Author Topic: Been reading and Youtubing on how to harvest yeast  (Read 480 times)

Offline redrocker652002

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Been reading and Youtubing on how to harvest yeast
« on: May 13, 2022, 06:21:30 pm »
I am thinking of trying it.  Doesn't look that tough, just make sure everything is sanitized and be patient, something I have to learn a bit more of.  LOL.  Probably won't with this batch as I only have Sunday to keg it and get it in the kegerator.  Unless I can leave the sediment in the bucket for a few days and come back at it say, Wednesday?  If not, I will give it a try on the next batch and see.

Offline fredthecat

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Re: Been reading and Youtubing on how to harvest yeast
« Reply #1 on: May 13, 2022, 08:41:33 pm »
it's not rocket science at all. you pour yeast from one batch into a sanitized container (glass is nice), keep it at a reasonable temp (40s to low 60s is nice). when you have some fresh wort pour it in.

the issue comes when you need to estimate how much you need for X gallons of X gravity wort. ie. 5 gallons of 1.045 wort would need less than 5 gallons of 1.07 wort.

also people might have opinions or better advice on making a starter out of a yeast sample. but again, you'll end up making beer if you add some living yeast.

Offline Bob357

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Re: Been reading and Youtubing on how to harvest yeast
« Reply #2 on: May 14, 2022, 05:21:28 am »
As a rule, about 1/4 of the yeast cake is a reasonable pitch for a beer of the same gravity.
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Offline BrewBama

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Re: Been reading and Youtubing on how to harvest yeast
« Reply #3 on: May 14, 2022, 05:56:22 am »
The only issue that keeps me from yeast harvesting is the gap between harvest and reuse. I know plenty will say my concern is unfounded but I simply don’t brew often enough to reuse yeast. I don’t like to store yeast longer that 2-3 weeks.

Offline denny

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Re: Been reading and Youtubing on how to harvest yeast
« Reply #4 on: May 14, 2022, 08:33:12 am »
it's not rocket science at all. you pour yeast from one batch into a sanitized container (glass is nice), keep it at a reasonable temp (40s to low 60s is nice). when you have some fresh wort pour it in.

the issue comes when you need to estimate how much you need for X gallons of X gravity wort. ie. 5 gallons of 1.045 wort would need less than 5 gallons of 1.07 wort.

also people might have opinions or better advice on making a starter out of a yeast sample. but again, you'll end up making beer if you add some living yeast.

I put the slurry from a 5 gal. batch into 2 or 3 sanitized containers.  One of those is enough for a 5 gal. batch up to around 1.070.  Don't make it harder than it is.
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Offline Visor

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Re: Been reading and Youtubing on how to harvest yeast
« Reply #5 on: May 14, 2022, 05:15:10 pm »
  I don't know how much is left in your bucket after kegging, hopefully not much more than a quart or so. Assuming that's the case, as others have said, put it in one or more sanitized containers and stick it in the fridge. I'm with Bob in not liking to use yeast that much more than 2 or 3 weeks old, but I have gotten away with using yeast more than a month after harvest. If what you try doesn't work as well as you hoped, next time try something different. One suggestion though, if you're going to have more than one harvest on hand at a time, make sure you label each container with yeast type and harvest date. Probably ~90% of the beer I've brewed was done with harvested yeast, it really isn't much of a deal, you'll probably wind up overpitching most batches, but I'm not convinced that's such a bad thing.
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Offline narvin

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Re: Been reading and Youtubing on how to harvest yeast
« Reply #6 on: May 14, 2022, 05:35:27 pm »
I've made great beers with months old slurry reactivated in a starter.  I actually think whatever advantage fresh liquid yeast has (or a new pack of dry yeast) is more than made up for by the fact that the slurry has been through a real beer fermentation, and not grown up in low gravity propagator.  Just my experience.

Offline denny

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Re: Been reading and Youtubing on how to harvest yeast
« Reply #7 on: May 15, 2022, 08:22:42 am »
I've made great beers with months old slurry reactivated in a starter.  I actually think whatever advantage fresh liquid yeast has (or a new pack of dry yeast) is more than made up for by the fact that the slurry has been through a real beer fermentation, and not grown up in low gravity propagator.  Just my experience.

My ROT for slurry is within 3 weeks pitch direct, after that make a starter with some of it.
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Online Bel Air Brewing

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Re: Been reading and Youtubing on how to harvest yeast
« Reply #8 on: May 15, 2022, 11:45:57 am »
I've made great beers with months old slurry reactivated in a starter.  I actually think whatever advantage fresh liquid yeast has (or a new pack of dry yeast) is more than made up for by the fact that the slurry has been through a real beer fermentation, and not grown up in low gravity propagator.  Just my experience.

My ROT for slurry is within 3 weeks pitch direct, after that make a starter with some of it.

Yes, 3 weeks is a good time frame. If you can pitch within a day or two, even better.

We simply drain the yeast from the conical using the yeast dump valve. It goes into a gallon glass jug, and is stored at 33 degrees until it is needed.

Our Anvil SS fermenter has no dump feature, so we will literally dump the yeast into a large funnel which goes into a gallon glass jug.

The yeast slurry is hyper clean.

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Offline denny

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Re: Been reading and Youtubing on how to harvest yeast
« Reply #9 on: May 15, 2022, 11:47:55 am »
Be careful about getting that lid too tight.  I have had a yeast contaone explode in the fridge.  It may be slow, but it continues fermenting.
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Offline BrewBama

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Re: Been reading and Youtubing on how to harvest yeast
« Reply #10 on: May 15, 2022, 12:32:55 pm »
Put an airlock on it vs. the screw on cap.

Offline denny

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Re: Been reading and Youtubing on how to harvest yeast
« Reply #11 on: May 15, 2022, 12:38:03 pm »
Put an airlock on it vs. the screw on cap.

I use jars with the lid only partially tightened.
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Online Bel Air Brewing

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Re: Been reading and Youtubing on how to harvest yeast
« Reply #12 on: May 15, 2022, 12:46:46 pm »
Put an airlock on it vs. the screw on cap.

I use jars with the lid only partially tightened.

The lid is loose, so any CO2 can easily escape. Sometimes aluminum foil is used to cover the bottle opening.

I also use jars, with a loose lid:
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Offline redrocker652002

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Re: Been reading and Youtubing on how to harvest yeast
« Reply #13 on: May 15, 2022, 01:20:30 pm »
What I saw on Youtube was they boiled water, brought it to room temp.  Added the water to the slurry and let it separate.  Poured the top part, the somewhat cloudy stuff, into mason jars and let it sit.  I am planning on using a hop bag for my next brew so that there is not so much hop material in the left over trub.  Would it be ok to just pour it in, as is, into a container and let it sit in the fridge until needed?  Or do I need to add water, separate and pour into containers.  Here is the youtube video I saw. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g7q5P9kEsX0

Offline denny

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Re: Been reading and Youtubing on how to harvest yeast
« Reply #14 on: May 15, 2022, 02:03:38 pm »
What I saw on Youtube was they boiled water, brought it to room temp.  Added the water to the slurry and let it separate.  Poured the top part, the somewhat cloudy stuff, into mason jars and let it sit.  I am planning on using a hop bag for my next brew so that there is not so much hop material in the left over trub.  Would it be ok to just pour it in, as is, into a container and let it sit in the fridge until needed?  Or do I need to add water, separate and pour into containers.  Here is the youtube video I saw. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g7q5P9kEsX0

Don't do that.  You will remove the protective layer from the yeast and weaken it.  Just cover the slurry with some beer from the fermenters.  We used to have a poster here who went by Saccharomyces and was a "yeast whisperer".  Here's what he said about rinsing yeast...

Basically, it has always been a bad move that has been difficult to kill because every newbie wants to gain some street cred by publishing an article on yeast rinsing. Do you want to know where the practice of rinsing yeast with boiled water originated within the amateur brewing community?  Charlie Papazian introduced it in the “New Complete Joy of Homebrewing” (it may even date back to an earlier publication of that book).  He also promoted the use of a secondary fermentation vessel as a way to prevent autolysis. While using a secondary fermentation vessel to prevent autolysis has gone the way of the do-do bird, amateur brewers still cling to yeast rinsing, a practice that is not based on science and provides no microbiological advantage. 

Brewing yeast strains are Crabtree postiive. What that means is that whenever the medium gravity is above the Crabtree threshold of 0.2% w/v (an S.G. of 1.0008), brewing yeast cultures will chose fermentation over respiration even in the prescence of O2. There is scientific evidence that brewing cultures became Crabtree positive due to competitive pressure. You see, the main reason why we have cell counts in the first place is that they are primarily a safeguard against a micro-oganism other than the pitched yeast culture owning the wort. From the time a yeast culture is pitched until the culture grows large enough to reach high krausen, it is in competition for ownership of the wort with wild microflora (boiled wort is not absolutely sterile and sanitization is not a synonym for sterilization). A yeast culture owns a batch of wort by doing three things. First, it consumes all of the dissolved O2, shutting out aerobic microflora. It then lowers the pH to around 4, which shuts out pH sensitive microflora. The pH sensitive microflora include the pathogen Clostridium botulinum, which cannot replicate below a pH of 4.6.  The final defense that a yeast culture mounts is the production of ethanol, which is toxic to all living organism at a given level, even human beings (i.e., people die from alcohol poisoning every day).

When a brewer rinses yeast with boiled water, he/she removes the protective force field that a yeast culture built for itself, basically opening it up to infection from house microflora while providing zero microbiological advantage. A yeast culture does not need to be kept free from trub and hop particulate matter. It is needs to be kept as free from wild microflora as possible because every time a culture is pitched it is an opportunity for microflora other than the culture to replicate.  This reality is what places an upper limit on bottom-cropped yeast more so that any other other reason when a yeast culture is not serially overpitched. 

Now, top-cropping an interesting take on cropping. While the top-cropped yeast should also be stored under green beer, top-cropping naturally purifies a yeast culture because wild microflora do not floc to the top, which means that top-cropped yeast can be re-pitched almost indefinitely as long as care is taken to not infect the culture.  The sad thing is that I have never heard of true top-cropping lager yeast.

If you need further evidence that yeast rinsing an amateur brewer fabrication that is not based on microbiology, watch how a craft or industrial brewery bottom crops yeast.  They either pump it out of the cone into a yeast brink for temporary storage or into a fermentation vessel with fresh wort.  I have yet to see a professional brewery rinse yeast with water before repitching it.

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