General Category > Yeast and Fermentation

S04 Dry Yeast

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I just pitched two 11.5 gram packets (dry sprinkle) onto 5 gallons of 1.095 wort (specialty stout) after aerating (first time using a aquarium pump and stone that I boiled and then soaked in starsan solution).  I'm literally amazed... the airlock has started working after only one hour.   :o ;D   

I know S04 is fast but it has to have something to do with the aeration, I've never seen it start this fast.

S-04 is fast.  Expect it to chew through that 1.095 Stout in 3-4 days tops, at least the bulk of the fermentation.  Watch the temps too.  That much/fast of a fermentation will create some heat!  Let it sit for at least 3 weeks to clean up.  You'll be amazed by how the yeast packs. The high sedimentation is one of its strong points.  

Update: A quote for their web site:

A well-known, commercial English ale yeast, selected for its fast fermentation character and its ability to form a very compact sediment at the end of the fermentation, helping to improve beer clarity. This yeast is recommended for the production of a large range of ale beers and is specially well adapted to cask-conditioned ales and fermentation in cylindro-conical tanks. Sedimentation: high. Final gravity: medium.

S-04 is my go to yeast for stouts. It's good, it's easy, it's fast, it's an incredible floculator, it's cheap!

Some have mentioned an undesirable "bready" character . . I've not noticed . . or maybe it just compliments the style. Regardless, I like it.

What was your previous aeration technique?

I've always just let the cooled wort flow as fast as it could, splashing as much as possible into the fermenter, sometimes I used to shake the fermenter after (when using a bucket). 

Its definitely giving up some gas, not a whole lot but still I'm surprised that it is at all.  The airlock wobbles about once every couple of minutes.  I'm supposing it will start rocking pretty decent sometime in the early morning.  I guess time will tell.  I hope it finishes as good or better than the wort tasted... I've always thought the wort never tasted nearly as good as the beer but this time the wort is more than I expected tastewise.   8)


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