Friday, April 11, 2008

Yeast from a starter

Recently, a reader named "papa" left a comment on an old post about recovering yeast from a bottle. He asked if one could split the yeast from a starter smack pack.

The answer is yes. I have done this, sort of. Instead of taking yeast from a smack pack, I take it from the starter. I make a yeast starter and pitch about 80% of it into the beer. I pour the rest into a completely sanitized beer bottle, cap it and store it in the refrigerator until it is time to make another starter.

Some people can their mini starter solutions in mason jars. I think it is easier to put about 6 ounces of starter solution into a beer bottle.

This can survive for a few weeks (maybe months) in the fridge as long as it doesn't freeze. There are spots in my fridge that get too cold. I'm not sure if the yeast are still viable after being frozen. I've elected to not bother with those.

I've been able to stretch a smack pack to 4-5 batches.


the incomparable mjenks said...

split infinitive...tearing me...asunder!

rangermonk said...

You could also culture the yeast in slants or on petri dishes. Though slants would be easier to seal.