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Question Danstar - London ESB Ale Yeast


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#1 thumbsucker

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Posted 30 December 2016 - 07:34 PM

Two weeks ago I brewed an all grain ESB. Volume 45 litres with an OG of 1070, I pitched two packets of Danstar - London ESB Ale Yeast directly into the fermenter no hydration or starter.  :o

 

The fermentation has been going steady gas still bubbling away slowly.

 

After two weeks the hydrometer reads a steady 1030 measured a few days apart. A 40 point drop. Giving the current ABV of about 5.25%

 

I do not have temp control yet so I stored it under the staircase sitting on the concrete slab the temp got no higher then 24c even when it was 38 plus outside.

 

This is my first time using Danstar - London ESB Ale Yeast - I have use their other dry yeast with great success.

 

Now from my understanding Danstar - London ESB Ale Yeast is a medium attenuating strain and should leave a bit of residual sweetness.

 

It does not taste cloying but it is on the sweeter side. I like it.

 

It is a relatively new yeast strain so maybe there is not allot of experience with this strain. 

 

Since the hydrometer is steady at 1030 I am considering pitching a packet of say Danstar - Nottingham Ale Yeast, to drive it down to say 1015.

 

Or is this part and parcel of this yeast which I believe to be related to 1968 London ESB Ale Yeast from Wyeast? The guy from Grain & Grape said that he was a diehard 1968 London ESB Ale Yeast fan but he now considers the Danstar - London ESB Ale Yeast just as good.

 

 

 

Brewing Properties:

* London ESB yeast is best used at a fermentation temperature range of 18-22degC (65-72degF). Fermentation is generally completed in 3-5 days dependent on recipe and process conditions. * Attenuation range 65-75% * Fermentation rate, fermentation time and degree of attenuation are dependent upon inoculation density, yeast handling, fermentation temperature and nutritional quality of the wort. * Produces a clean, well balanced ale. Medium attenuation preserves some beer complexity. Best for well-balanced British style ales.

 

THOUGHTS?


Edited by thumbsucker, 30 December 2016 - 07:49 PM.


#2 Jaded and Bitter

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Posted 31 December 2016 - 12:54 AM

What was your mash temperature?

 

What did your Iodine test look like? colour?

 

What was your mash pH?

 

How well did you oxygenate it?

 

You should have rehydrated your yeast.

 

How cold did it get before it stopped? 1968 can floc out if it drops to 17-18.

 

Thats 55% apparent attenuation, I have got that with 1968 mashing at 69 deg but with an OG of 1.036.

 

Try and answer the questions above.

 

If the yeast has flocked out you could try to break up the yeast cake, if its like 1968 it will be really tight and you will need to use something to break it apart and mix back in (not just gently swish/rock the fermenter around).

 

I'd rehydrate and pitch a pack of notto though and see if it will at least drop to 1.020.



#3 thumbsucker

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Posted 11 January 2017 - 08:54 PM

I am a novice brewer, I am still learning and I am not fully equiped, I cannot control temp and am at the mercy of the weather it is possible it dropped below 18c, I do have some litmus paper but did not record the ph and iodine is something that I have not done yet tending to rely on the refractometer only. As I said I am still learning.

 

I discussed this problem with my brewing mate and we have concluded that the combination of mashing too high 68c and the overuse of crystal malts 15% in the recipe is the likely cause of the residual sweetness. 

 

I tried agitating the yeast. Using a racking cane I  tried to break up the yeast cake, however their was no tight yeast sediment and it did not rouse the yeast back to life.

 

We added another packet of yeast but that did not get anything going. I can only summit that the residual sugars are to long for saccharomyces yeast, therefor we have decided to pitch a vial of WLP645 Brettanomyces claussenii and to leave it for 2 months. My mate feels this will fully attenuate the beer and I feel it will give me a very traditional real cask ale ESB. Since WLP645 Brettanomyces claussenii was originally isolated from strong English stock beer, in the early 20th century.

 

I will post back in two months with if it worked out.



#4 Camo6

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Posted 11 January 2017 - 10:31 PM

Look up 'forced ferment test'. Basically you ferment a small sample of the beer at higher temps to see if it's finished.
Sounds like a bit of an underpitch with only 2 packs into 45l of high gravity beer but a high mash temp is gonna have an effect too.
If you can't get a sample to drop any lower I'd say you may want to blend it with a dry beer and avoid bottling it to be safe.


Missed the bit about Brett: will probably turn into a ripper beer you'll never be able to replicate!

Edited by Camo6, 11 January 2017 - 10:32 PM.


#5 GalBrew

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Posted 12 January 2017 - 07:33 AM

I am a novice brewer, I am still learning and I am not fully equiped, I cannot control temp and am at the mercy of the weather it is possible it dropped below 18c, I do have some litmus paper but did not record the ph and iodine is something that I have not done yet tending to rely on the refractometer only. As I said I am still learning.

I discussed this problem with my brewing mate and we have concluded that the combination of mashing too high 68c and the overuse of crystal malts 15% in the recipe is the likely cause of the residual sweetness.

I tried agitating the yeast. Using a racking cane I tried to break up the yeast cake, however their was no tight yeast sediment and it did not rouse the yeast back to life.

We added another packet of yeast but that did not get anything going. I can only summit that the residual sugars are to long for saccharomyces yeast, therefor we have decided to pitch a vial of WLP645 Brettanomyces claussenii and to leave it for 2 months. My mate feels this will fully attenuate the beer and I feel it will give me a very traditional real cask ale ESB. Since WLP645 Brettanomyces claussenii was originally isolated from strong English stock beer, in the early 20th century.

I will post back in two months with if it worked out.


You can't dump fresh packet of yeast into a 5% ABV beer and expect it to do much of anything really let alone attenuate the last bit of your beer. Your problems most likely have nothing to do with mash temps or crystal malts but the fact that quite a few of the 'ESB' style British yeasts will drop out around the 1.020 mark unless you pay attention to them. No doubt the fact that you underpitched combined with no temp control (once fermentation slows down you need to increase the temp a bit to ensure full attenuation with these yeasts) will be the issue here. There are plenty of threads on how to coax these yeasts to completion, just look up s-04 it's a classic stopper at 1.020.

#6 Midnight Brew

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Posted 12 January 2017 - 08:20 AM

For learning sake you should brew it again and try

1. Lower the mash temp to 67-66
2. Oxygenate the wort (I think this will be the most significant difference)
3. Use a yeast starter*

*never liked dried yeast in my beers so experience lacks me from further comment. I use liquid cultures and always make a starter.

Can't stress enough how important yeast health is and providing them with the right conditions to ferment your beer. Even though you are a novice, I highly recommend you read a copy of Yeast by Chris White. Doesn't matter what skill level your brewing is at. Read it, digest it and then read it again.

Where abouts in Melbourne are you? Melbourne brewers have monthly meetings in ferntree gully in the eastern suburbs. They have a library of brewing books you can borrow.

#7 GalBrew

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Posted 12 January 2017 - 11:03 AM

An appropriate pitch for the volume and gravity of beer you made would be 3 rehydrated packs or 6 straight pitched. Even with an appropriate pitch it still may have dropped out early without temp control. If you plan to keep brewing without temp control try some American or Belgian yeasts that aren't as temp sensitive.