Harvesting Yeast

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Beer me up, Scotty!
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I am using Wyeast American Ale Liquid Yeast Culture in my next brew and I was wondering if anyone out there knows the most effective way to harvest the yeast from the brew so I can re-use the yeast in another batch? I have heard that a good way is to pitch the yeast, and then when the brew is bubbling nicely, draw off a tallie of beer, put an airlock in it and stick it in the fridge for storage. Another way I heard about is to pitch the yeast and then when it is bubbling, skim the krausen from the top of the brew and put that into a starter for storage. Yet another way is to do a starter when you are brewing your wort and then pitch a small amount of the yeast into the starter at the same time you pitch into your main wort, then when the starter is bubbling, stick it in the fridge. Then of course there is the "harvest from the sediment in the bottle" trick.

Does anybody know the best/most effective way??

Cheers - Steve :huh:
I do it a couple of different ways.
One is to make a large 2.5 litre starter from the bought liquid yeast vial. Then bottle two stubbies, cap and put in the fridge. With the remainder of the starter I pitch into the new beer.

If I don't have a couple of days to do that then I pitch the vial and when all is fermenting nicely I run off two stubbies, cap and put them in the fridge.
When I want to use them I take them out of the fridge and make a starter from them.

A word of warning. When you take them out of the fridge ease the cap of the stubbie up to let out just a little of the pressure. It will want to rush out of the bottle so you will need to ease the cap on and off carefully a number of times. If you don't do this you will have will be suprised how far a stubbie can project liquid. I use Crown Lager bottles, and haven't had any problems with starters in them.

Thanks, guys.

Doc, if you have to run off two stubbies from an existing brew, is there any risk of getting strange hop profiles in a subsequent brew that is a different recipe?

I am brewing tonight and as I don't have time to do a starter, I thought I might try and pitch, say, a quarter of my yeast pack into a bottle of DME wort, before I pitch the rest into the fermenter, and store that. I figure that because I'm using the new 125g Wyeast packet, which has 6-8 times the amount of yeast than the old ones, there will be a high enough cell count for me to do this. Whaddayarekun?

Never noticed any, but then I don't over hop either.

You could always wait until your starter had slowed right down and the yeast has dropped to the bottom of your starter container, then carefully pour off the liquid and pitch the slurry.


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