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Kit Yeasts Revisited

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wyane

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While I'm yet to get into the liquid yeasts, have done some great brews with us-05 recently. But what to do with all those left over kit yeasts from the Colesworse "on special" tooheys and coopers kits?

I was chucking the Tooheys yeast in the bin and using 2 Coopers packs for some heavier ales. But recently experimented with some pale & amber ales using 1x 7g Coopers original series kit yeast plus 1 x 5g Tooheys kit yeast.

The heavier ale (OG1050) stalled but I got a couple of ok batches starting with lighter worts, 1040 OG > 1008 FG over two brews and they taste ok.
The hop flavours are no where near as fruity as with US-05, more bitterness, not quite as clean but they're fine brews.

Not sure if anyone might have combined these yeasts but there you go ... comments and life's lessons appreciated :beerbang:
 

Amber Fluid

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I have sinse made the move to AG but still have about a dozen or so kit yeast.
I just use them as a nutrient.
 

kalbarluke

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Kit yeasts have a bad reputation on this site but if you can't get good yeasts (or couldn't be bothered spending the extra money) then they are okay to use IMPO.

I've recently been experimenting with old kit yeasts I have kept in my fridge. I made a nice dark lager with two Coopers pilsner yeasts. I kept it at 14 deg and it came out very clean. I just made a quick kit lawnmower lager with two packs of morgan's lager yeast (also known as mauribrew). Brewed for 12 days at 18 deg. Seemed to taste pretty good out of the fermenter.

These beers would obviously taste better with more expensive yeast but they have come out a lot better than most people on this forum would believe. In the future I will make an ale using mauribrew ale yeast and may even use the yeast I got from a Coopers Irish Stout.
 

slash22000

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These beers would obviously taste better with more expensive yeast but they have come out a lot better than most people on this forum would believe.
This is a key point that some people seem to miss.

I live in the middle of nowhere so I don't have any access to special yeast etc. I looked into buying some online but damn it's expensive, especially once you factor in postage.

I've been brewing with Coopers kit ale yeast exclusively since Day 1. I don't have any way to compare my homebrew to others, I'm sure much much better homebrew exists and I'm sure it would taste a lot better with nicer yeast and temperature control etc.

Thing is, my benchmark is the slabs of megapiss I used to drink before I got into brewing and my "Ew, extract", "Ew, kit yeast", "Ew, no temperature control" beer comes out on top every single time. Obviously, for pros with access to brewing fridges and well stocked brewstores 5 minutes way etc, there's no reason to use kit yeast (aside from the cost and convenience), but I know that when I first started brewing I was almost completely put off by the "No kit yeast no extract all-grain only" attitudes I found around the internet.

TL;DR Super complicated all-grain temperature controlled $20 superyeast beers > kit yeast prehopped extract beer > 99% of commercial swill. It's not "Kit yeast, might as well throw it out".
 

Yob

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I'm glad you are not suggesting that your beer could not be better with temp control or a specialty yeast.

"Your" beer will be as good as you need it to be.
 

JDW81

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when I first started brewing I was almost completely put off by the "No kit yeast no extract all-grain only" attitudes I found around the internet.
Thats the internet mate, its par for the course. Look on any forum site and you'll be bombarded by purists who say unless you drink espresso made from fair trade, organic, single origin beans, on a hand pumped espresso machine* then you don't know anything about coffee. Same thing with just about everything else. I'm training a dog at the moment, you should see some of the shite people say on the dog training websites. Bell ends the lot of 'em.

If you're happy with your beers then there is no reason to change, and all the purists can cry into their triple decocted bohemian pilsners.

If on the off chance you do want to try a different yeast there are quite a few dry yeast brands (Danstar and Fermintis, who make the very popular US05) that are cheap, easy to find and easy to use. Check out one of the sponsor sites and I'm sure they're be able to mail you a few packs for bugger all.

If you like the results that you're getting (and by the sounds of it you do) then by all means tell me to bugger off, I promise I won't be offended. After all this is the internet and we can all hide behind the anonymity of our less than imaginative user names.

Happy brewing!! :icon_cheers:

JD

*Disclaimer: I own a hand pump espresso machine, and drink short blacks. I don't use organic, fair-trade, single origin beans, that would make me a coffee wanker ;)
 

Feldon

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Thing is, my benchmark is the slabs of megapiss I used to drink before I got into brewing...
Wise words.

So many experienced and talented AG brewers seem to forget that they probably (like almost everyone) came to the hobby with no knowledge of how beer is made and what it is made of, and with little or no experience of what beer tastes like beyond what is on tap at the local pub.
 

hoppy2B

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12 months ago I did a Coopers Real Ale can to 23 litres with no additions using the kit yeast. Fermented at ambient temps outside on a table in the shade. Most days were in the mid to high twenties with temps peaking at 35 degrees. Night temps were probably average. I swear it tasted exactly like Coopers Ale from the bottlo. :lol:
 

wyane

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Thing is, my benchmark is the slabs of megapiss I used to drink before I got into brewing and my "Ew, extract", "Ew, kit yeast", "Ew, no temperature control" beer comes out on top every single time.
Well said. Does wet tea-towels count as temperature control? :D
Starting a mate on his homebrew journey this weekend as my "ew, extract" beers are miles better (in his opinion) to the megapiss swill.
 

mfeighan

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add in the last 10-15 mins of the boil, kills the yeast and is nutrient for the other yeast you add post boil/chill
 

pcmfisher

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IMHO unless you have temperature control ie, not too hot and not up and down, you might as well just use the kit yeast.
I think they are more forgiving.
 

RobboMC

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Lately Coopers have been selling recipe kits that include a dried commercial yeast like US-05 or similar. I'd expect they are buying it by the pallet to add to their packs. Usually each month one recipe pack is offered with free postage within Australia.

Now I'm not saying you MUST brew the recipe pack as they present it, but this is a great way to collect up decent dried yeast and plenty of Coopers extract cans if you live in the middle of nowhere. ( I assume Australia Post can find you )

The site sponsors also do pretty decent freight deals if you buy enough ingredients for 2 full brews. If you get 2 extract cans and 2 kg of malt all shipped together then the acompanying hops and yeast are pretty much freight free. I've done this both from Craftbrewer and The Brew Shop and the freight ends up being minimal over the whole brew.
 

MHB

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Snip
I live in the middle of nowhere so I don't have any access to special yeast etc. I looked into buying some online but damn it's expensive, especially once you factor in postage.
just a quick one on this I and I suspect any other retailer can easily stick half a dozen packets of any of the dry yeasts in an envelope and post it anywhere in Australia for (well a prepaid C4 envelope is $1.30) 8 cents a packet, just ask and Im sure whoever you buy from will be happy to help.

Im actually quite a fan of both of the common Australian dried yeasts (Mauri 514 and 497) and find it quite amusing that they get sold as premium imports in other countries and get the snot bagged out of them here.
Both are good clean hard working yeast and will produce excellent beer, all be it with very little in the way of yeast esters which is often far from a bad thing in a lot of cases.
If you are trying to produce reasonable beer under conditions where you dont have good temperature control, or as is often the case none, they are the first yeasts I would recommend.
That said the amount that comes with most kits is ridiculously small and you really need 2-4 times what the kit comes with. The manufacturer recommends 50-80g/hL (100L) so 12.5-20g/25L.
Mark
 

manticle

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I always assumed the reason it's recommended to ditch the kit yeast was due to storage and pitching amount issues as opposed to anything actually being wrong with the strain.
7g under the lid in a warm shop for a few months isn't ideal but presumably fresh and pitched appropriately, I'd expect decent results, all else being equal.
 

slash22000

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just a quick one on this I and I suspect any other retailer can easily stick half a dozen packets of any of the dry yeasts in an envelope and post it anywhere in Australia for (well a prepaid C4 envelope is $1.30) 8 cents a packet, just ask and I'm sure whoever you buy from will be happy to help.

I'm actually quite a fan of both of the common Australian dried yeasts (Mauri 514 and 497) and find it quite amusing that they get sold as premium imports in other countries and get the snot bagged out of them here.
Both are good clean hard working yeast and will produce excellent beer, all be it with very little in the way of yeast esters which is often far from a bad thing in a lot of cases.
If you are trying to produce reasonable beer under conditions where you don't have good temperature control, or as is often the case none, they are the first yeasts I would recommend.
That said the amount that comes with most kits is ridiculously small and you really need 2-4 times what the kit comes with. The manufacturer recommends 50-80g/hL (100L) so 12.5-20g/25L.
Mark
Wow, that is all great news! I always end up paying $15+ on postage even for fairly small items, it makes it hard to justify the purchases when you're practically doubling the price of the yeast through postage etc.

I've never heard of these Mauri yeasts, but a decent high tolerance yeast is exactly what I need. I will definitely look into grabbing some!
 

Feldon

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Im actually quite a fan of both of the common Australian dried yeasts (Mauri 514 and 497) and find it quite amusing that they get sold as premium imports in other countries and get the snot bagged out of them here.
Both are good clean hard working yeast and will produce excellent beer, all be it with very little in the way of yeast esters which is often far from a bad thing in a lot of cases.
If you are trying to produce reasonable beer under conditions where you dont have good temperature control, or as is often the case none, they are the first yeasts I would recommend.
That said the amount that comes with most kits is ridiculously small and you really need 2-4 times what the kit comes with. The manufacturer recommends 50-80g/hL (100L) so 12.5-20g/25L.
Mark
Mark,
Do you think that the lower pitching rate of 6g/23L is because of the relatively lower pressure in the fermentor compared to a commercial operation?

I was wondering if the Mauri yeast data sheet recommends a higher pitching rate because it is aimed the bigger volume operations and takes into account the higher pressures at depth that the yeast would experience. Would the lower pressure in a homebrew mean less yeast could be pitched?
 

MHB

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There are two answers I could give, the calm rational one is: -
For about 20 years the price of home brew kits in supermarkets barely budged (only 2-3 dollars in all that time), this means that there was very little profit in kit manufacture and that the makers had to watch every cent so they put in the minimum amount possible to do the job and anyway home brewers are only interested in the price, not the quality -right!
The other part of me wants to rip them a new one and tell them to lift their game but saying that here that preaching to the choir - and anyway home brewers are only interested in the price, not the quality - right!

Mind you if I was manufacturing kits aimed at supermarkets where 80% of the customers want Cheap Piss there is a very good chance you would find a 6-7g sachet under the lid. I hope the instructions would be a bit better and that using more/better yeast would be recommended, but we have to remember that we are a very small part of the market.

Intrinsically I believe the yeasts in question are very good yeast, the are often the best yeast for the job and we shouldnt reflexively slag them out, I cant think of a better choice for an Australian summer pale ale or light pilsner where you just want a nice clean easy to drink refresher on a hot day
Try an all pilsner/pale malt beer at about 1.045-50, just bittered to 15-20 IBU and fermented with 495 at about 1g/L, ferment at 13-15oC, lager for 2 weeks at -1oC (can throw some green apple will clear during maturation), if you want to bottle rack cold allow to warm add priming sugar and some 514 for bottle condition and enjoy. An excellent little Aussie Lager for summer and pretty cheap to make, 514 is a great bottling yeast that wont throw any flavour.
Same as above for a summer ale just use 514 at 0.5g/l bottle condition for 3-4 weeks and hook in.
Mark
 

super_simian

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I always assumed the reason it's recommended to ditch the kit yeast was due to storage and pitching amount issues as opposed to anything actually being wrong with the strain.
7g under the lid in a warm shop for a few months isn't ideal but presumably fresh and pitched appropriately, I'd expect decent results, all else being equal.
OK, for the record I agree with the above statement, but I am wondering. Would someone with the time and capacity be willing to do the experiment for real. 100l of wort: 25l with S05 (control); 25l 514; 25l Coopers; 25l 497? All at 17C and we get to hear the results?
 

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