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P:itching Washed Yeast No Starter?

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chefeffect

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I have been washing yeast for awhile and I usually make 1 lt starters to ensure the yeast is healthy especially when it's a few months old.

I made a beer 2 days ago and as I have too busy I just pitched 2 of my washed yeast samples which would be about 50ml. The yeast was 3 months old and seems to be fermenting fine and has the beginnings of a decent krausen. Just wondering if anyone just pitches straight washed yeast, Mr Malty calculator said I should pitch around 400ml of yeast at 3 months old instead of the recommended 50ml. I am aware of the basic's of under pitching, just wondering if 50ml of really well washed yeast is enough, and does the age really change the yeast that much? I mean there is a lot of conflicting info out there, just wanting someone who just pitches washed yeast to give me some advice.

My second question is I usually end up with 4 or 5 Grolsch bottles with about 20-40mls of yeast depending on the type of beer etc etc, just wondering if I should be getting more yeast and if I am being overly cautious about not getting hops and other sediment in the first wash?
 

Wolfy

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According to my calculation-spreadsheet, I'd be looking to pitch about 80-100ml of freshly harvested yeast.
Even after about 2 weeks storage you get a significant amount of yeast cells dying, so after 3 months, you probably only have a very small portion of your yeast still alive - the age of the sample makes a huge difference.
While there is some conflicting information about how much to pitch and how to estimate yeast cell counts, I am not aware of much conflicting information as to how long yeast can be stored for. Store washed yeast for more than about 2 weeks and you really should be making a starter to grow healthy new cells before pitching.

Edit: I'm assuming you are talking about rinsing yeast in water, not acid washing.
If I wash the entire yeast-cake with long-term-storage in mind, I usually end up with 3-4 stubbies with about 20-30ml of yeast in the bottom - which is the same as your results. However, since you need to make a starter after storing the yeast for some time, generally the only time I'll wash yeast is if I want to pitch a large amount of clean fresh yeast directly into the next batch of beer.
 

chefeffect

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Hey Wolfy,

Thanks for that, yeah I will revert to making starters again as I don't see the point in risking each brew by under pitching, just wanted to see if there was an easier process. I had heard people washing yeast and just pitching that, obviously they use the yeast relatively quick after the washing process.

Yes I rinse my yeast in water, I'm also glad to hear that's the amount of yeast you end up with. I have watched a few videos on yeast washing and some of those end up with what looks like about a 1/4 of a mason jar which seemed a lot more than I get. I guess they end up with a fair bit of hops and trub. The conflicting info was in regards to the yeast count, again I will just make starters.

My brew is going well but don't really want to go through the worry of wondering if its going to ferment well, especially when there is about $30 worth of hops in it. :rolleyes:

Cheers.
 

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