Restarting Liquid Yeast

Australia & New Zealand Homebrewing Forum

Help Support Australia & New Zealand Homebrewing Forum:

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.


Well-Known Member
Reaction score

I made up some starters from a Wyeast 1275 back in September, pulled one out to use last Friday.
Made up a 1 litre starter as usual instructions from the Batz thread.
The weather was a bit cooler (10c at night, 15c day) and it wasn't taking off as usual. Minimal krausen, little sediment in the demijohn, few yeasties visible in the wort.
Kept shakin the shit out of it and put it in a bucket of 20c water to try and save the situation, marginal improvement.
Pitched a litre on Sunday late morning anyway - no backup dried yeast - into 20 litres @ 15c
No action Monday night, gave it a stir and turned the heat pad on :unsure:
Tuesday night, wort at 20c, good krausen - big relief - turned heatpad off :)
Wednesday night, wort at 18c , great krausen - solvent aroma and taste :(

Two questions
Do I allow longer for my starters to become active as they get older ?

I'm worried about the solventy aroma, taste. Could I have a bad lot of yeast - didn't smell off when I made up the starter. Or has the lag in fermentation been the problem ?

batch was
1.8kg LME,
mini mash 200gm amber, 100gm crystal, 20gm chocolate
added 100gm wheat DME and 100m brown sugar
9 litre boil for hour with
60 min 20gm Super Alpha,
30 min 10gm Green bullet
15 min 10gm Green bullet & Irish Moss

Hmmm .. it wouldn't be the hops would it .. first time I've tried that combination ?
Hmm, now I remember why I left Wellington. 10 degrees in the middle of Summer.

Answer to Q1. Most definitely. If the yeast has been in the fridge more than a few months, it can take a long time to get going. If I am brewing at the weekend and I know the yeast is oldish I make the starter on Tuesday.

Answer to Q2. Depends really what you mean by solventy. Ive used both super alpha and green bullet and they are strong hops, in high concentrations they taste citrusy and grassy without being grapefruity to me. Wouldnt really say solventy.

Sounds like you have done the right things so far, keep going and hope for the best. Note that 1275 is quite sulphury for an ale yeast, dont get worried if you smell that.
Thanks GL, there was a healthy fall of hail in Christchurch the other day too.
But, nice day yesterday - a whopping 17c !

Sounds like I need to get this Sundays brew starter organised tonight then.
I'd planned a stout but the only source of flaked barley I could find is out of stock

I'll pop the lid again tonight and have another sniff - I haven't had many off smells in the past so my pick of it or my description could be out

Could also be the yeast - I haven't had it as high as 20c in the past so is it likely the higher temp has helped produce sulpher ?

Cheers & Beers and may Santa be generous to you all !
Even below 20 degrees, 1275 is very sulphury. I do 40 l batches split with different yeasts. Sometimes I have to label the fermenter with which yeast is which. Unless one is 1275, then I just sniff the airlocks at any temp and at any stage of fermentation and pick it straight away.

Maybe change from a dry stout to an oatmeal stout - instant oats can be had from any supermarket unlike flaked barley. There is a really good oatmeal stout thread on this site. Just bottled my version.
GL, it's not Rotorua, but it is sulphur which is a releif :)

The extra rousing on Monday must've done it some good as it's trying to get out the airlock ! haven't had that big a ferment with the W1275 before

Got Sundays starter underway last night, temeperatures are a few degrees warmer this week, might step it up a litre tonight to keep it going and get a couple of extra stubbies from it.

I'll be keeping away from the supermarket today, looks like it's going to be crazy out there. I'll revert to the srandard bitter recipe for Sunday.

Cheers & Beers and may Santa be generous to you all !

Latest posts