1 beer, 2 yeasts

I am planning an experiment for my next beer. I need some guidance though. I only have about 15 brews under my belt and have really only used dry yeast. And even at that I have only used Nottingham and US-05. I am going to make a 10 gallon batch next time and I will split it between 2 5 gallon fermenters. I want to use a different yeast in each fermenter to demonstrate the difference that yeast makes in the process. I will be making a very simple beer, probably a SMASH. Probably a simple 2 row malt and I have not decided on the hops yet.

So my question to you all is if I want a good demonstration of the impact of the yeast, what 2 yeasts would be good to use?

If you have the capability, you could use an ale yeast (US05) and a lager yeast (S-23 or 34/70). You could also consider a pretty neutral yeast (US05) and one of the Belgian strains. Or even contrast countries (German vs. English, British vs. US, etc).

Well, I don’t have the ability to lager. So I will be doing ales. I kind of want to stay away from US-05 and Nottingham because I have used them both all along. I would like to try 2 yeasts that I have never used. But I am looking for 2 that will be sure to have noticeable differences in results.

Even though you want to stay away from US-05, what about using a fairly clean yeast (like -05) and something estery, like vermont ale yeast? I think those two would be a fantastic comparison in a SMaSH APA/IPA wort. Or something like a hefeweizen yeast and a clean yeast in a wheat base.

The suggestion above to try a Belgian in contrast to something else would be awesome, too!

You could do a 34/70 lager yeast at ale temperatures and WB-06, or T-58. My guess with 34/70 if kept in the 60’s it will be pretty clean the closer to 70 and higher you will probably get more fruitiness. I had 34/70 start around 50f and over 3 days get to 80f and it stayed fairly clean with just a touch of fruit.

I did the same thing with a session IPA I brewed recently- Nottingham in one carboy and a Belgian I cultured from a bottle of Prairie Hop BPA in the other. Great contrast. If you want a dry yeast, try Belle Saison. It’s a little tamer than others I’ve used, but still good.

Seeing as you have so far only used dry yeasts, I would think you should stick with dry yeasts for this test. That will eliminate variations in preparations that could result in different pitch rates which would muddy the results.
Do you like wheat beers? Because making a wheat beer and pitching WB-06 in half, then pitching almost any “neutral” ale yeast in the other half will give you the most dramatic example of the impact of yeast strain.
In theory you could do the same thing with Belgian vs. neutral strain, but I don’t know of a good dry Belgian strain.

I never cared for wheat beers. So I will be steering clear of that idea. I cant make 10 gallons of something I don’t love.

I thought the same for years. What I don’t like are wheat beer yeasts. Prime example: Lagunitas little Sumpin Sumpin… A wheat beer, but doesn’t taste like you expect.

I understand that, but you would be surprised. Almost everything about the character that most people associate with wheat beer is due to the yeast strain. A wheat beer fermented with US-05 or similar tastes like a blond ale.

In that case maybe just do a couple “out there” 1 gallon batches and a couple “pretty sure you will like” 4 gallon batches out of that 10 gallons.

I’ve used Coopers ale yeast and Safebrew S-33 is the old Edme strain which is fairly neutral but different than Notty, Coopers has a slight woody flavor. I liked them both and they are both different than the others, also they are dry yeast

I do this all the time but I use 2 yeast that are close to see the difference. For example wlp 001 cal ale and wlp 090 san diego super yeast. Or 001 and 007 one American and one is English but a cleaner English. Now that I can larger I want to do a Batch of Pilsner but half will get saison yeast. That would be closer to what you looking to do. It really depends on the recipe that you use and what yeast will work.

I like doing double batches. What I usually do though is split the runnings for example 60% 40% first run then 40% 60% second. This way you make two different beers. I will make saison in one Belgian in other. Or a IPA in one and a Belgian. Or a IPA and an APA . It’s an efficient way to knock out two beers. Soon as you start chilling the first start the next boil. I have extra burners so I have tried boiling simultaneously but unless you have help it gets confusing, at least for me anyway.

I will be doing a single 10 gallon batch that I will mix well so that I have 2 5 gallon fermenters that have identical contents. I really want to experience the difference due to the yeast only. I am not going to go down the wheat road because I want to make sure that I am making something that I like to start with. Don’t want to add variables. So this will be a 2 row SMASH brew and I think I will use Chinook hops. Only because I like the name Chinook. It just sounds cool and I liked the beers that I have made in the past that used it.

That makes sense, but be aware that when you add a lot of hops, it can overwhelm the other flavors in the beer. Simply put, yeast strain isn’t nearly as important in an IPA as it is in a blond ale. In the IPA, you want the yeast to stay totally in the background so it doesn’t clash with the hops, but if it doesn’t it can still be hard to pick out. With a blond ale, you might want to get esters from the yeast to complement the malt and keep the hops in the background. Or not. It depends on what you are trying to achieve.

The SMaSH is a good idea, but think about using something less assertive than Chinook. EKG, williamette, Styrian Goldens, anything Noble, or even Northern Brewer or Magnum would allow you better discrimination of the yeast contribution.

OK, good advice. I will choose a less aggressive hop.

Danstar Belle Saison is a great dry yeast, and they just came out with an abbey ale yeast also. One of those would be great to use, then maybe S-04?

(I do split batches all the time, it mixes things up)