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Did I kill my yeast?

Last weekend, I harvested the yeast (Wyeast Neobritannica) from a batch of beer and ended up with three one-pint mason jars with about .5 inch of yeast at the bottom. I checked on them yesterday only to discover that one of the jars started to freeze. The water at the top froze but the ice didn’t quite get to the bottom where the yeast is. There’s about an inch of (very cold) water between the yeast and the ice on top.

I moved the jar to a less-cold part of the fridge and am slowly thawing the ice. I still have two jars of yeast that didn’t freeze so it’s no great loss if this one is lost. But I’m a cheapskate and hate to throw out good yeast. Is it possible that the yeast is OK?

best way to find out is make a starter. you could always chill & decant if it’s still good. or brew an appropriate style!

I have a friend bought a bunch of different styles in smack packs. without thinking, he put them into the freezer with his hops. he remembered them the next day. they were all frozen.

I think you will be fine, but definitely make a starter

Sounds like a good plan. I’ll make a starter and see what happens.


I don’t see a benefit to making a starter for this one jar. You have 2 others to use. When you use them, you can harvest the yeast from those fermenters. So those would be generation 2.

It wont kill you. But it’s time and a little bit of money to make the starter when you have 2 viable jars of yeast available.

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