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First Yeast Starter Help

Making a starter for an Imp Stout. 1300mL water and 3/4C DME. Boiled for 15 minutes and poured into flask only to have around 800mL “wort” now. Should i top with boiled and cooled water or just pitch yeast into this amount of water. Is this much boil off expected?? Gas Stove, large saucepan were used… Anyhelp ASAP would be great!


Just a WAG but you’re probably at ~1.050 with that starter.
You could top it up with some water. Maybe 200 ml.
I like to put 1 cup into 1300 ml in a 2 liter flask and boil in the flask with foil over the top so no water escapes.
I do the initial mixing it together with the hot water pre-boiled in a sauce pan and then pour it all into the flask to boil it.
Use Fermcap to keep it from volcanoing.

Ok, I like the idea of just doing the whole deal in the flask from the start. I was scoping around on Mr Malty and thats how he does it also. Makes sense to me.

Starting over again, 1300mL(in flask), 1 Cup DME (mixed and boiling in flask). Covered with foil
Thanks alot Scott!!!

Ok, pitched last night around 11:45 pm. Shook as much as I could before bed and before leaving for work this morning. No much activity then. Just got home around 3:30 pm and shook again and BLAM!! Instant volcano out of the top of flask. Didn’t lose much(if any) significant amount of liquid. A few napkins worth of foam though.
Is this a good sign and should this starter still be viable for tomorrow, early afternoon? I’ll insert pics if I can figure out how to from my iPhone…

It’ll probably be ready. I like to allow for a full fermentation (2-3 days) and a 2 day cold crash in the fridge so I can pour off the liquid.

Ok, so if I am going to be pitching this sometime tomorrow afternoon, should I even bother cold crashing this or just leave it at room temp and pitch all of it into main batch?

Can crashing it early hurt the yeast or will that only slow it?

Everytime I stir the flask, it wants to foam up pretty seriously and fizz out. It is 9 pm, about 21 hrs since initial pitch. The starter is for NB’s Imp Stout extract kit.

Thanks for your help

What yeast strain is it?
If it’s one of the sticky high flocculant types you should be able to crash it overnight.
But you’re not using a stir plate, so its not going to be really oxidized, so if crashing doesn’t work, just pitch it all in. You won’t even put a scratch in the flavor of that monster stout.

It is Wyeast 1728 Scottish Ale, high flocculation.
No stir plate but I’m swirling it every 30-45 mins or so.
I wish I could load pics. There Is about 1/4 inch of sediment until I swirl, then it foams high into the neck of flask. If I shook just a little harder it would shoot right out.

How do you know when to crash?
I wasn’t too worried about decanting since, like you said, it’s going into a stout which shouldn’t sway it in the slightest. I guess I am just inexperienced with the stability of yeast survival. I don’t want it to die off before it gets a chance to swim in the stout pool!

To crash or not to crash…
Temp in my kitchen is 69-71. This recipe calls for 55-70, once yeast is pitched, carboy will be moved into washroom which is 60-64.

I just decide that it’s done when C02 stops coming out from swirling/ stirring.
Yeast will stay healthy for quite a long time after you feed them.
You could put it in the fridge to force them to go dormant,
And they would stay pitchably healthy for a week.
Leave it unrefrigerated or for a longer time frame and you’d benefit from feeding them again.

So far everything looks good. Starter is still foaming like crazy with every swirl. Smells good too.
Been sittin at room temp since it was pitched about 34 hours ago.

Today is Brewday. Or at least was…
My bud who I brew with found the flu last night. I don’t have a problem brewing solo but was considering just refrigerating the yeast until next weekend. As far as I have read, that’s not a problem right?
Just store it in there for a week, pull it out in the morning on D day, decant and pitch it…

Anyone see a problem in my logic?
I’ve read about boiling and cooling a little (100-200ml) wort to restart it before pitching but is that necessary?

Ok, well tomorrow is officially Brewday! :slight_smile: Everyone is healthy, just hoping my yeast still are. It has been sleeping in the fridge since last sat and looks completely separated. There are two distinct layers with one being much more clear than the bottom layer. Anyone know what I mean?

We are gonna start around 9:30 tomorrow and hopefully pitch by early afternoon. I am going to remove from refrigerator around 11:30 to decant and let it warm up a bit before pitching. If anyone sees a problem please let me know.


Update: Brewday went off without a hitch. Started heating the kettle at 10:30 and pitched at 2:45. Starter yeast looked and smelled good before we threw it in.
Skipped the airlock and went for the blowoff into my bottling bucket since yeast was super active and frothy just in the starter flask. Good thing because 24 hrs later the neck of the carboy is already filled.
Bubbles popping through blowoff smell promising!
Tasted a sample of OG(1.08), little low but close enough. Nice flavor
Now comes the hard part- waiting 3-4 months to bottle!!

I’m glad you started this thread because I am about to brew a big beer (NB wee heavy) but need to make a starter two days before brew day. I usually make a starter the night before so it is good to know you can let it go much longer and it will still work. I love these big beers but you are right that the waiting is hard.

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