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Going to brew first lager

It is Oktoberfest. I will be using saflager w34-70 lager yeast. Anyway, I went to MR. Malty and it says 2 packs of 11.5g are needed. So do I just pitch these two packs and not do a starter. I’ve never done a starter and I know on liquid yeast I would need 4 liters of starter. Sorry the stupid question.

If I needed to do a starter, then what size of a starter would I need with dry yeast?

OG=1.058 for this brew

TIA

Starters are detrimental to dry yeast.

Rehydrate or drop in dry.

Thanks a lot.

I was wondering how I was going to 4 liters of starter in my 5.5gal carboy with the liquid yeast.

Make the starter 1 week ahead of time. Put in the fridge 2 days before brewing. Decant liquid off. Only dump in the slurry.

:wink:

The Yeast book says you’ll lose 1/2 of your dry yeast if you just dump them in. Always properly rehydrate them for the best results. Just as important as doing a starter for liquid yeast.

My first lager is in primary right now. It is also the Octoberfest. I did a 3 liter starter. I had the Wyeast liquid yeast. I don’t think I made the best starter in the world (forgot to aerate wort and only swirled the yeast intermittently) and my primary had a 1 inch krausen after only 5 hours. I let the starter go for four days before adding to the fermenter. I would have made a 4 L starter but I ran out of DME to make it larger. It has been a week now and the krausen is down to 1/4 inch but the airlock is still bubbling pretty regularly. I have kept the primary between 54-58 degrees in a swamp cooler. I would have like to keep the temp lower but I have to work during the day so I can’t monitor all the time.

I’m always confused when people make huge starters… like 3 or 4L. At that point, wouldn’t it just be easier, if not cheaper, to just brew a small batch of beer? Like 2-3 gallons and use that yeast cake for the larger 5gal beer. Or just buy an extra pack of yeast and make a starter with 2 packs. All that DME going into big starters or stepping up and making several starters… it just seems like a waste.

Not bashing anyone’s technique. I’m just thinking there’s gotta be a better way.

[quote=“BlakeW”]It is Oktoberfest. I will be using saflager w34-70 lager yeast. Anyway, I went to MR. Malty and it says 2 packs of 11.5g are needed. So do I just pitch these two packs and not do a starter. I’ve never done a starter and I know on liquid yeast I would need 4 liters of starter. Sorry the stupid question.

If I needed to do a starter, then what size of a starter would I need with dry yeast?

OG=1.058 for this brew

TIA[/quote]

Last year I made my first lager and it too was an Oktoberfest. My only recommendation is to let it lager (around 35F) for as long as you can stand it. It will get smoother and better with time. I was blown away on how good my first lager was after it lagered for 10weeks. Just a fantastic beer!

Good luck! :cheers:

[quote=“dobe12”]I’m always confused when people make huge starters… like 3 or 4L. At that point, wouldn’t it just be easier, if not cheaper, to just brew a small batch of beer? Like 2-3 gallons and use that yeast cake for the larger 5gal beer. Or just buy an extra pack of yeast and make a starter with 2 packs. All that DME going into big starters or stepping up and making several starters… it just seems like a waste.

Not bashing anyone’s technique. I’m just thinking there’s gotta be a better way.[/quote]
I’m doing this with a few yeasts right now, brewing a gallon of beer in a 3gal Better Bottle. The only thing about this is that you need to ferment at the lower temps for good beer, so this method takes longer to produce the needed yeast. If I want yeast more quickly I make a starter with no hops and ferment at a warmer temp, the yeast work faster that way.

[quote=“Nighthawk”]Starters are detrimental to dry yeast.

Rehydrate or drop in dry.[/quote]

Starters aren’t detrimental to dry yeast, they are just unnecessary if you use the right amount of dry yeast. Oddly enough, a packet of dry yeast is a lot cloer to having the proper cell count for a 5gal batch, than a vial/pack of liquid yeast. So in many cases you wouldn’t need to make a starter for dry yeast. If you didn’t want to pay $10+ for two packs of 3470, you could certainly brew a starter.

I also wonder if its always true that rehydrating makes that big of a difference to viable cell count. I can see it if you’re talking about pitching in a really high OG wort, but a 1.050 wort isn’t going to stress the cells osmotically all that much. I really think its going to vary a lot depending on the conditions. I do know you can do more harm than good ifg you let don’t do it right (as in, under 15min in pure nonchlorinated water).

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