Imperial Stout - Add Yeast When Bottling?

Hello Brewmasters!,

This is my first high gravity brew. I’ve seen some old posts about adding yeast to brews that have been in secondary fermentation for extended periods, but I’m still not quite sure, so I thought I’d get the most recent thinking on this. I fermented this stout using two packs of Safale S04, and it’s been in secondary fermentation for three months. Should I add yeast, and If I should, what is the best procedure for that? Should I add the yeast when I begin siphoning into my bottling bucket, or should I wait until the siphon is complete, then stir? Or should I do a starter, and how would I mix that in? Or, am I way off track and use some other method?

Thanks so much.


I would add some yeast. You may be ok, but why risk it. Just sprinkle a little dry yeast into your bottling bucket as you siphon the beer in.

Reyeasting is rarely absolutely required, but it doesn’t hurt. A lot of people do it as a matter of course even on normal strength beers, just to carb faster.

As said above, just sprinkle in a little. You don’t need anywhere near the entire packet. Also, type doesn’t matter much. The amount of fermentation that happens in the bottle is too small to make much flavor difference. You can even use ale yeast in a lager.

I use champagne yeast and will sprinkle it in at after the wort is flowing into the bottling bucket. Last time I bottled I carbed up a nine month old 13% Barleywine in seven days. I always add yeast when bottling big beers after a debacle I had last year with a 9.5% IIPA which absolutely refused to carb.

Thanks everyone. I will add a little yeast while siphoning into my bottling bucket.

I like to use S-04 as my bottling yeast. 2-3 grams is all that is needed.

So many posts on this forum asking how to fix an under-carbed big, aged beer - add the yeast and sleep well at night. :wink: