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Re-using sake yeast


I’ve been following Fred Eckhardt and Bob Taylor’s guides to make sake. The other day I was getting my moto ready and realized I needed more yeast. I figured I’d do some experimenting and re-use some lees from my secondaries that I had saved in sterilized jars. Wasn’t sure what I would be using it for, just didn’t want to throw it out (hoarder in me). So I pitched 6-8 oz and waited a day. Went back and saw it had really taken off. When I was thinking about this before, I figured the high alcohol content and lagering would make it not ideal to re-use slurry (lees, incl. rice matter in this case). This was being done with #9 yeast. Also on a side note, my #7 moto produced more diacetyl than I’ve ever smelled in one place. It smelled like a movie theater concession stand. Don’t mind a buttery Chardonnay but I think once the sake is finished (plenty of time for things to happen in there) it will be gone.

I also have a tane- koji observation and will post in another topic.

This is my first ever post on a brewing message board, after reading this stuff (and learning a lot) for years I finally felt like doing it.


Believe it or not, you’re the first homebrewer I’ve heard from directly who has re-used sake yeast in this way. There’s no reason it wouldn’t work, I’ve just never covered it because my sake batches tend to have so much time between them. Thank you for sharing!

It does make sense for sure!

At the end of the 3rd addition just before cooling down, take a cup of the moromi and place into a sanitized canning jar with some foil over top. Let it ferment out then cap and cool.

Add this to your next moto.

Its details like these that make me really appreciate the community of sake home brewers. And home brewers in general!

Kampai, cheers, etc…

Just note that as with any other things many yeasts has an expiration date aswell. Once it has grown out of nutrients it will go dormant and will not act in the same way as if it was activated with a package from any of the retailers.

So just a word of caution :slight_smile: This is definitively possible, but the yeast may react different than what you are accustom to based on which state your yeast is in

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