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Starter for Yorkshire Ale W1469

Made a starter for W 1469 - Yorkshire Ale. 1.5L, 150 g of DME. Shook wort for a about 5 minutes. Pitched at about 74 degrees. 2L soda bottle. Pitched in the morning before I left for work. Smack pack nice and swelled before pitching.

When I came home from work, no foam, no bubbling, no nothing. Seems a bit odd. So, after boiling water, etc. I added 100 g of corn sugar in about 350 ml of water last night. Some nice bubbling almost immediately. But, no real foaming. Still bubbling a bit this morning.

Temp - about 74 degrees.

Thoughts on whether this is a good starter or not?

Thank you.

check the gravity when you think it’s done.

“Should have started” and started may be two different things. 8-10 hours it may not have been into full krausen yet and when you added the second mixture it let some of the CO2 out of suspension thus the minor bubbles. You started adapting the yeast to a maltose base and they started building their nessecary reserves and cell count, but adding the pure sugar solution is not ideal but you should be alright because it was a small addition diluted by the already made wort.

You never want to use pure sugar in starters because the yeast will still utilize it, but will become dependent on pure simple sugar instead of maltose. In some cases when people have used pure sugar with no malt, the yeast will actually refuse to adapt and will not pass maltose through the cell wall now. Causing what some would think was just bad yeast or stuck ferment when it was all of their own devices.

I think the yeast are and were fine. The fact that the pouch swelled showed initial viability and you were probably 12 hours from full krausen. If you are not using a stir plate. A “normal” or shaken starter should be left for at least 48 hours before use.

You also mention a 2L bottle.

A couple questions come to mind.
#1 is there an airlock, blowoff tube, tinfoil, cotton ball, foam stopper attached to cover opening or simply capped?
If capped you are trapping to much CO2 and yeast can tolerate some CO2 but high levels effective stunt them. Or the high pressure level is causing the krausen to stay subdued or because of the first comment is causing them to flocc too early when ale yeast typically form the huge head(full krausen) if they are staying in suspension and floating to the top, instead of the bottom when they flocc out after utilizing the available ferment source.

#2 Just an observation but consider finding a cheap half/full gallon glass jar/jug etc…Lots suggest plastic or milk jugs etc… But it again is far from ideal.

Anything cold side is where sanitation is nessecary, but many dont realize that most infections are going to come from an infected yeast source that spreads when you then pitch. So why I bring up glass is the real ability to ensure nothing is hiding such as in plastics and to also reinforce for anybody learning still to spend extra time if needed to ensure yeast handling practices are the most sound of any process in your brewhouse.

ItsPossible - Thank you for your post. It is a very helpful explnation as to why you don’t want to use simple sugar for a starter. I have a cap on it, but it is loose to let CO2 escape.

Thanks for the help.

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