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Using a yeast cake

I am currently brewing the Chinook IPA extract kit and wanted to try my first beer that requires a yeast starter. I used the wyeast American Ale, for the Chinook IPA, and wanted to know if I could reuse the yeast cake to make the Black IPA extract kit?

The Black IPA kit calls for the 1272 Wyeast American Ale II so I am assuming the yeast strains are close enough to the 1056 Wyeast American Ale.

Now, could I brew the Black IPA and transfer the Chinook IPA to the secondary the same day and just pour the Black IPA wort on the yeast cake, then aerate it? Or do I need to do a yeast starter with the yeast cake to get rid of parts of the trub that may cause off flavors?

Any advice is greatly appreciated; thanks!

I believe you could pitch right away w/o any issues.

For what you are wanting to use the yeast for they are mostly interchangeable. The 1056 will give you a slightly sweeter finish (lower attenuation) and it does not flocculate (settle out) quite as well but you would not notice either of these things in a black IPA.

As far as using the yeast cake, I do it all the time. I have tried rinsing the yeast to remove the trub but I find it tedious and it seems to make very little difference in the finished beer. I would remove, (possibly store for future use) about 1/2 the yeast cake to allow some yeast growth in the second beer. Yeast growth by-products produce a lot of the flavors of beer.

I think the only perk to washing yeast is that you can spread it into several conatiners which gives you the opportunity to get several batches off of one yeast cake as ooposed to one.

Awesome, thanks for all of your help! Just wanted to make sure placing a fresh wort on a yeast cake could be done instead of making a yeast starter. Also wanted to avoid buying the $40 Black IPA kit and having it not turn out because I did something wrong with adding previous yeast and not decanting it.


…which saves you $7-8 for a smack pack and even more if it’s a high gravity beer that needs a starter. If you split your ale yeast into three batches from each cake and continue it to 5 generations, you can make 121 batches of beer with a single smack pack. At $7/pack thats $840!

I like the math but I don’t make a 121 batches with the same yeast. For me, using 6 or 7 different yeasts to make a variety of beers I don’t save $840 but it does at least cut my yeast cost in half.

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