# Variances in pitch rate for session beer

Alright guys, this has been discussed…beat to death…brought up again (and I guess yet again by me)
My brew will be 1.038-1.039 at 5.5 gallons. This will be a belgian pale with 3522, so I’m looking for a little yeast flavor.

If you look at our hosts pitch rate guide, for lower than 1.055 they recommend .5mil cells/ ml/P = which would equate to 104.1 billion, just over a smack pack

http://www.northernbrewer.com/documenta ... gRates.pdf

Wyeast recommends 6 million cells per ml (just a hair higher) = which would equate to 124 billion cells, around a .5 to .75 ml non-shaken starter

http://www.wyeastlab.com/hb_pitchrates.cfm

Malty (i’m guessing) recommends .75 mil cells/ml/P = which would equate to 152 billion cells, around a 1 L non-shaken starter

I’ve always followed Malty’s recommendations for 1.050 and above, and most of the time 1.045 and above.
It seems these days I’m spending more damn time brewing starters than beer…the OG is seriously 1.039…3.6% roughly :?:

Being this will be so low in alcohol, I want some residual body (1.010-11 lowest). I’d hate to have a 1 liter starter attenuate this down to heck and back. I recently brewed another Shining Star pale at 1.044 gravity…following Malty’s advice a 1.25 L non-shaken starter of 1056. Damn thing shot down to 1.008, with mash held at 152F, and ferm temp steady at 65f.

I know Malty is the man when it comes to yeasties, but does this seem a little out of whack to anybody else (for low gravity)?
Aren’t pitching rates generally advised by OG range (as in Wyeast’s site <60 pitch 6 mill per / >60 pitch 12 mil per)?
Wouldn’t a pitch rate of 500,000 cell per ml be sufficient for such low gravity?

I guess in part this is a rant, but if anyone would like to chime in with results of identical brews with different pitch rates…

As always :cheers:

I always make starters to give my yeast a jump start. If its over attenuation you’re worried about mash at 155* to 158* to add body and non-fermentables.

If you’re not inclined to do this I wouldn’t make a starter.

Thanks loopie, I was basically only asking opinions of other brewer’s practices. Making a sub 1 liter starter is not that big of a deal.
I guess I was concerned with over pitching such a light beer, as I’ve heard severe over pitching can be just as harmful as under.

After doing a little more reading on pitch rates, I think the consensus is over pitching by 100-200 billion cells can be harmful.
In this case, even if I make a starter to malty’s numbers and the actual pitch rate should’ve been in line with NB’s documentation…i’m only overpitching by 50 billion.
Not a big deal after all.

I guess I’ll have to RDWHAHB…

I wouldn’t think twice about pitching just the smack pack (if relatively fresh) into a wort with that low of an OG.

Thanks for the reply dobe, funny enough this will be a budget gravity version of our last pm!
I plan on using half this cake for a full on monster belgian ipa.

Sounds like a solid plan. Flying Dog’s Raging Bitch Belgian IPA (long name) was my inspiration for my Belgian IPA that we spoke about. Well, last night I had Flying Dog’s Double Pale Ale… yuck! I love Pale Ales, but this double pale ale was nasty. Real sweet and syrupy. Crazy hoppy. Not sure what a double pale ale is!!! Tasted like a sweet IPA that I did not enjoy. It’s the first Flying Dog beer that I haven’t loved.

I agree about the double pale, the moniker has always thrown me off. You’re adding enough malt to be in high abv ipa or typical dipa territory but your bittering to the extent of a pale. I’ve not had flying dogs, but the two examples i’ve tried have been a mess, almost cloying. I’ve also had O’dells double pils several times but I cannot point my finger at what doesn’t jive with me about it.

Cloying! That’s spot on. It’s extremely cloying!

I always go by mrmalty.com. Been pretty happy with it

But for anything under 1.040 I’d just throw in a fresh smack pack as mentioned above