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What is wrong with this yeast?

Hello all. I just made an AG Edmund Fitzgerald Porter clone and decided to try my first White Labs yeast. I can’t remember which one it is but it doesn’t matter. I forgot to pull the yeast out of my fridge until I had about 2 hour left in my process. So at the 2 hour mark of being out of the fridge I decided to dump it in. Seemed to be at room temperature by that point. So I twisted off the cap and as soon as I did the yeast made a big hissing noise, like a shaken up bottle of soda being opened. So I stopped and twisted just a little more thinking that if I did I would let some of the gas escape and all would be fine in a minute. When I did the yeast ran up the tube and rushed out. I quickly close the cap and let it sit for a bit. Came back and it did the same thing. So I let it sit about 10 minutes. Then no hissing or any problem. So I dumped it into the beer and shook the beer up a bit to get it going. Coming home 5 hours later there is absolutely no activity at all. So I shook the beer up again a bit. This always works with the smack packs. Absolutely nothing. Have I done something wrong? Can I fix this or have I just lost an entire 5 gallon batch?

5 hours is way too soon to write off the yeast. Give it time. Without making a starter, it could take 24-48 hours to see activity depending on the viability of the yeast in the vial.

Even if the vial was brand-new off the line, putting one into a ~1.060 beer is serious under-pitching. If there’s still no activity after 72 hours, check the gravity. If it hasn’t dropped, then you know you have a problem.

First, you don’t need to let the yeast come up to room temp before pitching. There’s evidence that it’s better not to. Second, as Sean pointed out, you really needed to make a starter. See for details.

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