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White Labs English Ale Yeast WLP002

Advise please!

I have never used While labs strains before. I have always used Wyeast. However, I am attempting to recreate Magic Hat #9 and this White Labs product was suggested to me.

I have made a starter and even before pitching I could not get this particular WLP0002 to separate. Cottage cheese like at best, a charachter of yeast I have never seen before. I do know this particular strain is highly flocculent, and highly attenuative but would that lead to the characteristics I am seeing? (First Question)

Oh well, I pitched my yeast into a 1L starter this past Wednesday, put it on my stirr plate and let it go. The yeast it self never did come out of its cottage cheese like state and while it does look like it may have turned over a couple of times, I am hesitant to ruin a 5 hour brew day and pitch some shitty yeast.

Now my dilema continues, I planned on brewing yesterday and well we all know how plans change! Now its SuperBowl sunday and between the kids and the game - doesn’t look like I will be getting anywhere close to the brew kettles until next weekend at best. Can I refrigerate what I have and use it next weekend or will I have to start over and make a new starter? (Second Question)

Finally, will I have to do anything further to bring my yeast back in order to ferment my HG wart with maximum efficiency when I finally get the chance to brew next weekend?(Third Question)

Thanks brew crew! I value your expertise and experience!

I have never used this yeast, so take this with a grain of salt. However, I have talked with others who have. So, the cottage cheese appearance is very common with this yeast. It is perfectly acceptable to refrigerate your starter and use it next week. You could make another starter with it if you feel that would help, and there is really nothing wrong with that. I would use some software, or mr. malty, and determine what your pitching rate will be. Other than that, I have never used this yeast because it flocculates very quickly at lower temperatures, and I usually have an ambient of 64F, which is apparently to cold for it. But, it is supposed to be a great yeast, and I hope your #9 comes out well.

I have used this yeast. Find it hard to even get out of the tube at times, but it sure makes a very clear beer. You will be fine for next weekend. Just make sure it is up to room temp on brew day, decant the wort on top and add some cooled pre boiled wort to it and shake the crap out of it to get it loose from the bottom of your flask and you will be good to go. My start slow, but it will go.

+1 to Birdstop. I have used this yeast and have had the same experience he describes. His advice is right on, good luck and brew on.

I have used this yeast a lot in the past year, it is always like that. Cottage cheese like. Another +1 on Birdstop’s advice on your starter. I also like to ferment fairly cool with this yeast 62-64 degrees for the first couple days then warm it up to 68ish in the third day.

I use this yeast a lot… it’s one of my favorites for English styles. What you are describing sounds normal.

Does it look like this?

This is my starter from Wyeast 1968 London ESB. It’s wyeast’s version of that strain. Yeah, it looks crazy. I was worried too, but everything came out fine. The only issue I had was that I couldn’t rinse the yeast. It flocculated to quickly. I couldn’t get it separated from the trub. Oh well. Live an learn.

I just kegged my porter from a 5 week primary using this yeast. It racked with almost zero sediment which is unusual for me! The cake was super condensed and THICK. I could have cut it with a knife like a brownie and put it in zip-locks to drop into the next few batches if I wanted to. It tasted and smelled great too.

I was also concerned about getting it out of the tube and broken up in the starter. I ended up using a 64oz growler for my starter and shaking it VIOLENTLY (aerating :lol: ) to break up all of the chunks. I fermented it around 66-67`F and it went from 1.061-1.014. Plenty good for me!!


It’s pretty chunky, the White Labs description actually says that it is supposed to be that way. Looks bad, but makes great beer.

Now the bad news-- as far as I can tell, Magic Hat uses the Ringwood yeast in #9. Sometimes their batches have tons of diacetyl (butterscotch). Sometimes not. Still though, the Apricot extract is the dominant flavor in this beer. Your recipe does use Apricot extract, right?

Yes, apricot is going into this bear, which leads me to my next dilemma. My plan was to rack to a secondary and then add my 3 lbs of Apricot Puree (I opted to do this rather than use an apricot extract).

Anyway, I have had others suggest to me I would be better off leaving it in the primary and instead adding the apricot puree directlyto the primary.

I can see their thought process, however, additions are brand new to me and with my last all grain pliney clone, I had never even dry hopped before to say the least I have never added anything to a beer post boil.

This on the other hand is a fermentabl, but I am guessing the take home, I am not looking for additional sugars from this addition, I am looking for the apricot.

Granted I think there should be some time to subtle the sweetness…

Thus, should I make the apricot addition to the primary?
Should I rack over it in the secondary?

Additionally, how long would one let this sit with the puree?


Thus, should I make the apricot addition to the primary?
Should I rack over it in the secondary?

Additionally, how long would one let this sit with the puree?

Add fruit to the secondary and then rack the beer on top of it. The yeast may take up to a week to ferment out the fruit sugars but you’ll want to take some gravity readings to be sure it’s finished. You don’t want another fermentation happening in your bottles.

Regarding White Labs yeast, I use them most of the time (I think I used Wyeast once) and find the White Labs website to be a good resource. For some strains Chris White actually links an audio file describing the particular yeast and how best to use it.

You’ve probably brewed this one already, but for the future here’s one for WLP002:

How close is WLP002 and/or WLP007 to S-04?

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