Hi, I currently brew 2.5 gal batches. I never use a yeast starter and have great results. I use a full pkg of White Labs yeast. I just started trying “yeast washing”. My question is, can still skip the starter using washed yeast if it’s worked so far pitching right from the pkg? Just bring it to room temp and pitch ?
You have quite a bit of yeast at yer disposal… So it will work as you do yer brewing…
To me, washing yeast isn’t something I would do again. You can harvest yeast to keep costs down… But a true washing is complicated… adds a chance to "acquire " more bugs…
Yet… To each Brewer, there are more ways to brew than words… If this helps you , by all means, don’t change… It’s a great hobby that you can explore every side of brewing! Brew on!!
I agree. I don’t wash yeast. I save a slurry with beer on top.
As @sneezles61 said you have a ton of yeast at your disposal. One wyeast/white labs is great for your 2.5gals, and you won’t need a starter. For repitching you could use about 1/4-1/2 of the yeast cake from your saved slurry.
Do you need a starter? In your case that is really going to depend on the age of the slurry and OG. Use it within a couple weeks you won’t need it. Wait a month or 2 and you’ll need it. BUT, your in luck because of your batch size you could easily get away with a 1L starter with that 1/2 slurry pitch.
@SDRocks I agree with sneezles and loopie. Just save your yeast and don’t bother to try and wash it. I almost always save the yeast slurry from the bottom of the fermentor.
I sanitize a small mason jar ( in your case even the very smallest 4oz Mason container is enough).
I swirl the remaining bottom trub in the fermentor (after bottling or kegging) to get the yeast back into suspension.
I fill the mason jar completely, all the way to the very top. I don’t want any headspace that might help CO2 build pressure.
I spray down and clean the now dirty rim and threads with star san and screw on the cap but not as tightly as I can. Any junk on the jar/lid threads will make a glue that you don’t want.
I do all this pouring from the fermentor into the small jar with the small jar in a large mixing bowl to minimize the mess.
When it comes time to reuse, pull your yeast jar out of the fridge near the beginning of your brew session. Look at the lid, if it is bulging then the contents are under extreme pressure and it might not be worth opening (I learned this the hard way). If the lid is ok then open completely and smell your yeast. It should smell like the day you stored it. If you smell anything off then throw it away. If everything checks out, put the jar on a plate and lightly put the cap back on. The yeast will warm up for pitching and possibly bubble out. When it’s time for pitching clean off the container with Starsan. I have gotten pretty confident in my process by now and just take out the yeast jar and submerge it, without opening, in a larger bowl of Starsan until I need it.
Seems like the only benefit to washing (and I do more of a rinse, no chemicals) is removing trub, which would settle out anyway in the next batch I guess. So you guys recommend just harvesting the spent yeast without doing any rinsing.
The yeast is happy, resting and safely stored in the solution it made and brought into balance… now you agitate it and give it a shower with water at a new temperature, pH, and chemical content. Rinsing is more harm than good IMO.
I will pour about a 1" hoppy beer cap on my saved yeast… Beer is already got a low pH and a hoppy extra to help thwart off bad bugs wanting to spoil your yeast…
Of course sanitizing is very critical whenever you toy with yeast… I find that the 2,3 and 4 repitch of the yeast, seem very anxious to get busy!!