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McJeff
05-23-2015, 02:52 PM
So I'm cold crashing a traditional mead that was made with US 05 right now. I had planned on starting another traditional of sorts immediately after. So I got thinking why not just use the yeast cake I have right there. Anything special I should do with it? Figured I'd brin it back up to room temp and add the must. Anything else?

Swordnut
05-23-2015, 06:26 PM
Should work. This is how they did it before we could isolate yeast strains. Through trial and error they used the barrels "infected" with the yeast that made the best drink and conversely ditched those that didn't (like yeasts that don't produce a tolerable drink or acetobacter).

Mind you though, they did this in huge barrels where the lees won't impart that much of a taste to such a huge batch. You might want to use part of the cake instead of all of it.

Edit: for experimental purposes though, let us know how it works out. This isn't actually needed.

McJeff
05-23-2015, 10:43 PM
Yeah that was another thought about the spent lees. I'll prob take a chunk out.

fatbloke
05-24-2015, 04:34 AM
That's sort of right, but not IMO.

A lot of the yeast debris is gonna be dead yeast, so rather that only using part of the colony, use the lot so the live cells can cannibalize for the nutrients etc.

Otherwise it may take a while to kick off i.e. the colony has to build back up to a viable size.to ferment etc, whereas using the whole cake will more likely start quicker..........

Just my tuppence worth.........

McJeff
05-24-2015, 08:00 AM
Hmm ok, so use th whole yeast cake so the new yeast can use the dead yeast for nutrients? Still do a normal sna that I usually would?

kuri
05-24-2015, 08:11 AM
I've been reusing yeast for years, both in beer and in mead. With US 05 you should have a fairly well compacted yeast, meaning you might have to swirl some liquid into it to get it to pour. What I do is to leave as little beer/mead as I think I'll need to get something to pour, swirl it around, and then save about 1 cup. If the yeast is fresh, that's way more than is needed. If it's sat around for a week or two after collecting it's still enough. Any longer than that and it will need a starter. With a yeast that doesn't form a nice yeast cake, like k1v, for example, I generally collect twice as much by volume (i.e. 2 cups), just because the amount of yeast in the slurry is much lower.

I don't know if there's anything particularly wrong with reusing the whole cake, except that I have read in several places that overpitching yeast can be as bad as underpitching. I've never had a problem with overpitching so I don't know what problems people are talking about. My using only 1 cup from the yeast cake (for 5 gallons) is because I don't really want to find out the hard way that they were right. The one thing I can say is that if you take the yeast right after fermentation has finished, 1 cup of a thick slurry will be more than enough.

BBBF
05-24-2015, 09:00 AM
What was the abv of your batch? Wine yeast isn't reused as often as beer yeast beacause they are pushed closer to their limits and become more prone to mutations. Brwers rarely reuse yeast from a barely wine.

I'm not saying it cannot be done, but factor in the cost of a pkh of yeast vs. a. batch.

kuri
05-24-2015, 09:38 AM
Wine yeast isn't reused as often as beer yeast beacause they are pushed closer to their limits and become more prone to mutations. Brwers rarely reuse yeast from a barely wine.

I'm not saying it cannot be done, but factor in the cost of a pkh of yeast vs. a. batch.

Good point. I've reused k1v twice in succession (i.e. 3 batches with 1 packet of yeast) with no problems developing, taking it from meads in the 15% ABV range. I don't think I'll try for an extra time, though, unless I start hearing that people are doing it regularly without any problems, because I don't really have the patience or equipment to test the yeast and see what the level of mutation is. At some point it will stop being as good as usual. I prefer to stop reusing it before that point. 3 batches from one packet of yeast, though, has so far been clearly before that point for me.

McJeff
05-24-2015, 10:27 AM
I've been reusing yeast for years, both in beer and in mead. With US 05 you should have a fairly well compacted yeast, meaning you might have to swirl some liquid into it to get it to pour. What I do is to leave as little beer/mead as I think I'll need to get something to pour, swirl it around, and then save about 1 cup. If the yeast is fresh, that's way more than is needed. If it's sat around for a week or two after collecting it's still enough. Any longer than that and it will need a starter. With a yeast that doesn't form a nice yeast cake, like k1v, for example, I generally collect twice as much by volume (i.e. 2 cups), just because the amount of yeast in the slurry is much lower.

I don't know if there's anything particularly wrong with reusing the whole cake, except that I have read in several places that overpitching yeast can be as bad as underpitching. I've never had a problem with overpitching so I don't know what problems people are talking about. My using only 1 cup from the yeast cake (for 5 gallons) is because I don't really want to find out the hard way that they were right. The one thing I can say is that if you take the yeast right after fermentation has finished, 1 cup of a thick slurry will be more than enough.

Great info thank you



What was the abv of your batch? Wine yeast isn't reused as often as beer yeast beacause they are pushed closer to their limits and become more prone to mutations. Brwers rarely reuse yeast from a barely wine.

I'm not saying it cannot be done, but factor in the cost of a pkh of yeast vs. a. batch.


I've yet to take a final gravity, I will when I rack it. The starting Gravity was ~1.092 and I let the US05 run its course and cap out.

I'm feeling adventurous, I think this time ill gamble and see what comes of reusing the yeast.

Thank you for your help guys!

mannye
05-25-2015, 05:39 AM
I've made several BOMMs by just pouring must right back into the fermenter on the same day I rack into secondary. I don't even add nutrients. It takes off in hours. Then I stick to the usual SNA protocol afterwards.

pokerfacepablo
06-02-2015, 08:36 AM
Check out love of rose's yeast bank thread. It provides a section on yeast washing that you may want to utilize. You'll have to page through his old threads or search yeast bank.