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Brews & Views Bulletin Board Service * Brews and Views Archive 2005 * Archive through February 06, 2005 * Lager Starter Ques. < Previous Next >

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John Leech
New Member
Username: Jpleech

Post Number: 2
Registered: 01-2005
Posted on Wednesday, February 02, 2005 - 10:29 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

After the latest discussion on my attempt at brewing a lager without using a starter, I have been thinking about starters and their procedures. So I'd like to see if I have it right. As I understand it when I make a starter I start off by smacking the packet of yeast and let it set at room temperature while I'm at work. When I come home I boil a quart of wort, cool to room temperature and then pitch the yeast and let it go at room temperature. When the krausen has fallen back into the beer I then siphon or pour off the beer from the yeast cake at the bottom of my fermenting jar. I then repeat the process by making another quart of wort and allow it to go at room temperature again. After this second round, I'm ready to rack off the beer from the yeast, brew my target beer, add a smidgen of the wort to my starter yeast cake, swirl and pitch. Am I right so far? I'm assuming that when I make the starter I can allow the yeast to ferment at room temp because I'm not interested in the beer just the yeast. Also, when people talk about making a half gallon starter are they talking about the size of the actual yeast cake, or volume of wort used to create the yeast? Finally how long before I brew do I need to get my starter going? A week? 10 days?

Thanks, John

Senior Member
Username: Hophead

Post Number: 1143
Registered: 03-2002
Posted on Wednesday, February 02, 2005 - 10:57 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Yes, pretty much. Do these things as well for better results.

- chill the starter before decanting to maximize yeast falling (you'll see the white layer on the bottom).

- instead of quart to quart, go pint to 1/2 gallon (or gallon).

And yes, a 1/2 gallon starter refers to the amount of wort NOT the amount of collected yeast! Figure 3-4 days per stepup...

(Message edited by hophead on February 02, 2005)

Bill Pierce
Username: Billpierce

Post Number: 2109
Registered: 01-2002
Posted on Wednesday, February 02, 2005 - 11:13 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I generally give my starters about 48 hours between steps, but I have had success after anywhere from 10 (not ideal but I was rushed) to 96 hours.