I am planning on brewing 2 beers this weekend. I want to make starters for both of them but I only have 1 stir plate. I do have 2 Erlenmeyer flasks. How would be the best way to go about making both starters?

If I'm brewing on Sunday, should I start the first one on Tuesday? Let it go for 2 days. Then put it in the refrigerator? Then start the second one of Thursday? Let it go for 2 days and then refrigerate it?

Then bring them both out on Sunday and let them sit out for a few hours?


That sounds like a plan. When the starter is cool the yeast will sediment quicker so you can pour off the spent wort easier.

Definitely take yeast out of the fridge on brewday, let it warm. If you have some additional sterile wort, then you can decant the spent wort and pitch the fresh wort as soon as the yeast has come up to room temp. Otherwise, if you have no sterile wort, then just wait until you're ready to pitch into the main brew and decant the spent wort before pitching.

  • 1
    Any reason for getting rid of the spent wort instead of just pitching it with the yeast? – Keith Jun 23 '14 at 3:18
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    The taste. It will be oxidized, full of esters and usually not all that good. If it's only a liter in a strongly flavored 5galllon batch then that's ok, but more than that and it's best to decant. If in doubt, just taste it first (I always sample the starters since it's a rare opportunity to taste plain wort with the yeast so the yeast character stands out.) – mdma Jun 23 '14 at 3:22
  • Letting the yeast warm up before pitching is not only unnecessary, it can be detrimental to good yeast performance. You want the nutrient reserves that the yeast builds up to be active in the wort, not the starter. By warming up the starter, the yeast starts to consume those reserves before getting into the wort. I have made hundreds of batches by simply taking the yeast out of the fridge, decanting and pitching immediately, while the yeast is still cold. – Denny Conn Jun 25 '14 at 16:11
  • I agree - you don't want the yeast warming up, consuming their reserves then going dormant again while they wait for you to pitch. But I did say to pitch fresh wort when warming up the starter, so the yeast has plenty of food once it's consumed the reserves. – mdma Jun 25 '14 at 16:32
  • But why bother with that at all? I have found no benefit and it's just extra work for no return. – Denny Conn Jun 25 '14 at 16:51

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