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The answer to this question suggests yeast shouldn't be washed, is that really the current consensus?

  • what if I'm brewing a different style? Won't the trub affect taste? Lots of hop residue there.
  • Dry hopped beer?
  • is yeast in this case harvested from Krausen, primary or secondary? I usually only do primary, so lots of residue in the trub.
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Yes, the current consensus is don't bother rinsing (homebrewers almost never truly wash) the yeast. I have verified this for myself over the course of hundreds of batches. There is no advantage to rinsing the yeast and it's just another point where you could contaminate it.

1.) I have never found the trub to have any effect on the next batch. When I use whole hops, they get filtered out so there are no hops in the trub. But when I use pellets, they go through my pump and into the fermenter and consequently, in the trub. Still no issues.

2.) Dry hopping is best done after removing the beer from primary yeast to prevent undesirable interactions between yeast and hops. In that case, dry hops will have no bearing

3.) Primary yeast is the best bet for repitching.

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    Out of curiosity, how many successive repitches do you do this way? – Franklin P Combs Feb 13 '15 at 17:08
  • Usually 5-6. Could probably get more, but by that time I'm ready to move on. – Denny Conn Feb 14 '15 at 17:04
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I disagree that yeast slurry shouldn't be 'washed' (purified, really) in general. I think it's all about how you go about it and what you want to accomplish. If it's done right, in a sanitary manner, it's perfectly safe and will allow more consistency and predictability in your finished beer. Storing under cold water over long periods is better than beer for yeast health, too. Personally, I don't like the idea of generations-old trub and hops going from brew to brew, but I'm overly paranoid about stuff like that most of the time anyway.

But the real issue here is the work-to-reward ratio. Basically, do you want to go through all this trouble when you won't see any real, appreciable improvement in quality? Because you probably won't. It's one of those things where, at home, on the five or 10 gallon level, there are so many other confounding factors to consistent beer that this alone won't make the difference. If you have, say, physiologically healthy yeast, predictable pitch rates, wort compostion and oxygenation, reliable temperature control, etc., not storing and/or pitching crap in with your yeast becomes important to consistent outcome. But unless you have those other things under control, you just won't see a difference that wouldn't be within the limits of variability anyway.

So I hate to see what I'd consider slurry purification discounted in general, though I do agree it's entirely dependent on what exactly you want to do with your brews.

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