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I took my rinsed yeast out of the fridge and it's looking like it has very low viability. It might have partially frozen at some point while it was in the fridge due to an issue with the fridge, and it was in there for a good few months too.

When I did the starter I initially thought it was completely dead but 12 hours on there were a few bubbles and it looks like it's coming to life ( wp 568) ... I could get new yeast but long story short that's not going to happen the only reason I was doing this brew was because I had the yeast in the fridge.

Assuming the starter gets into a decent ferment then I'm wondering whether I should just do the brew and pitch it in, or whether I'd need to step up the starter.

My question is generally speaking how would I figure this? Ideally I'd like some way of knowing by looking at it or smelling it or something which I know is not very scientific but I have no idea of the original viability so I don't have a starting point really.

  • How big a brew volume are you adding it too and what is the physical quality of the yeast? Is it very dilute or is it quite a good suspension? – barking.pete Jan 5 '18 at 15:34
  • it's going in a 12 litre ( 2.5 gal ) batch ... not sure what you mean about the quality. It was fairly compacted in the jar before I added it but now it's being agitated obviously ever time I shake the starter – byronyasgur Jan 5 '18 at 17:49
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I would make another starter with what you have, and get it going at full strength, and ferret out any contamination that may be present.

But in general I would just get new yeast, I just ruined a whole batch by doing this same thing, it was sitting in the fridge for 2 months, then created a starter, then did another one with it. and somewhere along the line it got a contamination of something, when all was done, i had to dump my batch....goodby 5 gals of cream ale.

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  • hmm - yea - that's got me wondering. This was a lot longer than 2 months and also I am in a 1.5 litre starter which if I understand correctly is not the safest way to step up – byronyasgur Jan 5 '18 at 17:47
  • I would just get more yeast, US-05 dry yeast is a best bet to have on hand for quick batches, unless you're feeling experimental. but take the 1.5L starter, and take the yeast and make another 1.5L starter. By this point you should have a decent amount of yeast. – jsolarski Jan 5 '18 at 21:21
  • thanks - yea I might get more yeast but it's a saison brew so I can't use my us05. I'll prob just use the grains for something else if this doesn't work out – byronyasgur Jan 6 '18 at 20:04

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