My plan to brew this Saturday has been set in motion, so the rollercoaster has left the station and you should have your hands in the cars and the safety bar securely in your lap.
I got home from work today and mixed up my yeast starter. Apparently, the scale that my wife bought at the local antique shop (which luckily is located behind Paw Paw Brewing Company) isn’t exactly set up for weighing in grams – it must be a Stonecutter’s scale. With the easiest method for yeast starters to use the 100g DME per 1L water method, I decided it was just easier to breakout my electronic scale. A little trick I use is adding a few teaspoons of dry bread yeasts to the starter before the boil since dead yeast hulls and whatever other contents the dried yeasts have and spill into the boil can’t be bad for the yeasts I pitch.
Anyway, the brewing spreadsheet I use suggested I only needed an 800mL starter, but according to Mr. Malty a 2.5L starter was needed. I decided that overpitching a homebrew batch is less likely to occur than underpitching so I went with Mr. Malty’s numbers. Plus, I may pour off some of the starter after it’s fermented out into a jar to use for another beer later. The boil, chilling and pitching were pretty uneventful (thanks to a drop or two of Fermcap-S – I love this stuff!) and now it’s sitting on the stir plate hopefully chewing up the sugars and making new yeast. I’ll let it ferment out completely on the stir plate, then put it in the fridge to drop the yeast out of suspension and decant the nasty beer. From my perspective, I see a couple benefits from this: 1. I won’t be diluting my finished product with the nasty oxidized beer that sat on a stir plate for a day or two, 2. while I’m maximizing the mass of yeast I’m pitching into my beer, and 3. cold-pitching the yeast has been proposed to have many benefits with regard to fermentation.
In other news, titling a post “A Post-War Requiem Rollercoaster” is a good way to have random religious and apocalyptic websites link to your blog – and I thought my wife and I were the only people reading this. Of course, the funniest part is that some of these religious sites that are referring people to my site are of religious denominations that are forbidden from imbibing alcohol. I’ll have to come up with some more blog titles to evoke the religious zealots.