Pitched at a high heat !!!

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Pitched at a high heat !!!

Postby DTS78KC » Thu Jul 24, 2008 2:26 am

Ok, here is my problem. I just pitched a wyeast smack pack (no starter) of 1056 Am ale into my blonde ale wort which was very high because i didnt calibrate my thermometer and got a wrong reading. I believe it went in around 90 to 100 degrees. When I read my side thermo and felt the jar being very warm when I carried it, I quickly realized what happened and knew it was too late. Placing it in an ice bath I was able to drop the temp to 82 degrees in 1 hour and down to 72 with in 2 hours. I will ferment this around 68.
Now my question do you think any off flavors will appear or do you think some of the yeast might have been killed at that temp?? I wanted to post this asap to see if there is anything i should do. I did pick up a yeast nutrient pack I could dump in there maybe to give the surviving yeast a chance if some of then died off? Or should I just repitch another pack?

Thanks for the help.
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Hot-pitched yeast; you'll probably be okay

Postby billvelek » Thu Jul 24, 2008 11:06 am

Well, the bottom line is that it's too late to do anything, and worrying won't change a thing, so you just need to be patient. But if it will relieve your mind any, I think it should be just fine -- although I have never done anything like that myself. Yeast can easily survive 90 to 100F, and probably reproduce and flourish more in that temp range than normal fermentation temps. Even when you get up to even higher temps, it usually takes a bit of time to kill the yeast unless it is a ridiculously high temp (I think they even survive for a hour or two at something like 120F). So I'm positive that most if not all of the yeast should have survived, although it might have been shocked a bit by the drastic temp change -- but that would be good in this case because that should reduce their activity in producing undesireable effects. Also, if you aerated your wort, I think the yeast would most likely have still been in the aerobic reproductive stage, and while they do produce some alcohol at that stage (and probably some fusels and esters along with it), I'd think that you would still have 90% of your wort still unfermented, so the worse case is perhaps a small amount of esters and fusels, but it certainly won't be ruined.

Cheers.

Bill Velek
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