Dry vs. Liquid Yeast

Grains, malts, hops, yeast, water and other ingredients used to brew. Recipe reviews and suggestions.

Moderator: slothrob

Dry vs. Liquid Yeast

Postby Dr Funkenstein » Sat Oct 25, 2003 7:02 am

Hello, I'm relatively new to the homebrewing hobby and have brewed a half dozen batches. The first three I used Cooper's dry yeast for the Light Lagers I enjoy and the last three I used White Labs 840. The first three were excellent but the the last ones has a more sour taste. Through my reading I've learned that liquid is better quality. My cleanliness I believe is very good. Is this a common taste with this particular yeast?
Dr Funkenstein
Posts: 6
Joined: Tue Jun 10, 2003 8:14 pm


Postby BillyBock » Mon Oct 27, 2003 2:37 am

Welcome to the hobby, Dr.

Compared to dry yeast, liquid yeast is pure--there is no bacterial contamination during production. Dry yeast has a small amount of contamination present. From that standpoint, I guess you can say it's better "quality." However, I have used high quality dry yeasts such as produced by DCL and Lallemand. I've also tasted excellent beers made with dry yeast, and I've also taste really nasty beers made with liquid yeast. Sanitation is a key, but also pay attention to the temperature you subject your yeast to. All yeasts have an optimum temperature range and all produce some level of byproducts. If you go outside this range, the level of byproduct production increases to the taste threshold and beyond :-)

What temperature did you ferment at? Coopers is an ale yeast and is fairly temperature tolerant. Lager yeasts, perform best at colder temperatures in the range of 45-55 normally.

According to the White Labs site, the description for WL840, American Lager Yeast is: This yeast is used to produce American style lagers. Dry and clean with a very slight apple fruitiness. Sulfur and diacetyl production is minimal. Attenuation: 75-80; Flocculation: Medium; Optimum Ferm. Temp: 50-55.

My guess is you have some fermentation byproducts due to using a lager yeast at a higher than normal temperature. If you're unable to control the temperature of your ferment, and you want to use liquid yeast, may I suggest using a clean tasting ale yeast such as WL001 or Wyeast 1056. These have minimal byproducts and will give you a cleaner tasting which seems to be what you're after. You could also try a temperature tolerant yeast.

Hope this helps. That's my guess for now without knowing anything of your procedures or recipe.

Imperial Stout
Imperial Stout
Posts: 561
Joined: Sun Dec 31, 2000 12:37 pm
Location: Ohio


Postby Dr Funkenstein » Tue Oct 28, 2003 3:00 pm

All of these ferments were at 70 degrees F. I'll be able to get some cooler temps in the following months.
I appreciate the info. Very helpful!

Dr Funkenstein
Posts: 6
Joined: Tue Jun 10, 2003 8:14 pm

Liking the dry right now

Postby jayhawk » Tue Oct 28, 2003 4:23 pm

I have gone back and forth between the two forms of yeast. Currently, I like Danstar Windsor dry yeast. It is not too dry (flavour wise), leaves a good aroma and tastes great! I really like drinking the sediment from the bottles with this yeast. I think I will stick with this yeast for a while because it is so easy to use. I use 15g packets and don't even bother with rehydrating (i know some will say bad! scold! bad!) and fermentation starts almost right away. Liquid yeasts are a pain for me because you have to make a starter and all that hoo hah. But sometimes it is worth it to use a liquid yeast if you want a certain flavour profile that can only be attained by using liquid cultures.
Strong Ale
Strong Ale
Posts: 472
Joined: Tue Dec 25, 2001 1:05 am
Location: Vancouver, BC, CA

I agree

Postby fitz » Wed Oct 29, 2003 4:23 am

I like the windsor and the nottingham from Danstar
I also like the Superior lager out of Australia.
These are all good dry yeasts.
I like the dry, because I am a Dad, still finishing my Taj Mahol(Spelling), and I never know when I will have the oportunity to brew. When the time is there, I brew. Dry yeast is ready to accept the challenge. Get it out of the fridge when you are rounding up your equip and ingredients, and it is ready to pitch when the time comes. I know Chris, We'll get slammed on the no starter, but it works. Especially if the cleanliness is there.
Strong Ale
Strong Ale
Posts: 442
Joined: Thu Dec 19, 2002 9:36 am

Return to Ingredients, Kits & Recipes

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest