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Manowarfan1

Timeline help on Wyeast Smack Packs

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Howdy all -
This weekend - depending - I plan on making something new - either a witbier or some other belgian (saisson, dubble, pale ale).

I have two smack packs from Wyeast and have never used them. I do understand that you need to smack the pack ahead of time, and may need to make a starter on top of that. With all that being said, what is a good time line for this? Should i take the pack out of the fridge now (almost 4pm on Friday), let it get room temp for a couple hours, smack it, wait a couple hours, do a quick starter tomorow? Tonight? Let it ride for a few hours and then either decant or dump it into the LBK?

I was going to try the Belgian Wit 3944. Here is what I was thinking in terms of a simple recipe:
3 lb Wheat DME
.25 lb Flaked Wheat (steep)
.25 lb American White Wheat (steep)
.25 Belgian Two Row (or it could be Belgian Pale Malt) (steep)
Hops: .25 Cascade (6.2AAU) @ 30 and 7 minutes
Other: .5 oz Coriander (@15)
.5 oz Bitter Orange Peel (@15)

Any changes to this? Tweaks? I grabbed a few different grains and other ingredients to try to make a Saison in a bit after I get some of the current LBKs bottled. Or a Dubbel :) Will change my mind a few times between now and then.

So any experienced Wyeast users or Belgian makers out there - what is your time line?
Cheers
jeff

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Give it a day, or till inflated. Some of the lager yeast can take 5 days to swell. Since you are going to pitch into the LBK do not need to make a starter.

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"Manowarfan1" post=325764 said:

Howdy all -
This weekend - depending - I plan on making something new - either a witbier or some other belgian (saisson, dubble, pale ale).

I have two smack packs from Wyeast and have never used them. I do understand that you need to smack the pack ahead of time, and may need to make a starter on top of that. With all that being said, what is a good time line for this? Should i take the pack out of the fridge now (almost 4pm on Friday), let it get room temp for a couple hours, smack it, wait a couple hours, do a quick starter tomorow? Tonight? Let it ride for a few hours and then either decant or dump it into the LBK?

I was going to try the Belgian Wit 3944. Here is what I was thinking in terms of a simple recipe:
3 lb Wheat DME
.25 lb Flaked Wheat (steep)
.25 lb American White Wheat (steep)
.25 Belgian Two Row (or it could be Belgian Pale Malt) (steep)
Hops: .25 Cascade (6.2AAU) @ 30 and 7 minutes
Other: .5 oz Coriander (@15)
.5 oz Bitter Orange Peel (@15)

Any changes to this? Tweaks? I grabbed a few different grains and other ingredients to try to make a Saison in a bit after I get some of the current LBKs bottled. Or a Dubbel :) Will change my mind a few times between now and then.

So any experienced Wyeast users or Belgian makers out there - what is your time line?
Cheers
jeff

My wheat beers are never more than 45% wheat and 55% barley and making a starter and decanting it without cold crashing it for a few days means you'll be tossing out all the more attenuating, less flocculant cells....so you will have trouble reaching your final gravity.

How old is the yeast and what size batch are you brewing?

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OK - on the package it says MFG 03 Jan 13 - so I am assuming (dangerous I know) that is the "manufacture" date but it could be a use by date. On the back it says to use within 6 months of date on front.

It would be for a LBK sized batch. I do have a bunch of other grains, and can certainly swap some of the wheat dme with light dme or add some other grains. I can also "mash" instead of steep - as it seems to be the same process just for longer and trying to control temps a little bit more if that would help ( could crush some of the white wheat I have sitting around in place of the wheat dme as well).

So to be clear - do you guys let it warm up to room temp before smacking? Straight outta the fridge? If it can take days to completely swell - should I smack it and leave it out of the fridge overnight? I would think they'd be fine and dandy just eating their included goodies at room temp for 10-12 hours? If it were to swell up really quickly what is the result of not pitching it for a couple hours after that?

Thanks all
jeff

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Generally, I smack right out of the fridge, and it's fully inflated within 5 hours at 65* room temp. Your results may vary. To be safe, I have smacked 12 - 14 hours before I needed. It is important to let it "inflate" at room temp, if your room is 65ish degrees.

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I like to let the smack pack be out of the fridge for a few hrs. before I spank it, then as mtsoxfan and others have said maybe 12 hrs or so. I know thats not what the directions say, but I have found that to work. And have not done a starter, I wait untill the pack is hard. Smack that baby :chug:

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It has been smacked - having not done it before I guess I will find out tomorrow morn if I did it correctly (hard to believe you can smack a pack incorrectly lol).

So now I am wondering if I should split the DME into 50-55% Light DME and 45-50% Wheat. I guess I won't worry about doing a starter as it is a LBK sized batch and not even a big burly one either. I will then harvest the yeast after this one ferments.

Cheers
jeff

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"Manowarfan1" post=325920 said:

It has been smacked - having not done it before I guess I will find out tomorrow morn if I did it correctly (hard to believe you can smack a pack incorrectly lol).

So now I am wondering if I should split the DME into 50-55% Light DME and 45-50% Wheat.
jeff

Hey Jeff...

Most wheat DME is composed of a percentage of wheat and a percentage of barley...

Not all wheat...

Muntons Wheat DME is 55% wheat and 45% barley...

Briess CBW Wheat DME is 65% wheat and 35% barley...

Consider that when deciding to reduce the wheat dme to change the balance...

Also, here's a good video on 'smackin' the pack' as it were... B)

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Wow I totally spaced that fact Big Papa - thank you for pointing that out. I was trying to figure out what I should do about grain bill. I think I may just keep it as is - it is mostly to get a feel for the whole yeast thing anyway - want to see how some of these belgians work. :)

Cheers
jeff

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That yeast is pretty fresh so you will be fine, just watch your temperatures and don't pitch it into wort that's higher than 75F.

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So would anyone change out the grain bill on this? Maybe sub out a pound of Light DME for one of the Wheat? Time to bust out the rolling pin and crush some white wheat malt :)

Also - even though it is a very small grain bill - should I go ahead a "mash" this or just steep?

Thanks all - today will be an early brew day and then bottle, and then perhaps brew again late afternoon or early evening, or bottle another batch, gotta check the gravity on the Crimson Tide Victory Ale :)

Cheers
jeff

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if you wanted more hits on your recipe questions please post it in the correct category, advanced recipes. I fail to see what this has to do with Wyeast smack packs???

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On January 26, 2013 at 8:54 AM, haerbob3 said:

if you wanted more hits on your recipe questions please post it in the correct category, advanced recipes. I fail to see what this has to do with Wyeast smack packs???

Thread-killer.

  • Haha 3

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7 hours ago, Bonsai & Brew said:

Thread-killer.

 

He's going to get back with you...in seven years.  😄

  • Haha 2

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2 hours ago, Shrike said:

 

He's going to get back with you...in seven years.  😄

lol it's funny seeing these guys that posted thousands of times on this forum and they're just gone now!

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12 hours ago, Jdub said:

lol it's funny seeing these guys that posted thousands of times on this forum and they're just gone now!

 

Yup.  A huge number left in the the summer of 2013.  Many went to another forum, but that died off and has probably 1/2 dozen active participants out of nearly 1,000 members.  Many also left brewing totally - this hobby has a huge dropout rate, and that was before craft beer really impacted it, dramatically increasing the dropout rate.  That's why homebrew stores are hurting.

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I’ve basically given up on the liquid yeast instant pitch thing, they are too vulnerable and inconsistent with their labeling. I usually use a starter on all liquid or hit it before sealing the fermenter with a can of wort and maybe a pack of dry yeast if stuck. Seems the canned wort has been pretty effective for me. Even the new organic  yeast brands along with Omega and other newer brands sometimes go lame too. 

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