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US-05 (dry) vs WY1056 (liquid) - My tests/results
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kal
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PostLink    Posted: Tue Mar 26, 2013 2:11 pm    Post subject: US-05 (dry) vs WY1056 (liquid) - My tests/results Reply with quote


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Hi everyone,

Safale US-05 dry yeast is my go to yeast for blonde ales, all american style pale ales (APAs), IPAs (AIPAs), as well as anything else that requires a clean fermentation. It's a yeast I know well and I use it a lot.

I like the convenience of this dry yeast as it keeps for years when kept in the freezer and is so much easier to use than liquid.

Some brewers have indicated that they prefer the liquid versions (Wyeast 1056 or White Labs WLP001 California Ale) because they taste better so I thought I'd do a series of tests, starting with an Organic Blonde Ale that is a light coloured 5.3% ABV (1.048 -> 1.007) made with 85% Organic Pilsner malt, 5% CaraFoam, 10% table sugar, hopped to 15 IBU with Crystal hops. It's meant to be an "everybody likes it" beer.

It was brewed on Feb 17, 2013.

In one fermenter with ~5.5 gallons of wort I pitched 12 grams of hydrated US-05 dry yeast at 66F. The yeast was one year old and had been stored in a freezer at 0F.

In the second fermenter with ~5.5 gallons of wort at 66F I pitched two WY1056 smack packs with manufacturing dates of Feb 4 (only 13 days old). Both were smacked and allowed to swell for 5 hours first.

On Feb 25 (8 days later) both were at 1.008 / 68F. The WY1056 beer tasted crisper/brighter. The US-05 was more grainy tasting, more astringent.

On March 3 (14 days later) I racked to my 5 gallon 'brite' tanks and added gelatine to clear the beer. The beers tasted much more similar at this point.

On March 8 (19 days later) I kegged both and placed them in my conditioning fridge at 33-34F on C02 gas to carb them up.

On March 23, 15 days after putting them on C02, they are carbonated to approx 2 volumes. Fairly low, but I've always liked my beers less carb'ed than usual. There's less carbonic bite this way and I find I enjoy the flavour more, even with a lighter beer like this that doesn't have a ton of flavour.

At this point I did a 3 way test where you try and point out which beer is the different one: Two glasses of beer fermented with WY1056, one glass with beer fermented US-05. Labels were added on the bottom of the glasses so that I couldn't see them. My wife mixed them up and I tasted with my eyes closed. I tasted them all a few times and thought one of them was the different one (the US-05) so I pointed that one out. I was wrong.

My wife reshuffled them and I tried again, tasting each multiple times, jumping back and forth, trying to find a difference. I realized I couldn't tell them apart at all. I tasted again and ended up taking my best guess. I was wrong again.

My wife then tried twice, guessed twice, and was wrong both times.

Maybe others can tell the difference, but to our taste buds US-05 and WY1056 taste identical on lighter beers so I'll be sticking with using US-05 for these types of beers as dry yeast is (IMHO) so much easier to use.

I'm also trying the same two yeasts on an APA that I brewed recently with a massive hop stand to see if the hoppiness makes any difference.

Note: US05, WY1056, and WLP001 are all based on the same Chico strain, so they are expected to taste similar. I was surprised in this case that I didn't notice any difference at all once the beer had been conditioned and carbonated.

I have a couple of vials of fresh WLP001 so next time I brew this I'll do the same experiment with US-05 and WLP-001.

Kal

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Last edited by kal on Mon Dec 08, 2014 3:56 am; edited 10 times in total
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huaco



Joined: 05 Apr 2012
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PostLink    Posted: Tue Mar 26, 2013 2:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great write-up Kal. Thanks!
This is especially of interest to me because I just bulk ordered some US-05 and have plenty to use.

BTW... I like the price tag on the dry yeast when compared to the liquid!
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kal
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PostLink    Posted: Tue Mar 26, 2013 2:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

+1 to the price, though you can do pretty well if you re-use slurry from the liquid. With dry yeast I never bother as it's so cheap so I go with convenience first.

Kal

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MtnBrewer



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PostLink    Posted: Tue Mar 26, 2013 2:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good info, Kal. Personally I think they're both sort of bland and characterless. That said, I keep a couple of packs of US-05 around at all times for spur-of-the-moment brewing.
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kal
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PostLink    Posted: Tue Mar 26, 2013 3:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

MtnBrewer wrote:
Good info, Kal. Personally I think they're both sort of bland and characterless.

Yes. They're extremely neutral and do not impart any yeast derived flavours at all, which is why I like them for beers where I want the yeast to stay out of the way of the hops and malt. Definitely not for every beer. I do use them a lot of Blonde Ales, American Wheat, anything American and hoppy for that matter. I've even used it for things like a Irish Red Ale that I want to be somewhat neutral.

I'd never use them for British beers (I like WY1968) or anything special like a Wit or a Hefe.

Kal

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MtnBrewer



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PostLink    Posted: Tue Mar 26, 2013 3:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Even for American beers I'd rather go with something that has a little soul like 1450 or 1272. But sometimes a spontaneous brewday pops up and you cannot beat the convenience of opening up a pack of yeast, rehydrating it and pitching.
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Kevin59



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PostLink    Posted: Tue Mar 26, 2013 3:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the info and testing Kal! I've been thinking of doing something similar and having a couple of dry yeast skeptic brewing friends of mine be the tasters. Maybe I'll just point them to your results!

Mug
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huaco



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PostLink    Posted: Tue Mar 26, 2013 3:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nah... let them do the test for themselves. That's the only way they will be convinced.
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kal
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PostLink    Posted: Tue Mar 26, 2013 3:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

MtnBrewer wrote:
Even for American beers I'd rather go with something that has a little soul like 1450 or 1272.

Sure! That's what makes brewing so interesting. There's no right or wrong answers. Anyone can brew exactly what they like.

mrjofus1959 wrote:
Thanks for the info and testing Kal! I've been thinking of doing something similar and having a couple of dry yeast skeptic brewing friends of mine be the tasters. Maybe I'll just point them to your results!


Give it a go yourself and post back. I'd love to hear what you think.

Kal

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RichBenn



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PostLink    Posted: Wed Mar 27, 2013 1:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks, Kal, for doing this.

Your results are not surprising to me. I converted to US-05 a long time ago, and see no reason to go liquid for APAs using the Chico strain when such a good dry equivalent is available. Wish there were more like it for other strains.

It's tough to do a controlled experiment when comparing dry to liquid, as the yeast availability and nutrients are by definition different. US-05 has, as you probably know, a high number of yeast cells with included nutrients. Many will not survive the initial pitch, but due to the numbers and nutrients, there are plenty available and it works well.

Liquid yeast, OTOH, is typically grown up to the quantities required to pitch in a starter. Without counting the number of live yeast per ml, there is no way to know if the dry and liquid yeast have an equal start and/or grow at a similar rate. This could explain the variation you perceived before the beers were finished and carbed. There is some evidence that how a yeast progresses through the growth, alcohol production, cleanup, and dying phases may have subtle differences in the beer components/by products.

Of course, in any experiment, there can be many other unknown or "lurking variables" than can throw results off. This is why statisticians use so many samples, a luxury we don't have, unfortunately.

Still, a light beer is most likely to show these differences, and your blind taste test didn't find any. A good APA or IPA would be even less likely to show a difference, I would think, as the stronger presence of malt and hops seem to mask variations more.

Anyway, thanks again.

Rich

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kal
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PostLink    Posted: Wed Mar 27, 2013 1:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

RichBenn wrote:
I converted to US-05 a long time ago, and see no reason to go liquid for APAs using the Chico strain when such a good dry equivalent is available. Wish there were more like it for other strains.

+1 to this. Other than Safale US-05 (and sometimes Saflager W-34/70) I don't use any other dry yeasts. I've been using liquid for everything else.

Thanks for the other information. You are absolutely right that it's not always easy to do truly controlled testing that is 100% conclusive.

Kal

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kal
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PostLink    Posted: Wed Mar 27, 2013 1:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So last night I racked my Electric Hop Stand Pale Ale (another experiment I did where 16 oz of hops were only added after boil, not during).

This beer was fermented in split batches: Half on fresh US-05 (24 g), the other half on the slurry of two WY1056 smack packs used in this Blonde Ale experiment I discuss in this thread. The idea was to do this same experiment, but now with a hoppy beer.

The two 5 gallon carboys side by side after adding dry hops:


(US-05 on the left, WY1056 on the right)

The yeast had been pitched 12 days ago and fermented at 66F.

To throw another data point into the US-05 vs WY1056: For this hoppy APA, the WY1056 beer seemed to taste slightly smoother (slicker) and possibly slightly fruitier. Very hard to tell. I'll reserve full judgement until it's kegged and carb'ed and I can do a 3 way test. After the Blonde Ale test I completely expect them to taste the same, but I need to prove it to myself instead of just assuming.

Kal

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RichBenn



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PostLink    Posted: Wed Mar 27, 2013 10:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kal,

For reference, what temp are you fermenting at?

Rich

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kal
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PostLink    Posted: Thu Mar 28, 2013 12:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wort was cooled to 66F and fermented at 66F-68F.

Kal

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-MG-



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PostLink    Posted: Thu Mar 28, 2013 12:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thought I would add this short write-up I did for my home-brew club about pitching rates. Your second test batch is closer depending on your OG. I also posted it on this forum a little while ago for people. When you start doing the math, liquid yeast becomes cheaper since dry-yeast you are not suppose to make a starter. One vial contains around 100B cells and a 2L starter can build it up to the high 300s.

I'm using the probrewer .75 pitch rate, which is mentioned on many different articles and appears to be generally accepted as a conservative number for normal ales.

Scroll down to the Dry Yeast explanation and MrMalty, claims 20B cells per gram for dry yeast in their calc. HOWEVER, if you go look on fermentis website and look at the details for us-05, they clearly state:

Viable cell at packaging: 6 x 10^9/G (6B cells per gram)

Using the yeast pitch rate forumla provided on MrMalty for an ale:

(0.75 million) X (milliliters of wort) X (degrees Plato of the wort)

This will tell us how many billion cells of yeast we need for our specific beer (same thing the calc does).

There are about 3785 milliliters in a gallon

Doing the math on my batch of 6 gallons in the fermenter and an OG of 1.042 (about 10.3 Plato):

(750,000) X (22,710) X (10.3) = 175,434,750,000.

Or about 175.5 Billion cells!

Using Fermentis own numbers of 6B cells a gram we would need:

175.5 / 6 = 29.25 grams of US-05 to meet these standards.

That is almost 3X more than what most of us probably do.

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kal
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PostLink    Posted: Wed May 08, 2013 4:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

UPDATE: WHAT ABOUT HOPPY BEERS?

I've now done the same 3-way blind tasting on my Electric Hop Stand Pale Ale that was fermented in split batches: Half on fresh US-05 (24 g), the other half on the slurry of two WY1056 smack packs used in the previous Blonde Ale experiment I discuss in this thread. Same experiment, but now with a hoppy beer that's been in the keg for ~4 weeks so it is at its prime.

Two glasses were filled half way with WY1056 fermented beer, one with US-05 fermented beer. My wife again mixed them up so that I wouldn't know which was which.

The results were the same as with the lighter beer. Try as a I might, I could not pick out which of the 3 beers was fermened with US-05. I just couldn't tell at all. I tried with the beer cold (38-40F) and then again 20 minutes later after they had warmed up a bit. I just couldn't tell and would have been guessing. I did guess, thinking that maybe I was tasting something different in one of the samples, but again I was wrong both times. My wife didn't try the experiment as she's not a fan of hoppy beers (more for me). Wink

Conclusion: To my tastebuds both lighter (delicate) beers as well as hoppy beers do not taste any different. These are the two styles I make the most with US-05 so I will continue to use it as I've done for years as I find it so much easier to use.

Eventually I will also try US-05 against White Labs WLP-001 California Ale. It's based on the same Chico strain. I have two vials of this in the fridge now so my next American style hoppy beer with be half fermented with this. I fully expect the same results but just need to be sure for my own curiosity.

If anyone else tries this test please post your results here. I'd be curious to hear if anyone with more refined tastebuds tastes any differences.

Cheers!

Kal

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18DPA



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PostLink    Posted: Thu May 09, 2013 2:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

as always thanks for the info. Started using dry last summer and love the ease and price. As for pitching rate Mr Malty always comes out needing less packets of dry so all the availability (way smarter than me) stuff I trust his software and occasionally will splurge and spend an extra 3$ on an extra packet just in case.. The write up in love beer love food was good thanks for the newsletter.
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kal
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PostLink    Posted: Thu May 30, 2013 7:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

To continue the saga...

Yesterday I brewed a Blonde Ale, and half is fermenting on Safale US-05 dry yeast, the other half on White Labs WLP-001 California Ale liquid yeast.

I expect them to also taste the same but like the original experiment, I have to check for myself. We'll see in a month or so. I'll then follow up with an IPA or similar to test with hoppy beers too.

Kal

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kal
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PostLink    Posted: Fri Aug 02, 2013 5:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So to close the loop on this: 2 days ago both my wife and I tested the Blonde Ale where half was fermented with Safale US-05 dry yeast and the other half with White Labs WLP-001 California Ale liquid yeast.

The beer was kegged on June 13, 2013 so it was allowed to carbonate and condition for nearly 7 weeks before tasting.

We did the same 3 way test where you try and point out which beer is the different one: Two glasses of beer fermented with WLP001, one glass with beer fermented US-05. Labels were added on the bottom of the glasses so that I couldn't see them. My wife mixed them up and I tasted with my eyes closed. I tasted them all a few times and thought one of them was the different one (the US-05) so I pointed that one out. I was wrong.

My wife then tried and she was able to pick out the US-05 beer successfully. She found it be very slightly fruitier, the WLP001 slightly more 'tannic'. I re-shuffled and she again picked out the US-05 beer successfully.

I tried them side by side (knowing which was which) and then tried again to pick it out blindly and was successful in picking out the US-05 knowing what to look for this time. I prefer the US-05 but they're so similar that I doubt most people would notice (I didn't until I knew what to look for).

The conclusions I can draw:

- The difference between WLP001 and US-05 is extremely subtle in lighter beers. (The difference may be lost on on hoppier beers - I don't plan on testing this)
- WY1056 and US-05 taste the same to both of us in both lighter and hoppy beers.
- For my use, I see no need to use WLP001 or WY1056.
- My wife is better at differentiating tastes. Probably because I've killed my taste buds with 100+ IBU beers over the years. Wink

Kal

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Castermmt



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PostLink    Posted: Sat Aug 03, 2013 1:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

huaco wrote:
Great write-up Kal. Thanks!
This is especially of interest to me because I just bulk ordered some US-05 and have plenty to use.

BTW... I like the price tag on the dry yeast when compared to the liquid!


Where can I "Bulk Order" the us-05 in the US? Thanks, castermmt

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