Attempting to harvest yeast…
I got inspired by the Nordeast homebrew club guys after my last brew session and decided to try and harvest my own yeast. Normally I just wash the yeast cake down the drain after I transfer the batch, but I figured I’d try to save myself a few bucks and see if I could maintain the same yeast strain for a few batches. This attempt to harvest the Belgian Wit yeast used for the SaiSon of a Bitch batch fit especially well with my brewing plans, as I am going to brew multiple saison batches this year.
After doing all my sanitation due diligence, I got a majority of the yeast cake from primary into a beaker, sealed it up and stuck it in the fridge to pull the yeast out of suspension. Later that evening, I was reading online and people were saying it’s better to harvest the cake after secondary, not primary as there is more trub and non-yeast particles in the primary cake. After everything settled a few hours later, I went down to the basement fridge to check out the sample for darker brown undesirable flecks. I was greeted by a fermenting sample that had blown the top off the beaker. Whoops! Live and learn. Yeast is too active still to be harvested from the primary fermenter. Noted.
I still plan to try and grab some of the saison yeast off the secondary when I bottle that batch this coming weekend. We’ll see if it explodes again… Anyone have any tips on harvesting yeast? Am I doing this completely wrong? Please let me know.