Choosing the right yeast for you beer is a critical step in your homebrew process. Each strain of yeast, which creates the sugar and flavor for your beer, is different. And the vast variety of yeast strains can be overwhelming. Here is your guide to choosing the right yeast for your beer:
1. If you want to make an ale:
The best of both worlds, House is clean and allows malt and hops to shine. This strain is extremely versatile and flocculent enough to drop out of the beer quickly. Best used in American IPAs but works well in English style ales. House is clean at cold temperatures with increased esters as fermentation temperatures increase.
Temp: 62-70F, 16-21C // Flocculation: High // Attenuation: 73-75%
Ready to attack your IPA, Barbarian produces stone fruit esters that work great when paired with citrus hops. Barbarian will give you what you need for an exceptionally balanced IPA.
Temp: 62-70F, 16-21C // Flocculation: Medium // Attenuation: 73-74%
A craft brewing standard, Flagship is a versatile strain loved for its extremely clean character. This strain performs well at standard ale temperatures, but can be used in the low 60s to produce exceptionally crisp ales. Flocculation is in the middle of the road and will typically require filtration or fining to achieve crystal clear beers.
Temp: 60-72F, 16-22C // Flocculation: Med-low // Attenuation: 73-77%
Brewers swear by this strain to achieve super bright ales in a short amount of time. One of the most flocculent brewer’s strains around, Pub will rip through fermentation and then drop out of the beer quickly. Pub produces higher levels of esters than most domestic ale strains. Be sure to give beers made with Pub a sufficient diacetyl rest.
Temp:64-70F,18-21C // Flocculation: Very High // Attenuation: 69-74%
A beautiful strain for stout, porter, brown, and amber ales. Darkness produces a unique character that matches up perfectly with roasted and caramel malts. This strain is alcohol tolerant, so don’t hesitate to throw high gravity worts its way.
Temp: 62-72F, 17-22C // Flocculation: Medium // Attenuation: 71-75%
Independence is the strain for bringing some new character into your hop-driven beers. Higher in esters than Flagship, this yeast will give some fruit character that will take your hoppy beers to a new level. While it shines in pale ales and IPAs, Independence is a great all-around strain and will also work well in stouts and English ales.
Temp: 60-72F, 16-22C // Flocculation: Medium // Attenuation: 72-76%
This strain is a fast mover and can be used at the low end of the ale fermentation spectrum to keep it clean. Joystick is a good choice for big, high alcohol, malty beers but has no issues chomping on a hoppy double IPA.
Temp: 60-70F,16-21C // Flocculation: Med-High// Attenuation: 73-77%
Citrus cranks out orange and lemon aromas along with some tropical fruit. Use this strain at high temps for big ester production. A wild saccharomyces strain, it will get a bit funky without the worries of a brettanomyces strain.
Temp: 67-80F, 19-27C // Flocculation: low // Attenuation:74-78%
Dry Hop is a blend of A20 Citrus and A04 Barbarian. When this blend goes to work on your hoppy beer, the hop aroma blows up. The combination of these strains produces amazing aromas of citrus, peach and apricot that will accentuate your IPA, pale ale, and any other hop driven beer.
Temp: 64-74F, 18-23C // Flocculation: medium // Attenuation: 74-78%
Tartan is a traditional strain that accentuates the malt character of Scottish ales. It can also be used for other styles and works well in IPAs due to its clean character. For a higher ester profile, use this ale yeast at the top end of the temperature range.
Temp: 65-70F, 18-21C // Flocculation: medium // Attenuation: 70-75%
2. If you want to make a German Ale:
This is the traditional German strain used to produce world class weizen beers where big banana aroma is required. Balanced with mild clove, depending on your wort profile, this strain will produce amazing beers. Stefon will create a slightly higher level of acidity to give your beer a very crisp finish. Slightly underpitching will help increase the banana character.
Temp: 63-73F, 17-23C // Flocculation: Low // Attenuation: 73-77%
A traditional alt strain, Kaiser is ready to produce an array of German style beers. It will keep the beer clean and allow the delicate malt flavors and aromas to shine through. Characteristics of this strain make it a good choice for traditional Berliner weisse fermentations. Kaiser is a low flocking strain, so expect long clarification times, but very low diacetyl levels.
Temp: 56-65F, 13-18C // Flocculation: Low // Attenuation: 73-77%
Dieter is a clean, crisp, traditional German Kölsch strain. A very low ester profile makes this strain perfect for Kölsch, Alt and other light colored delicate beers. Dieter has better flocculation characteristics than most Kölsch strains which allows brewers to produce clean, bright beers in a shorter amount of time.
Temp: 60-69F, 16-20C // Flocculation: Medium // Attenuation: 73-77%
3. If you want to make Belgian Ales
This is the strain for Belgian Wit style beers. Whiteout produces an excellent balance of spicy phenolic character and esters. Along with the necessary aromatics, this strain produces a significant amount of acidity which is perfect for wits and other light colored Belgian ales. Whiteout can be flocculent during fermentation, then become non-flocculent at the end. This may lead to slower than normal fermentation.
Temp: 62-72F, 17-22C // Flocculation: Med-low // Attenuation: 72-76%
Gnome is the yeast for brewing Belgian inspired beers in a hurry. This strain is extremely flocculent and drops out of the beer quickly after fermentation. Gnome produces a nice phenolic character that goes well with hops, as well as with caramel and toffee flavors. Great for Belgian ales that need to be crystal clear without filtration.
Temp: 65-75F, 18-24C// Flocculation: Med-high // Attenuation: 72-76%
The perfect strain for your classic abbey ales. Triple Double produces moderate esters with low to no phenolic characteristics. This strain is tried and true and works perfectly in a production environment. Keep an eye on Triple Double, it likes to sit on top of the wort throughout fermentation which may result in a slow fermentation.
Temp: 65-77F, 18-25C // Flocculation: Medium // Attenuation: 74-78%
This unique yeast can be used in your saison, farmhouse ale, or other Belgian styles where high ester levels are important. Rustic typically produces a lot of bubblegum and juicy aromas that compliment complex maltiness.
Temp: 68-80F, 20-27C // Flocculation: Medium // Attenuation: 72-76%
This yeast is an insane wort attenuator. Napoleon will destroy the sugars in your saison and farmhouse beers – even the ones in which most brewer’s strains have no interest. When all is said and done, Napoleon produces very dry, crisp beers with nice citrus aromas. Yeast settling times can be long, usually requiring filtration for bright beers.
Temp: 65-78F, 18-26C // Flocculation: Low // Attenuation: 77-83%
4. If you want to make a lager:
This strain is for fermenting your “California Common” beer. Cablecar can produce clean pseudo lagers at ale temperatures, but is also willing to work as a traditional lager strain down to the mid 50s.
Temp: 55-65F, 13-18C // Flocculation: Med-high // Attenuation: 71-75%
The world’s most popular lager strain is ready for you. Global is an all-around solid lager strain that produces clean beers with a very low ester profile. This strain is very powdery, so long lagering times or filtration is required for bright beer.
Temp: 46-56F, 8-13C // Flocculation: Med-low // Attenuation: 73-77%
This strain combines good flocculation characteristics with low sulfur and low diacetyl. Clean fermentations produce amazing bock, helles, pilsner, dunkles, and just about any other lager style you throw its way.
Temp: 50-60F, 10-16C // Flocculation: Medium // Attenuation: 70-74%
A traditional Czech lager strain, Urkel allows for a nice balance between hops and malt. This strain can be slightly sulphery during fermentation, but it cleans up during lagering. Fermentation at the higher end of the range will produce a beer with minimal sulfur and a light ester profile.
Temp: 52-58F, 11-14C // Flocculation: Medium // Attenuation: 71-75%
5. For all your Wilds and Sours:
Sour Batch Kidz is a blend of low attenuating Belgian saison yeast, Lactobacillus, and two Brettanomyces yeast strains. This blend is great for emulating lambics, Flanders reds, sour farmhouse ales and any other brew you would like to funk up.
Temp: 68-76F, 20-24 // Flocculation: Low // Attenuation: 80%+
Suburban Brett is Brettanomyces yeast that works great as a secondary aging strain. It really shines when used in wood barrels and will produce complex and balanced aromas of sour cherry and dried fruit. It can also be used for as a primary strain for brett only beers
Temp: 64-74F, 18-23C // Flocculation: Low // Attenuation: 75-80%