2020-09-14

Yeast Battle: Lallemand Verdant vs Imperial Juice A38

Yeast info:

I've been using the London III strain as my house ale yeast for a while now via Wyeast 1318. Allegedly Imperial Juice is the same strain, and Verdant IPA at least started out as LIII then maybe mutated into something new? I guess we'll find out. But if there's no difference between the two, OR if I end up preferring Lallemand, then that will be pretty exciting as I'll have a dry yeast option for my house ales.

For the test I took my standard Session IPA, "Hop Light" and brewed up a big 44L (had some unexpected boil off so it actually ended up being 42L) batch to split into 2 fermenters, each with a different yeast. The yeasts were both added directly to the wort: Verdant sprinkled on top, and Juice poured directly in. No starters or rehydration. 

RESULTS: After about a week in the kegs, these were fully clear though the Verdant batch had a bit of a head start. After several side-by-side and blind quad/triangle tests I could not tell these apart. I may do another test with a hazy since that is what Verdant is known for and what this "IPA" yeast typically goes into. This is not a disappointing outcome: I now have a reliable dry 'house' ale yeast that is essentially London III. Time to stock up!

Full recipe is on BrewersFriend, but here's the TL;DR:
  • 2020-9-12: brew day
  • Malts: Maris Otter, Munich I, Honey
  • Hops: [Nugget] (Loral) {Sabro}
  • Yeasts: Verdant IPA OR Juice/A38
  • OG: 11.2°P; FG: 1.9°P; ABV: 5%
  • 2020-9-15 (+3): dry hopped with 6g/L Sabro
  • 2020-9-18 (+6): FG checked via brix: verdant 1.9°P, juice 1.6°P
  • 2020-9-22 (+10): transferred to 'keg secondary' 
  • 2020-9-30 (+18): in keezer
Milled grains

Mash temp

Floor Manager Steve keeping track of the temp

Nugget for FWH (small cup), and Loral for Flameout (big cup)

Brew session beer: Tasty NEIPA from down the street.

Speaking of hop soup: 176g Loral added for the last 5 minutes

OG looking like 11.2°P

The contestants!

And they're off! this was a few hours in but they surprisingly started about the same time and fairly quick; I was seeing airlock activity after 2 hours. 

2020-9-15 (+3): Dry hops - 6g/L Sabro 

Healthy krausen! This is the Verdant batch but Imperial looks exactly the same. 

2020-10-8 (+26): Verdant (left) and Juice samples. So far can't tell a difference. Both very good, lots of tropical fruit and a mild aroma. This is an easy pint and at 4.6% you can have another one without getting rekt. Unfortunately that means the kegs don't last very long...

2020-10-10 (+28): Both beers are nice and clear and tasting clean. Kegs kicked shortly after this.