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  1. #21
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    Re: Does yeast have an impact on flavor?

    Of course yeast has an impact on flavor, be it beer, bread or Bourbon. This is why Beam continues to use the old National Distiller's yeast to ferment Old Grand Dad mash rather than standard Beam yeast.

  2. #22
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    Re: Does yeast have an impact on flavor?

    Quote Originally Posted by Trey Manthey View Post
    Which recipes would you recommend I purchase to best highlight the differences between yeasts?
    OscarV has a post on here that has what all the yeast do to the bourbons. Pick 2 bourbons with the same grain mash bills and 2 yeast that are exact opposite of each other.
    Normal is an illusion. What is normal to the spider, is chaos for the fly.

  3. #23
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    Re: Does yeast have an impact on flavor?

    I remember seeing this on Chuck's blog awhile back, and did some digging.

    http://chuckcowdery.blogspot.com/201...to-revive.html

    Seems like a lot of trouble to go through if yeast does not have an effect on the taste. Although it is also a "strange" coincidence that it all is occurring the day before their big anniversary and release. Hopefully it is both yeast and marketing.

    Personally, I am to green to know the true impact. However, if it didn't have an effect on the taste these distillers would be buying it from a company to save time and money. Remember that is all about $$$

  4. #24
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    Re: Does yeast have an impact on flavor?

    Quote Originally Posted by portwood View Post
    Most people would agree that the barrel itself has an impact on taste to the point that two barrels filled with the same spirit sitting side-by-side for the same amount of time can produce aged whisky that tastes different. Therefore, the impact of yeast should be tested on new make spirit with all other variables the same except for yeast.
    This was discussed by Jim Rutledge at length this past weekend. Going back to the time he began in R&D they went through many, many variations of yeast and distilled them in mini stills in the lab measuring everything scientifically. The taste & smell comparisons were made on fresh make and his contention has always been that the measure of good bourbon must be made on what goes in to the barrel. In '91-'92 when he moved from NY to KY he had only 6 months to bring the quality of FR up to his expectations. The stuff they were making was ranked near the lowest their 4-point scale went until he eventually came up with the combinations that ranked at the top of the scale. All of these tests, tastings, & nosing were on fresh make when the yeast show the greatest variable. The others being the water and the quality of the grains.

    Interestingly, he told us of a visit by another barrel picking group .. likely noted earlier on this thread .. where they literally picked out the different yeast formula. Something he said neither he nor anyone else at the distillery had been able to do!
    Last edited by HighHorse; 03-14-2013 at 08:54. Reason: change "post" to "thread"
    Jon

  5. #25
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    Re: Does yeast have an impact on flavor?

    Here's an idea. Go back and tell them that all the talk Scottish distillers do about peat is nothing more than marketing. Someone at Diageo even said so.

  6. #26
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    Re: Does yeast have an impact on flavor?

    Distilleries keep samples of their yeast in several places around the world so it can't be destroyed. That's how important it is to them. One master distiller was quoted as saying if you control the yeast (meaning at that time the liquid yeast) you control the distillery.
    Last edited by p_elliott; 03-14-2013 at 08:48.
    Normal is an illusion. What is normal to the spider, is chaos for the fly.

  7. #27
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    Re: Does yeast have an impact on flavor?

    What a very Duneish thing to say.

    The Yeast must flow.

  8. #28
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    Re: Does yeast have an impact on flavor?

    Every component matters, so of course the yeast does. Bruichladdich, and to a lesser extent Arran, are doing a lot of exciting things with different barleys from local farms in Scotland. Would they bother with that if all barley was the same? Or would there be whisky aged in countless varieties of casks (new, refill, sherry, PX, rum, cognac, hogshead, butt, puncheon, quarter cask, etc. etc. etc.) if there wasn't variation and uniqueness to be found and exploited? It is probably true that there's less focus (or even no focus) on yeast as part of scotch whisky culture because the recipes and yeasts were standardized centuries ago and nobody has deviated, but I'm inclined to believe that if you used some drastically different yeast in a bottle of Balvenie Doublewood, there would be more people than not who notice.
    Last edited by Yeti; 03-14-2013 at 08:58.

  9. #29
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    Re: Does yeast have an impact on flavor?

    Quote Originally Posted by MyOldKyDram View Post
    What a very Duneish thing to say.

    The Yeast must flow.
    My high school self would have had a field day with that one.

  10. #30
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    Re: Does yeast have an impact on flavor?

    Quote Originally Posted by Yeti View Post
    Every component matters, so of course the yeast does. Bruichladdich, and to a lesser extent Arran, are doing a lot of exciting things with different barleys from local farms in Scotland. Would they bother with that if all barley was the same? Or would there be whisky aged in countless varieties of casks (new, refill, sherry, PX, rum, cognac, hogshead, butt, puncheon, quarter cask, etc. etc. etc.) if there wasn't variation and uniqueness to be found and exploited? It is probably true that there's less focus (or even no focus) on yeast as part of scotch whisky culture because the recipes and yeasts were standardized centuries ago and nobody has deviated, but I'm inclined to believe that if you used some drastically different yeast in a bottle of Balvenie Doublewood, there would be more people than not who notice.
    It's funny you would mention Bruichladdich's barley experimentation, because the that's how the whole issue of yeast popped up. I said I was skeptical of the impact of barley variety on the finished product and I said that I thought yeast had a bigger impact on the taste of the final product than barley strain and everybody jumped in to tell me how very wrong I was. I stand by that, but since I haven't tasted any Bruichladdich product ever, I'm not in a good position to judge.

    Anyway, I think the idea of a Scottish distiller trying a different yeast strain is an excellent one. Let's hope somebody in that business is reading this!
    Last edited by Josh; 03-14-2013 at 09:22.
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