It was warm in central Pennsylvania on the weekend after Christmas. Highs in the 50s. Warm enough that I was able to get in a brew session. I decided to brew a batch of CJ’s House of the Rising Sun JPA using the extract recipe on Homebrew Adventures.
It was the first time I used the Wyeast 1026 PC British Cask Ale. I bought two packs as soon as they became available. Manufactured 14-oct-08.
I smacked and the pack did almost nothing. It filled some, but did not swell. There was some yeast in there, but not terribly active.
I made a starter — 7 oz Light DME in 2 quarts of water with a pinch of Wyeast Nutrient — and the starter did almost nothing. Some effervescence but not very active bubbling. Some yeast, but not terribly active.
When I brewed I added a ½-teaspoon of Wyeast Nutrient 10 minutes before the end of the boil. After cooling, I rocked the carboy back and forth for a good five minutes to aerate before pitching. I pitched that afternoon and the next morning I had to switch from a 3-piece airlock to a blow off tube and the bubbling sounded like a damned minigun.
I guess the next time I use the Cask Ale yeast I will keep in mind that it may be a little slow to start.