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The History of The Best of Both Worlds From MoreBeer!
Olin "Hey Chris, for our brew this weekend I am thinking we should use California yeast. I love the clean neutral flavor and high attentuation that lets the malt and hops shine through"
Chris "True, and you can never go wrong with California, but I am thinking English. It flocculates so much you always have perfectly clear beer and you can't beat the malty flavor."
Olin "We're homebrewing right? Lets do one of each!"
And so it often went around MoreBeer! for over 15 years. One 10 gallon batch, split evenly into two carboys, and pitched with California and English yeast. These beers were then blended at the tap to achieve the perfect harmony. Just recently, and we are surprised it took them so long, Chris and Olin realized that even though they now brew in 14 gallon MoreBeer! conicals and no longer split their batches, they could mix the strains directly in the fermenter.
Blending WLP001 and WLP002 Right in the Vial
We asked our friends at White Labs if the two strains could be blended right in the vial. They told us it was possible (and they even liked the idea!) so we began working on a final formula. Because English tends to dominate just a little, we lowered the percentage of English and raised the percentage of California in the final blend.
The Flavors and Fermentation Characteristics
What we found in our years of blending at the tap holds true - you can expect the malty flavors and aromas of English combined with the ability of California to highlight hops. The true bonus of blending the strains prior to fermentation was discovered in a test at White Labs. The California strain will ferment more sugar than English and that holds true in the blend so your beers will have a higher attenuation (less malt sugar left in beer). Conversely the blend had the same level of flocculation (ability to clump and drop out of solution) as English, natually leaving a clear beer after fermentation. The English yeast cells apparently also help drop the California yeast cells out of solution. The end result is a yeast blend that has the awesome flavors of the two best selling yeast of all time with the attentuation of California and the flocculation of English... The Best of Both Worlds.
Somebody queue the music because we are seriously having too much fun.