How To Use Turbo Yeast (Step by Step)
Turbo yeast is probably one of the most amazing discoveries in homebrewing. This innovative type of yeast concentrates sugars for better alcohol absorption and faster fermentation times. Here’s how you can use turbo yeast to create the best homebrews.
What Is Turbo Yeast?
Turbo yeast is a brand of yeast used by brewers to increase the alcohol content of their spirits. It can be used to make whiskey, vodka, or gin. The term “turbo” refers to the fast and efficient way this yeast works. It ferments faster than other types of yeast, so it’s ideal for people who want to make a lot of alcohol within 1-7 days.
Turbo yeast has added (micro and macro) nutrients that help increase the speed at which the mash ferments. There are various turbo yeasts to choose from depending on what you’re trying to achieve with your wash. The varieties include:
- 24-Hour Turbo Yeast– makes 14% alcohol by volume (ABV) within a day.
- 48-hour Turbo Yeast- makes 14% ABV within 2 days.
- Rum Turbo Yeast– is an excellent companion for spirits made from molasses such as rum, because of its ability to bring about an aromatic taste.
- Vodka Turbo Yeast– great for converting sugar to ethanol and producing clean, neutral spirits.
- Classic 8 Turbo Yeast- Ideal for producing 20% ABV in a short period.
- Heat Turbo Yeast- excellent to use when fermenting in areas where temperatures are above 27℃ (80℉).
- Whiskey Turbo Yeast- works well with malted barley and grains to yield high ABV.
- Pure Pot Still Turbo Yeast- wonderful to use when adding fruit to your spirits. The turbo yeast comes with a pectin enzyme packet which helps to speed up the extraction of fruit sugars during fermentation.
- Triple Distilled Turbo Yeast- For a clean fermentation process.
- Express (Fast) Turbo Yeast-This is a fast-acting yeast that makes 14% ABV in less than 24 hours.
What’s the difference between 24hr and 48hr turbo yeast?
The difference between a 24 and 48-hour turbo yeast is the time it takes to ferment your wash. A 24-hour turbo yeast makes 14% ABV within a day, and a 48-hour turbo yeast makes 14% ABV within 2 days. In both cases, if you want to achieve a higher ABV (up to 20%), you should leave your mash to ferment for 5 days.
How To Use Turbo Yeast
You should always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when using turbo yeast. This will ensure that your brew turns out correctly every time. Also, ensure that all materials are sanitized before using turbo yeast to avoid contaminating your wash. The following steps will guide you through using a turbo yeast:
Ingredients will vary depending on the type of alcohol you’re making. Typically, the ingredients you need to add your yeast to are:
- 20 liters of warm water
- 6.4kg sugar
- Turbo yeast
- 20-liter plastic bucket
- Pour your sugar into the bucket.
- Add the water into the bucket with the sugar and stir until all the sugar has dissolved.
- Cut the yeast packet open and pour it into the sugar solution. Stir until all the yeast has dissolved.
- Tightly seal your container with a lid.
- If you’re using a 24-hour turbo yeast, check the gravity of your ferment using a hydrometer. To do a gravity reading, take some wash from the bucket and pour it into the cylinder, and insert your hydrometer.
- If the gravity reading is 1 or below 1, your wash has fermented and is ready to be added to the still.
When using turbo yeast, it’s crucial to adhere to the temperatures specified on the packaging. Any drastic increase or decrease in temperature results in the yeast cells stalling and going dormant. Ideally, your temperature range should be 18℃-27℃ (65℉-80℉).
It can take anything between 24 hours to 48 hours (1-2 days) for your mash to ferment. But, if you want a higher ABV, you should let your wash ferment for up to 5 days (120 hours).
Frequently Asked Questions:
How long does it take for turbo yeast to work?
Because turbo yeasts are powerful enzymes, they react quickly when added to your wash. Typically, you will see some activity within 24 hours after adding turbo yeast to your brew. If you are using a hydrometer, this is a good time to do a gravity reading to check the progress of your fermentation.
What’s the difference between Still Spirits and Alcotec turbo yeast?
Still Spirits and Alcotec turbo yeast are very similar. The type of turbo yeast you use depends on your preference.
Does turbo yeast need a starter?
Turbo yeasts generally don’t need a starter. The advantage of turbo yeast is that it does not require any additional preparation other than dissolving it in water. This saves time and effort since you won’t have to make starters or (typically) monitor the temperature during fermentation.
Even though turbo yeast is not a miracle cure, it’s a high-quality yeast designed to be faster and give better results. When used correctly, Turbo yeast can dramatically change your homebrew game. From yielding high alcohol by volume, to having your mash ready to hit the still within a day, there’s no reason not to give it a try.
- Turbo Yeast: Turbo yeast alcohol distilling, industrial ethanol TT yeast
- Still Spirits: Fermenting better spirits
- Distillery King: Still Spirits Yeast Guide
- Distillique: Turbo Yeast Experiment