Different yeast strains such as wlp002 or wlp007 can give you a different charactered ale. Some are good for English ale while others prove their worth with American ale. That’s why it’s pretty easy to get lost about differentiating them.
So, what are the differences between wlp002 vs wlp007 vs s-04 vs us-05?
Compared to wlp002 yeast, wlp007 is richer in flavor and English yeast characteristics. On the other hand, S-04 has a unique taste that is more bready in comparison with US-05. US-05 has a more peachy flavor and results in a clean beer. However, US-05 attenuates higher while S-04 attenuates lower.
Well, this was only just a teaser to the main picture. If you feel inclined to know more, come along and take a look at the differences!
A Quick Comparison of the Yeast Strains
Many home brewers tend to contemplate why there are so many yeast strains. Because few good ones are good enough right? Well, that’s not really good enough. People have very different tastes in ale and that’s what made so many yeast strains available.
However, I’ll just quickly cover wlp002, wlp007, s-04, and us-05 yeast strains today. To start off, let’s check out what are the basic differences-
|Taste||Less English characteristics||More English characteristics||Beady||Peachy|
|Fermentation Temperature||65-68 °F||65-70 °F||64.4-78.8°F||64.4-78.8°F|
|Viability||79.35% after 5 months||79.35% after 5 months||79.5% after 5 months||79.5% after 5 months|
|Used for||English Ale||Dry English Ale||Dry American Ale||Dry American Ale|
|Cost||Starts from $11||Starts from $11||Starts from $7||Starts from $7|
|Where to Get||Check Availability in Amazon||Check Availability in Amazon||Check Availability in Amazon||Check Availability in Amazon|
For any brewer, this much information is never enough. That’s why in the next segment, I’ll try to cover these characteristics one by one. By looking at the different attributes you’ll be able to pinpoint your preference more confidently.
So, let’s move on!
Comparing the Different Factors of the Strains
It’s now time to compare all the yeast strains according to their different characteristics. Just like the hop seeds and rhizome comparison, you’ll see the full picture very shortly.
So, let’s dive straight into the full discussion.
Taste & Flavor:
WLP002 and WLP007 are both English yeast strains from White Labs. However, the Wlp007 is much drier and more alcoholic. While Wlp007 can act as a wlp002 substitute, the taste will be different.
Also, there is no Wyeast substitute available for WLP007. That is what makes WLP007 ale a tad more unique.
You can check out the look of WPL007 compared to other yeast here-
So, if you want to experience the best English Ale, these two are quite remarkable. You can definitely get these to enjoy some homemade ale.
Here are some recommendations for you-
- White Labs WLP002 from Homebrew is quite exquisite to taste. On top of that, it comes with a cold pack and heat shield.
- You can also get White Labs WLP007.
Now, SafAle S-04, and US-05 are used for Dry American Ale. So, they will definitely have more American characteristics. However, the taste of S-04 is beadier as most brewers say.
And US-05 tastes peachy and more fruity.
Also, here’s how S-04 and US-05 look at the end in the glass-
Because of the close relation of the strains, many try mixing us-05 and s-04! If the viability is good enough, then you’ll get a unique result pitching them together.
So, don’t restrict yourself if you want to try that.
However, don’t go and use raisins with your dry yeast! Because using raisins for home brewing is a very different process altogether.
Remarks: WLP007 tastes more English while WLP002 has a more clean flavor. As for SafAle, US-05 is more peachy and S-04 is beady.
While it’s not that significant, there are slight gaps in the fermentation temperature. For that reason, the temperature is definitely a characteristic that requires discussion.
Wlp002 temperature for fermentation is less tolerant of the surroundings at 65-68 °F. While it’s not bad, the WLP007 yeast has a more tolerable range of 65-70 °F.
So, that’s a bit of an advantage of using WLP007.
However, both of them pale in comparison with the American ale yeasts.
Both the S-04 and US-03 have a wider temperature range for fermentation with 64.4-78.8°F. That’s why you rarely look out for the temperature change for these yeasts.
However, it’s important to get these SafAle yeasts from good manufacturers. Here are some excellent US-05 and S-04 yeasts I’ve found-
- Safale US-05 Pack of 3 is the perfect way to start your American ale journey.
- Another great value for money is Fermentis Safale S-04! It has the cheapest price of the bunch.
Trust me, you’ll be blown away after you taste the ale from these yeasts.
Remarks: The S-04 and US-05 are better when it comes to optimal fermentation temperature.
In the attenuation segment, there’s no significant difference between SafAle s-04 vs us-05. Because they both attenuate high and retain good flavors.
However, the same thing can’t be said for English Ale yeasts. Only WLP007 attenuates high while WLP002 attenuates low in the range of 63-70%. That’s actually a major downside of this particular ale yeast that differs significantly from the rest.
Still, all the yeasts retain their viability at almost 80% even after 5 months.
Remarks: While WLP007, S-04 & US-05 attenuate in the same high range, WLP002 attenuates low.
This segment is pretty important for any yeast strain comparison. Because flocculation in brewing can determine the overall aggregation of the yeast strains.
So, keep a watchful eye on this factor.
Compared to the rest three, only WLP002 has very high flocculation. WLP007 also has high flocculation. But the sad thing is that both S-04 and US-05 flocculation is medium.
So, in the wlp002 vs s-04 flocculation, the former overwhelms the latter.
Remarks: WLP002 surpasses all the other yeast with a very high flocculation rate.
Wlp002 vs wlp007 vs s-04 vs us-05- Which One’s the Best?
The final hour to make your decision has arrived. Now, you’ll have to decide which one you want to try pitching. However, if you can’t make a decision yet, let me summarize it for you by starting with English ale yeast.
Between WLP002 and WLP007, the latter is relatively better in most of the categories. From the attenuation to taste, WLP007 provides more to your homebrewing.
So, that’s definitely the better choice in my opinion.
In terms of American Ale, S-04 attenuates lower but has fast sedimentation speed. It has a bit of beady flavor and flocs medium. On the other hand, US-05 attenuates higher but has a medium sedimentation speed.
So, you have to be a bit patient with it.
That’s every major thing you need to know before you make a pick. Now, go through them once again and you’ll be done!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
How Do You Use Safale S-04?
You can use Safele S-04 either directly or by rehydrating it. For direct use, just pitch it well enough and provide proper maintenance. With the rehydrating process, take 4 oz of water or wort to sprinkle the yeast. Put at least 10 times the weight of the liquid. Then leave the yeast to rest at 70 to 77 F.
Is High Attenuation Good or Bad?
Generally, higher attenuation means a better-tasting beer. Attenuation is the process of converting sugar into beer. So, if the yeast strain has more attenuation rate, it means more flavorful beer. So, getting more attenuated beer results in a drier and more alcoholic taste.
Does Type of Yeast Affect Flavor?
Yes, different strains can result in different flavors for your ale or beer. Some yeast strains are more bready, while others are creamy. Even some yeast strains can provide better dryness and alcohol percentage. So, the type of yeast can severely affect the taste and flavor.
Finally, all the crucial differences between wlp002 vs wlp007 vs s-04 vs us-05 have been discussed. You can now just compare the four and choose the one according to your preference.
So, all you have to do is to pick one and enjoy your ale to the fullest.