Forget the Chico Yeast…Try the White Labs Cream Ale Blend!

What great yeast this is! WLP080 is now my goto yeast for american ales. I have used this yeast a total of six times now and it is like a wild beast! It has been used in a cream ale, 3 pale ales, an american brown ale, and most recently a rye pale.

  • The Vitals

WLP080 Cream Ale Yeast Blend
This is a blend of ale and lager yeast strains.  The strains work together to create a clean, crisp, light American lager style ale. A pleasing estery aroma may be perceived from the ale yeast contribution. Hop flavors and bitterness are slightly subdued. Slight sulfur will be produced during fermentation, from the lager yeast. 
Attenuation: 75-80%
Flocculation: Medium
Optimum Fermentation Temperature: 65-70°F
(18-21°C)
Alcohol Tolerance: Medium High

Because it is considered a clean fermenting yeast, I find this yeast to be one of the most versatile yeasts available. Rumor has it that the blend is the famous Anchor Steam / California Common strain and the clean German Ale/ Kölsch Yeast but that has not been confirmed.

  • My Goto “Clean” Yeast

My experience with this yeast has been great and it works equally well with making hoppy pale ales  to the  brown ale I brewed. It’s a yeast that attenuates very well, and has excellent flocculation properties.  So don’t be confused by the name, it will produce a great cream ale but it is much more capable of doing more. My problem with the Chico/ California Ale yeast has always been a flocculation issue and the yeast, despite being profiled as a “clean” yeast does add its own spin, albeit a small spin for sure. I have said in the past how much I love the Steam Beer yeast and hom clean it can be. If you have ever tried Anchor Steam you will agree.

I would as far as to say you could pull off a mock lager and an ale with this very yeast and no BJCP judge would be the wiser!….(hmmm…experiment?!) That very possibility alone is worth it to me. Many of you maybe be in the same boat.  When I brew ales or lagers, I usually do a string of them, as you know lagers ferment at 50F and ales around 65F.  Mock lagers are nothing new as ale brewers have been using the california lager yeast for years and have had success. One of my fellow club members just mentioned the other day that his “Mocktoberfest” was excellent and he used the WLP029 German Ale/ Kölsch Yeast. ( Shout out to DREW!)

So next time you are in your local homebrew supply shop, or are making you online order, instead of reaching for that 1056 or 001 give this one a try and you won’t be sorry. Cheers!

BTW: I will be updating the recipe section with some more recipes very soon. I have also been writing some supplemental homebrewing articles for charlottebeerblog.com so PLEASE if you are ever in the up and coming craft brew mecca that Charlotte,NC is becoming… check out www.charlottebeerblog.com for all of the craft brew news.  Cheers…again!

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One response to “Forget the Chico Yeast…Try the White Labs Cream Ale Blend!

  1. Thanks again for the shout out Matt! I’ve got another one for you to try as well, the San Diego Super Yeast (WLP090). Talk about a work horse, three days to ferment a Pale ale with a 1.060 OG! And I agree with your assesment of the cream ale blend, I am going to be playing around with this one as well.

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