Yeast strain guide
Here's my horribly biased opinion and experience with yeast strains.
WLP001 California Ale. Good, neutral, takes forever to finish fermenting and low floculation. Exactly the same as Wyeast 1056 and US-05, just buy the dry stuff or switch to WLP090.
WLP002 English Ale. Good, almost the same as 1968 but not as interesting. Safe bet though, mildly fruity, drops like a rock and is pretty inefficient so it'll leave some sweetness.
WLP004 Irish Ale Good, a bit too fruity for me. Nice high floculation.
WLP005 British Ale I like this one, great British character, finishes fairly sweet. Nice high floculation, but can be difficult if you don't aerate well and keep temps up.
WLP006 Bedford British. Pretty good, mild character, fairly crisp and clean good floculation. Probably won't buy again.
WLP007 Dry English. Good stuff, leaves a strong malty character with some fruityness.
WLP009 Australian Ale. Pretty plain but makes decent beer. Will not use again.
WLP013 London Ale. Excellent, one of my regulars. Has a funny oaky ester to it and is a hair sharp tasting which I like for dark beers. Good floculation.
WLP017 Whitbread II. Pretty similar to 1099, light fruityness, good stuff. Medium floculation. One of my go to yeasts for British stuff.
WLP022 Essex Ale. Tried to like this one but had a funny flavor every time. Not bad, just not for me. Low floculation too if I remember right.
WLP023 Burton Ale. Kind of weird, not my thing. Add finings like geletin or biofine clear, doesn't floc well and tastes grainy until it clears. Smells like rhino farts when fermenting.
WLP028 Scottish Ale. Nice and crisp, assertive yeast. Flocs not bad and has a slight smokiness to it, reminds me of WLP013.
WLP029 Kolsch. Excellent, one of my regulars. So clean and crisp with a light fruitiness to it, love the kolsch yeast. Floculation is medium.
WLP041 Pacific Ale Pretty good, nice fruity British character. Flocculation is medium.
WLP059 Melbourne. Not bad, adds a dryness to the beer with a smokey or oaky sort of taste. Similar to WLP013. Makes things taste 'old' somehow.
WLP066 London Fog. Very nice, way more attenuative than advertised. More like 80% if you mash low. Cloudy and soft tasting like 1318.
WLP072 French ale. Nothing special, pretty neutral. Have a feeling it enhances bitterness.
WLP090 San Diego Super. Is one of the best clean yeasts. Ferments super fast (like 3 days) and drops like a rock. Highly recommended.
WLP095 Burlington Ale. Is supposed to be the same as Conan. I don't think it is, not near as fruity or fluffy tasting. Excellent yeast though, makes great IPA.
WLP300 Hefeweizen Ale. Good if you like wheat beers, very sweet and fluffy, more banana than clove to this one. Takes a little longer to ferment.
WLP320 American Hefeweizen. Tastes like nothing, waste of time unless you want cloudy US-05
WLP380 Hefeweizen IV. Good if you like wheat beers, sharp and crisp with more clove than banana to this one. Fast fermenter.
WLP500 Monastery Ale. Nice belgian phenols, not too agressive. Tastes pretty generic belgian to me, not bad.
WLP510 Bastongne Ale Just ordered for a friend who like Belgians. Tastes like a Belgian strain.
WLP530 Abbey Ale. Very angry yeast, huge blow off. Smells Belgian, very perfumey. Very mild phenol character that fades into a nice finish. Super mild Belgian strain, very inoffensive, I like it.
WLP644 Sacc Trois Vrai. Very fruity on it's own, lots of pineapple. Has that brett dryness to it that is unique but not too funky.
WLP645 Brett C. Similar to WLP644, fruity that turns into funk after a few months. Smells like apple juice that's a little off on the stir plate. Can be used on it's own.
WLP800 Pilsner Lager. First stab at using a lager yeast. Very aggressive at ale temps, and lots of sulphur and blow off, much less at lager temps. Makes a damn fine Pilsner though, leaves some sweetness.
WLP802 Czech Budejovice Lager. The Czech Budweiser strain. Smells like green apples in the package. Has the traditional lager taste but much fruitier, very nice. Will throw phenols if fermented warm and if starter is not cold crashed before pitching.
WLP810 San Francisco lager. Produced more diacetyl than it could clean up when underpitched (single pack in a lager at lager temps). Need to revisit.
WLP815 Belgian Lager. Supposed to be the Stella Artois yeast. Very powdery yeast, makes a nice crisp clean lager. Little sulphur, has a nice softness to it.
WLP830 German Lager. Most popular lager strain for a reason, nice neutral low sulfur unoffensive taste. Clears fairly well too.
WLP840 American lager. Probably the cleanest strain I've used. Super crisp and neutral. I don't get any of the apple flavours that others have noted.
WLP862 Cry Havoc lager. Fermented warm it's just as advertised, kind of a pseudo lager/ale. Decent but not my favorite, light fruityness when fermented warm. At lager temps it tastes like WLP090 to me not really a lager either. Not bad, not my favorite.
WLP940 Mexican lager. Super good. Low sulfur production, clears the fastest of all the lager strains I've tested so far which means tasty beer faster.
1007 German Ale. Not bad, fairly neutral strain, some sulphur. I like Kolsch yeast better.
1084 Irish Ale. Not bad, light fruitiness. Made a decent Guiness clone.
1098 British Ale. Not bad, not my favorite. Slight grainy flavor, finished pretty dry. Has a flat boring fruity flavor kind of like 1469. Good floculation.
1099 Whitbread Ale. Excellent, this will be a regular. Nice soft yeasty flavor, mildly fruity. Low floculation
1187 Ringwood. Super fruity, tons of personality, very nice but use with caution, will be the dominant flavor. Has a hint of banana sometimes, flocs well.
1203 Burton IPA. Not bad but not worth the effort, way too clean and plain tasting. Finishes dry and flocs well.
1217 West Coast IPA. Very assertive clean yeast, neutral flavored but finishes crisp and accentuates the bitterness. Not bad, going to hit it with lots more hops next time.
1272 American II. Excellent, first liquid strain I ever bought. Fairly clean but adds an excellent little something to everything that makes it way better than US-05. Finishes slightly sweet, flocs medium.
1318 London Ale III. Another favorite, very unique. Soft and smooth fluffy mouth feel, great in stouts, New england IPAs or flowery ESBs with EKG hops. Lower floculator.
1332 Northwest Ale. Pretty good, fairly neutral. Throws some fusel alcohols at higher fermentation temps and gravities. Huge fluffy krausen that lingers forever in the fermenter.
1469 West Yorkshire Ale. Good, kind of flat boring fruitiness to it. Good floculator
1764 Pacman. Rogue brewery's yeast, super clean but adds a certain something to the flavor that's fantastic, good stuff. Use it mostly for flavored beers for some reason.
1768 English Special Bitter. Used this one forever, very clean for a British strain with a subtle nuttiness. Had a weird habit of tasting thin and crappy until it was one month old, then it was magically delicious. Excellent floculation.
1882 Thames Valley II. Good stuff, medium fruitiness and floculation was good too. Has it's own thing going on and made an excellent Hobgoblin.
1968 London ESB. Excellent, one of my favorites. Mildly fruity, inefficient so finishes high and sweet. Drops like a rock. Good for lots of styles. Like it better than WLP002
2042 Danish Lager. super clean and crisp. Really like this one.
2308 Southern German Lager. Fantastic. Love this one, makes a sweeter maltier lager, next to no sulfur.
2352 Munich Lager II. First batch threw tons of diacetyl since I pitched warm, will try again soon.
2565 Kolsh. I like the white labs version better. I fermented warm and it threw sulfur and had a weird acidic tang to it. Probably OK if you can keep your temps under control.
British II (Escarpment) Light British fruityness and fairly attenuative. Not my favorite but does the job. Enhances malt flavors.
Barbarian A04 (Imperial). Not as good as conan, will see if it changes with a few passages.
Conan Favorite, also sold as Vermont Ale, I got mine directly from a can of Heady Topper. Intensely fruity, peachy, probably terrible on it's own but paired with stanky piney hops it's superb. Very creamy mouth feel, finishes sort of dry, medium floculation.
Foggy London (Escarpment). Very nice, supposed to be 1318 but I found it more attenuative and cloudier. Tastes great in an IPA.
Hothead (Omega Yeast labs). Very nice, has a wonderful unique fruity aroma and flavor. Was excellent in an IPA I did recently. Will probably be a house favorite. Slight odd plastic flavor after aging.
Isar Lager (Escarpment). Very slow, took much longer than normal to ferment. Good flavor if you give it time though. Pretty straight ahead lager, not too crisp or malty.
Kveik Arset (Escarpment) Similar to Laerdal, malty and possibly a little cleaner with some apple notes. Typical mild sour kveik tartness.
Kveik Hornindal (Escarpment) Smells Phenolic, malty and a little fruity. Typical mild sour kveik tartness.
Kveik Laerdal (Escarpment) Malty sweet with some caramel. Typical mild sour kveik tartness.
Kveik Voss (Escarpment) Seems to enhance fruitiness a lot, good for IPAs. Typical mild sour kveik tartness. Really like this one.
Vermont (Escarpment) It's Conan alright. Very nice.
Windsor Dry Pack. Terrible efficiency, which makes it great for low ABV beers like milds where you want some body left behind. Weird but good nutty flavor.
US-05 Dry Pack. Fail safe standard. Always have a pack in the fridge in case something goes wrong with a culture. Makes good beer (only strain most breweries use ie. Lake of Bays)
S04 Dry Pack. Not bad for dry yeast, makes a decent British beer. I find it slightly harsh tasting compared to the typical British strains I normally use.
Nottingham Dry pack, friend used it for an imperial russian stout. Decent.
ESB Dry Pack. Not bad, generic British yeast flavor. Light fruityness, fermentation might stall and pick up again if it gets cold.
T-58 Dry Pack. Good dry pack wit yeast, all the usual phenols and banana you'd expect from a wheat beer yeast. Actually really good as far as dry yeast goes.
Abbaye Dry Pack. Not bad, definitely Belgian. Aroma is very banana, flavor is more phenols with a different finish. Pretty good but there are better liquid strains.