Global liquid yeast and fermentation company, White Labs, is launching a new kveik strain—WLP518 Opshaug Farmhouse Yeast—that was isolated from a farm in western Norway. It is a neutral, hop-forward strain making it an ideal choice for cleaner beer styles that you can ferment at higher temperatures.
The company worked with Lars Marius Garshol to source the culture kveik-style yeast from farmhouse brewer Harald Opshaug in Stranda, Norway. Opshaug used the strain for years, brewing kornøl-style raw ales with juniper branches and kveik like other brewers in the area until he was exposed to modern brewing theory, which teaches that this method of brewing is wrong. In an effort to stay current, Opshaug switched from the kveik to a commercially available strain, but he couldn’t bring himself to get rid of the kveik, which he calls “the good sort,” so he made it a point to keep it alive throughout the years.
Kveiks are known for their high-temperature tolerance and WLP518 Opshaug Farmhouse Yeast is no exception. Opshaug often pitched the yeast at 73-75°F (23-24°C), but the strain has handled up to 91°F (33°C). He would harvest yeast from the top after 30 hours, and the beer would be finished after 48-50 hours.
“Kveik strains are on the rise, but we didn’t want to add just any strain to our lineup,” said Chris White, founder, CEO and president of White Labs. “We’ve spent a lot of time studying different kveik strains and found that this is one of the best.”
WLP518 Opshaug Farmhouse Yeast is being released through the White Labs Vault, making it available for professionals to order year-round. Homebrewers can pre-order it through The Vault for Homebrewers.
White Labs Inc. is an international company headquartered in San Diego that provides liquid yeast, fermentation products, services, analysis and education to professionals and enthusiasts alike. Continually raising the bar in the art of fermentation, White Labs stretches the limits of science to set new standards in purity and freshness. From the industry’s first pitchable liquid yeast to a complete revolution in the way it’s propagated and packaged, the White Labs innovative spirit is tireless.