WLP022 Essex Ale Yeast

Seasonal Availability: Jan - Feb

Flavorful British style yeast. Drier finish than many British ale yeast. Produces slightly fruity and bready character.    Good top fermenting yeast strain, is well suited for top cropping (collecting). This yeast is well suited for classic British milds, pale ales, bitters, and stouts. Does not flocculate as much as WLP002 and WLP005.

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Style Performance Listing

A listing of how this style ranks amongst different brew styles, on a scale from 0 to 4.

Classic English Style Pale Ale4 English Style India Pale Ale4
English Style Bitter4 English Style ESB4
English Style Brown Ale4 Oatmeal Stout4
English Old Ale English & American Strong Ale4 Imperial IPA2


Feedback and experiences from previous customers. Want to leave a review of your own?

“Perfect Strain(Part II)”

By: Paul Conlon | Date: Mar., 1st 2014 | Beer(s) Brewed: Southern Brown, Pub ale, Wheat Stout, 8 Malt

Since my last comment I have used this yeast for four different brews...Pub Ale, Wheat Stout, Southern Brown Malt as well as another batch of Essex 8 Malt described earlier. Since it is not available year-round, I've had to harvest the yeast and use a starter for the next batch. This yeast is excellent from start to finish and reconstitutes readily. I love how it brings out the flavors of the malts used, and provides a nice dry finish.

I did not harvest yeast from my last since it was the fifth generation...plus the White Labs website said it would be available again soon. As of yet it has not appeared on my suppliers website....yikes.... I hope they get it soon or else I'll be without one of my favorite yeasts until next year....heaven forbid.

“This Limited Edition strain sounded perfect”

By: Paul Conlon | Date: Jun., 14th 2012 | Beer(s) Brewed: Essex 8 Malt

This Limited Edition strain sounded perfect for a brew I've been toying with for some time. Maris Otter & 7 other malts +Target & Fuggle hops to produce a dark English Ale. I haven't used a yeast which produced so much on the top during primary fermentation, but "carried on" with my usual 2 weeks in secondary & 3 weeks in bottles. This yeast does bring out all the flavors you put into your mash...for me the Maris, Aromatic, Victory came out very pronounced while the Brown & Debittered Black gave the color I was looking for... a dark, full bodied brew with the malty biscuity taste. Like most, I wish this strain was available year- round...but perhaps it's limited availability makes it what makes it so special.

“This should be a year-round strain ...”

By: Steve | Date: Jun., 7th 2011 | Beer(s) Brewed: English Mild, American Amber

Just a great yeast, gives off some fruity esters(according to one judge strawberry esters in an English mild.) Put into a Hoppy American Amber, mostly late hop additions to appease the wife's hop addiction, and still left a great malty flavor. This should be a year-round strain, something I am keeping in the stable for some more batches.

“It enhances the breadiness and ...”

By: Jonathan Rosenfeld | Date: Apr., 30th 2011 | Beer(s) Brewed: Ordinary Bitter, Special Bitter, Dark Mild, Northern English Brown Ale, Dry Stout, Brown Porter

Supposedly from the now defunct Ridley's brewery. This is an awesome strain for darker British style ales, very English character that's very bready, balanced with malty body, dry and slightly minerally finish with a moderate stonefruit (peach/cherry) ester. Possibly the ideal strain for Dark Mild ales. It enhances the breadiness and nuttiness of Marris Otter, mild malt, biscuit, amber malt and works well with adjunct malts like caramel/crystal and chocolate malts. A quick fermenter and great flocculator, it lives and stays on top of the fermenting beer for quite awhile, would make for very easy top cropping. Tips : make sure to mash a bit higher (at least 152 or higher) to account for higher attenuation, give it a thorough diacetyl rest and don't let the temperature get much above 75F. I wish White labs would make this a year-around offering. It's very easy to work with and produces lovely, very flavorful and easy drinking English beers.

“... off to top crop”

By: Filthy McWhiskey | Date: Jun., 26th 2009 | Beer(s) Brewed: amber, ESB, English mild, blond

AMAZING! The best English style yeast I have ever used! I launched an Essex series from yeast cropping one batch after another off the first batch the English mild then came blond, amber, ESB, all came out great! The yeast has a nice bitter to it, worked well with only 2oz. of hops on the mild! The ESB @ 5oz.of hops wow it is beautifully bitter! Can't wait till the next round! Well, off to top crop the Nottingham series next!

“I highly recommend this strain”

By: j_snook | Date: Apr., 29th 2009 | Beer(s) Brewed: Extra Pale Ale, American Pale Ale, Oatmeal Stout

This is an update to my previous review of this strain with more complete info: My Stats with this yeast: Attenuation 70% (EPA, pitched one vial/5 gallons wort), 72% (APA, pitched slurry) and 76% (Stout, pitched slurry) Flocculation: Observed very high flocculation upon completion of fermentation. Alcohol Tolerance: Got high attenuation according to published range with the Stout which was 7.0% ABV. Fermentation temp: All 3 fermented around 67-68 F. Observations: Lag times were about 12 hours for each brew. Fermentation was steady for 5 to 7 days with airlock activity continuing up until day 10 for all 3 brews. I did not use foam control or blow-off tubes and had no problems. There is a visible top-cropping fermentati