So you've listened to all the advice from your fellow brewers about making a yeast starter.
Heck, you've made a great starter. You've swirled and mixed this starter everytime you laid eyes on it. Maybe you went on Ebay, Labx or Cynamr and found yourself a stir plate so you could have even better growth (A 4-10 fold increase interests you doesn't it? Makes $20-40 spent seem well worth it).
At some point for every brewer, you taste a beer that you want to clone or capture it's distinct yeast character. But if you're like a lot of us, you're long on desire, short on time and decidely short on the equipment and practiced techniques need to streak plates and capture single colonies of pure yeast. This shouldn't stop a homebrewer from practicing "Bad" Tom Hamilton's technique of bottle starter generation. After all, you were intrepid enough to make your own beer!
We all know that starters are one of the big keys to making top-notch beer, but it's a pain. You have to make the starter wort when you need it, wait for it to cool, worry about sanitation and then pitch it. That smells a lot like planning, something home brewers generally try to avoid!
Yeast is that wonderful microbe which converts sweet wort into an enjoyable alcoholic beverage. In addition to converting sugar to alcohol, yeast can also influence the taste, flavor, bouquet, and even the color of beer. They do this by secreting a variety of compounds at very low levels. Different yeast strains produce different levels of these compounds and therefore impart their own subtle characteristics to the wort in which they are pitched.