I'm trying to determine the proper starter size to use for washed yeast. I've read a few threads that touch on this, but I'm still a little confused. My apologies if this has been answered before.
I'm planning to brew a 1.035 bitter with 30 ml of washed yeast harvested on 1/23/11. My usual practice has been to make a small starter (1/2 c DME in 1 pint of water) about 18 hrs before pitching, and this has worked well over the years. However, I've been reading about proper pitching rates recently, and most people refer to the Mr. Malty calculator. According to the calculator, my yeast is only 10% viable. If I assume a yeast concentration of 4.5 billion cells / ml, then I have 30 ml x 4.5 B cells / ml x 10% = 13.5 billion cells. Mr. Malty tells me I need 137 B cells to ferment 5.5 g of my 1.035 wort. First, I'm not sure how to enter this into the calculator to determine the proper starter size. Second, it seems I need to increase my cell count by an order of magnitude, which would require a gigantic starter. Am I doing something wrong?