Brew Day – 3 gal Baltic Porter

My one-gallon Baltic Porter turned out good enough to scale it up a bit.  So what better to do on a Snowpocalypse day in Dever (we got a bit over a foot of snow, I’ve seen 40 inches out of a single storm.  This was piddly stuff).  I brewed.  Got a late start on planning so instead of growing up a starter – a single vial or packet of yeast would have been far too little for this beer – I used dry yeast.  Basic spex on the beer:

OG:  1.094 (Pred) 1.090 (Actual)
IBU:  38
FG (Pred) 1.028, but I bet I get better out of it.
Single infusion mash, no water treatment, 90 minute boil, Magnum as bittering hops, Saaz for flavor.

A word on dried yeast.  I normally use vials and starters but since I decided to brew too late to make one and a beer this big definitely needs one, I chose to use dry yeast, specifically Danstar’s West Coast Ale Yeast.  Some believe it’s okay to sprinkle the stuff on the top of aerated/oxygenated wort and just forget about it.  This works but it also kills off about half your cells.  Danstar specifically recommends rehydration but when using dried yeast, I always rehydrate it.  Here’s how:

Boil about 4 ounces of water per packet of yeast, cover it with aluminum foil and let it cool to 92 – 95 degrees.  Sprinke the yeast over the top of the water and let it rehydrate for fifteen minutes.  With a sanitized tool, stir the yeast to form a creamy slurry then add to your prepared wort.  The yeast will perform better thanks to this little pick-me-up, they’ll hit the wort ready to go and do their best for you.

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