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Old 12-19-2011, 02:24 AM   #1
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Default Experience with Pale Chocolate and Chocolate Rye?

I'm wondering if anyone has actual, hands-on experience with Pale Chocolate (Fawcett) or Chocolate Rye (Weyermann). My original plan for the recipe below was to use the Pale Chocolate, but LHBS is out for a while, and I do have access to Choc. Rye.

I'm brewing a small beer (OG 1.035) with a significant contribution from darker malt. It's kind of a hybrid Cali Common/Mild/Bitter I'm developing for a year-round stock ale with a quick turnaround time. I plan to use different yeasts and dark malts depending on the brewing season and temperature of the basement.

Here's the bill:

3 lbs light DME
1 lb 6-row barley
8 oz malto-dextrin
8 oz Fawcett 45L Crystal
6-8 oz either Pale Choc. (215L) or Choc. Rye (245L)

Chocolate malt adjusted to reach 14-15 SRM

BU:GU 0.73

What do you expect the differences in finished product to be if I use one chocolate over the other?

Not to be a jerk, but first-hand experience (as taster or brewer) only, please.

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Old 12-19-2011, 02:46 AM   #2
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Well, I brewed an imperial stout with chocolate rye a few weeks ago. Still conditioning. The last gravity sample I took gave it a very smooth flavor as opposed to chocolate malt (so far as I can tell). Hope that helps.

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Old 12-19-2011, 04:06 AM   #3
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I have used pale choc in 4 recipes. It is a little lighter in color and "cooler" in flavor than American choc. There is less roast to it. I have not used choc rye yet.

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Old 12-19-2011, 04:26 AM   #4
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I've used pale chocolate a number of time as called for in the recipes in "Brewing Classic Styles". As was mentioned its much less roasty than American chocolate and seems softer to me. I'd probably lean toward the upper bounds of your recipe and use 8oz.

[Edit] Oops, just noticed you can't use pale. I have yet to try chocolate rye, but id imagine (based on its SRM) it's similar roast to pale chocolate but might have some of the spice of rye, although at these levels I doubt it would be noticeable. I would use 8oz and see how it goes.

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Old 12-19-2011, 04:36 PM   #5
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Thanks for your feedback, everyone.

I guess the new question now is "how different will these beers be" if I use choc. rye versus pale choc?

I'm pretty dedicated to the pale chocolate version (it was the original), but I'm debating if it is worth the extra charge to have ingredients shipped to my house.

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Old 12-19-2011, 10:17 PM   #6
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I've used both in Baltic porters with all of the other ingredients kept relatively the same. I like both. The chocolate rye is not as chocolate-y, it gives more of a roast-and-rye-spice flavor, like the really dark German pumpernickel bread. Should be an interesting experiment.

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Old 12-20-2011, 02:30 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BeerLogic View Post
I've used both in Baltic porters with all of the other ingredients kept relatively the same. I like both. The chocolate rye is not as chocolate-y, it gives more of a roast-and-rye-spice flavor, like the really dark German pumpernickel bread. Should be an interesting experiment.
You are the man. This is exactly what I needed to hear. I would have been disappointed with the pumpernickel flavor. It would be fascinating, just not what I'm looking for. I'm going to hold out for the pale chocolate.
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Old 12-20-2011, 07:28 AM   #8
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I see you're in Lansing - if you want to make the drive out to Ann Arbor, they have pale chocolate in stock at Adventures in Homebrewing, or they did last time I was there a couple weeks ago.

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Old 12-20-2011, 12:22 PM   #9
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From a purely pragmatic standpoint, A2 is beyond the cost/benefit barrier over which it's worth it to pay AHBS to ship me my supplies instead of driving.

From an entertainment standpoint, it would be fun to drive out and see another LHBS.

Decisions, decisions.

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Old 12-20-2011, 03:37 PM   #10
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If it helps, I'll mention that the owner is a really nice guy and often gives out samples of his own stellar brews. Last time I was there I tasted a raspberry coconut porter that was amazing - definitely not something I would have expected to enjoy, but extremely tasty.

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