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Old 12-17-2011, 06:23 AM   #1
mistercameron
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Default First bulk grain purchase

I got a grain mill for my birthday and Christmas is right around the corner (what can I say, I'm a procrastinator). I will be near more beer next week and was thinking of picking up some bulk grains. I can't get a lot since I don't brew more than once a month, but besides 2 row, what would be a good second grain? I've made a lot of pale ales and IPAs in the past, as well as some hefs, but don't have much interest in a lot of English styles. I do have a new interest in brewing some of the various types of Belgians, as well as exploring some of the other generally malty styles. I do want to have some kind of pale/apa always on tap, then something else a little different as my second.. Given that, I was considering either MO, wheat, or pilsner (what country?) as the second bulk grain option.

Any insight is appreciated.

Thanks!!

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Old 12-17-2011, 07:08 AM   #2
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If there's a crystal you find yourself using again and again (I use a lot of crystal 40 and caramunich in my brewery), that's not a bad thing to have alongside a sack of 2 row. Munich malt is fantastic, a great thing to have in bulk. You can slip munich into slmost any recipe buy the pounds -- IPAs, stouts, APAs etc etc.

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Old 12-17-2011, 02:04 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by mistercameron View Post
I got a grain mill for my birthday and Christmas is right around the corner (what can I say, I'm a procrastinator). I will be near more beer next week and was thinking of picking up some bulk grains. I can't get a lot since I don't brew more than once a month, but besides 2 row, what would be a good second grain? I've made a lot of pale ales and IPAs in the past, as well as some hefs, but don't have much interest in a lot of English styles. I do have a new interest in brewing some of the various types of Belgians, as well as exploring some of the other generally malty styles. I do want to have some kind of pale/apa always on tap, then something else a little different as my second.. Given that, I was considering either MO, wheat, or pilsner (what country?) as the second bulk grain option.

Any insight is appreciated.

Thanks!!
+1 to Munich all day long. Most if not all of my favorite commercial IPA's use it. You can use it in pale ale's, IPA's, German beers, etc. Very versatile. I love it!

Other than that, Belgian Pale Malt for Belgian ales or Continental (European) Pilsner Malt. If you don't like English styles then I wouldn't bother with
Maris Otter.

Other than base malts, I wouldn't buy specialty grains in bulk unless you brew alot.
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Old 12-17-2011, 04:02 PM   #4
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I keep 3 bags on hand usually. MO, Vienna and Pilsener malt. I figure with those 3 I can pretty much make anything that I may need base malt for. However, I think it could be beneficial and get a whole sack of a specific type of crystal you find yourself using a lot like bigbeergeek mentioned. However, if you're limited to say only having 2 bags I think a bag of 2 row and a bag of pilsner (I like Weyermann) you'd be off to a good start.

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Old 12-17-2011, 07:03 PM   #5
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Looking back at the various recipes I've made to date, I haven't used much Munich - only a small part of the grain bill on a couple recipes (no more than a couple pounds). I could see going with either Munich or Pils, as I will probably use them in equal proportions. My concern is that I wouldn't be using this second bag fast enough before it goes old/stale/bad in a year (though I do plan on storing it properly). I haven't seen many inda/pale pale ale recipes that actually use very much munich, so I'm not sure how to gauge the actual need. At least with pilsner it *seems* it could be a bit more versatile between various continental European styles

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Old 12-17-2011, 11:47 PM   #6
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Looking back at the various recipes I've made to date, I haven't used much Munich - only a small part of the grain bill on a couple recipes (no more than a couple pounds). I could see going with either Munich or Pils, as I will probably use them in equal proportions. My concern is that I wouldn't be using this second bag fast enough before it goes old/stale/bad in a year (though I do plan on storing it properly). I haven't seen many inda/pale pale ale recipes that actually use very much munich, so I'm not sure how to gauge the actual need. At least with pilsner it *seems* it could be a bit more versatile between various continental European styles
I see your point. Many of the beers I make are more focused towards German varieties (Oktoberfest, Bocks, Dunkels) so I use Munich often. Plus two of my favorite commercial beers Union Jack and Nugget Nectar use it. That being said, you can't go wrong with a good continental pilsner.
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