Originally Posted by Henry Hill
Have you tried chewing and tasting the different grains first, to try to assay their flavor and what contributions they will impart?
As was stated, the fermenting of individual base grains will leave a lot to be desired in a fermented wort, and if understanding the flavor differences is what you seek, just taste a couple tablespoons of each, and spit the hulls into a trash can, one at a time.
This was enough for me to really understand the difference between Briess 2 row and maris otter. From there I can extrapolate the qualities to be had form using one or the other.
Same with hops; smell 'em, chew 'em, rub 'em on your cheeks, and see what is different with each one.
I feel this does work to a degree, but have the notion that it can only get you so far. I say this because some flavor profiles can dramatically change in the brewing process, and in addition it is hard to gauge the total effect of how the main components play out until it is done. You can get a rough feel,this is indeed true. But I think what Toot is going to do will really give a full presentation of the grain post-fermentation. I would say that chewing them can give you a ballpark idea, but not a detailed view, especially when trying to pan out how base malts differ.