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Old 04-25-2013, 03:59 AM   #1
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Default How old is too old for malts

I have about 15# of wheat and 15# of Marris otter that i picked up in March/April 2012 - they're stored room temp in a vittles vault. I also have so assorted lbs of specialty grains that are probably at 6-7 months.

I'd hate to make a bleh beer or two that have other, expensive ingredients in them, but I hate to throw out the grain.

So here are my questions -
- How old is too old for grain (e.g. when does it go stale)?
- What would you do with the grain if it is stale?

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Old 04-25-2013, 04:07 AM   #2
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How much more expensive will the other ingredients be? A few bucks for specialty grains, and a few more for hops and yeast? If they have been protected from humidity, they are probably fine. Just brew with them. If it ends up bad, you won't be out that much. Or just throw away $40 or so worth of ingredients.

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Old 04-25-2013, 04:13 AM   #3
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Before using any malt from my malt stash, I take a taste of it.

If I detect any off, oxidized or stale flavors, it gets thrown out.

I think it is good practice to sample the malt out of fresh bags and make a mental flavor profile.

After doing this a while, you will know when malt is no longer fit for brewing.

Malt that is stored under the right conditions can remain usable a year or even longer.

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Old 04-25-2013, 04:13 AM   #4
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IMO all of those grains are perfectly fine to use.

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Old 04-25-2013, 04:16 AM   #5
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cracked, no good. not cracked yet, good

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Old 04-25-2013, 01:12 PM   #6
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I have grain that has been stored in home depot buckets that is like three years old. Tastes alright so i brewed with it the other day, so we will see what happens.

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Old 04-25-2013, 01:20 PM   #7
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I think it is good.... if it is not "infected" in some way the only thing you might have to worry about is the enzymes breaking down and losing some dynastic power. (I think that is the correct term).

BUT I agree with the “smell it-taste it” recommendation.


Then again if you are really worried about it mashing up OK, buy some new grain and use some old and new together...

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Old 04-25-2013, 01:50 PM   #8
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A couple weeks ago I brewed an IPA with crushed grain that was ~6 months old, stored sealed in an unheated part of the house over the winter. The wort smelled & tasted great, and my samples have shown no off-flavors at all. I tasted the grain before brewing to be sure, and it tasted just like it does when I buy it new.

So I think the 'smell it-taste it' recommendation is spot-on.

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Old 04-25-2013, 01:54 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skins_Brew View Post
I have grain that has been stored in home depot buckets that is like three years old. Tastes alright so i brewed with it the other day, so we will see what happens.
Hey! Welcome back to the forum- I haven't "seen" you around in a while so it's nice to see a post from you. It's been a long time!

Anyway, I think that if the grain doesn't taste stale it'll be fine. I had some older grain once that was a bit soggy tasting. Not really well, but not crisp either. It was definitely off, and I didn't use that. But if the grain tastes good, I would use it.
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Old 04-25-2013, 02:50 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yooper View Post
Hey! Welcome back to the forum- I haven't "seen" you around in a while so it's nice to see a post from you. It's been a long time!

Anyway, I think that if the grain doesn't taste stale it'll be fine. I had some older grain once that was a bit soggy tasting. Not really well, but not crisp either. It was definitely off, and I didn't use that. But if the grain tastes good, I would use it.
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yea, In 2010 my wife and I had a kid. 11 months after that, we had another , so homebrewing was shelved for a bit. After spending the week cleaning, changing diapers, etc. the last thing I felt like doing on the weekend was cleaning homebrew gear Getting back into it though
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