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Old 06-12-2011, 02:14 PM   #1
HomerJR
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Default What happens if I skip the Melanoidin?

Hey everyone,

Woke up this morning itching to brew my favorite Amarillo IPA, which has the following grain bill:

9 lb 2-row
.75 lb Melanoidin
.5 lb Crystal 45

I'm fresh out of Melanoidin. My LHBS is closed until Wednesday. What would be the ramifications if I just used 9.75 lb of 2-row?



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Old 06-12-2011, 02:30 PM   #2
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Melanoidin is 20 SRM, aromatic and malty so leaving it out will make the batch lighter color and less malty. Maybe you have some crystal to add in it's place?



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Old 06-12-2011, 02:31 PM   #3
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You will still make good beer, but there will be a significant difference. The mouth feel will be thinner and it will lose a lot of the maltiness you are expecting. If you want to try something new without adding ingredients you can add a decoction step to your mash process. You can also do a longer boil. Here is a link to an interesting read.

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Old 06-12-2011, 02:39 PM   #4
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Bithead, I've got plenty of Crystal, but I don't want to overdo it. I *really* like this recipe, much more than when I use more Crystal.

Dahoov, I'm thinking about mashing at a little higher temp, like maybe 156 instead of 152 like I usually do. Never done a decoction, and today's not the day to start. Too many other things on the plate.

I think I'll mash a little higher, maybe use a *little* more crystal. I'll report back.

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Old 06-12-2011, 02:43 PM   #5
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Got any victory, aromatic or biscuit. That would be an approiate sub.

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Old 06-12-2011, 03:14 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Poobah58 View Post
Got any victory, aromatic or biscuit. That would be an approiate sub.
^^This too.^^

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Originally Posted by HomerJR View Post
Bithead, I've got plenty of Crystal, but I don't want to overdo it. I *really* like this recipe, much more than when I use more Crystal.

Dahoov, I'm thinking about mashing at a little higher temp, like maybe 156 instead of 152 like I usually do. Never done a decoction, and today's not the day to start. Too many other things on the plate.

I think I'll mash a little higher, maybe use a *little* more crystal. I'll report back.
This will affect your final gravity, and will add some sweetness but will not necessarily affect the maltiness in the flavor. You really need boiling temperatures to get the melanoidins that are missing.

You can also just pull some of the mash, bring it to a boil and add it back in during the sparge. That way you don't have to account for the rise in temp that you would when re introducing it to the mash. It would not take that much, maybe between a pint and a quart. Pulling a quart would alter your gravity by approximately 3-5 points.

Melanoidins are also produced during the wort boil, so the easiest thing would be to just increase the boil for a while (an hour should be good) before adding your first hops and then add top up water to the fermenter. If you are worried about hop utilization due to reduced boil volume, you can add the water into the boil to bring the level back up and then add the hops.

Anyway, enough of me rambling. DRINK MORE BEER!!!
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Old 06-12-2011, 04:55 PM   #7
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Never tried it, but perhaps an easy way to increase melanoidins would be to seperately boil say your first gallon of runoff in a separate pot. I would guess that the high gravity wort would boil down and (meloidatize) rapidly without much added work or time.

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Old 06-12-2011, 07:13 PM   #8
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I ended up with:

10.2 lb 2-row (I asked for 10 lb, my LHBS measured out 10.2 apparently)
6 oz. Crystal 15
4 oz. Crystal 45

Single infusion mash at 155, batch sparge.

1.25 oz Amarillo (7.8%) at 60, 15, 5 and 1 minute

Safale US-05

Might dry hop with an ounce or so of Amarillo. Looking for a lighter body, hoppy APA that goes down nice n easy. I'm sure this will do the job. Must remember to pick up the melanoidin for next time though.

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Old 06-13-2011, 12:22 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HomerJR View Post
I ended up with:

10.2 lb 2-row (I asked for 10 lb, my LHBS measured out 10.2 apparently)
6 oz. Crystal 15
4 oz. Crystal 45

Single infusion mash at 155, batch sparge.

1.25 oz Amarillo (7.8%) at 60, 15, 5 and 1 minute

Safale US-05
On its own, that looks like a very nice recipe for an IPA. I'm sure it will turn out great.

But I think this was actually the best answer.

"Got any victory, aromatic or biscuit. That would be an approiate sub."

Melanoidin is a toasty, but typically fermentable, malted barley. Unlike crystal which can be steeped to extract some of its sugars (or caramel, or cara__, or honey malt - whatever the maltster wants to call it), it must be mashed for full conversion.

EDIT
An extensive test was done by another HBT member on the fermentability of crystal malt. The results showed that when mashed with a base malt, crystal malt will offer additional starch conversion, which would have been otherwise untapped by a steep. More importantly, mashing crystal malt with a grain with diastatic power will yield a more fermentable sugar contribution than you would have gotten from an equal amount of crystal put through a simple steep. That said, regardless of process, crystal malt still maintains some degree of unfermentability, however, it is far less unfermentable than original texts have led us (me) to believe.


best link I've ever been given
http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f128/testing-fermentability-crystal-malt-208361/

Back to my point...
Aromatic would have been a direct substitute (it is a Belgian version of melanoidin). Victory (US) and Biscuit (Belgian) would have also worked, but are slightly darker. US Special Roast, and UK Amber are even darker. UK Brown is the darkest of the bunch; toasted so much that it no longer has the enzymes required to self convert (which is why you can no longer make a Brown Porter with Brown Malt as your only base grain).

To go on the lighter side, you could have used Dark Munich (~16L) for a less dramatic effect, or to continue down the line, you could have went with Light Munich (~8L) or Vienna (~6L).

I know this is after the fact, but it could be valuable info if you in a similar situation in the future. Like I said, the grain bill you went with looks great for an IPA, but don't confuse the recipe contributions you get between toasted and crystal malts.

A bit off topic, but for the same reasons I noted above (toasted grains must be mashed for conversion) it really makes me a little nuts when I see Biscuit lumped in with steepable grains like crystal and chocolate in an extract batch. It does a disservice to a new brewer, and for someone trying to learn about grains, it only adds to the confusion.

Joe
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Last edited by jfowler1; 06-13-2011 at 05:44 PM. Reason: Edited my own bad information about fermentability of crystal malt
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Old 06-13-2011, 04:10 PM   #10
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I agree, this is going to be a very tasty APA/IPA. If I'd have had anything else to substitute, I surely would have. Sadly, though, all I had was a couple different crystals. We make do with what we've got, I guess.

Note to self: get some damn Melanoidin and stick it in the freezer.

Thanks guys! Can't wait to taste this one!



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