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Old 12-09-2008, 08:30 AM   #1
ohill1981
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Default Difference in Dry Malt Extract and Liquid Extract

I am reading a recipe book right now for an easy german style wheat beer. The recipe calls for 6 2/3 lbs of wheat malt extract, but it did not specify whether it should be liquid or dried malt extract. Am i correct in assuming this is just a preference in taste? or is there a good reason to choose liquid over DME or DME over liquid extracts..?

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Old 12-09-2008, 10:46 AM   #2
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Please take this answer with a grain of salt ( I am also new to this brew thing ) But I believe that they LME and DME are exactly the same (except LME is 80% Malt extract and about 20% water).

or something like that...

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Old 12-09-2008, 11:57 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ohill1981 View Post
I am reading a recipe book right now for an easy german style wheat beer. The recipe calls for 6 2/3 lbs of wheat malt extract, but it did not specify whether it should be liquid or dried malt extract. Am i correct in assuming this is just a preference in taste? or is there a good reason to choose liquid over DME or DME over liquid extracts..?
There is a difference in the specific gravity potential: DME is more concentrated than LME, so you can convert to equivalent quantities:
from LME to DME = weight of LME * 0.89
from DME to LME = weight of DME * 1.10

Also, some people mention problems with "extract twang" due to LME that is no longer fresh. As the LME ages, it can produce an off-flavor in the beer. So, some people only use DME to avoid this problem.
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Old 12-09-2008, 02:06 PM   #4
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Some say that LME is more likely to result in a darker beer than using DME. Also I think DME is probably the better of the two when dealing with bulk amounts. Get a 50# bag of DME and you can just scoop out what you need as it is just a powder (must reseal the container to keep it dry to avoid clumps though). Get a 50# container of LME and I'd imagine it would be quite messy to get the specific amount of syrup you want.

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Old 12-09-2008, 02:31 PM   #5
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Many people say LME has a better flavor but many say they notice a "twang" at times. otherwise they are basically the same except for the above weight differences.

Most use a combination of both as LME is cheaper

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Old 12-09-2008, 03:27 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grinder12000 View Post
Most use a combination of both as LME is cheaper
Is it cheaper?

IIRC, by weight, LME = (DME * .8), a pound of LME = .8 pound of DME. So, you need more LME to hit gravity.

Also, if you are paying shipping by weight, you are paying to ship water along with your malt extract.

Has anybody done a complete breakdown on the prices and bottom line?
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Old 12-09-2008, 03:44 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grinder12000 View Post
Most use a combination of both as LME is cheaper

Right, I heard the same thing from my Local Brewshop.
Use a can of LME and make up the rest with DME, to "smooth" out the flavors and then you can hit your OG better using the smaller amounts of DME.
But it all comes down to personal preference and cost.

I usually use all LME or a combo in all my batches. I have yet to use straight DME. Maybe my next batch.
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