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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > Extract Taste vs. All Grain?
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Old 04-04-2010, 01:52 PM   #1
StarCityBrewMaster
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Default Extract Taste vs. All Grain?

I'm 3 batches deep in homebrewing and have only tasted my first batch so far. My first batch was an English Brown Ale extract kit from Brewers Best. I just put some in the fridge yesterday morning after sitting at room temp for 2 weeks and had people over last night to try them with me.

Everyone approved of the beer, including some of the woman that came over, and kept going back for more. The funny thing is I wasn't all that impressed. It wasn't terrible by any means but just had something different to it that I can't pinpoint. I kept saying it has a funky sweetness to it but no one else agreed with me - go figure. We all got good and drunk to say the least, I guess I'm just my biggest critic. Nothing wrong with that I don't think, I just want to brew perfection!

After my 2nd brew (also an extract) I switched to All Grain and I am anxious to see what the difference in taste will be. Is there a noticeable difference in AG vs Extract?

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Old 04-04-2010, 02:10 PM   #2
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Noticeable, yes, but whether it is better or not is your call -- I do not have your sense of taste, as you don't have mine.

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Old 04-04-2010, 02:55 PM   #3
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There is a difference yes. But I think if you switch from "brewers best" kits to some kits from one of the online stores you will see a difference as well. I brew all-grain but will throw a session kit in from Northern Brewer, Midwest, or Austin Home brew and they make some damn good beer. I use either steaping grains or mini mash. Brewers best can make good beer don't get me wrong but there is a step up from there

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Old 04-04-2010, 03:01 PM   #4
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Between Brewers Best or prehopped canned extract and correctly done AG, yes. Between fresh extract brewed properly and AG, no.

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Old 04-04-2010, 03:09 PM   #5
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Are you doing full boils with the extract kits? When I stepped up to full boils the brewers best kits turned out amazing. I will be making my first all grain kit in the next couple of weeks and I really don't see how making some of the same beers in AG could taste that much better than my full boil kits. My belief is that AG just gives you more control of ingredients and what you do with those ingredients could turn out good or bad.

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Old 04-04-2010, 03:31 PM   #6
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For having aged only two weeks, it's pretty young. It will taste different in a month, and in 2 months, and up to 6 months or longer. I don't think you should judge it yet. An AG brew that is only 2 weeks old would probably have a similar character, I would guess. But I've never done AG. But my extracts all have tremendously different characters after a month. My last batch of hefeweizen I split for an experiement, and the "crappy one" after two weeks became the "good one" after a month. Aging does make a difference.

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Old 04-04-2010, 04:21 PM   #7
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Thanks for all the replies! Now that you all mention a step up from brewers best I feel better about my other extract kit. I did a honey brown ale from AHB and I drank some of the wort along with my wife on bottling day and we both agreed it tasted pretty damn good compared to that of the Brown Ale wort sample we tried at the same stage.

Unfortunately I placed all but 4 of my brown ales in the fridge already. I left the 4 out to condition longer to see what difference it would make so I'll let those sit another 2 weeks or so.

Once the beers go in the refrigerator I'm assuming bottle conditioning stops, correct?

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Old 04-04-2010, 04:26 PM   #8
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Also I was not doing full boils I did two extracts with 2.5 gallons of water and then topped off.

Two was enough for me as it felt like I was pulling a microwave dinner out and following the simple directions to make a meal. I just wanted a more hands on approach and the ability to fine tune what I'm making/drinking so I jumped right into AG.

I did the Haus Pale Ale by the Bee Cave Brewery and then decided to write my own recipe from scratch right after that so you can tell how wild I get with this stuff. It's so much fun though and I was glad to see so many people enjoying what I made - what a great feeling even if I was the least impressed with the taste!

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Old 04-04-2010, 04:28 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StarCityBrewMaster View Post

Once the beers go in the refrigerator I'm assuming bottle conditioning stops, correct?
Incorrect. It will slow down, but not stop. Some people (including myself) try to stop carbonation leaving more sweetness behind by refrigerating the bottles. It does not work. In my experience, even (accidentally) freezing them solid won't necessarily stop the conditioning process.
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Old 04-04-2010, 07:34 PM   #10
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It's the sludge in the primary messing with your mind.

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