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Old 10-08-2006, 03:52 PM   #1
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Default Ingredients: How old is too old?

A friend gave me some brewing equipment that he has had laying around for years (probably 3-4 years). Inluded in this was a Brewer's Best German Altbier kit. I threw out the cans of extract and the yeast packet, but I'm wondering if the hops and grains are still good? The hops are in vaccuum sealed packs and the grains (crushed cystal and black patent malt) are in a regular plastic bag. Would it be worth it to buy some new extract and try to brew this kit or should I just throw it all out?

If I do brew it, what would be a good yeast to use for an Altbier?

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Old 10-08-2006, 04:11 PM   #2
Baron von BeeGee
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None of the ingredients are good at this point. Most people keep hops ~1 year, maybe a little longer if they're vac sealed and frozen. Grains are usually good up to about a year (maybe longer, but I've never tried so can't say for sure) assuming they're not cracked. Yours are probably cracked and likely rancid from the oils.

IMO you'll be pretty disappointed if you try to use those ingredients...consider the equipment a bonus and go buy some fresh ingredients.

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Old 10-08-2006, 04:13 PM   #3
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Actually, the extract was probably the only part worth keeping. It gets darker with age, but unless the can is bulging, old extract is usable. Crushed grains are only good for a month, if they haven't been frozen. Hops might be ok, but the alpha acids break down even in sealed bags.
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Old 10-08-2006, 06:45 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by david_42
Actually, the extract was probably the only part worth keeping. .
X2. canned stuff last forever.
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Old 10-09-2006, 12:57 AM   #5
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My stepdad used some LME a friend had given him. It had been sitting sealed for 9 years It was so dark he made a porter with it. It wasn't that bad, although I thought it had a molasses-y taste to it. So yea, canned malt will keep for a long time.

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