Ss Brewtech’s Biggest Baddest Holiday Giveaway Ever!

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Recipes/Ingredients > Difference between Crystal and Caramel
Thread Tools
Old 02-17-2012, 08:46 PM   #1
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Grand Rapids, MI
Posts: 50
Liked 8 Times on 6 Posts

Default Difference between Crystal and Caramel

I brewed up a batch of the BYO recipe Fat Tire clone recently. The clerk told me to use caramel rather and crystal malts. The beer came out very dark and higher gravity that expected. Is this because of the different malts or are they interchangable? We also used LD Carlson Pilsner DME rather than the Laaglander. Below is the recipe for reference:

•5 lbs. Laaglander plain extra-light DME
• 0.50 lb. crystal malt (20° Lovibond)
•0.50 lb. crystal malt (40° Lovibond)
• 0.50 lb. carapils malt
• 0.50 lb. Munich malt
• 0.50 lb. biscuit malt
• 0.50 lb. chocolate malt
• 3 AAUs Willamette pellet hops (0.66 oz. at 4.5% alpha acid)
• 1.33 AAUs Fuggle pellet hops (0.33 oz. at 4% alpha acid)
• 2 AAUs Fuggle pellet hops (0.50 oz. at 4% alpha acid)
• 1 tsp. Irish moss
• 2/3 to 3/4 cup corn sugar to prime Wyeast 1056 or BrewTek CL-10

planecrazy29 is offline
Reply With Quote
Old 02-17-2012, 08:50 PM   #2
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: North Dakota
Posts: 2,876
Liked 42 Times on 38 Posts
Likes Given: 6


caramel and crystal malts are the same thing.

Your beer came out too dark because of the 1/2 pound of chocolate malt. In a five gallon batch to get the color you are looking for, I would have simply added 2-3 oz of chocolate or subbed C80 for the C40.

8 oz of choco made you a brown ale.

permo is offline
Reply With Quote
Old 02-17-2012, 10:56 PM   #3
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Alternate Universe
Posts: 2,272
Liked 71 Times on 60 Posts
Likes Given: 10


This came up before. There is a difference between crystal and caramel malts but I don't remember exactly what it was now. There is a thread or more floating around about it. Caramel malts are 'newer' and supposedly a tad less harsh if I remember correctly. Problem is, you don't know what you are getting most of the time. I traced one brand that changed from caramel to crystal by the time it hit the LHBS.
Hermit is offline
Reply With Quote
Old 02-18-2012, 12:31 AM   #4
Feedback Score: 1 reviews
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Portland OR
Posts: 5,373
Liked 62 Times on 58 Posts
Likes Given: 29


from BYO

Crystal malt: This is the British term for saccharified and drum-roasted malt. It can be roasted to different degrees to provide a range of colors. The most common range used in the UK is 70° to 80° Lovibond, which tends to produce deep red colors and a strong caramel flavor. These malts may be marketed as light, medium and dark crystal. They are used in pale, amber and dark ales and lagers, and leave a beer tasting sweeter.

Caramel malt: The American term for crystal malt. American producers tend to market these malts by their Lovibond rating. The most common colors used in the U.S. are 30° to 40° Lovibond, but this statistic is skewed because it includes all the caramel malt used by the big commercial producers, who use it in paler, milder-tasting beers. It’s typically used in pale, amber and dark ales and lagers.
samc is offline
Reply With Quote

Thread Tools

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Caramel Malt question. NOT "Caramel/Crystal" pm5k00 Recipes/Ingredients 4 11-27-2011 06:34 AM
Caramel 20 vs. Crystal 20 de5m0mike Recipes/Ingredients 7 02-21-2011 06:08 PM
Difference between using 60L Crystal or half as much 120L Crystal nipsy3 Recipes/Ingredients 4 06-03-2009 01:53 PM
Caramel Wheat or Crystal 60L??? MCH Recipes/Ingredients 2 08-01-2008 08:12 PM
Crystal/ Caramel Malt EamusCatuli Recipes/Ingredients 3 07-16-2008 04:37 PM

Forum Jump

Newest Threads