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Old 10-09-2012, 01:46 AM   #1
Aug 2012
Appleton, WI
Posts: 232
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How do you know the difference between a specialty grain for steeping vs a normal grain used in all grain brewing. I know what the difference is between them in what they do (Specialty for Color, flavor / All Grain for Fermentables). But when ordering a grain from an online store, how do you know if its specialty, or a regular grain?

For example, on a site I am looking at, it shows "All Styles, Base Malt, Caramel/Crystal, Roasted, Adjucts/Other"


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Old 10-09-2012, 01:50 AM   #2
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May 2012
Atlanta Area, GA
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Base malt is something you use that has diastatic power, and most specialty grains, have been kilned or roasted, and have some, but all the way down to none in some cases.

"Base grain/malt" is something that needs to be mashed. Caramel/Crystal and other adjuncts you can normally get away with, within reason, with just steeping them for extract brewing.
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Old 10-09-2012, 01:59 AM   #3
Jul 2011
Posts: 22
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You need to see these grains over and over in catalogs or go online and look at the different malts. You will become familiar in time with many of the more commonly used malts. Base=mashing required, crystal/caramel=steep, roasted/toasted=steep. This is a very general answer and it will depend on what beer you are making and your brewing skill/level.

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Old 10-09-2012, 03:17 AM   #4
Oct 2012
Murrieta, CA
Posts: 19
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I've requested the Northern Brewer catalog, any other's you can suggest?

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Old 10-09-2012, 03:22 AM   #5
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Jan 2009
Attleboro, MA
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I just want to point out that specialty grains also add fermentables to the wort - not just color and flavor. Also, they can be (and usually are) mashed in all-grain recipes.
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Old 10-09-2012, 03:54 AM   #6
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SF Peninsula
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Old 10-09-2012, 03:58 AM   #7
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Feb 2011
Nashville, TN
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