Originally Posted by wanabeer
Whew! I'm tired, but it was worth it for the satisfaction of learning how to mash my own grain. Of course the true test will come when I taste the finished product.
Congrats on making a big step forward. If your batch comes out anything like my first PM, you're in for a big, pleasant surprise! I was astonished what a huge improvement substituting base malt for half the LME in my favorite pale ale made. There is no turning back to extract brewing for me, those days are over. In fact, weather permitting, I'll be brewing my first all grain batch on Sunday.
I have to agree with those recommending Beersmith, I think it's the class of the field. I've learned SO MUCH about brewing, just by changing ingredients and other parameters in any given recipe, and "contemplating the ifs." It would be a bargain at three times the price.