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Old 04-02-2008, 12:41 AM   #1
limey lou
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Default Cost of All-Grain Vs. Extract!

i got a few extracts under my belt and want to go all-grain, of course. i got everything i need except wort chiller so i'm still at least a week away yet. The question i got is how does the cost of brewing all-grain compare to brewing extract(which averages me about $40 for the kit and water)? i realize if you buy in bulk it obviously will cost less, but what's an average cost when buying just what recipe calls for? i'm certain this has been discussed before but i was unable to find such a discussion. thanks in advance for any help with this query.



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Old 04-02-2008, 12:44 AM   #2
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it's still quite a bit cheaper. i pay about $25 per all-grain batch for the same beers i used to make when i paid $40 for extract. plus, my beer is better

of course, hops prices have gone up, too, so it's a good thing i don't like hoppy beers


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Old 04-02-2008, 12:53 AM   #3
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To give you an idea of the savings possibilities, my last brew, a steam beer, came to about $0.30 per bottle. Not bad. I've still got room to improve.
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Old 04-02-2008, 01:51 AM   #4
Matt Foley
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take a look at the kit price at northern brewer or austin home brew for a start. It seems that you can usually see a price difference of $7 to $10 per kit difference between extract and all grain.
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Old 04-02-2008, 02:36 AM   #5
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Before hop and grain prices went insane, it wasn't incredibly difficult to brew a 5g AG batch for $10.

It's pretty easy to see the cost savings though... If you know your average efficiency, it's pretty easy to figure out the price difference between a pound of DME and the amount of grain it takes to get an equivalent amount of fermentables.

For example, at my LHBS, grain is $1/lb and DME is about $3.50/lb. Assuming 75% efficiency, 1lb of DME is roughly equal to 1.33lb of grain. Taking that all into account, using extract in a recipe costs 3.50/1.33 = 2.6 times more than grain.
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Old 04-02-2008, 03:35 AM   #6
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I'm still able to brew 5 gallons of BCB Haus Pale ale for $7.85 thanks to bulk buying last year.
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Old 04-02-2008, 05:12 PM   #7
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14.7 cents a 12ounce bottle!?!?!?! I really need to get on the All-Grain Wagon.
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Old 04-02-2008, 05:14 PM   #8
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To be fair, you really need to factor in the costs of the AG equipment you might need to invest in (propane burners, wort chillers, etc). I think *most* people would agree that they don't go AG with saving money as their primary motivation.

I do love not having to pay $15 for three pounds of DME at the HBS!
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Old 04-02-2008, 05:34 PM   #9
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You're going to have to brew a lot of AG beers to make up for the 250 or so you'll need to spend to get on the AG wagon. Although it sounds like you are pretty much invested except for the IC.

Let's say your AG setup costs you $300(cheap), and you save $10 per batch(probably less), you'll need to brew 30 batches to recover the cost.

So, maybe a year of brewing? A couple months for Biermuncher?

However, the beer is 10x better, as well!
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Old 04-02-2008, 05:37 PM   #10
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Indeed, equipment costs more, and AG is easier to screw up. I have gone back to PM from AG because I have 3 kids and other things to do. Also I was doing AG on the cheap, and one crapping out thermometer led to a nearly NA batch.

With extract in there, you are guaranteed that much in fermentables.


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