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Old 09-14-2008, 09:51 AM   #1
Adam's Apples
Sep 2006
Posts: 266

I'm really starting to enjoy beers with a nice malt flavour and want to try creating the same in some of my brews. It seems easy to make hoppy, IPA style beers, with all the hop choices, but I'm not as sure about making the malt flavour stand out.

I am an extract and steep brewer for now and I have used chocolate malt, black patent and crystal malts, which have all added something, but not the flavour I'm trying to achieve. Does most of the malt flavour come from the base malt (in my case, usually extra light DME) or the grains I steep? I'm thinking the grains add the flavour as I heard medium and dark DME are just light DME with crystal or other malts added.

I know I can just reduce the hops, but I would like to create different malt flavours, like one can create different hop flavours or aromas with the vast array of hop choices.

I'm interested in using other grains, but am limited in those I can use by just steeping. I want to try aromatic malt and biscuit malt, but I know liitle about either. I think both can be steeped and don't require mashing.

I know that the information I have given may make any specific recommendations difficult, since I haven't really described the flavour I want in detail. This is because I am not exactly sure how to describe the flavour I'm after...but I'm enjoying the sweeter, heavy, malty beers that are rich and wholesome, without the hop bite.

Any pointers or tips/techniques for adding a malt flavour that you have found works will be appreciated.

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Old 09-14-2008, 11:14 AM   #2
For the love of beer!
Orfy's Avatar
Sep 2005
Cheshire, England
Posts: 11,732
Liked 98 Times on 62 Posts

Start looking at going to mini mash......there is no return.
Have a beer on me.

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Old 09-14-2008, 11:29 AM   #3
Bob's Avatar
Nov 2007
Christiansted, St Croix, USVI, US Virgin Islands
Posts: 3,927
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This is where brewing is like cooking. One of the things you have to do in order to master the process is know the ingredients.

Aromatic, biscuit, Special Roast, Victory, home-toasted Pale Ale malt - all of these can enhance perceived maltiness in an extract-and-steep beer. Have a look at this website - it gives you basic descriptions of specialty grains as well as suggestions on the amounts to use.

Orfy is right - the best way to impact "maltiness" is by mashing your own grains. It gives you the most control over the grainy goodness of the beer.


Fort Christian Brewpub
St Croix, US Virgin Islands

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Old 09-14-2008, 12:06 PM   #4
Adam's Apples
Sep 2006
Posts: 266

Cheers guys.

I do see mini-mashing as the next natural step, before going all-grain, but had no set timescale on when this would happen.

As usual with life, time, money etc are all factors and I still see myself as very much the newbie at the moment, with only 9 beers under my belt. I have a link to John Palmers book, maybe I will read the section on partial-mashing and take the leap, or step, as I don't think it's that big of a change in process.

Still not sure whether I'm a malt or hop man, but definately enjoying the darker, malt accented beers more at the moment!

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Old 09-14-2008, 01:06 PM   #5
Jun 2008
Posts: 205
Liked 3 Times on 3 Posts

You'll also want to look into a less attenuative yeast, one that will leave some of that malty goodness behind. In other words, not a Safale-05, but rather the -04, if you're using dry. Consider one with "English" or "British" in the title.
"There is nothing in brewing so complicated that a little effort can't make even more complicated."

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Old 09-14-2008, 01:20 PM   #6
PseudoChef's Avatar
Apr 2007
West Chicago 'Burbs, IL
Posts: 3,406
Liked 110 Times on 81 Posts

You could also try some Munich malt - but that would also have to be mashed.

Aromatic is a good place to start

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