A message to extract brewers.

Homebrew Talk - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Forum

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

HopHeadGrady

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2011
Messages
354
Reaction score
6
Location
Stittsville
I hope this does not come across the wrong way to some, as that is not my intention. I am by no means a beer snob and enjoy the hobby for what it is. If you brew something you like, thats all that matters.

I have been absent here for about a year as I experienced with different ways to brew. I started with Kits, went to Mash Extract and then to AG (BIAB). I joined a thriving local brew club and thats when things really took off. Up until then I had been playing with extracts and just getting beer flavored drink and crap after tastes etc. I did about 20 different beers, and found 1 or 2 decent recipes but they still lacked flavor and fullness of beer. I was about to give up when a fellow brewer told me to come by and sample his 6 taps of AG brews.

Simply stated, I was floored. I can say if it wasn't for me joining the club and tasting AG, I would have quit the hobby as the extract beer wasn't for me. Again, this is just me. I tried fecking with my water and all sorts of stuff and nothing helped.

Ok, where am I going with this? About 2 months ago it was very cold up here so I couldn't do any AG brewing in my garage. I decided to cash in a gift cert on two Muntons Premium gold kits. I decided to make them bone stock. I did not boil them, they are pre hopped. I added it to boiled water in the fermenter, followed instructions to a T from here. No hop teas or anything.

Well I tapped one and the beer is absolute filth. I am not sure why Muntons sells this crap. I tasted my other Muntons kit too and it as well has that caramel, extract and weak hop oil taste. Its a 1 out of 10.

I am not saying all kits are garbage, but I just cant drink the Craig Tube Kool Aid. Anyone thinking about giving up without trying AG should really try that first. It will sway you back. I guess I shouldn't be shocked at the lack of quality, especially since I have done 50+ AG brews since my last kit.

I should have put my gift cert from LHBS into a bag of 2 row. What a waste.
Sorry if this comes across as a rant, but I was expecting a little more than this with the kits. I knew they weren't going to be that good, but I didn't know it would turn out to be filth.

As for the fermentation, it too was terrible. OG 1055 FG 1022..... I fermented in the same room as all my other beers. I rehydrated the crap yeast they send too. The only good thing is the beer is super clear. It looks good sitting on the bar, decent head etc, then you take a sip and it's like "Hmm this doesn't taste like beer". It like comparing Tang to fresh squeezed OJ IMO. Its just not real tasting.

Both extract kits are going down the drain when I get home. Never again.
IMO Extracts are excellent to get you started and used to the process, thats about it. I am not referring to some of the Northern Mash Extract Kits etc as I haven't drank them yet. Just the canned stuff at my LHBS.

I would rather just do a Festa Brew next time... You get 23L of wort in a box...
 

unionrdr

Homebrewer, author & air gun collector
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Feb 19, 2011
Messages
39,136
Reaction score
3,798
Location
Sheffield
I brewed my 1st Cooper's kit that came with my micro brew kit stock. It came out pretty good,but really needed flavor hops imo. I started on the 2nd brew onward using 3lbs of Munton's DME in the boil & 2-6oz ofhops,depending on the style I was turning it into. So I was really using the cans as a base. Comes out much better with late extract additions & rehydrated yeast. Different yeast have been interesting as well.
I've since gone to partial mash. As soon as I get a couple more things,hopefully local,I can use a recipe from a member to turn the Cooper's Heritage Lager into a slightly smoky German dark lager. Will need a "micro mash" with the rauchmalt. I'm looking forward to this one.
My point is,I use them for what they can be, Not what they are.
 

BxBrewer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 9, 2012
Messages
445
Reaction score
60
Location
Bronx
Your big problem is the comercial extract kits. Munttons,Brewers Best,Coopers etc. Die hard extract brewers dont use this stuff. If i do a kit it is a custom kit from say Moorbeer. My extract brew is as good as any all grain. No twang, no sweetness.

 

The Soft Underbelly

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 24, 2008
Messages
218
Reaction score
9
Location
Joliet, Il
Sorry if this comes across as a rant...
Dude! This is the internet! You're supposed to rant!!! Just try being a little offensive and self righteous next time :fro:

I feel your pain though, ive made some very good extract kits, all from norther brewer. But sometimes I'd order kits with the best intentions and they'd sit on a shelf for 6 months. The liquid extract doesn't age well and when you combine that with a partial boil and aged, though refrigerated, yeast... the results were less than stellar. I fell into a 2 year non brewing rut that lasted until the smell of the Solemn Oath tap room drove me screaming back into the hobby last October.

Now this being said, simple recipes, DME with ~ 50% of it added at the 15 min mark and a good yeast starter has left me with my best extract partial boil recipes. I've recently graduated to full boil partial mash (all grain can wait until spring) but the last batch i made with the late addition method just described is a sweet stout that tasted awesome going into the bottle a week back. FWIW I've never brewed with pre-hopped extract for some of the reasons you describe above.

Hows the BIAB method workin' for ya? I'm still debating whether to convert a cooler or order one of them fancy a*s bags folks on here sell - neither my wife or me can sew worth a damn.
 
OP
HopHeadGrady

HopHeadGrady

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2011
Messages
354
Reaction score
6
Location
Stittsville
BE Brewer - Yeah, thats what I am thinking. I mean when I mashed some grain, added some light DME etc I was able to get something half decent. But as soon as a can of pre hopped extract comes into the mix, everything goes downhill. Northern doesn't ship to Canada and getting those mailed up anyway would be very expensive. I find it Ironic a company called Northern Brewer does not do business with the North. The shipping usually equals the kit price. Yeah I know, thats my problem for living in Canada... haha.

TSU - I wonder how long my Kit was on the shelf too. I think they must use hop oils in the kit. Def has a different taste than what I am used to. 5 out of 5 buddies gave the Muntons the drain pour... I remembered I made a mash extract using one of these cans last year and it wasnt so bad. This time however, bleh.

BIAB was meant as a cheap way to get into AG before going 3V etc. I haven't bothered though since BIAB is coming along so good. At my clubs last malt split my beer finished in the top 5 of 25 beers (4th). I am not fixing something that isn't broke. I do tweak my water a bit though. BIAB is perfect for me. You just need a LOT of water up front. I brew 30L batches from a 50L pot. I have lots of little tips n tricks now :p

Union - Yeah, you need to customize your brew when using extracts in order to make something half decent. I wasn't expecting excellent beer here by any means, just low grade drinkable beer. Its not even that though which is why Im a bit frustrated.
 

duboman

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 13, 2011
Messages
6,365
Reaction score
517
Location
Glenview
While I won't totally discount what you are saying, it is somewhat a disservice what you are putting out there can can be somewhat discouraging to those interested in getting into this hobby/obsession.

Most people will agree that the pre-hopped kits or no boil kits are pretty crappy but there are many other proven kits that use fresh ingredients, specialty grains and good yeast that prove to be good, if not great beers. Many of these kits do not prove to be great, not because of the kit but the new brewer making it and the short comings they have in their process.

In fact, if you go through many of each year's GABF medal winners in each category you will find some of the best beers were in fact extract recipes or had extract as part of the recipe. Many of which have been written up in Zymurgy over the years.

Just my .02:)
 

bknifefight

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2009
Messages
1,950
Reaction score
124
Location
PA
It all comes down to using the best and the most fresh ingredients. Some of those cans of pre-hopped extract can be YEARS old. The yeast is usually always shot. I bet if you got them fresh, with good yeast, the results would be a lot better than what you're reporting.
 

MyNameIsPaul

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 6, 2010
Messages
1,057
Reaction score
161
Location
Tomball
ALL GRAIN VS EXTRACT SNOB THREAD!!!

Just kidding...but just to clarify: You used 'crap' yeast, no fermentation temperature control, no boil, and you expected great results? I've had and made absolutely delicious Extract brews. Reminds me of a saying "Play stupid games, win stupid prizes"

I'd try again if I were you, with an extract kit from a big homebrew website that turns a ton of extract orders from bulk LME. Forget the prehopped stuff too. Get after it and let us know what you think!
 

ken_manke

Active Member
Joined
Jan 21, 2013
Messages
27
Reaction score
7
Location
Katy
I'm relatively new to brewing and did a 100% extract my first time out. I would agree that I was a little disappointed with the outcome. It was a Coopers Kit and was relatively light, as it aged it got better. However, it never got to where I had hoped. Currently I'm waiting on my 2nd batch to complete fermentation. This batch was part extract. I hope that it comes out better as the first.

These things being said, I appreciated your comments regarding AG. This is where I hope to get to with my brewing in the next year. The only thing I would say is please, for my homies, don't pour out your fermented water. There are needy sober people in this world that drink the likes of BL, ML, etc. and would be happy to take it off your hands.
 

dstranger99

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 27, 2012
Messages
1,046
Reaction score
112
Location
Charlottesville
My LHBS also has his AG on tap, and it is awesome, I do PM's now, but yeah extracts do suck, but the key is adding a little extract at the boil start, and the rest at flameout, it rids of the twang, but not 100%....
 

Revvy

Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Dec 11, 2007
Messages
41,288
Reaction score
3,729
Location
"Detroitish" Michigan
While I won't totally discount what you are saying, it is somewhat a disservice what you are putting out there can can be somewhat discouraging to those interested in getting into this hobby/obsession.

Most people will agree that the pre-hopped kits or no boil kits are pretty crappy but there are many other proven kits that use fresh ingredients, specialty grains and good yeast that prove to be good, if not great beers. Many of these kits do not prove to be great, not because of the kit but the new brewer making it and the short comings they have in their process.

In fact, if you go through many of each year's GABF medal winners in each category you will find some of the best beers were in fact extract recipes or had extract as part of the recipe. Many of which have been written up in Zymurgy over the years.

Just my .02:)
Exactly. BxBrewer summed it up, as did you. Using extract in kits, you don't really know the quality of it, how old it is, how it's been store, etc. Especially kit and kilo kits. There's a big difference between using those and let's say an Austin Homebrew or even Northern Brewer kit, where there is high turnover of the product, and you get the freshest extract possible, or where you are custom building a recipe and using good extract.

I made a ton of extract batches, but only 2 of those were kits. Everything else was either recipes from here, or later my own, using fresh extract, hops and the right amount of yeast.

I even won a few awards for them. I think OP, you're throwing the baby out with the bathwater equating ALL extract with the kits you brewed. I think we've come so far on here from those stupid Extract Vs Ag debates of a few years ago.

And like Duboman said, you run the risk with this rant of of like Duboman said, doing a disservice to new brewers this way.
 

Brewtah

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Nov 11, 2012
Messages
668
Reaction score
60
Location
Salt Lake City
Why in the world would you buy those type of kits? Pre-hopped, no boil? Don't use your poor decisions on gift certificate spending to condem extract brewing. You basically just told a bunch of brewers you suck at basic brewing and good beer can not be made unless it is all grain.
Hope this doesn't come off as a selfish rant.
 

zeg

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 17, 2012
Messages
1,218
Reaction score
140
Location
West Lafayette
Bzzt, sorry, your problem was not extract vs AG, it was stale ingredients and bad process vs. fresh and good.

I have used at least 30-50% extract in all my beers and I have no idea what "extract twang" is. I've never encountered it.

Swapping out AG for extract is not going to magically make your beer better. It *might* be true that the best AG beer is better than the best extract beer, but that's far from proven fact. For most of us, the problems with our beer are caused by bad process or process control problems, not by bad starting ingredients.

Yes, garbage in = garbage out, which is why comparing a pre-hopped canned extract kit from the back of the LHBS is unfair. Using fresh LME or DME and fresh hops is the only fair comparison. You wouldn't make AG with 3-year old moldy malt would you?
 

Revvy

Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Dec 11, 2007
Messages
41,288
Reaction score
3,729
Location
"Detroitish" Michigan
I'm relatively new to brewing and did a 100% extract my first time out. I would agree that I was a little disappointed with the outcome. It was a Coopers Kit and was relatively light, as it aged it got better. However, it never got to where I had hoped. Currently I'm waiting on my 2nd batch to complete fermentation. This batch was part extract. I hope that it comes out better as the first..
Couldn't it also be that it's because it was your first attempt at brewing that was why the outcome was dissapointing, NOT that it was an extract kit. No one ever thinks perhaps it's their own "fault" for their beer coming out? Because they perhaps followed the kit directions and rushed their beers, or hadn't learned about temp control, or proper yeast pitching, or aerating the yeast or any of the myrad other tips they usually pick up AFTER their first few batches. But NO, it's NEVER taken into consideration that it's because they're new at this stuff...It's ALWAYS that "crappy extract's" fault. :cross:
 
Joined
Apr 23, 2009
Messages
34,971
Reaction score
14,346
Location
☀️ Clearwater, FL ☀️
Exactly. BxBrewer summed it up. Using extract in kits, you don't really know the quality of it, how old it is, how it's been store, etc. Especially kit and kilo kits. There's a big difference between using those and let's say an Austin Homebrew or even Northern Brewer kit, where there is high turnover of the product, and you get the freshest extract possible, or where you are custom building a recipe and using good extract.

I made a ton of extract batches, but only 2 of those were kits. Everything else was either recipes from here, or later my own, using fresh extract, hops and the right amount of yeast.

I even won a few awards for them. I think OP, you're throwing the baby out with the bathwater equating ALL extract with the kits you brewed. I think we've come so far on here from those stupid Extract Vs Ag debates of a few years ago.

And like Duboman said, you run the risk with this rant of of like Duboman said, doing a disservice to new brewers this way.
OP clearly stated he wasn't referring to all extract kits. He was referring to the canned Munton kits.

We should not suppress a members' honest opinions. This was not a rant, only his experience. This entire forum is just a collection of homebrewer's experiences.
 

OhCrap

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 29, 2012
Messages
635
Reaction score
51
Location
Galway
Revvy said:
Couldn't it also be that it's because it was your first attempt at brewing that was why the outcome was dissapointing, NOT that it was an extract kit. No one ever thinks perhaps it's their own "fault" for their beer coming out? Because they perhaps followed the kit directions and rushed their beers, or hadn't learned about temp control, or proper yeast pitching, or aerating the yeast or any of the myrad other tips they usually pick up AFTER their first few batches. But NO, it's NEVER taken into consideration that it's because they're new at this stuff...It's ALWAYS that "crappy extract's" fault. :cross:
My first one was a Canadian blonde kit from coopers. I bought it, read a lot in here butI followed the instructions to the letter as I was new to this and wanted to experience 'crap beer' (according to members views of kit brewing) and i expected my results to be nothing special. They weren't crap or brilliant but drinkable. I put this down to it being my Virgin brew. Since them I've used the same kit but with grains and dme hops etc and have made good beers that others enjoy aswell. It's not the extracts fault if you just want beer in 2 wks, regardless of taste. A bit of effort goes a long way.
 

GrogNerd

mean old man
Joined
Oct 3, 2012
Messages
8,274
Reaction score
6,680
Location
Sterling, VA
Couldn't it also be that it's because it was your first attempt at brewing that was why the outcome was dissapointing, NOT that it was an extract kit. No one ever thinks perhaps it's their own "fault" for their beer coming out? Because they perhaps followed the kit directions and rushed their beers, or hadn't learned about temp control, or proper yeast pitching, or aerating the yeast or any of the myrad other tips they usually pick up AFTER their first few batches. But NO, it's NEVER taken into consideration that it's because they're new at this stuff...It's ALWAYS that "crappy extract's" fault. :cross:
it's the poor craftsman who blames his tools
 

lazyhophead

Member
Joined
May 24, 2012
Messages
14
Reaction score
0
Location
morehead city
I started from day one as an AG brewer. I felt going in that I didn't want to "waste time" with kits and extracts.

I've just got this weird thing that when I learn something new, I wanna do it old school and learn it from the ground up. I felt like using kits was "cheating."

Obviously I know better now (kinda :p ) but I'm very glad I started with AG. I'm by no means a seasoned vet having only 6 batches under my belt, but I know what I like and AG brewing is the only way for ME.
 

hoppyhoppyhippo

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 6, 2012
Messages
2,778
Reaction score
445
Location
New Brunswick
There is absolutely nothing wrong with All Grain or Extract brewing. Different strokes for different folks.

Personally everyone who's had my extract beers loved them. I only buy premium crafted extract kits from my LHBS who constructs a recipe then slides it from AG, to Partial Mash, and Extract. The advantage to going all grain is just more control over the whole process. You can tweak the amount of fermentable sugars, add more base grains, etc. There are absolutely advantage to AG brewing. There's also huge disadvantages as well, Time being the biggest. I can do an extract brew day in 2 and a half hours. About the same amount of time to mash and sparge in AG.

As I said above, different strokes for different folks. I've tasted better homebrew and it gives me something to aspire towards. For now though, what's most important for me is locking down sanitation, cleaning, and the boil process. If you can't do the basics you're more likely to screw the advanced stuff
 

jethro55

Banned
Joined
Dec 2, 2012
Messages
591
Reaction score
54
Location
Dayton
Odd for sure. My extract brews are turning out very well. The second batch that I did was Munton's Nut Brown Ale. Several times others have tasted this one side-by-side with Guinness Draught. And the Munton's batch is described as surprisingly better. I only have 2 quarts of it left. What shall I do? :eek:
 
OP
HopHeadGrady

HopHeadGrady

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2011
Messages
354
Reaction score
6
Location
Stittsville
ALL GRAIN VS EXTRACT SNOB THREAD!!!

Just kidding...but just to clarify: You used 'crap' yeast, no fermentation temperature control, no boil, and you expected great results? I've had and made absolutely delicious Extract brews. Reminds me of a saying "Play stupid games, win stupid prizes"

I'd try again if I were you, with an extract kit from a big homebrew website that turns a ton of extract orders from bulk LME. Forget the prehopped stuff too. Get after it and let us know what you think!
Yeah I understand that for sure. I think I need to re state that I have done over 20 extract/ mash extract brews trying all sorts of things.

As far as your points (which are very valid) here's my take:

Crap Yeast = Stock Muntons Premium Yeast. I wanted to brew the stock kit to see what the taste would be like.

Fermentation Control is in full effect. Same room I use to brew 50+ AG brews.

I do not boil pre hopped extract as it changes the hop profile and makes the beer taste off imo. I simply add the pre hopped at the end of a boil or to boiled water poured into the fermentor.

You are lucky. "absolutely delicious" and Extract can not be used together in my experience. My Porter and "absolutely delicious" on the other hand, thats a fair statement in my home...
 
OP
HopHeadGrady

HopHeadGrady

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2011
Messages
354
Reaction score
6
Location
Stittsville
Exactly. BxBrewer summed it up, as did you. Using extract in kits, you don't really know the quality of it, how old it is, how it's been store, etc. Especially kit and kilo kits. There's a big difference between using those and let's say an Austin Homebrew or even Northern Brewer kit, where there is high turnover of the product, and you get the freshest extract possible, or where you are custom building a recipe and using good extract.

I made a ton of extract batches, but only 2 of those were kits. Everything else was either recipes from here, or later my own, using fresh extract, hops and the right amount of yeast.

I even won a few awards for them. I think OP, you're throwing the baby out with the bathwater equating ALL extract with the kits you brewed. I think we've come so far on here from those stupid Extract Vs Ag debates of a few years ago.

And like Duboman said, you run the risk with this rant of of like Duboman said, doing a disservice to new brewers this way.
I would be doing more of a disservice to new brewers had I lied and said " I just made the best ever beer from a Muntons kit". Why over hype something?
Im not saying dont ever use extract, I am kinda saying to stay away from a can of pre hop. I would be more inclined to show a new brewer a mid west kit, or northern etc. Make sure their effort is pointed in the right direction instead of misleading them.

As as far as the other comments from people about boiling this... YOU DONT BOIL THE MUNTONS PRE HOPPED KIT as per 100's of people advice. I have indeed tried it, and for sure, it takes away the hop aroma thats added by the oil. Maybe I took that the wrong way though and people just meant you need a boil of some sort to make good beer. In that case, given this filth beer, I agree!

I have also brewed a couple mash extract recipes that were ok... I am not flogging extract entirely. Just sharing my experience of 20+ extract bashes.

I find it more of a disservice to take a run at someones brewing techniques and call them a "poor craftman" and blame them 100% without even knowing what I have done, how I have brewed, and what the outcomes have been.

This is turning into a great thread actually and like the feedback. Makes for good conversation imo. Again, sorry if I ruffled some peoples feathers. This is my opinion.No boild / pre hopped Extract is easy, fast but not very good.
 
OP
HopHeadGrady

HopHeadGrady

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2011
Messages
354
Reaction score
6
Location
Stittsville
You can make award-winning beer with extract but don't expect it to be from a pre-hopped no boil kit...
But thats just it, I wasn't expecting much from it. I just wanted to throw down a quick brew and have drinkable beer. I wanted to see if it was as bad as some people say. Indeed, it was.

I am sure there's decent extract out there, I am not doubting that.
 

BxBrewer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 9, 2012
Messages
445
Reaction score
60
Location
Bronx
Im really glad extract brewing has come a long way. If all i had avalible to me was the "just add water" extract kits with the no name 6 gram packet of yeast taped to the top. I would look down on extract brewing too thinking about it.

The fact is the modern day extract brewer still go's through the process. Steeping grains, malt additions,hops additions, boil times, chilling wort, yeast starters or rehydrating yeast. We take great care and pride in the beer were making. In the end thats what were all doing right ?
 
OP
HopHeadGrady

HopHeadGrady

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2011
Messages
354
Reaction score
6
Location
Stittsville
/\ Yeah thats the only method I have used that produced a decent product. Mash/Extract. I wish I could get Northern Brewer up here.
 

hoppyhoppyhippo

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 6, 2012
Messages
2,778
Reaction score
445
Location
New Brunswick
You are lucky. "absolutely delicious" and Extract can not be used together in my experience. My Porter and "absolutely delicious" on the other hand, thats a fair statement in my home...
So far I've made a dozen beers off of extract I'd say are absolutely delicious. I've never brewed with HME ever. I've only done DME or LME and then hopped myself. Only every used Safale 04 in my extracts and gotten great results. I buy local and from LHBS that have fresh ingredients and get good turnover.

That's really the key, what you get out of a beer is only as good as what you put into it. If you're taking an old extract that's already hopped and probably going stale, add some old yeast that may not be 90+% viable, and go with that, you're probably not gonna end up with a good beer.
 

GrogNerd

mean old man
Joined
Oct 3, 2012
Messages
8,274
Reaction score
6,680
Location
Sterling, VA
always go to the chili analogy

sure, you can make chili by opening and heating a can of Hormel, but you can make better chili from a recipe where you pick out all the ingredients as fresh as you can get them

Hormel chili ain't completely foul, in my opinion, but it ain't that great.
 
OP
HopHeadGrady

HopHeadGrady

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2011
Messages
354
Reaction score
6
Location
Stittsville
So far I've made a dozen beers off of extract I'd say are absolutely delicious. I've never brewed with HME ever. I've only done DME or LME and then hopped myself. Only every used Safale 04 in my extracts and gotten great results. I buy local and from LHBS that have fresh ingredients and get good turnover.

That's really the key, what you get out of a beer is only as good as what you put into it. If you're taking an old extract that's already hopped and probably going stale, add some old yeast that may not be 90+% viable, and go with that, you're probably not gonna end up with a good beer.
yeah bang on. But why sell that crud then? It should be phased out in the name of progress! Haha.
 

hoppyhoppyhippo

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 6, 2012
Messages
2,778
Reaction score
445
Location
New Brunswick
always go to the chili analogy

sure, you can make chili by opening and heating a can of Hormel, but you can make better chili from a recipe where you pick out all the ingredients as fresh as you can get them

Hormel chili ain't completely foul, in my opinion, but it ain't that great.
And you can make a great chili by opening a can of tomatoes and starting from that (which is essentially what you're doing with extract)
 

the_trout

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 16, 2011
Messages
434
Reaction score
95
Location
Rochester
I havent made any of the big commercial extract kits like Moutons or Coopers but I have done kits from NB and AHS. The kits I have done have been pretty good, perhaps even a little better than pretty good. Are they as good as my partial mash or BIAB all grain brews? No, they are not. Then again I wouldnt expect them to be any more than I would expect canned soup to be as good as homemade.

I think extract brewing is a great place for someone to start who has little cooking expirence or is unsure if they are going to really invest into the hobby but I would recomend buying a kit from one of the big internet houses like NB or AHS over the dusty Moutons box on your LHBS shelf.
 

GrogNerd

mean old man
Joined
Oct 3, 2012
Messages
8,274
Reaction score
6,680
Location
Sterling, VA
And you can make a great chili by opening a can of tomatoes and starting from that (which is essentially what you're doing with extract)
agreed. each have their degrees of complexity and the quality of the end product is not always directly proportional

my comment about the poor craftsman still applies: a good craftsman can make a quality product with the simplest of tools & raw material.
 

hoppyhoppyhippo

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 6, 2012
Messages
2,778
Reaction score
445
Location
New Brunswick
yeah bang on. But why sell that crud then? It should be phased out in the name of progress! Haha.
Why sell it? Cause some people are lazy. Hope many people buy canned and processed products cause they're just lightly assemble and they're done?

Now what you hope happens is peopel start with say Mr. Beer, then realize there's more to the craft world, and read How to Brew or the Complete Joy of Hmebrewing and then step up to extract with a full boil, then to partial mash, then to all grain.

I mean it's a silly comparison, but when I started playing guitar I didn't buy a Fender Strat and start playing Sweet Child O' Mine, I bought a cheap used guitar and started play simple songs like the notes to When the Saints go Marching in and leanring all the basic chords (still hate the F) I like to think most people's approach to brewing is the same you get your feet wet, then down the road you expand on it because you enjoy it.
 

schematix

Banned
Joined
Aug 14, 2011
Messages
6,785
Reaction score
4,836
I've never had an extract brew that was as good as my worst AG (SMaSH American Pilsner Lager with River Bend 6-row and Willamette - tastes like Bud Light Lemon Grass).

The beers always seem to be lacking body and a brightness in the flavor. I'm not saying you can't make a good extract beer, but I have yet to taste a great one.

Plus there is just no variety in ingredients. Sure if you just like to dabble in brewing as a hobby keep it simple, but don't expect to make something better than you can buy. Great beer takes a lot of time, equipment, money, patience and knowledge. All of which are the opposite of extract brewing (except patience).
 

GrogNerd

mean old man
Joined
Oct 3, 2012
Messages
8,274
Reaction score
6,680
Location
Sterling, VA
I mean it's a silly comparison, but when I started playing guitar I didn't buy a Fender Strat and start playing Sweet Child O' Mine, I bought a cheap used guitar and started play simple songs like the notes to When the Saints go Marching in and leanring all the basic chords (still hate the F) I like to think most people's approach to brewing is the same you get your feet wet, then down the road you expand on it because you enjoy it.
only thing silly about the comparison is that you can't play GnR on a Strat, gotta be a Les Paul. :rockin:

seriously, very good analogy. also: you can't write the Great American Novel without learning the alphabet
 
OP
HopHeadGrady

HopHeadGrady

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2011
Messages
354
Reaction score
6
Location
Stittsville
Why sell it? Cause some people are lazy. Hope many people buy canned and processed products cause they're just lightly assemble and they're done?

Now what you hope happens is peopel start with say Mr. Beer, then realize there's more to the craft world, and read How to Brew or the Complete Joy of Hmebrewing and then step up to extract with a full boil, then to partial mash, then to all grain.

I mean it's a silly comparison, but when I started playing guitar I didn't buy a Fender Strat and start playing Sweet Child O' Mine, I bought a cheap used guitar and started play simple songs like the notes to When the Saints go Marching in and leanring all the basic chords (still hate the F) I like to think most people's approach to brewing is the same you get your feet wet, then down the road you expand on it because you enjoy it.
Yeah thats kinda how I started. I did the craig tube thing and made hop teas, added some grain then went to full on DME/Mini Mash which is how I got the best beer.

I wish I was able to test one of these excellent all extract beers. Like I said I wanted to order some Caribou Slobber since my cousin goes Caribou hunting all the time and would be a good gift for him to bring up to camp... It would also ensure me some meat :) However, Northern Brewer does not ship North :)
 
OP
HopHeadGrady

HopHeadGrady

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2011
Messages
354
Reaction score
6
Location
Stittsville
Why sell it? Cause some people are lazy. Hope many people buy canned and processed products cause they're just lightly assemble and they're done?

Now what you hope happens is peopel start with say Mr. Beer, then realize there's more to the craft world, and read How to Brew or the Complete Joy of Hmebrewing and then step up to extract with a full boil, then to partial mash, then to all grain.

I mean it's a silly comparison, but when I started playing guitar I didn't buy a Fender Strat and start playing Sweet Child O' Mine, I bought a cheap used guitar and started play simple songs like the notes to When the Saints go Marching in and leanring all the basic chords (still hate the F) I like to think most people's approach to brewing is the same you get your feet wet, then down the road you expand on it because you enjoy it.
Sweet Child of mine was played on a custom Les Paul type guitar. I forget the acutal Luthiers name. :mug: I'm picking up what you are putting down here though. My first bass was a Jay Turser, it was 150$ but it rocks. I still use it to ham around at beer jams instead of my good stuff. I have a 78 Fender Precision custom shop :)
 

hoppyhoppyhippo

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 6, 2012
Messages
2,778
Reaction score
445
Location
New Brunswick
only thing silly about the comparison is that you can't play GnR on a Strat, gotta be a Les Paul. :rockin:

seriously, very good analogy. also: you can't write the Great American Novel without learning the alphabet
I only picked the strat cause I love my American Strat haha Also cause my first guitar was a strat knockoff from squire, I think it was called the stage master. Wasn't a bad little thing. But compared to my SG or Strat it pales in comparison and with my added practice (though to be fair I've probably practiced thousands of hours more on guitar than I have on brewing) it really looks bad.

Also I am not a huge LP fan. Love the sound but the thing is like wearing a baby. I like my Strats and SGs, solid bodies that don't throw your back out.
 

GrogNerd

mean old man
Joined
Oct 3, 2012
Messages
8,274
Reaction score
6,680
Location
Sterling, VA
I only picked the strat cause I love my American Strat haha Also cause my first guitar was a strat knockoff from squire, I think it was called the stage master. Wasn't a bad little thing. But compared to my SG or Strat it pales in comparison and with my added practice (though to be fair I've probably practiced thousands of hours more on guitar than I have on brewing) it really looks bad.

Also I am not a huge LP fan. Love the sound but the thing is like wearing a baby. I like my Strats and SGs, solid bodies that don't throw your back out.
my first electric was a faux Strat and my current one is a California Strat that I've modded out the a** with hotter pickups and custom electronics

brought up the LP because it's what Slash and Izzy both played on Appetite for Destruction. I just LOVE that LP thru the Marshall tone.

/hijack
 
Top