Differnce between Brewers 2-row and Pale 2-row malt

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kcstrom

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Hi,

I went to the LHBS last Friday to buy my first 50 lb bag of 2-row malt (got my grain mill in). I'm all about buying in bulk to save money. There were a few different kinds of 2-row malt:

* 50lb Briess Brewer's 2-Row Malt - ~$53
* 50lb Briess Pale Ale 2-Row Malt - ~$76
*55lb Marriss Otter 2-Row Malt - $~90-something

I asked the owner about the difference, and I ended up buying the Pale Ale 2-Row malt, but I honestly don't feel like I understood what is actually different beyond the two Briess choices. His explanation was essentially that the Pale 2-Row produces a better smoother beer with better head retention. I don't know what makes the Marriss Otter that much better either, but I doubt I'm willing to pay that much more even if I did unless I really needed it for something.

Can someone who knows about these things provide more detailed information than the proprietor of this LHBS did?

Thanks!

EDIT: Just realized that I misspelled Difference in the thread subject. Whoops. I don't think I can change it now.

kcstrom
 

david_42

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Here's what Breiss has to say:

2-Row Brewers Malt 1.8L Mild Malty Base malt for all beer styles. Smoother, less grainy flavor than 6-Row Brewers Malt. Slightly higher yield than 6-Row Brewers Malt. Slightly lower protein than 6-Row Brewers Malt.

Pale Ale 3.5L Malty (2-Row) Use with 2-Row base malt for rich malt flavor and additional color. Nice in ales. A High Temp Kilned Malt
 

Bob

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Let's see if I can't shed a bit of light onto the subject.

First, Briess 2-row Brewer's malt is a pale, fairly bland malt, suitable as a base malt in a wide variety of styles. Don't get me wrong - it's good!

Maris Otter is a British malt, normally floor-malted. It is kilned to a higher temperature, which gives it a pronounced biscuity, crackery flavor in the finished beer. Many brewers swear by it because it has a much more complex character on its own than 2-row Brewer's Malt.

In between is Briess Pale Ale malt. It's kilned higher than 2-row Brewer's Malt, which gives it a more full-flavored impact on the beer. I disagree with your guy's explanation of Pale Ale malt; those things are impacted more by process than by ingredients.

Maris Otter doesn't cost that much more because it's any better or worse than any other malt. It's more desireable, and it has less availability than the others. Higher demand + limited supply = higher price. Macroeconomics in action! :)

Cheers,

Bob
 

jacksonbrown

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A bit off topic, but I'm pretty sure you can get better prices on those grains online (well, not the Brewer's Malt). Many places offer flat shipping around $7, so a sack of MO should run you less than or around $70. And the Pale 2-row should come in around $60.
 
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kcstrom

kcstrom

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Thanks for the extra info. It sounds like I will probably go with the Brewer's 2-row for most beers in the future or perhaps get the Pale Ale malt online.

kcstrom
 

Aspera

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Variety, extract, diastatic activity and color. Just ask for the bag tags.
 
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