Extract to all grain

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Katfeesh

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I have figured out how much grain to use but now I'm trying to figure out what grains to use to replace the dark malt extract and the sparkling light malt extract
 

Kickass

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I believe some extract manufacturers list what is in there extracts. I’d check their websites and see if you can gain some insight.
 
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Katfeesh

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The light they call base grains Munich crystal 60l. The dark Munich crystal 60l and dark malt
 

Sam_92

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What style of beer are you trying to make? I recommend looking at all-grain recipes for the style you're making to get a general idea of what people are using. The book "Brewing classic styles" is an excellent guide and you can brew the recipes as is or use them as a jump off point for designing your own recipes. Designing Great Beer is another great book that delves very deep in formulating recipes.
 
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I believe some extract manufacturers list what is in there extracts. I’d check their websites and see if you can gain some insight.
For the styles and brands of DME that I use, there was a time when this information was available in product information sheets. Over time, as those documents have been updated, the base malt information seems to be harder to find.

How to Brew, 4e remains a solid resource for this information as well as some worked out examples for converting recipes.
 

madscientist451

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I'm trying to figure out what grains to use to replace the dark malt extract and the sparkling light malt extract
You'll be better off using your time looking for all grain recipes instead of attempting to convert extract recipes. Also skip trying to make up your own recipes until you've got some experience using grain.
:mug:
 

hotbeer

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Also skip trying to make up your own recipes until you've got some experience using grain.
Why? And does making up ones own recipe include using different brands of malts than specified?

I'm asking because that's where I'm at right now. I know the basic recipe of what I'd like to get too, but I'm trying different malts to see what difference they make.
 

GrowleyMonster

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What style of beer are you trying to make? I recommend looking at all-grain recipes for the style you're making to get a general idea of what people are using. The book "Brewing classic styles" is an excellent guide and you can brew the recipes as is or use them as a jump off point for designing your own recipes. Designing Great Beer is another great book that delves very deep in formulating recipes.
I have that book. It is pretty good, too, except the author assumes that the reader will have a way of keeping his fermentation temperature down to the upper 60's at most. Myself, I don't use any chilling system and I ferment at room temp, around 72 degrees, and big beer fermenting temps often reach into the high 70's during the most vigorous part of the process. Most beginners likewise will not have a way to keep the fermenting beer cold. Someone really should write a similar book with room temperature fermenting in mind. Yeah I know, that would mean no true lagers but ales are something else. I kind of rock my own recipes and I don't care about winning prizes or conforming to a style, but I know a lot of brewers enjoy all that.

Absolutely, it is easier to ditch the extract recipes and start from scratch with a simple all grain recipe, rather than doing all that conversion and hope that arithmetic will make it all come out perfect in the real world.

For a beginner to all grain brewing, I don't think creating your own recipe is all that bad an idea, This can be very quick, simple, and effective with a recipe calculator like Brewer's Friend. Just start with enough pale ale malt to make the calculator yield a good drinkable 5% or so ABV, and add a pound of a malt or a couple of malts with the color or flavor or other characteristics you want, an ounce of a popular bittering hops for the whole boil and some flavor or aroma hops at the end if desired, a yeast that will perform well at the anticipated fermentation temp, and bobs yer uncle, you are gonna get a decent beer if your mash temp was appropriate. It's a base to work from. The next batch can be improved. and the next. Running the calculator as a "trial brew" will help by giving the approximate gravities, color, IBU, ABV, etc and save a lot of "wasted" brewing by allowing simulated experimentation that isn't going to be too far off from real world results.

Having begun with extract, the new all grain brewer already has a grasp on most of the mechanics of BIAB brewing except for the grinding and mashing. A bit of study should put the newbie in the ballpark on all that. If the end result is not perfect, it will still be good, if he doesn't do anything really weird.

Detailed recipes for simple but tasty all grain beers are all over the internet. If you don't want to wing it, it is easy enough to just pick one and follow it. I don't see how any extract recipe can be so good that it simply must be converted and used with all grain brewing.

With respect to normal and customary cleanliness and sanitation methods, it isn't easy to make a beer that isn't better than most of the grocery offerings. The extract recipe crutch needs to be kicked aside. Just my opinion, YMMV.
 
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I don't see how any extract recipe can be so good that it simply must be converted and used with all grain brewing.
I do. In other words, "I've been there and done that" - converting an extract recipe to all grain for a friend.

It can be done. The result wasn't exactly the same. But it was a rewarding experience for both of us.

Just my opinion, YMMV.
 

GrowleyMonster

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Why? And does making up ones own recipe include using different brands of malts than specified?

I'm asking because that's where I'm at right now. I know the basic recipe of what I'd like to get too, but I'm trying different malts to see what difference they make.

Usually a similar malt of a different brand will have insignificant effect. A pale 2 row is still a pale 2 row. A 350 chocolate is still a 350 chocolate. A 60l. crystal is still that, though you will see maybe more variation there, between brands with those types. The thing is, using different brands may make a detectable change but it won't ruin your drinking beer. If you want the exact precise same results as the author of the recipe gets, as a noob you aren't going to get that, anyway, unless you are privy to all his brewing and bottling methods, in great detail, and you follow them dogmatically. Even then, circumstances out of your control or anticipation will change the result. But the beer will most likely still be great. So sure, emulate exactly if you like, but if you want to use a different brand or slightly different malt specs, have at it.


Plug in the ingredients you expect to use, water amounts and temps, yeast, hops, etc, and see how the calculator predicts it will come out. Keep an eye on more than just the ABV. A percent or two either way honestly doesn't make a lot of difference in the drinking experience unless you want a session ale or something. Your FG will give you a clue about how dry the beer might be. The IBU, how hoppy. The popup with the yeast and malt and hops individual characteristics will also help tell you if you are on the right track or not. By sticking close to the mainstream at first, you know your results will be pretty good, if you follow standard and accepted methods and practices. A simple two or three malt recipe is pretty easy to work out. A good rule of thumb is no more than 15% of the mash bill should be one particular type of specialty grain. Let your base malt carry the ball and not be overwhelmed by the fancy stuff. Unmalted grains can be good as long as you have a nice, active base malt to convert them, and plenty of it, but using all malt or just going with the 15% rule will be easiest for your first batch or three.

Make sure you understand the mashing process and the effects that mash temp and time will have on the finished beer.

Don't do anything too different from what most brewers do. By now you have read plenty of blow by blow accounts of batches that came out great or came out sucky, and you have read dozens of recipes and reviews. Follow the road well traveled. If you do what most brewers do, you should get the results that most brewers get. Or close enough to drink, anyway. Excellence will come with experience. Or luck. Perfection is a worthy but not quite achievable goal.

Just remember, plan ahead for the entire brew day. Don't panic. And if you have a "better idea", save it for maybe batch number 4 or 5, not your first batch. Get your foot in the door with a nice standard beer. There are enough things that COULD go wrong without you overthinking things and freestyling before you get the basics down.
 

hotbeer

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@GrowleyMonster

Sure, but still I'm not certain why as a noob one should avoid making their own recipes or try to convert extract to all grain.

Certainly the extra possible mishaps and mistakes of a mashing might complicate the issue of figuring why it doesn't taste like the beer it was intended to be. But still it was a beer and the pursuit of getting it right on a subsequent attempt will be good experience and learning.

I learn more when I make mistakes and figure out why than if I blindly do what I'm told. Or have success the first time and don't really understand why it was a success. That tends to allow dogma to creep in.
 

RM-MN

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Sure, but still I'm not certain why as a noob one should avoid making their own recipes or try to convert extract to all grain.

Maybe it's because we have see noobs create recipes without understanding what each ingredient brings, then come here wondering why their beer is nearly undrinkable. Understanding the relationship between extract and all grain is plenty to worry about for a starter, then take recipes that are proven and tweak them just a little.
 

Sam_92

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I did that with a very early batch, it was ve-e-e-ery memorable lesson. Maybe it's good for beginners to learn the hard way sometimes.
 

madscientist451

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Why? And does making up ones own recipe include using different brands of malts than specified?

I'm asking because that's where I'm at right now. I know the basic recipe of what I'd like to get too, but I'm trying different malts to see what difference they make.
That's great; my experience was I was consistently making good beer following established clone recipes and then when I went off and tried my own recipes it just wasn't as good since I really didn't know what I was doing. Nothing wrong with doing your own thing, go for it.
:mug:
 

GrowleyMonster

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@GrowleyMonster

Sure, but still I'm not certain why as a noob one should avoid making their own recipes or try to convert extract to all grain.

Certainly the extra possible mishaps and mistakes of a mashing might complicate the issue of figuring why it doesn't taste like the beer it was intended to be. But still it was a beer and the pursuit of getting it right on a subsequent attempt will be good experience and learning.

I learn more when I make mistakes and figure out why than if I blindly do what I'm told. Or have success the first time and don't really understand why it was a success. That tends to allow dogma to creep in.

OH, but I agree. I never said a noob should avoid rolling his own recipes, only that keeping it mainstream will help to ensure success, or at least near or partial success. I never used any established recipe after I did my first extract recipe kit batches. I started out trying to make a cheap extract ale and when I figured out that the extract on sale was the old semi stale stuff, and that BIAB was still cheaper anyway, I switched to all grain, and still no recipe copying, though I certainly read a few and got a lot of ideas from them. I think my first BIAB batch was 10lbs (two bags) of Viking pale 2-row and a pound of Briess 350 Chocolate, with an ounce of Cascade and a pack of US-05. Pretty plain. It was a good drinker, though. And I just went from there. And now almost three years in, I still haven't followed anybody else's recipe though I have a clone recipe somewhere for Leffe Blond that I will probably try one of these days just because it is a beer that I have always really liked from before I ever saw it in the US. And I am still brewing based on either the Viking 2 row pale or the extra pale. My specialty grains change but the base stays pretty much the same. It works and no reason here to change very much.
 

GrowleyMonster

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Over in the topic "Going bulk grain - need some advice" there are brewers who have the opposite opinion.

For those looking to stock an "at home" Local HomeBrew Store, the topic is worth following.
And that is a worthy opinion and maybe if I had used more different brands I would have reason to support it at least a little bit. But as an example, I haven't noticed any difference between different brands of 2 row pale ale malt, even though that makes up the bulk of my usual mash bill. I can't even taste the difference between Weyermann's biscuit malt and the Viking cookie malt. They are just too similar. VIking Chocolate vs Briess Chocolate? I can't tell the difference, but I want a half pound or a pound of one or the other in my ales and stouts, I know that. But yeah, okay, I will admit that there is some wiggle room there. However I don't think it is something for the beginner to obsess over excessively.
 
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And I am still brewing based on either the Viking 2 row pale or the extra pale. My specialty grains change but the base stays pretty much the same. It works and no reason here to change very much.
I have a couple of craft brewers near me that have a similar approach. Many of their "flagship" beers have a common base malt and vary based on the character / specialty malts.

+5!

I started out trying to make a cheap extract ale and when I figured out that the extract on sale was the old semi stale stuff, ...
It's well known that stale ingredients result in bad beer.

I don't think it is something for the beginner to obsess over excessively.
It's their hobby. And generally, if I can be helpful (to them) by answering their question directly (and without judgement) I'm inclined to do so.

And, as I said earlier
For those looking to stock an "at home" Local HomeBrew Store, the topic (link) is worth following.
 

Sam_92

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OH, but I agree. I never said a noob should avoid rolling his own recipes, only that keeping it mainstream will help to ensure success, or at least near or partial success. I never used any established recipe after I did my first extract recipe kit batches.
Same here, and I've never duplicated one of my own recipes either. You tend to get a feel for what your ingredients are doing and you can spitball recipes that turn out very good and sometimes astonishingly good. I could never make it as a commercial brewer because consistency is not what I'm looking for. I can purchase consistent beers all day long anymore, I like to be surprised by my beer I guess.
 

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Not sure if this applies...but we have found that many times, less really is more. A great German Pilsner can be brewed with a single malt, and a single hop.
For a beginner, this would be an easy beer to start with. If you use W-34/70, you can even ferment at slightly warmer temps with good results.

Ireks Pilsner malt, or Weyermann Pilsner. Both good choices.
 
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Katfeesh

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Got the grains figured out to what I think they should be the beer is in the fermenter now so we'll see what happens
 

hotbeer

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Keep good notes. They can be important to figure out where to go next if you need to tweak it. Not just for ingredients, but the temps you hit during mash, how hard you boiled, how much total water to get how much to the fermenter after boil. And etc all the way till you pour into a glass.
 
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Been keeping notes in the brew father app
 
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Well fermentation stalled at 1.050 og was 1.090 guess I didn't get the yeast right for the batch
 

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Have you tasted it yet?

If you only cooked it on the 1st then you are only 7 days in.
What's your wort temp and what was it throughout?
Is it still cloudy?
 
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Katfeesh

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Have you tasted it yet?

If you only cooked it on the 1st then you are only 7 days in.
What's your wort temp and what was it throughout?
Is it still cloudy?
Didn't taste it brewed it on January 27 it's temp has been 68 f not cloudy it didn't even leave a krausen ring in the fermenter
 
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Katfeesh

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Well, the good news is you have the opportunity to learn a lot. :mug:
[/QUOTE
That is true just started doing all grain after not brewing for about 3 years feels like I'm starting over
 

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Well fermentation stalled at 1.050 og was 1.090 guess I didn't get the yeast right for the batch

Can you go over your recipe, brewday notes, yeast, and fermentation conditions? This sounds like something is way off.

Maybe also take a picture of where you are reading the 1.050 from on the hydrometer (and confirm that the hydrometer isn't bottoming out in the test cylinder).
 
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Katfeesh

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Here is the recipe defiantly screwed up only using one packet of yeast. That's all I used when I would do it as an extract
 

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camonick

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I hate to say it, but that recipe is kind of a mess. Your base malt only consists of 40% of the grist. 5 lbs of crystal 60??!!!! plus an additional 6+ pounds of roasted grain and sugars aren’t going to work well for a 5 gallon batch. That’s going to be sickly sweet and no surprise it didn’t finish below .050 no matter how much yeast you used. 26 IBUs of hops isn’t going to do much either. That’s why the advice about using proven recipes given above is relevant. You need to understand what everything contributes to a recipe. I doubt that will be drinkable.
 
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marc1

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Whoah! 25.5% Crystal 60 with 5% maltodextrin! This could be part of the issue. One pack of yeast for a 1.090 beer isn't helping, either.

You can try to get it to finish out more, but I'm not sure how much more there is to go.

1644385119046.png
 

marc1

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Try it and see what it tastes like. Probably sickly sweet, but maybe you'll like it.

If you hate it, the only thing I can think to do is add glucoamylase to the fermenter. It will make it all fermentable, and if the yeast is still up to it, it will take it down around 1.000. Not sure if it would taste good then, even, but probably better than now.
 

camonick

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Here is the recipe defiantly screwed up only using one packet of yeast. That's all I used when I would do it as an extract
Can you provide the extract recipe or a link to it? Seeing it will help everyone be able to give more useful advice.
 
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