Ruby's Red Amber Ale, Help me decide which grain bill

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slsBrewing

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Brewing my first Amber Ale this weekend. My goal, in addition to a solid amber ale, is to have a beautiful ruby red color. Help me decide which of the two grain bills to use, and why; I'm not sure about the amount of crystal.
OG 1.052, IBU 34 (100% Simcoe), SRM ~14

Opt 1
8.75 lb 84.3% 2-row, Rahr 1.7L
1 lb 9.6% Crystal 60, Briess 60L
0.5 lb 4.8% Melanoidin, Weyermann 27L
0.125 lb 1.2% Roasted Barley, Crisp 510L

Opt 2
8 lb 76.2% 2-row, Rahr 1.7L
2 lb 19% Crystal 60, Briess 60L
0.5 lb 4.8% Melanoidin, Weyermann 27L
 

hoplobster

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As far as color is concerned, using my 5 gallon batch settings in Beersmith, the first grain bill should give you a beer that's about 13 SRM, which is at the lower end of the BJCP style guidelines (11 to 17). This should produce a beer that's more on the orange/copper side of the red spectrum, but still Amber, so a little more roast would to bring it closer to 17 may get you more of the ruby red you're looking for. Perhaps bump the roasted barley to .25lb for deeper red.

The second grain bill uses way too much crystal at 20%. I like crystal malts as much as the next guy, but I don't want a cloying sweetness in my beer. I'd limit crystal 60 to 10% max and use higher lovibond malts in lesser amounts to get a darker color, hence my earlier suggestion to increase the roasted barley a little.
 
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slsBrewing

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Thanks for the input Hoplobster! However, I didn't read the post until after purchasing the grain bill. I shared your concern about the 20% crystal and decided to do a hybrid 3rd option: 14.2% crystal. I kept going back and forth on the about of roasted barley. On one hand, I really wanted a nice red color but on the other hand, I did not want much if any roast flavor. So I erred on the side of flavor and went with 1oz of roasted barley (Crisp 510L). I hope to revisit this beer and play with the color another day. Here is the recipe, I will let you know how it turns out and hopefully be able to post a pic!

8.5lb 2-row, Rahr
0.75lb Crystal 40L, Briess
0.75lb Crystal 80L, Briess
0.5lb Melanoidin, Weyermann
1 OZ roasted/black barley, Crisp 510L
 
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