Should I be using extracts?

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blaqball

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I am a beginner who purchased a home brewing beer kit.
I also purchased and read a book called the 'home brewing guide'.
I watched as many online videos as i could find.

The kit used dried malt extract and malted barley extract in a can.
Bought the Irish Stout "all malt"
it came with the hops, barley grains,adjuncts...etc
My very first batch
My goal: To someday create a sweet chocolate milk stout
My Question: I see recipes that do not use LME and DME. Should I steer away from brewing using these ingredients? Are these just easier and more generic ways to obtain sugars vs using grains? Do they cheapen the taste?
 

Blender

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Welcome to our forums. I think extract brewing a great way to start and get an understanding of the brewing process without being to complicated. Do you have 2 kits that are ready to make because I am a little confused. You can make beer using DME, LME or all grain brewing in which you extract the sugars from the malted barley.

Have you read through >>http://howtobrew.com/
 

z987k

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blaqball said:
My goal: To someday create a sweet chocolate milk stout
Add some lactose and bakers chocolate maybe along with some steeping grains and you'd have it. Not to over complicate things on your first brew, but just keep that in mind.
 

TexLaw

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I'm also confused as to whether you have two kits or one kit that includes extract and grains. Unless you have another, more experienced brewer to show you the ropes, I highly recommend starting with extract brewing and steeping specialty grains. All grain brewing is not difficult, but it's a bit more complicated and can frustrate a new brewer who is on his own.


TL
 

HP_Lovecraft

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I'd love to brew all-grain, but my limited space, and time make such a thing impossible right now.

Plenty of award winning homebrews have been extract based. There are a few tricks to improve the quality. Like:
1- Used the lightest DME you can find. I like "Extra Light DME". Get all your color and flavor from specialty grains.
2- Used the late extract method. Again, minimized any twangy flavors

Using those methods, I'd doubt anyone could tell the difference. Then gradually go into partial mashes, and all-grain methods as time/space/etc allows.

nick
 

Revvy

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I can't say about the chocolate, but in my milk stouts I use 1 pound of Lactose per 5 gallon batch.

If the kit came with choc malt, that and the lactose may give you all the chocolatey goodness you desire without the need for any actual chocolate.
 
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blaqball

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My kit consisted of both extracts and grains.
Few pounds of Muton dark dry extract, one can of liquid dark LME, and then a few types of grains that were steeped.
The LME is as easy as it gets
The DME wasn't a terrible experience, but it wasn't as easy as the LME
I was searching the site recipes and I noticed that the people were not using extracts.
I don't plan on using a kit for the next run. I will basically purchase the same ingredients on my own to save a little money.
My local bar has a great sweet milk stout that I love. I want to be able to make a beer that tastes like that. If extracts won't really get me there then why bother with them.
I will use extracts until I progress to the next tier.
Maybe the next tier will be using light extracts and specialty grains for flavor
OK lactose and chocolate when I progress to that tier
I am going to the how to brew homepage as suggested.

thanks
 

Blender

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Once you get ready to make your brew run your process by the brewers here and you will get good advice on how to make things run smoother. It really helps.
 
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