The Point Of No Return For Grain, Hops, Etc?

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Yesfan

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I've recently went through some of my inventory and noticed the dating (when I remembered to date it) of some of my ingredients. When is it the point to where those items are not worth using it in a recipe? Is there another use for them? I'm pretty fruggle and I hate to throw anything away if it's still of use.

I keep my hops sealed (not vacuum sealed) and in the freezer. I keep my grains in their bags and in those rubbermaid style containers (60qt for bulk grains and 15qt for specialty) with the foam gasket in their lids to keep the critters away and a decent seal. To be honest, some of it I think I can still brew with and others, well, are just embarrassing that I still have.

What was the oldest ingredient you have used? What is your cut off to where you decide it goes into the trash can instead of the mash tun or boil kettle?
 

Brooothru

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I've recently went through some of my inventory and noticed the dating (when I remembered to date it) of some of my ingredients. When is it the point to where those items are not worth using it in a recipe? Is there another use for them? I'm pretty fruggle and I hate to throw anything away if it's still of use.

I keep my hops sealed (not vacuum sealed) and in the freezer. I keep my grains in their bags and in those rubbermaid style containers (60qt for bulk grains and 15qt for specialty) with the foam gasket in their lids to keep the critters away and a decent seal. To be honest, some of it I think I can still brew with and others, well, are just embarrassing that I still have.

What was the oldest ingredient you have used? What is your cut off to where you decide it goes into the trash can instead of the mash tun or boil kettle?
Great timing on the question. I'm in the process of doing the same thing. Since I've drifted away from using most crystal malts except for some very pale (<40L) in very small quantities, if ever, I realized that if I downsize them I can load up on more pilsner malts, since those are becoming ubiquitous in just about everything I brew from lagers to hoppy IPAs. Don't want to dump 25#~30# of various grains in numerous vacuum sealed bags, but my Vittle Vaults are getting pretty crowded.
 
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Yesfan

Yesfan

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Great timing on the question. I'm in the process of doing the same thing. Since I've drifted away from using most crystal malts except for some very pale (<40L) in very small quantities, if ever, I realized that if I downsize them I can load up on more pilsner malts, since those are becoming ubiquitous in just about everything I brew from lagers to hoppy IPAs. Don't want to dump 25#~30# of various grains in numerous vacuum sealed bags, but my Vittle Vaults are getting pretty crowded.


I hear ya. Back when I ordered a lot of these grains, I didn't know what I was ordering. Grains like wheat and Munich, I ordered in sacks thinking I would use it as much as I would 2row or Maris Otter (lessons learned). The last beer I brewed was a Summit "smash" with some 2row with some left over pilsner/vienna just to use up those last two grains (yeah, not a true smash). It tasted good enough to not throw away. The Summit hops on the other hand in that recipe were a never opened 1 pound pouch I kept in the freezer since purchase.......from 2015.

It's embarrassing I tell ya.
 

Brooothru

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I hear ya. Back when I ordered a lot of these grains, I didn't know what I was ordering. Grains like wheat and Munich, I ordered in sacks thinking I would use it as much as I would 2row or Maris Otter (lessons learned). The last beer I brewed was a Summit "smash" with some 2row with some left over pilsner/vienna just to use up those last two grains (yeah, not a true smash). It tasted good enough to not throw away. The Summit hops on the other hand in that recipe were a never opened 1 pound pouch I kept in the freezer since purchase.......from 2015.

It's embarrassing I tell ya.
Yeah, got a few of them myself. A ton of hops that haven’t been opened or seen the light of day in the deep recesses of the freezer for 3~4 years. Ouch.
 

OleBrewing

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There is a storage life for grains and hops granted of what type of storage. I have used three year old malt and three year old home grown hops and the beer was great. Hops being vac sealed and frozen the grains sealed in containers thru hot summers and cold winters. Of course I was not making hoppy beer, single bittering additions with flavoring at the end.
 
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Yesfan

Yesfan

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For those brewing with old(er) ingredients, what would be the best styles to brew? Obviously I can't expect an awesome tasting NEIPA bursting with flavor and aroma with 4-5 year old hops and grain, so thought I'd ask.
 

sibelman

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If the grain smells off or rancid, I would toss it. Frugality is fine but non-yummy beer isn't.

A big stout with plenty of (reasonably fresh) dark grain should conceal slightly degraded flavors of other ingredients.

I've become more cautious about over-buying specialty malts.
 

hotbeer

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Learn their smell, looks and for malts, taste when they are fresh and then use that as a guide when to toss them.

Though if you have enough stuff that seems past it's prime, then you might go ahead an brew it up. Name it "Past It's Prime" or something and see what it's like.
 

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