Extract question

Discussion in 'Recipes for Feedback' started by jeffpn, Sep 3, 2017.

  1. jeffpn

    jeffpn Well-Known Member

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    I've got a couple lager recipes that I like where I use pilsner malt when I make it BIAB. In the interest of a speedier brew day, I've rewritten those recipes to use extract. Same specialty grains, same hops, same yeast. I use LME Pilsen for the base. It makes the beer an amber instead of a straw color. Tomorrow I plan to use DME pilsner which looks to be a lighter color. Am I on the right track, or should I use the extra light in liquid or dry?
     
  2. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    If you're doing full boil with LME, it'll end up quite a bit darker. DME will probably help. If you use the LME as a late addition and essentially add it in so that you just bring it to a boil before flame out, it stays lighter. That can end up giving a less clean flavor overall, at least in my experience and take a little longer to get right flavor-wise.
    BTW, when you say same specialty grains, are they all Cara/Crystal malts? If using malts like Vienna or Munich, they may require mash temps to convert rather than just steeping as you would with something like Carapils.
     
  3. jeffpn

    jeffpn Well-Known Member

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    Steep only. Vienna for one recipe, Munich light for the other. Not really looking for conversion on them, just flavor. But I steep them around 155° or so. Modeled after the Brewers Best extract kits.

    I do like the flavor of what it turned out to be. It's just darker than I expected.
     
  4. chub1

    chub1 Active Member

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    You can always do half the amount of dry extract at the start of the boil and either add remainder at 15 minutes or even add to the fv.
    Have done both and no problemo:)
    However if the taste is as good with the LME and it's just colour that worries you,what the heck!!!:D
     
  5. jeffpn

    jeffpn Well-Known Member

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    I was just reading recipes over at brewersbest.com to see what they do with those types of beers. They boil the LME Pilsen for an hour and do a late addition on the DME to keep the color light.

    What I brewed is good, albeit darker for sure. It does taste different that my BIAB version of the same beer. I'm just playing around trying to figure out how to make the two methods taste the same.
     
  6. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    I hadn't done any extract in quite a while and I decided to do a quick batch to make work up a yeast cake. It was a basic blonde ale with simple hops so there wasn't much place for any off flavors to hide. I immediately could tell a big difference in the flavor of that beer compared to my all-grain beers. It just doesn't seem as clean to me. Finally after an extra month of aging, it's a pretty good beer. I'd love to shorten brew days but I just can't justify using up keg and tap space for beer that's not enjoyable. I'll bite the bullet and go all-grain.

    I will say that using up to 1/3 extract for a partial mash to get a double batch out of a single mash and boil has given me some pretty decent beers. Extract/steeped grain, though, is dead to me. :)
     
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  7. jeffpn

    jeffpn Well-Known Member

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    I hear ya. But not everyone is like that. My neighbor claims to be a brewer, but I haven't seen him brew yet. He uses hopped wort. Many different ways to brew.

    I bet there's someone on the planet who could brew an extract and an all grain of the same beer and we couldn't tell the difference.
     
  8. Mark D Pirate

    Mark D Pirate Well-Known Member

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    One of my housemates claims to be a brewer and uses pre hopped kits and dry bakers yeast ...i can't and won't force him to change his methods but he was surprised to find i go grain to glass in less than 4 weeks compared to his 12 weeks .

    I have tasted some very good extract based beers and will again this weekend since there's 50 entries i know are extract based , the other 250 are full mash brews so will be interesting to see how they compare
     
  9. jeffpn

    jeffpn Well-Known Member

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    I'd at least use beer yeast if I brewed prehopped. 12 weeks? Wow. No reason he couldn't go to glass in less than 4 weeks like you.

    But yes, he is a beer brewer.
     
  10. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    The reason is that it takes at least that long for the HME stuff to taste worth a damn. And even then, it's still inferior in flavor. The trick is to make stouts and Porters so that all the extract nastiness is covered up with dark roast and hops. There are ways to make decent extract beers, but HME ain't one of them. :rolleyes:
     
  11. Mark D Pirate

    Mark D Pirate Well-Known Member

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    Never hide the extract twang and sweeter finish properly unless its a big complex beer , will not be hanging up my mash paddle anytime soon
     
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  12. jeffpn

    jeffpn Well-Known Member

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    To answer my own question, using Pilsner DME made for a lighter color wort today. It'll be interesting to see how it compares to my BIAB version.

    It'd be interesting to put 8 extract beers and 8 all grain beers on a table and have people figure out which is which. I bet most of you think you could.
     
  13. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    I've had extract beers that are excellent. If it's done properly (and I think full-boil DME is the key) it can be done. I think it's hard to get a tru straw-colored light, clean lager that way, but it'd be worth trying.
     
  14. jeffpn

    jeffpn Well-Known Member

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    Consider it tried. That's what I did today. I'll let you know!
     
  15. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Depends on who.brewed it lol :p.
    Na i cant give an educated answer Jeffpn its been a long time since i brewed extract or drunk extract. Deffinetly a great exbeeriment though...
     
  16. Ozarks Mountain Brew

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    Ive brewed the same light beer in both many times, I'm amazed at how well the extracts are today compared to years ago, but I only brew smash beers in the extract, no flavor grains and I have a rather unique process but both taste the same in the end, the only difference i could say are the mouthfeel, the extract is a bit thinner
     
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  17. jeffpn

    jeffpn Well-Known Member

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    And I bought another extract kit. I walked into my LHBS determined to buy the ingredients for my BIAB Oktoberfest. I walked out with an Oktoberfest kit. They're just so convenient!
     
  18. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    So is that your can of malt specialty grain and hops and yeast all together in a kit jeffpn?
     
  19. Mark D Pirate

    Mark D Pirate Well-Known Member

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    Traditional or modern version ? Since our seasons are backwards I should be brewing my Ofest now and drink it in march
     
  20. Ozarks Mountain Brew

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    the official date for Oktoberfest in Germany is Saturday September 16 and it ends Tuesday October 3, I just drank mine early but I might brew one again as an ale for speed
     
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