Quality Of Switching To All Grain

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hockadays

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Hi all,

Have been brewing for a while now with extracts and steeping a little grain a couple of times and I'm trying to find out how much better going all grain is compared to extracts. Most kits i've used always have the same sort of taste which is ok but is grain heaps better or would you have trouble telling the two final products apart. Also where do you get grain is bris as my home brew shop dosen't have much at all. I've been told that all the extra work in mashing dosen't give that much differn't a result.

What do you think???

Thanks ,
Matt
 

Bilph

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Grains give the widest range of flavours and customisation possible.
Grains give a freshness which extracts can't match - by definition.
Try doing a small mash with maybe a kilo of crushed grain from a decent HBS. You can handle that with normal household equipment. If you can't pick the difference, then all grain is probably not for you.
Personally, I can't handle big grain bills - yet - due to space and financial considerations. When I can, I'll be straight into it.
Even with my partials - no comparison IMHO.
I can't help you with good Brissie HBS's, but there are plenty of Brissie brewers on this site who could.
Go grain. :super:
 

Ross

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Give a bit more detail on whereabouts you are & I'm sure we can point you in the right direction...
 

hockadays

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Thats what I thought. I'm wondering if there's more profit on kits maybe? I live on the north side inside 10km from the city. Is brewing a batch of AG cheaper then extract?

Thanks,
Hock a days...
 

sluggerdog

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Hockadays.

Being Northside of Brissy your best place would probably be brewers choice at mitchelton, Norm who runs the place knows his stuff and has been mashing for years.
www.brewerschoice.com.au

I'd say overall grain is better however saying this I feel it depends on what style your after, for example I find with a lager or pilsner you need the all grain however when dealing with ales you can get away with a partial or even extract and still make a great beer.

I moved to all grain pretty quick because I prefer lagers/pilsners..
 

Justin

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$$wise it's cheaper for the ingredients over the long haul, but I guess it depends on what hourly rate you put on your time. Plus you spend a lot more on equipment that will take year and years to make your money back due to the cheaper brews. It's not a financial decision to all grain brew.

My all grain brewday typically lasts about 6 hrs for a 25L batch from start, to set up to brew done, cleaned up and put away. Then you have extra time with the fermentation side of things that you would have done anyway. Its time consuming, if you dont love brewing it's not for you really IMO.

A kit you could have done it 30min to and hour.

Depends what you want out of the hobby.

Cheers, Justin
 

PeterS

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hockadays said:
Hi all,

Have been brewing for a while now with extracts and steeping a little grain a couple of times and I'm trying to find out how much better going all grain is compared to extracts. Most kits i've used always have the same sort of taste which is ok but is grain heaps better or would you have trouble telling the two final products apart. Also where do you get grain is bris as my home brew shop dosen't have much at all. I've been told that all the extra work in mashing dosen't give that much differn't a result.

What do you think???

Thanks ,
Matt
[post="69530"][/post]​
First of all, wellcome to the forum. Good to see another Brisbanite. Personally, I only made 13 AG Brews to date and I would not go back to cans or extracts. I consider that I am in control of all aspects of the brew and the taste should be to my liking if I followed the correct proceedure. You can make very nice brews from extracts too, the problem is you never know how old the extract is when you get it and is of a questionable quality not knowing what is in it exactly. I am on the South side and I get my grains from Annerly or Slacks Creek or from BABBS, my club. Keep an eye on this forum for good info as sometimes we organise a bulk purchase as well.

:beer:
PeterS....
 

PostModern

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Kits are easier for a HBS to manage. Long shelf-life; simple unit sales; no need to run a grain mill and bag heat sealer; not having to stock many types of grains in 25kg lots that sell in 500g lots...

If the HBS guy does not brew all grain himself, he'll have trouble keeping up with the customer's enquiries, too.

I do part mashes almost exclusively now. Gradually working towards AG because even the "bad" AG's I've tried have been good.
 

MAH

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Hi Hock a Days

You mentioned that all the kits you make taste similar and wonder if all-grain is the answer to getting a greater variety of flavour. Well it can, but so can a lot of other aspects of brewing, in particular yeast.

Chances are that most of the kits you have made are by the same company and they will use the same yeast each time. Do some reading on the different flavour profiles of different yeasts. For example even if you went all-grain, you wouldn't be able to reproduce the true flavours of a German wheat beer unles you used the correct yeast.

After yeast I would say that varying the type of hops would make a big impact, particularly if you've never made a pale ale usinf American hops like Cascade. The differences between most American hops and English hops are enormous. Another very distinctive flavour is Saaz. You will immediately be able to tell the difference between a Pilsner made with Saaz and one made with Hallertau.

Most all-grain brewers are very particular about the beer they brew so they pay careful attention, not only to the grains they use, but also yeast, hops, fermentation temperatures, sanitation etc. It's the complete approach which adds to the quality.

I'd say that simply switching from extract to all-grain will not give you the improvement you're looking for, and that more basic issues like yeast and correct fermentation temperatures will have a bigger impact. But if you combine these practices with all-grain, this will be the icing on the cake.

I love all-grain brewing, truly believe it's not the most important element to good beer.

Cheers
MAH
 

johnno

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Definately for the taste. I've only been brewing AG since the start of this year.
Initially I wasn't going to go AG. Then I tasted an AG beer at a brewshop.
That made me hurry into AG.

cheers
johnno
 

Justin

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Same goes with me Johnno, tasted an all grain a mate brewed and I was sold. But MAH raises an important issue in that when someone brews all grain they tend to step up the quality in all aspects of the brewing from fermentation temps, sanitation etc.

It's the whole package. As I said, all grain is for the keen brewers who want to put more into their beers, at all levels.

Cheers, JD
 

hockadays

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Thanks again for the info,

I've been using different hops and yeast etc and am pretty good with temp control and the beer I brew is good but I know it can be better. I think I'll end up AG soon.

Thank for all the prompt replies..
Hockadays
 

PeterS

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hockadays said:
Thanks again for the info,

I've been using different hops and yeast etc and am pretty good with temp control and the beer I brew is good but I know it can be better. I think I'll end up AG soon.

Thank for all the prompt replies..
Hockadays
[post="69651"][/post]​
I forgot to tell you, once you start, it never ends. Take it easy and have a beer on the way...

:chug:
PeterS...
 
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