Need help on choosing grains

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Dazzelknight

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Hi all
I’v just made the leap into AG. Iv done a couple of dark rock AG kits and been very pleased with the outcome. My next step is to invest in a grain mill and buy uncrushed grains, seems logical to save a couple of quid in the long run. Thing is I live in Jersey and the shipping costs are high so I want to buy a good selection in a one bulk order so I can do a few different styles. I tend to like British ales like London Pride, Doom Bar, Speckled Hen and the odd IPA. So help in needed getting a beginners grain “Hamper” put together. I’m thinking a 25kg sack of Maris Otter for my base malt but need advice on caramel, specialty and roasted malts ect and amounts so iv got a good solid selection at hand to rustle up a few different brews. The shipping cost of hops is relatively low so I can order them in when needed. I know everybody's taste is different but input would be most appreciated.
 

Cheshire Cat

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I would buy
25kg MO
3kg wheat malt
1kg Crystal medium 55 Lovibond
1 kg Chocolate malt
That will total 30kg so should be classed as a single delivery.
 

An Ankoù

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Your plan of buying a sack of base malts and small quantities of secondary malts is exactly what I would have recommended. Why not look through a recipe book, like Greg Hughes, for example and list a few- not too dissimilar styles you'd like to try. You only need about half a kilo of very dark malts like chocolate and black, perhaps a kilo of medium crystal a bit of amber and some caramalt. If you go to geterbrewed, ordering 2 lots of 10 kilos is very nearly pro rata on kilo price per sack so you could give yourself a bit more flexibility by starting with 20 Kg of base malt and make up the other 10 Kg with other things. Be careful with GEB, their medium malt is dark and their light malt is medium. You need something that's about 150 ebc. Also Crisps Best Ale malt is a very good malt if you want to make a saving over Maris Otter.
Good luck.
 

An Ankoù

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I would buy
25kg MO
3kg wheat malt
1kg Crystal medium 55 Lovibond
1 kg Chocolate malt
That will total 30kg so should be classed as a single delivery.
The OP may not be familiar with degrees Lovibond. 55 is nearly 150 ebc.

Forgot to mention that you don't need a grain mill out the outset. Crushed malt is good if you keep it very dry and sealed. If you must have one, get a good, roller version. the one's that look like coffee grinders will put you off for life.
 
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Benfleet Brewery

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As a first step you may want to consider ordering a few all grain kits. These will come with all the malts, hops and yeast you need so after making them there aren’t any left over ingredients. This company do kits that seem to suit your style and taste:
 

Dazzelknight

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As a first step you may want to consider ordering a few all grain kits. These will come with all the malts, hops and yeast you need so after making them there aren’t any left over ingredients. This company do kits that seem to suit your style and taste:
Iv done a few AG kits and been pleased with the results,, I’m just thinking of stepping up my game and also saving a couple of quid in the long run.
 

phettebs

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I always try to keep a small amount of darker malts like dark crystal, roasted, chocolate, and black malts if I ever want to venture into something non-pale.
 

clib

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I'd say you want two or three colours of crystal (pale, medium and dark) and some wheat, torrified perhaps. Some chocolate malt. Maybe roast barley or black malt if you want to do darker beers. Maybe some amber malt.
 

darrellm

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I'd add in a bit of black malt too.

Don't buy too many different types or you'll end up like the rest of us with lots of half-used packets. Most my recipe use base malt and crystal, and some with added wheat and chocolate, and black is always handy for adjusting colour.
 

Benfleet Brewery

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I'd say you want two or three colours of crystal (pale, medium and dark) and some wheat, torrified perhaps. Some chocolate malt. Maybe roast barley or black malt if you want to do darker beers. Maybe some amber malt.
😂🤣 This sounds exactly like the list of malts I’ve got stashed away in various places, plus a freezer drawer full of half used packs of hops, which is why I suggested a few AG kits 😉
 

clib

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😂🤣 This sounds exactly like the list of malts I’ve got stashed away in various places, plus a freezer drawer full of half used packs of hops, which is why I suggested a few AG kits 😉
It's 5 or 6 types. Roast grains keep a long time. I buy those whole and crush them myself, they keep for ages whole. I chuck hardly anything away and I have quite a few types of grain. 😉
 

clib

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The OP may not be familiar with degrees Lovibond. 55 is nearly 150 ebc.

Forgot to mention that you don't need a grain mill out the outset. Crushed malt is good if you keep it very dry and sealed. If you must have one, get a good, roller version. the one's that look like coffee grinders will put you off for life.
You can crush small amounts, your crystal for example, without a mill. Hit it, roll it, blend it, whatever!
 

Dazzelknight

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Your plan of buying a sack of base malts and small quantities of secondary malts is exactly what I would have recommended. Why not look through a recipe book, like Greg Hughes, for example and list a few- not too dissimilar styles you'd like to try. You only need about half a kilo of very dark malts like chocolate and black, perhaps a kilo of medium crystal a bit of amber and some caramalt. If you go to geterbrewed, ordering 2 lots of 10 kilos is very nearly pro rata on kilo price per sack so you could give yourself a bit more flexibility by starting with 20 Kg of base malt and make up the other 10 Kg with other things. Be careful with GEB, their medium malt is dark and their light malt is medium. You need something that's about 150 ebc. Also Crisps Best Ale malt is a very good malt if you want to make a saving over Maris Otter.
Good luck.
Shipping is £65 ! on £43 worth of grain. 29kg grain +1kg packaging. geterbrewed 🥶
 

Obadiah Boondoggle

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Yes - different grains will give you different colours

But the grain is principally there to produce you sugar and taste

How fermentable the grain is, and its flavour are the more important factors
 

Dazzelknight

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I would buy
25kg MO
3kg wheat malt
1kg Crystal medium 55 Lovibond
1 kg Chocolate malt
That will total 30kg so should be classed as a single delivery.
I’m looking at
25k MO
3x1k of crystal light, medium and dark
1k chocolate
5k pale ale malt
1k caramunich
Does that sound ok ?
Delivery is reasonable priced at £15 on over £65 spent..will be ordering a few other bits.
 

Cheshire Cat

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Maris Otter is pale malt, not sure what pale ale malt is as I use MO for all my pale ales. If you like wheat beer maybe get 5kg of wheat malt instead.
 

Dazzelknight

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Maris Otter is pale malt, not sure what pale ale malt is as I use MO for all my pale ales. If you like wheat beer maybe get 5kg of wheat malt instead.
I got ya. Il scrap the Pale ale malt as didn’t realise it’s same as MO..So thats a good solid selection, il stick on some wheat malt.
cheers👍🏻
 

Dazzelknight

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That's horrendous. They use DHL who have an economy rate and an express rate. Are you sure you've chosen the economy rate? It's only £18 for 30Kg to France!!
I couldn’t see anything on the website to change shipping options.. just the the £65 DHL quote 🤷‍♂️
 

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