Has anyone come across and educational source that helps one understand all of the various grain ingredients and then gives a library of typical ingredients by style? I’ve been brewing for a little while now and I have yet to come across a good source.
Designing Great Beers by Ray Daniels does this to some extent. He collated the ingredients used in NHC winners and shows percentages for a bunch of styles. It’s rather dated at this point, but I understand a new edition is in the works
#1 to Ray Daniels’ Designing Great Beer. I’ve read his book a handful of times at this point. Is it dated, sure. Does that make it unusable? Not by any means. He starts every chapter for every style covered with a history of how it was made. It will point you in the right direction. Use online forums if you still have questions.
Thank you guys. I have been brewing for a little while now and I really want to put together my own recipes in the future but don’t want to waste a lot of grains and money making beers that are based upon horrible combinations.
Brewing Classic Styles by JZ and Palmer is about as good as it gets for recipes by style. Jamil’s column in BYO, and his shows on the BN (The original Jamil Show series, as well as the new “Brewing with Style” one) are also great ways to learn about brewing the various styles.
In my research, I have yet to find a reliable, comprehensive resource for grain details. Lot’s of info out there on hops and yeast. But not grain. In fact, it’s the one book that’s missing from the “Brewing Elements Series.”
Designing Great Beer is the “best” I’ve found, but it is far from comprehensive and it is a bit dated. Every now and then, there’s a good article on grain in BYO or Zymurgy–but again, not comprehensive.
Here is a good malt chart. You can click on the grain for more details.http://homebrewtalk.com/wiki/index.php/Malts_Chart
I agree Brewing Classic Styles is as good as it gets for recipes.
When designing your own recipes be careful with the very dark malts like Black Patient and Chocolate Malt. They can become bitter easily if overdone.