Curious about the experience others have had with melanoidin malt (especially when used excessively) – I’m looking after having already leapt.
I brewed this year’s holiday ale over the weekend. My holiday ales are usually an opportunity to take some risks and experiment in ways I might not otherwise, but, of course, I still want to end up with something that is not only festive, but enjoyable.
My grain bill (for a 5 gal batch) was:
5 lbs. Rahr 2-row (41.67%)
2 lbs. Vienna (16.67%)
2 lbs. Melanoidin (16.67%)
1 lb. Carared (8.33%)
1 lb. Ashburne Mild Malt (8.33%)
.5 lb. English Medium Crystal (4.17%)
.5 lb. Crystal Rye (4.17%)
Weyermann suggests not using melanoidin for more than 20% of the grain bill, but now I am reading many posts (after the fact) that suggest something more like 5% is about the right tolerance for many.
I have only used this malt in small quantities in the past, so I am not entirely sure what to expect from such a dominant presence in my grain bill – I was hoping for toasty - maillard type flavors, but the prevailing warnings out there seem to suggest that I may have (once again) overdone something in my holiday ale (it’s becoming a tradition unto itself).
Can anyone who has used a considerable amount of melanooidin malt in a batch share some experience and give me some idea as to what I am in for?
When I tasted the wort, I thought it seemed quite promising, actually, so despite the grave warnings, I am not resigned or without hope, though now my expectations have been tempered by reading about the negative (although non-descript) experiences of others. So, I would appreciate hearing about your experiences with melanoidin malt.
Most of the warnings I’ve read are vague at best – “it gave the beer a distinctive flavor”; “I once used 10% and didn’t like it, I wouldn’t use more than 5%”; “it was very noticeable and I wouldn’t use that much again” – but I haven’t been able to find out more specifically what the flavor was like. Obviously taste is subjective and describing taste has its challanges, but I sure would appreciate whatever specifics you can offer.