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Multiple base malts

So I was curious about something and thought Id see if anybody would weigh in on my thought.

I have always brewed beers using a single base malt and some crystal malt. And roast or black malts if I wanted a Porter/Stout.

But I see recipes posted where people will use multiple base malts. Anyway it got me wondering what this would bring to a finished beer. What is the benefit of this? Is the finished product better? More complex?

So, thats what I was just thinking about. If anybody wants to throw some information or even a recipe they did and liked at me, Id love to hear it.

Thanks

There are three base malts I buy in bulk - Great Western/Rahr 2-row, Thomas Fawcett Maris Otter, and Best Pils. Pretty much never mix them except when adding some MO to an American IPA for a little of extra character. I can see adding some 2-row to a mostly-Pils grist for some “grainy” character, or other similar mixes, though. In general, I’m a fan of KISS with recipes.

Thats how Ive felt. Most of my recipes are that way. Domestic 2 row and some sort of crystal or caramel malt. What about something like Munich or Vienna malts? People use those quite a bit. Ive never done it though.

[quote=“Adam20”]What about something like Munich or Vienna malts?[/quote]They have their place - I buy a bag of Vienna every other year and use it a couple of lbs at a time to add a malty/cracker sort of character. Munich is more malty, especially the darker version - can’t remember the last time I used Munich in anything.

Interesting. Well Im planning on running some tests with malts once I wrap my brain around bru’n water and understanding water chemistry. Not much point for me until I can get my water to highlight different characteristics.

Almost all of my beers are made with more than one base malt.
In addition to whatever Pale Malt I have on hand (and I often freely substitute according to what’s available to me at any given time), I just about always include some Light or Dark Munich Malt.
I have made some beers with a single base malt, but it’s not really the norm for me to do so.

Ditto Shadetree. I tend to stick to one base malt per recipe. I do love some Munich and Vienna though for Festbier and Marzen.

My house pale uses a mix of about 50% domestic 2-row and 50% munich malt.

I use a lot of munich and buy that in bulk, along with 2 row and pils. I use the munich with 2 row in ambers, browns and obviously, german styles such as alts and such.

I have been using more and more munich. Enough that I as well, am looking into getting a 55lb sack…

I use it in my ambers, reds, and even have down in an APA.

I think it adds some depth. Which I like.

Ill have to try some Munich when I get a chance. Everyone seems to rave about it.

[quote=“The Professor”]Almost all of my beers are made with more than one base malt.
In addition to whatever Pale Malt I have on hand (and I often freely substitute according to what’s available to me at any given time), I just about always include some Light or Dark Munich Malt.
I have made some beers with a single base malt, but it’s not really the norm for me to do so.[/quote]

Same here.

I think layering some base malts is a really cool way to experiment with some simple beer recipes, especially where specialty malts don’t really come into play that much. It definitely adds some subtle complexity to a brew.

Doing a combo of pilsner and 2-row is one of my favs for some lighter belgian styles. It’s an interesting concept to try to achieve different complexities while still using really simple ingredients. I also used to have a habit on adding vienna malt to everything I brewed, not sure if that was bad or good… but vienna = delicious, not doubt.

This is not to say that one base malt isn’t a great way too, just that if you haven’t tried changing it up, you could be missing out on finding some combination you really like.

I love the bready character of a light Munich.

Look at any number of continental style recipes, they use a combination of pils, Vienna and Munich. Ofest, altbier, Vienna lager to name a few.

+1. I frequently add some munich to continental-type beers, just like I often add a bit of biscuit to my British beers to compensate for my inability to get real British malts.

But that said, for the majority of my beers I’ll use only pale or pils as the base - wheat/rye beers, dunkels and amber lagers excepted.

On the other hand I have tried beers using all Munich or Vienna and I didn’t like them a lot, seemed like too much of the flavor became somewhat harsh. Too much of a good thing. I like the contribution when its a little more delicate. I’m not necessarily in the majority with that opinion.

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