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General Category => All Grain Brewing => Topic started by: bfogt on January 08, 2011, 02:15:18 AM

Title: Belgian Malt sources
Post by: bfogt on January 08, 2011, 02:15:18 AM
I'm looking at buying some bulk Belgian Malt, pale and pils.  What brands am I looking for?  My LHBS carries Dingeman's.  But I'm not seeing it everywhere.  I've seen Franco-Belges but I'm not sure how "Belgian" their base malts are.  And before anyone asks, there does appear to be a difference. (http://www.brewingtechniques.com/library/backissues/issue1.1/fix.html)  I could taste a difference just tasting the malt.
Title: Re: Belgian Malt sources
Post by: tomsawyer on January 08, 2011, 03:10:03 AM
You can get Castle products from Northern Brewer.
Title: Re: Belgian Malt sources
Post by: jaybeerman on January 08, 2011, 04:25:42 AM
I'm looking at buying some bulk Belgian Malt, pale and pils.  What brands am I looking for?  My LHBS carries Dingeman's.  But I'm not seeing it everywhere.  I've seen Franco-Belges but I'm not sure how "Belgian" their base malts are.  And before anyone asks, there does appear to be a difference. (http://www.brewingtechniques.com/library/backissues/issue1.1/fix.html)  I could taste a difference just tasting the malt.

Although I don't use Franco-Belges for Belgian beers I'm curious how you reached those conclusions from that article.  I suggest you compare this  (http://www.countrymaltgroup.com/francobelges.asp) to the specs you think you need.  Dingeman's is a very usable replacement.  Cheers and good luck finding what you're looking for,  j
Title: Re: Belgian Malt sources
Post by: bfogt on January 08, 2011, 05:06:19 AM
Although I don't use Franco-Belges for Belgian beers I'm curious how you reached those conclusions from that article. 
I only posted that link because Fix says that there are distinct differences between Belgian and other malts.  Not to say anything about the particular maltsters.  In the Brewing Techniques 1997 Brewers' Market Guide (http://www.brewingtechniques.com/bmg/malteries.html), the F-B Pale and Pilsen is described as standard.  I'm not sure if their pale and pils malt is considered Belgian or not.  It doesn't sound like it.  That would mean that as far as i can tell, I wouldn't be able to get Belgian base malts from Country Malt Group, which is probably the first place I'd look.
Title: Re: Belgian Malt sources
Post by: joeysmokedporter on January 08, 2011, 12:23:05 PM
Along the lines of this post, has anyone found a difference in character between Belgian Pils and German Pils?  The Brewing Technique article in the original post referred to differences between Belgian and North American or British grains.

I'm currently swimming in German Pils, thanks to a prize from a local competition--good problem that I'm thankful to have.  I'm brewing a few big Belgians (tripel, higher gravity saison) to help me consume the Pils (along with several German lagers, of course), but am wondering if I can expect differences in malt character in the Belgian beers versus if they had been brewed with Belgian Pils.
Title: Re: Belgian Malt sources
Post by: narvin on January 08, 2011, 02:19:13 PM
I've used both Dingemanns and MFB pilsner malts in my Belgian Tripels, Saisons, and Strong Goldens.... beers with little to no other additions other that sugar.  I haven't done a true side by side comparison, but I haven't really noticed any difference between the two.  Considering that I can get the MFB for $30 less, that's what I use.

Also, you have to consider how old that article is.  What was true of the North American malts then is not necessarily true now.  DWC is long gone, and although Dingemanns is considered a worthy sub, it's not going to be the same.  According to the pages I found, the MFB pils actually has a lower protein content, something listed as important in the original article:


http://www.specialtymalts.com/dingemans/malt_analysis.html
http://www.countrymaltgroup.com/francobelges.asp
Title: Re: Belgian Malt sources
Post by: skyler on January 08, 2011, 09:18:46 PM
Along the lines of this post, has anyone found a difference in character between Belgian Pils and German Pils?  The Brewing Technique article in the original post referred to differences between Belgian and North American or British grains.

I'm currently swimming in German Pils, thanks to a prize from a local competition--good problem that I'm thankful to have.  I'm brewing a few big Belgians (tripel, higher gravity saison) to help me consume the Pils (along with several German lagers, of course), but am wondering if I can expect differences in malt character in the Belgian beers versus if they had been brewed with Belgian Pils.

I have only extensively used one German and one Belgian Pils malt - Weyermann and DIngeman's. All I noted was slightly higher extract from Weyermann and lower prices with Dingeman's. As I understand it, some Berlgian brewers use German Pils malt anyway (keep in mind there are no trade barriers between Belgium and Germany, and the countries border, so it could likely be cost-efficient for many Belgian brewers to buy German and vice versa). So, yes, feel free to use your German pils for Belgian ales - you will not detect any negative influence from that change in maltster, IME.
Title: Re: Belgian Malt sources
Post by: mabrungard on January 08, 2011, 10:36:21 PM
I concur that things have certainly changed since the time of that article.  I might agree that there may difference between US and continental Pils malts, but I'm under the impression that there is little difference between those continental Pils malts.  I look forward to someone who can say that there is an appreciable difference and what those differences are.