Author Topic: Amber Malt  (Read 2081 times)

Offline gmac

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Amber Malt
« on: December 01, 2011, 04:13:20 PM »
I'm making some home-made amber malt for a DFH 60 clone I want to try.  I followed the instructions in a recent BYO article. 
The process is to start at 185 for 30 mins, move to 190 for 30, 200 for 30, 220 for 30 and 250 for 30 followed by about 45 more at 250.  Having never bought amber malt, I have no idea if this is close but the endosperm looks to be pale buff in colour as it says it should so we'll give it a go and see. 

However, my question is:  Has anyone else made amber at home and did you have another process?  I just can't believe that each of these tiny steps is that important to the overall process.  I mean the difference from 185 to 190 is probably less than the normal fluctuations of the oven.  I can't see how 185 for an hour, 220 for an hour, 250 for an hour could be that much different and I wouldn't have to keep running up from the office to adjust the temp.
Thoughts?

jaybeerman

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Re: Amber Malt
« Reply #1 on: December 01, 2011, 04:43:31 PM »
I'm making some home-made amber malt for a DFH 60 clone I want to try.  I followed the instructions in a recent BYO article. 
The process is to start at 185 for 30 mins, move to 190 for 30, 200 for 30, 220 for 30 and 250 for 30 followed by about 45 more at 250.  Having never bought amber malt, I have no idea if this is close but the endosperm looks to be pale buff in colour as it says it should so we'll give it a go and see. 

However, my question is:  Has anyone else made amber at home and did you have another process?  I just can't believe that each of these tiny steps is that important to the overall process.  I mean the difference from 185 to 190 is probably less than the normal fluctuations of the oven.  I can't see how 185 for an hour, 220 for an hour, 250 for an hour could be that much different and I wouldn't have to keep running up from the office to adjust the temp.
Thoughts?


I had the same thoughts.  Not only is that a lot of work, but according to everything I've read amber is made with a lower temp kilning with a large and quick sweep in temp at the end.  Either way, toasted malt is a nice addition to a brew.  cheers, j

Offline morticaixavier

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Re: Amber Malt
« Reply #2 on: December 01, 2011, 07:23:05 PM »
The idea may be to make sure the temp throughout the endosperm is raised without the outside getting to dark but I do not know. I did make something similar a while ago by heating pale alt malt at 230*f for I think about two hours but I will have to check my notes. I got alot more color on the malt than I started with, it was somewhere near the munich I have been using of late so I would say it was in the neighborhood of 5-10*L but that is just a guess. The beer I made with it was somewhere between a pale ale and a brown ale. It self converted at any rate. I don't know if it would convert any additional grain as I used it in a SMaSH.
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Offline hoser

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Offline gmac

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Re: Amber Malt
« Reply #4 on: December 01, 2011, 07:41:03 PM »
Or you could just buy it?

http://www.northernbrewer.com/shop/brewing/brewing-ingredients/grain-malts/toasted-roasted-malts/crisp-amber-malt.html

But where's the fun in that?

Actually I checked first and the only one my supplier has is called "Dark Kilned Amber Malt" and it looks a heck of a lot darker than I'm looking for and much darker than the Crisp you mentioned.

Norther Brewer won't ship to Canada (I've checked) so I tried this.

I actually started with Weyermann Light Munich because I had the most of that but it didn't really darken the husk at all, it darkened the endosperm which I think is what is supposed to happen.

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Offline hoser

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Re: Amber Malt
« Reply #6 on: December 01, 2011, 09:21:10 PM »
Who says it's not fresh?  I bet it is just as fresh as the 2-row that is toasted in your oven.

jaybeerman

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Re: Amber Malt
« Reply #7 on: December 02, 2011, 11:23:05 AM »
Who says it's not fresh?  I bet it is just as fresh as the 2-row that is toasted in your oven.

freshly toasted.  it is worth a try if you haven't already and yes, I like amber and brown malts from thomas fawcett and crisp

Offline hoser

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Re: Amber Malt
« Reply #8 on: December 02, 2011, 11:36:00 AM »
No, I have tried it.  I can't say if made a huge difference in my beer.  I can't remember the beer I added it to.  I followed the procedure I found in Old British Beers and How To Make Them by Dr. John Harrison and members of The Durden Park Beer Circle.  It is so much more convient and reproduceable to buy a product from a maltster than to find time myself to do it with a full-time job and 3 kids.   ;)

Offline euge

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Re: Amber Malt
« Reply #9 on: December 02, 2011, 12:14:24 PM »
I think I'm gonna try this. Tubercle does it and he's been brewing for 25 years. Mainly I just want to buy base malt and that's it. My beers tend to be the same type usually so think it's doable for me.
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jaybeerman

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Re: Amber Malt
« Reply #10 on: December 02, 2011, 01:24:57 PM »
It is so much more convient and reproduceable to buy a product from a maltster than to find time myself to do it with a full-time job and 3 kids.   ;)

i hear ya

Offline tubercle

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Re: Amber Malt
« Reply #11 on: December 02, 2011, 03:47:26 PM »
I toast just about all my grains.
 
There is a lot of literature available to clone the various ones. Some are really close to store bought.

You have to experiment due to differences in the oven and the holding temps. Your oven and mine at 250f may or may not be the same.

There is a lot of difference in dry vs wet too.

 One important trick is not to have a layer too deep - no more than 1/2" - and stir often, about every 10 - 15 mins. I use a 1/2 sheet baking pan.

 Black malt is the easiest to replicate. 450f until it charcoals :D
« Last Edit: December 02, 2011, 03:50:35 PM by tubercle »
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Offline morticaixavier

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Re: Amber Malt
« Reply #12 on: December 02, 2011, 04:06:36 PM »
No, I have tried it.  I can't say if made a huge difference in my beer.  I can't remember the beer I added it to.  I followed the procedure I found in Old British Beers and How To Make Them by Dr. John Harrison and members of The Durden Park Beer Circle.  It is so much more convient and reproduceable to buy a product from a maltster than to find time myself to do it with a full-time job and 3 kids.   ;)

Holy COW. I have been interested in making my own specialty malts and even my own base malt of late and I checked out the book title you mention. The Durden Park Beer Circle will sell you a copy for 6.95 pounds according to their website. but it's also available thru amazon... for $781.00! Yup seven HUNDRED and eighty one dollars!!!!!

**EDIT** after further research you can get it in the states from The Beverage People for 14.95. quite the price spread
« Last Edit: December 02, 2011, 04:09:22 PM by morticaixavier »
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Offline gmac

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Re: Amber Malt
« Reply #13 on: December 02, 2011, 05:09:45 PM »
I toast just about all my grains.
 

Any advice for making Amber?  Do I need all those steps?
I made my beer today (still making actually).  I used 1/2 lb of my home toasted amber and I can tell you that stuff smells absolutely amazing compared to the 2-row.  I ground it last and you could see a very clear colour difference when you look at the ground pale vs the ground homemade amber. 

Hope this beer turns out well and is worth the effort.
13 lbs pale malt
1/2 lb home made amber
1 oz Centennial leaf @ 60
1/2 oz each of Citra/Amarillo/Simcoe at 15
1/2 oz each of Citra/Amarillo/Simcoe at flameout
WLP001 in a 2 L starter

Offline tubercle

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Re: Amber Malt
« Reply #14 on: December 02, 2011, 05:28:07 PM »
Usually about ~30 minutes @ 350 starting dry will get somewhat close to 30-40L (pre-heated oven and pan) which I think is what amber is concidered color wise.

 You ramp up method may be better, don't know.

 It will only take a pound of grain to find out! ;D
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