Author Topic: DME vs LME  (Read 1807 times)

Offline swimsalone

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DME vs LME
« on: January 29, 2013, 08:17:33 PM »
I've seen quite a few recipes lately that call for a combination of LME and DME and was wondering if anyone knew the logic behind this. Is there a benefit to combining the two, or using one over the other.

I've been using LME and specialty grains for brewing (roughly 6 or 7 years) and reserving DME for bottling.

Just curious, I guess.

Offline AmandaK

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Re: DME vs LME
« Reply #1 on: January 29, 2013, 08:22:02 PM »
I always thought it was because LME usually only comes in predetermined amounts (3lbs, 6lbs) and DME can be used in various amounts based on the gravity you want.

But I could be wrong.  :D
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Offline tschmidlin

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Re: DME vs LME
« Reply #2 on: January 30, 2013, 01:56:36 AM »
I think Amanda's got it right (but I could also be wrong :) ).

I only use DME because it stores well and I use it rarely.   LME does mix in easier though, so if I needed extract and could get it fresh, I might use that.
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Offline mtnrockhopper

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Re: DME vs LME
« Reply #3 on: January 30, 2013, 06:50:45 AM »
+1 Amanda
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Offline denny

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Re: DME vs LME
« Reply #4 on: January 30, 2013, 10:20:47 AM »
+1.060 Amanda
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Offline alcaponejunior

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Re: DME vs LME
« Reply #5 on: January 30, 2013, 11:16:28 AM »
LME can be gotten in precise amounts from certain vendors or homebrew stores. 

LME can scorch if you don't immediately mix well.  In practice, as long as you mix well, this probably won't happen.

Taste wise I haven't personally noticed any difference.  Both work well.

DME is easier to store and weigh, and may have a longer shelf life.

When I was doing extract, i used both, sometimes in combination.  Seems like six of one, half dozen of the other.

Offline mtnrockhopper

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Re: DME vs LME
« Reply #6 on: January 30, 2013, 11:51:30 AM »
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Offline fugglupagus

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Re: DME vs LME
« Reply #7 on: January 30, 2013, 12:00:49 PM »

If you buy extract from your LHBS then it’s quite possible to weigh out whatever amount of LME you want.  If you’re ordering online or using imported LME then you’re likely committed to the standard container sizes used by the online source or manufacturer.  Extract recipes based on a specific supplier’s packaging tend to reflect this. 

LME is less expensive, easy to use in large quantities, available in more varieties and brands, and stales faster.  DME is more readily available in smaller quantities, stays fresher longer, stays fresher longer once the package is open, and (to me) is easier/more convenient to use and keep around once the package is opened.  For some or all of these reasons recipes tend to specify multiples of standard package weights of LME for the bulk of the fermentables, then build up any remaining fermentables with DME.

For instance an English pale ale recipe will likely suggest an English brand extract like Munton’s, and an ESB may need between two and three 3.3 lb cans of Munton’s  LME in a 5 gal batch to provide an OG appropriate for the style.  So to achieve that gravity an ESB recipe may specify 6.6 lbs (two cans) of Munton’s LME plus some Munton’s DME to make up the difference.  Same thing with online homebrew shops who build recipes/kits based on their LME packaging.  For instance the Consecration clone from Morebeer comes with one of their standard sized pouches of LME and a baggie of DME to bump the OG up to where Vinnie says it should be.
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