Author Topic: You can brew award-winning beer with extracts.  (Read 562 times)

Offline neuse

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Re: You can brew award-winning beer with extracts.
« Reply #15 on: September 11, 2021, 05:43:32 PM »
I switched to extract brewing for the most part several months ago, due to physical limitations, and haven't seen any decline in the quality of my beers. For the most part, I stick to APAs and IPAs and use William's extracts exclusively. They have a good selection of quality LME and very reasonable pricing.
I also had to give up all-grain brewing because of medical issues. I miss the mash - it's like magic. But I still enjoy brewing very much. I think old LME is a potential limitation, especially for pale beers. I buy three at a time (Williams Brewing) and brew the lightest first and the darkest last to minimize darkening of the pale beers. Still, I can't control how long it has been sitting at the supplier's warehouse.

Online Big_Eight

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Re: You can brew award-winning beer with extracts.
« Reply #16 on: September 11, 2021, 05:50:46 PM »
As many have stated, good beer comes from good ingredients + brewer talent.

I've found that I can screw up just about anything no matter how fresh the ingredients are. I'm cool like that.

Not to start a scuffle but the phrase "pretty good for an extract beer" is a bit of a low-key insult. Admittedly it is a bit more difficult to ensure freshness with something so processed as a LME but still.. ouch.


I actually liked LME when I used it. But there is always that fear of "stale" LME and the rumoured flavour issues it causes.

I have so far only had really good experiences with LME, and tbh I think it provides a stronger flavour than light DME. But I use DME because it's just so easy to keep around for starters and knowing that it definitely won't go off.

I've only done maybe ~10 brews ever with LME, but once poured it myself from a nearly empty tank at my LHBS, so it couldn't have been the super freshest. I think all the claims people had about "extract twang" and LME staleness issues are holdovers from the early days of homebrewing when LME might have been sitting for many, many months in less than prime conditions. I would definitely use it again if I desired to.

I guarantee you that it still exists.  All depends on where you get your LME
As well as new brewers that don't realize how they need to store it and let it sit around for two months and then brew.

I see twang threads every so often still over on the HBT forum.

I love brewing with extract and still do it every so often.

Offline Steve Ruch

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Re: You can brew award-winning beer with extracts.
« Reply #17 on: September 12, 2021, 02:13:13 PM »
I switched to extract brewing for the most part several months ago, due to physical limitations, and haven't seen any decline in the quality of my beers. For the most part, I stick to APAs and IPAs and use William's extracts exclusively. They have a good selection of quality LME and very reasonable pricing.
Williams has some proprietary blends that are really good. I made a marzen with their munich lme and a small portion of their Baltic black that came out pretty good.
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Offline nateo

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Re: You can brew award-winning beer with extracts.
« Reply #18 on: September 14, 2021, 10:24:21 PM »
Agreed on Williams extracts. I've been very happy with the beers I've brewed with those.
In der Kürze liegt die Würze.

Offline ScallyWag

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Re: You can brew award-winning beer with extracts.
« Reply #19 on: September 16, 2021, 04:00:33 PM »
Agreed on Williams extracts. I've been very happy with the beers I've brewed with those.

I had never heard of those. 

I have made 1 surprisingly [to me] excellent beer using all LME, but I generally do all-grain BIAB.  However, I often add some DME to the boil to bump up my higher gravity beers, since I have limited mashing room (5 gallon Igloo cooler).  Generally it's the Briess Pilsner DME that I add, but it would be nice to have more options.  Thanks for the recommendation.

Offline nateo

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Re: You can brew award-winning beer with extracts.
« Reply #20 on: September 16, 2021, 11:07:03 PM »
Not sure who produces the extract for them but they have some unusual blends. I've used a few of them and honestly can't really tell the difference vs all grain.
In der Kürze liegt die Würze.

Offline BrewNerd

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Re: You can brew award-winning beer with extracts.
« Reply #21 on: September 16, 2021, 11:17:02 PM »
As many have stated, good beer comes from good ingredients + brewer talent.

I've found that I can screw up just about anything no matter how fresh the ingredients are. I'm cool like that.

Not to start a scuffle but the phrase "pretty good for an extract beer" is a bit of a low-key insult. Admittedly it is a bit more difficult to ensure freshness with something so processed as a LME but still.. ouch.


I actually liked LME when I used it. But there is always that fear of "stale" LME and the rumoured flavour issues it causes.

I have so far only had really good experiences with LME, and tbh I think it provides a stronger flavour than light DME. But I use DME because it's just so easy to keep around for starters and knowing that it definitely won't go off.

I've only done maybe ~10 brews ever with LME, but once poured it myself from a nearly empty tank at my LHBS, so it couldn't have been the super freshest. I think all the claims people had about "extract twang" and LME staleness issues are holdovers from the early days of homebrewing when LME might have been sitting for many, many months in less than prime conditions. I would definitely use it again if I desired to.

I guarantee you that it still exists.  All depends on where you get your LME

Not super shocked that if you use crap ingredients you get a crap result. Also old enough to accept the possibility that home brewers gossip like fishwives and love holding on to old half truths.

Use the freshest stuff you can get your hands on and just make some more beer!

Offline dannyjed

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Re: You can brew award-winning beer with extracts.
« Reply #22 on: September 17, 2021, 12:33:31 AM »
This makes me want to brew an extract batch again. It has been a long time maybe 12 years or so. Thanks for the positive feedback on the William’s products. I’ll have to give them a try.


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Offline fredthecat

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Re: You can brew award-winning beer with extracts.
« Reply #23 on: September 17, 2021, 01:47:32 AM »
This makes me want to brew an extract batch again. It has been a long time maybe 12 years or so. Thanks for the positive feedback on the William’s products. I’ll have to give them a try.


time savings is the biggest factor for me.

i have the active "brewday" time down to as little as 90 minutes if i really rush.
1. cold steep crystal or other grains 24 hours before in a mesh bag (depends on the style)
2. time = 0 - begin heating the water to boil (~a generous 30 mins)
3. begin the boil. (DME is already sanitized IMHO, so the boil is only necessary for hopping) - 30 minutes.
4. chill the wort (20 minutes if you have a better wort chiller than i do)

super easy if you just want to make beer fast between a busy schedule. no mash tun to clean out.  cleanup of course will probably take another 20 minutes, but this is fast.

Offline nateo

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Re: You can brew award-winning beer with extracts.
« Reply #24 on: September 17, 2021, 06:00:58 PM »
super easy if you just want to make beer fast between a busy schedule. no mash tun to clean out.  cleanup of course will probably take another 20 minutes, but this is fast.

Same, but I'll clean empty kegs while I'm waiting for the water to warm up and the wort to boil. The fastest I've done it is like 2 hours but that's pretty leisurely for me.
In der Kürze liegt die Würze.