It is malted barley that provide most beers with the majority of their alcohol, body, colour, flavour and head retention and yet many beer drinkers are unaware of any connection between a field of barley and a pint of beer!
Caramel malt have undergone a special stewing process during malting resulting in a crystalline sugar structure inside the grain's hull.
These grains give a sweet, caramel flavour to the finished beer and can almost always be used as steeping grains by extract brewers.
As the name suggests, lager malts form the basis of lager beers.
Pilsner and Lager malts are kilned slightly cooler than pale malts, which gives them a more delicate flavour.
Munich malt and Vienna malt are used for the darker lager styles indigenous to Bavaria.
Pale MaltsMore Info
Roasted malts are used both for flavour and colour. They are produced by roasting pale or lager malts in revolving drums at various temperatures and for differing durations to achieve the desired characteristics.
Rye malts can be used with discretion in most beer styles.
They add a dry, nutty flavour which is very disctinctive.
Wheat is a more difficult grain to malt than barley as it has no husk. It is also more difficult to mash for the same reason. German Weissbier brewers use up to 70% wheat malt in their grist, but 50% is a more realistic proportion for the home brewer. Wheat malt is an excellent adjunct in many types of beer as it promotes head formation and retention.
Speciality MaltsMore Info