The Process of Brewing Beer
Malted Barley (the starch source)
Other starch sources
Corn, rice, sugar, millet, sorghum, cassava root, potato, agave
Potato is used in Brazil
Agave is used in Mexico
Step 1: Malting
Malting is the process where barley grain is made ready for brewing
Grain is added to water and soaked for 40 hours
After germinating for 5 days, the grain is dried in kiln
Step 2: Milling
Milling cracks the grains and makes it easier for them to absorb the water that they are mixed with and which extracts sugars from the malt.
Step 3: Mashing
Mashing combines the milled grain with water and heats it in a mash tun. Mashing takes 1 to 2 hours.
Step 4: Lautering
Lautering is the separation of the wort (the liquid containing the sugar extracted during mashing) fromm the grains.
Step 5: Boiling
Boiling the malt extracts, called wort, ensures sterility. During the boil hops are added, which contribute bitterness, flavour, and aroma to the beer.
After the Boil:
The wort is set into a whirlpool, then a sealed hopback, and then cooled to fermentation temperatures.
Step 6: Fermenting
After the wort is cooled and aerated - usually with sterile air - yeast is added to it, and it begins to ferment.
Step 7: Conditioning
Conditioning can take place in the same tank as the fermenting. At this stage, the beer is cooled to around freezing which settles the yeast and causes proteins to coagulate and settle out with the yeast.
Step 8: Filtering
Filtering the beer stabilizes the flavour, and gives beer its polished shine and brilliance. Not all beer is filtered.
Final Step: Packaging
The beer is put into bottles, aluminium cans and kegs, or bulk tanks for high-volume customers.