THE 5 Essential Beer Ingredients
Beer is composed mostly of water. Regions have water with different mineral components; as a result, different regions were originally better suited to making certain types of beer, thus giving them a regional character. For example, Dublin has hard water well suited to making Stout, while Pilzen has soft water well suited to making Pale Lager and Pilsners.
The waters of Burton in England contain gypsum, which benefits making pale ale to such a degree that brewers of pale ales will add gypsum to the local water in a process known as Burtonisation.
To get the best possible brew we carbon filter the water and then add conditioners to it in the mash-in stage to replicate the water source from the origin of the beer style.
The starch source in a beer provides the fermentable material and
is a key determinant of the strength and flavour of the beer. The most common starch source used in beer is malted grain. Grain is malted by soaking it in water, allowing it to begin germination, and then drying the partially germinated grain in a kiln.
Malting grain produces enzymes that convert starches in the grain into fermentable sugars. Different roasting times and temperatures are used to produce different colours of malt from the same grain. Darker malts
will produce darker beers.
Nearly all beer includes barleymalt as the majority of the starch. This
is because of its fibrous husk, which is not only important in the sparging stage of brewing (in which water is washed over the mashed barley grains to form the wort), but also as a rich source of amylase, a digestive enzyme which facilitates conversion of starch into sugars.
To keep it simple, malt is the sugar source in the brewing process, and influences the presentation and flavour of beer.
Flavouring beer is the sole major commercial use of hops. The flower of the hop vine is used as a flavouring and preservative agent in nearly all beer made today. The flowers themselves are often called “hops”.
Hops contribute a bitterness that balances the sweetness of the malt;
the bitterness of beers is measured on the International Bitterness Units scale (IBU). Hops contribute floral, citrus, and herbal aromas and flavours to beer. Hops have an antibiotic effect that favours the activity of brewer’s yeast
over less desirable microorganisms, and hops aids in “head retention”, the length of time that a foamy head created by carbonation will last. The acidity
of hops is a preservative.
For those playing at home, hops are the natural preservative in beer and no other preservative is added. Hops also influence the aroma, flavour and
bitterness of beer.
Yeast is a living organism which converts sugar to alcohol. Yeast strains can be used for many generations, this means that one strain or family of yeast can be used many times within the brewery when brewing different batches of beer.
Many beers contain ‘neutral yeasts’, which do not influence or enhance the flavour of the beer. However in our Hefeweizen for example, the yeast is responsible for creating the lolly banana and clove flavour that you
smell and taste.
Brewer’s yeast is a type of fungus formally known as Saccharomyces cervisiae. Brewer’s yeast is extremely nutritionally rich, and contains protein, amino acids,
vitamins, and minerals which can keep you healthy. True.
Love is why brewers become brewers in the first place.
Love is why our brewers run the brewery (not finance, not marketing).
Love is why we use the BEST (irrespective of cost) ingredients possible for all of our beers.
Love is why we dry hop certain beers for longer, why we let beers rest for that extra day or two to become perfect.
Love is what brings the whole beer and the experience of that beer together.
Without love you just rely on machines. Without love all you have is cheap swill.
You need love to make really, really good beer and that’s why it’s the fifth ingredient. We love beer.