Brewing

Beer is brewed from hops, malted barley, yeast and water. In some types of beer ingredients such as fruit and wheat are used. Brewers create a sweet liquid called wort, using barley and water. The wort is then flavoured using hops and fermented using yeast. The are eight stages in brewing beer.

  1. Malting:  Barley, in its original state is not suitable to be used to create wort as the starch it contains is insoluble. The barley is first soaked in water  for around 40 hours, then forced to germinate and at the end of this process the barley has turned into green malt. The green malt is then dried in a kiln house ( a process called kilning) in order to transform it into finished malt.

  2. Milling: This stage involves the breaking down of the grain to prepare it for the absorption of water at a later stage in order to extract sugars. The remaining liquid is called wort.

  3. Mashing: In this stage the grain is crushed into a fine substance called grist and then added to warm water in a mash tun. It is here that the startch dissolves into the water and changes to a sugar called maltose.

  4. Brewing: The remaining grains are removed and the wort is boiled. Different ingredients can be added at this stage to create a particular flavoured beer. Hops are added to add bitterness and flavour.

  5. Cooling: The hops are filtered out and the wort is transferred to a heat exchanger to cool and is exposed to air in preparation for the addition of yeast in the next stage.

  6. Fermentation: When the wort cools it is moved into a fermentation tanks. The brewer then adds  the yeast  which enables the wort to be turned into alcohol and carbon dioxide and eventually the wort transforms into beer. Sometimes the yeast cells reside at the top of the beer after fermentation (top fermentation) and on other occasions it sinks to the bottom (bottom fermentation).  These cells need to be removed.

  7. Maturation: This is the ageing process of beer. Secondary fermentation takes place in this stage.  

  8. Finishing: The beer is filtered and carbonated at this stage.