How is beer made?

Brewing beer is the process of extracting sugars and flavour from malted barley, adding hops for a bit of spice and fermenting this liquid with the help of our yeast to create alcohol. Explore the 10 steps of the brewing process below.

Step 1: Milling

Step 1: Milling 

 

Step 1: Milling

It all begins with milling the malted barley.

Malted barley isn’t a type of barley; malting is a way of making the barley ready for brewing. The drying and roasting process is similar to that of coffee beans, the extent of this kilning decides the colour and flavour of the malt. It can range from straw coloured Pale malt to dark roasted Black malt.

Step 2: Mashing

Step 2: Mashing 

 

Step 2: Mashing

The mixing bowl

This is where the malt is mixed with hot water in a large vat.

The starches begin to break down and convert into sugars that will later be fermented into alcohol by the yeast.

Step 3: Lautering

Step 3: Lautering 

 

Step 3: Lautering

The wort

Once the mash is ready, the sweet liquid is separated from the grain husks.

This is done by passing the mash through a natural filter created by the grain husks. The resulting mixture, rich in sugars, is called the wort.

Step 4: Boiling

Step 4: Boiling 

 

Step 4: Boiling

Add some spice

Now the wort is put into a kettle and brought to the boil.

During the boil hops are added at various times in order to extract different characteristics.

Hops added early in the boil will impart bitterness while hops added later in the boil will provide more aroma and taste to the final beer. Other ingredients such as natural cane sugar, honey, spices or fruits can also be added at this stage. 

Step 5: Whirlpool

Step 5: Whirlpool 

 

Step 5: Whirlpool

Time to spin

After the wort has been boiled and the hops and other ingredients have left their mark, it needs to pass through a whirlpool to filter out any leftover materials from the barley and hops. These materials settle into the centre and can be separated from our lovely clean wort.

Step 6: Cooling

Step 6: Cooling 

 

Step 6: Cooling

Cool it

Now the liquid has to cool off to a temperature between 8 to 15 degrees Celsius, dependent on beer style.  The hot wort is run over pipes and plates filled with cold water – making the water hot, and the wort cold. Afterwards, this hot water is used in other parts of the brewing process.

Step 7: Fermentation

Step 7: Fermentation 

 

Step 7: Fermentation

Magical creatures

Yeast is now added to the brew. Inside the fermentation tanks, the yeast eats up the sugars and produces alcohol, carbon dioxide (gas), and delicious beer flavours. Now, when almost all of the sugars are gone, the brew is cooled to stop this process. The yeast is then filtered out of the brew and is sometimes used to make Marmite!

Step 8: Conditioning

Step 8: Conditioning 

 

Step 8: Conditioning

Develop the flavour

Like all good things, flavour takes time to reach its potential. This can take anywhere from a few days to a couple of months depending on the beer style. But the taste is worth every moment.

Step 9: Filtering

Step 9: Filtering 

 

Step 9: Filtering

One last thing

Now it’s time to filter the beer removing the remaining unwanted particles. This creates a sparkling clear beer called ‘Bright Beer’. After filtering and the critical final taste tests, it’s ready to go to the packaging line.

Step 10: Package it and enjoy it

Step 10: Package it and enjoy it 

 

Step 10: Package it and enjoy it

The finishing touches

So you made it through. Good work. Now it’s time to keg or bottle the beer, put a name on it, and find a nice glass to pour it into – appreciate the taste of true craftsmanship.