Brewing Beer

in Beer
Brewing is the term used for the process of making beer. A brewery is a building dedicated to the production of beer, most often done by a brewing company. When beer is produced for domestic use in the home, the process is known as home brewing.

For most of the history of beer, the beverage was made in private homes for individual and family use. During the industrial revolution large manufacturing companies started to produce beer, and were able to put most home brewers out of business. This was reinforced by federal legislation in most developed countries that restricted the manufacture of beer to large, properly licensed entities.

Home brewing became popular again in 1963 when the UK relaxed regulations on it manufacture and sale. This move was soon followed by Australia in 1972 and the United states in 1979.

Beer is made when a starch is turned into a sugary substance called wort. The starch usually comes from malted barley. The actual beer is made from the fermentation of the wort as affected by yeast.

Wort is produced in a process known as mashing, where the starch is mixed with hot water in a device known as a mash tun. The mashing process generally takes about 1 – 2 hours, and during this time the starch is converted into sugar. The sweet part of the wort is then drained off of the grains, and the grains themselves are washed in a process called sparging.

The next step is called wort separation where the spent grain is separated from the wort and sparge water. This can be done through lautering, where the grain bed is used for the filter, although some breweries prefer to use filter frames, so that they can get a more finely ground grist.

The sweet wort that is collected from this process is put into a device called a kettle, or a copper, named after the fact that the original devices were actually made out of copper. The wort is then boiled for about an hour, which evaporates away the water, leaving behind the sugars and other wort component materials. It also has the sanitary effect of killing off any bacteria that may remain from the mashing.

While boiling, hops can be added to the beer to draw out bitterness, aroma, and flavor. These hops can be added at any point during the boiling process, and can actually be added multiple times, depending on the recipe. The earlier that the hops are put into the boil, the more bitterness they will exude, but they will also become less distinct in taste.

The hopped wart is now ready to be made into beer. Before that however some brewers do like to put the substance through a small vac filled with hops, in order to add more hops flavor to the beverage, as well as to filter it.

Yeast is added to cause the wort to ferment, turning it into beer. The fermentation process can take anywhere from one week to years to complete depending on the process. As the beverage ferments, the yeast, as well as all stray particles in the beverage fall to the bottom, leaving the alcohol clear of impurities. In some cases the beer is taken through a second fermentation process when it requires a longer fermentation, or greater clarity.

The final product is packaged in either casks or barrels, or individual bottles or cans, and made ready for delivery through various distribution channels.

This article was written by Joey Pebble, and was produced on behalf of his line of rich, beautiful natural stone beer coasters. These coasters are hand crafted from the finest natural stone materials, and include unique designs in a variety of sandstone, slate, marble, gemstone, and onyx materials.

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Brewing Beer

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This article was published on 2009/03/26
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