It’s Not the Malt’s Fault 9 (2021, Q1 Edition)

By Dave Thomas – Brewer Emeritus, Dostal Alley Brewery A large regional brewer noticed that recent brewhouse yields were down and fermentations were hanging up. The brewer blamed malt from the recent crop year of a single growing area and padlocked the bin containing this malt, planning to dispose of it. After sampling the bin…

It’s Not the Malt’s Fault! – Q4 Edition

By Joseph Hertrich – Retired Group Director, Brewing Raw Materials at Anheuser-Busch, Inc. Investigating a phenolic, 4-vinyl guaiacol (4VG), off-flavor in finished beer in a brewery that did not have any wheat beer yeast in the plant, led to a search for wild yeast contamination.  After the absence of any wild yeast contamination was confirmed,…

It’s Not the Malt’s Fault: Q3 Edition

By Rob Mccaig, Chief Brewer of Europe – SAB Miller In China, a brewer was complaining about poor quality malt coming from Canada. The issue was with premature flocculation of yeast resulting in poor attenuation. This only occurred during the spring in the brewery, malt was fine the rest of the year, but the brewer…

It’s Not the Malt’s Fault – Q2 Edition

By Joseph Hertrich – Retired Group Director, Brewing Raw Materials at Anheuser-Busch, Inc. Brewers have high expectations for their malt supply regarding high extract recovery and consistent attenuation.  They closely manage water to grist ratios and temperature profiles at mashing, but also must manage effective mixing through the use of a fore masher and the…

It’s Not the Malt’s Fault – Q1 Edition

By Dave Thomas The kiln operator of a large western malthouse noticed that friability was always lower from Kiln #3 of the six steam-heated kilns in the malthouse. She told this to the malt chemist in the lab, who replied “That’s weird! It’s the same barley, growing area, and crop year malted in exactly the…