What Do You Guys Have On Tap? About Beer In General. Teacher Wanted To Know What My Preferences Are.

1012 words - 4 pages

What Do You Guys Have on Tap? When someone mentions the word "beer" most of us picture a few of our favorite kinds. The truth is there are more different kinds of beer than most people would ever imagine. Considering all the different beers there are in our world today, the odds are, there are many you would fall in love with if ever given the chance to try them. The trick is discovering their existence. In order to grasp the difference between beers, one must first have a basic understanding of the beer brewing process: its parts, its ingredients, and how each part affects the beer as a whole. The basic ingredient in beer is malted barley. Barley is a grain that looks very similar to wheat and plays a big role in the beer's flavor and color. During one part of the malting process the barley is heated after germination. The higher the temperature, the darker the beer is going to be in the end (Goldammer). Hops are another key ingredient. This plant, which is very closely related to marijuana, plays a role in the beer's bitterness and aroma. It also helps prevent certain bacteria from infecting the beer (Goldammer). Brewer's yeast is responsible for converting available sugars into alcohol and other byproducts. Ale yeast, the "top fermenting" type, is used when brewing ales, porters, stouts, and wheat beers. Lager yeast, the "bottom fermenting" type, is used when brewing lagers, pilsners, and bocks, among others (Goldammer). Water plays a bigger role than many may think. Yes, it makes up about ninety percent of the beer, but the mineral content can have quite an effect on the end result. Waters from different parts of the earth contain different minerals. Some improve the taste of one beer while decreasing that of another. For example, Munich water has low numbers of sulfates and chlorides, but is high in carbonates. These aren't desirable for pale beers, but work very well with darker, mellow lagers. The actual brewing process is a long and detailed one requiring weeks of ones time and many hours boiling, cooling, reheating, separating, and fermenting. After all the ingredients have been combined and prepared correctly, one is left with warm flat beer. There are a few different ways that beer can be carbonated. Many of the big brewing companies inject carbon dioxide into the flat beer with "in-line" or "in-take" methods. Some German brewers add a dose of actively fermenting beer to add carbonation. Another method is to add yeast and priming sugars to the beer. These two ingredients then react and produce carbon dioxide. Bottling the beer is also very important. If the bottles are not properly washed and prepared the beer can spoil...

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