A Guide to Craft Brewing by John Alexander

By John Alexander

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Acid Malt Such malt is made by steeping green malt in biologically prepared lactic acid. It is useful as part of a water-treatment programme in carbonate-rich water localities, for increasing the acidification of the mash. It can also be used in soft water to acidify lager worts without needing to use gypsum or to prepare a lactic-acid mash. This keeps the liquor soft, with the beneficial influence on hop character. Typical amounts to add are between 1 per cent and 5 per cent. Acid malt can also be used to introduce subtle ‘tart’ nuances into porters and stouts.

Amylose makes up 20–25 per cent of the starch, and consists of upwards of 1,000 glucose units joined by the first carbon atom of one molecule to the fourth carbon atom of another: these are typically referred to as the 1–4 alpha-glycosidic bonds. Amylopectin has a more complex branched structure and consists of about 75–80 per cent of the starch. The straight chains of glucose units are joined by the 1–4 linkages, but the branches are joined to these by the first carbon atom of the molecule and the sixth carbon atom of another to form, 1–6 alpha-glycosidic bonds.

The local home brew shop, too, is the bedrock of the craft, and what they don’t stock, they will get for you. There is also great interest in researching and brewing the beers of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Today, craft brewers can produce any style of beer with fairly modest equipment, and yet turn out a product with the highest degree of excellence! CHAPTER 1 BRITISH BEER STYLES Traditional beer styles vary throughout the country with local and regional variations, and it is this great diversity that makes British beers so appealing.

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