Fuller’s brewery in London has been making beer for over 170 years. It is both science and art.
Hayley Marlor is one of Fuller’s top Brewers and has offered to show how Fuller’s makes beer at their Pilot Brewery. This microbrewery experiments with new ingredients and creates new beer recipes.
A SIMPLE GUIDE FOR MAKING BEER
Hayley stated that the most important requirement to brewing great beer was passion and appreciation for the beverage.
“Beer making is a labour-intensive, time-consuming and scientific process. To make great beer, you must love what you are doing. It also helps if the end product is something you like.
“I enjoy every aspect of beer-making, which keeps it exciting once you have your “why”, it’s time for beer making! Passionate about beer and brewing are key ingredients in producing great beer.
Hayley stated that beer brewers require four key ingredients:
* Malted barley
She explained that beer is made with the same ingredients but can produce different flavours and varieties.
Brewing is a complex process that requires a lot of science. There are many types of hops available to enhance bitterness and aroma. Temperature and water can have an impact on the taste of your brew. You can also add hops, botanicals, or flavourings to your brew.
“For example, we use British hops when we brew London Pride, while we use New World hops when we brew Frontier Premium Lager.”
THE MALTING PROCESS
Beer is made from grains. Usually, barley is used, but wheat and oats can also be used. To isolate the enzymes in beer, the grains are harvested, dried, and cracked.
The beer’s colour is determined by the Malt used. Lightly roasted malts will make a pale beer; deeply roasted malts will make dark beers.
We mill our Malt before using it, controlling the grist (milled Malt). Many smaller breweries have their Malt pre-milled, which can alter the flavor.
MASHING THE MALT
The Mash Tun is then made with Malt and steep in hot water. This will produce a sugary liquid known as wort. This is called “mashing in”.
Hayley further explained:
The Malt is steeped for about an hour in hot but not boiling water. This activates enzymes that cause starch in Malt to be broken down and released as simple sugars. After this, drain the water remaining in the mash. It is now full of sugar and grains. This sticky, sweet liquid is known as wort. It is pronounced “wurt.”
BOILING AND ADDING HOPES
The wort is then transferred to a Copper, where bitter hops are added. After boiling the wort for approximately an hour, more hops can enhance the aroma.
“First, we add bitter hops. The bitterness is then boiled. Hayley explained that more hops are then added to enhance the aroma. This isn’t done by boiling.
“Some beers have extra hops, such as Montana Red or Wild River.
The liquid is then chilled to 17 degrees Celsius and transferred to a fermentation vessel where yeast is added.
After cooling the wort, you can put it in a fermentation vessel and add yeast to it.
This is where the magic happens. The yeast eats sugar to create carbon dioxide and alcohol. You can add hops, botanicals, or flavourings to make the beer you want.
The beer variety determines the length of fermentation. Most ales are stored at lower temperatures for a brief time. Lager beer is kept longer at lower temperatures after fermentation.
Hayley stated that maintaining the right temperatures is crucial for beer quality during this stage. This is one of the greatest challenges home brewers face.
FILTERING, PROCESSING, AND BOTTLING
Once the fermentation process has been completed, alcoholic beer is produced. The beer can then go into a cask. This is the most basic type of beer.
Unfiltered beer is considered more craft because it retains more of its flavour. This can affect the taste and quality of the beer during processing. It is possible to strike a delicate balance between not over-processing beer and keeping it clean.
The FINISHED PRODUCT = Delicious Beer!
Here it is – A step-by-step guide for making beer as described by Fuller’s Brewery.
If all that sounds too complicated, you can leave the brewing to Fuller’s Brewery’s skilled experts. You can also purchase the final product online from Fuller’s shop or visit one of our many pubs across England.
You will enjoy the beer’s best taste when you understand what goes into it.
WANT MORE INFORMATION ABOUT BREWING BEER?
Fuller’s offers regular brewery tours at the historic Griffin Brewery in Chiswick (London)
London’s oldest brewery tour was voted “excellent” by TripAdvisor and has a 5-star rating. It takes you around Griffin Brewery on the Thames, where Fuller’s has been producing award-winning beer since 1845.
One of our highly-trained guides will give you a two-hour tour that will show you how beer is made. You can enjoy a delicious beer tasting at our Hock Cellar museum and bar, where you can also taste the final products.