What We Do
Malting converts the starches in grains to sugars so they are more easily consumed by the yeast when brewing. While simple in concept, it is hard to execute consistently and well. The grain is soaked so it can germinate and start to grow. When the growth hits the optimal stage, the grain is dried to halt the process and then kilned or roasted to determine the final malt profile.
High quality malt is not possible without high quality grains. We grow most of the grain we use for malting, so we can manage the process. From the time we plant, careful attention is paid to soil conditions and any risks posed by disease. At the end of the growing season, the crop is harvested at the optimal time based on conditions.
Part of our process is ongoing experimentation with different varieties of malt barley and other grains. Not all grain is the same and new (and old) varieties open up new flavours.
Before malting can begin, we assess the grain. Tests are run to confirm that it is disease free and that key parameters like protein and kernel weight are on target. Germination testing is one of the most important, and confirms that the grain will grow as required for the malting process. Any grain that does not pass is sold for feed. Only the best grains are kept.
Our malting process occurs in an enclosed system. This allows us to better control the key factors for malting: moisture, temperature and humidity. Depending on the grain, malting can take from 5-7 days to complete.
Before we release a new malt to the craft brewing community, lab testing is done to confirm key parameters for brewing.
We also conduct brewing trials to get a sense of the unique flavours our malt can bring to a given style. This aspect cannot be read on a malt analysis.
We don’t aspire to be brewers. Our goal is to facilitate a more tangible conversation about how local malt can contribute to local craft beer.