As you are enjoying an ice-cold beer, have you ever stopped to think about how it is made or the process that goes into making it?  Most people do not think about how their draft is processed, they just enjoy drinking it. However, there is a lot that goes into the making of the brew before you ever ingest it and in fact, the different recipes used are many. The recipe depends on the company, the area in the country you live, and the actual country you live in. For instance, in America, brew is served cold, but in Germany, the drafts are served at room temperature.

The beer you may be enjoying right now has a long history and has been around since around 4000 BC making it a very old alcoholic beverage that has been consumed many times over the years. One of the aspects to the beverage that many people do not know is that the basic recipe has only four ingredients, which include barley, water, hops, and yeast. All drafts will have these four base ingredients, but the amount used for each recipe is different. In addition, the amount of time the brew ferments also make a difference in the taste. For instance, lagers have to ferment for one month, while ale only needs to ferment for 21 days.

Even though the ingredient list is small, the quality used is high, for example, all beer has purified water rather than tap water. The barley has to be screened and checked for any impurities before it can be used. In the first step of the process of making the brew, the barley must be filtered through piping where water is added to the grain so that it releases additional sugar. Once this process finishes, the barley is mashed into very large (or giant) metal pots that help to break down the starch and then ferments the mixture.

Once the liquid is completely mixed, it then goes to the filter pipe and more purified water is added. This is boiled for about 90 minutes in a special kettle where hops are added and then the entire mixture is drained so that it can separate the liquid from any solids remaining, it is cooled and then is stored to ferment. The result is beer.

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Kaitlyn Murphy
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