The Basics of Brewing a Beer

Before brewing beer, you must know the basics of the process. Brewing a beer requires yeast, sugar, and water. Yeast consumes sugars during the fermentation process and produces carbon dioxide during the final stages of the brewing process. Nitrogen is absorbed into the liquid, creating the mouthfeel that most people associate with beer. Nitrogen adds a creamy, thick taste. Moreover, it also contributes to the body of the beer.

The brewing process produces an infinite number of different styles and characteristics of beer. Generally, a good beer has effervescence, produced naturally by the fermentation process. There are beers that are less fizzy than others, or have a sour taste caused by lactic acid or the funky note produced by brettanomyces. The color varies from hazy to clear, and some are thick and have a profusion of brewing grains.

The basic ingredients of beer are water, malt, yeast, and hops. Hops, however, were not always part of the brewing process. But today, these four ingredients are essential for creating the drink. The fermentation process is a vital step in beer making, as yeast consumes sugar and produces alcohol. Depending on the type of yeast used, you may want to change your beer’s malt content. To enhance the flavor of your beer, you can change the type of grain you use.

In ancient times, the people living between the Euphrates and the Tigris rivers used to produce beer. They called it “the divine drink” because of its intoxicating properties. However, the first solid proof of beer-making comes from the Sumerian period, approximately 4,000 BCE. Archeologists found evidence of villagers drinking the beverage from a bowl with straws. Archeologists also discovered a Sumerian ode, the oldest known recipe for brewing beer. By the 19th century, beer was produced mostly commercially, but at home.