With such a wide variety of styles, flavours, aromas and colours out there – you’d be forgiven for thinking that the list of what goes into making your beer is a long one. But in fact, the truth is much, much more simple.

So what makes beer such a great partner with food, and why are there so many different kinds of beer out there? Well, to start, many of the characteristics of the 140 different styles of beers in the world today derive from the same four ingredients – the key is in the individual recipe per brewery.

There are of course exceptions to this rule, such as Fuller’s Honeydew that has honey added to the final brew; or Young’s Double Chocolate Stout which (yes, you guessed it!) has real chocolate; and Brewdog’s Elvis Juice, with Grapefruit juice in for an extra bitter kick. 

In fact, more and more breweries are experimenting with the flavours of their beers by adding in extra ingredients to influence the final flavour/aroma, but they will always use the same four ingredients to create their brews in the first place.

Water

Water

One of the key ingredients in beer is water. It makes up 95% of the finished product. The attributes of the water vastly affect the beer styles, for example, soft water is ideal for lagers whilst hard water is perfect for a porter or a stout.
Read more about this vital ingredient here

Malt

Malt

One of the biggest contributors in the brewing process – most beers are brewed using barley malt, but others also add wheat, rice and oats to the mix to create different colours, flavours and that all important mouthfeel. Some malts produce more fermentable sugars than others, and so will also influence the strength of your beer to a degree.
Discover more about malt

Yeast

Yeast

A key ingredient of beer debated by many to be nothing more than a catalyst, is in fact an important contributor to the flavour profile of your beer. As well as converting the sugars from the malts into alcohol, yeast also adds a natural carbonation to the beer.
Take a closer look at yeast here

Hops

Hops

Beers’ ‘seasoning’. Hops are a crucial aspect of brewing. Depending when they’re added to the beer in the process, they are a powerful natural preservative, add bitterness, aroma and contributes to the head of the finished product.
How do hops make such a big difference?



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