Beer Making at Depot Street
Where it all Begins to Happen
Depot Street Brewing is a 10 barrel system capable of brewing about
310 gal of beer at a time. Malts and grains are carefully selected to meet the qualities necessary for a specific batch of the desired beer.
The grains are placed in a hopper located above the grinding
Mill. The grains are ground just right and travel by a screw auger to the top of the Mash Tun.
As they fall into the tank a spray mist of water is applied to aid in wetting the grain. Heat is applied by steam boiler and the temperature raised in steps. This process is to free the enzymes in the grain to act upon the carbohydrates and convert them into sugars. After the sugars are liberated water is sparged (rinsed) through the grain bed in order to recover the maximum amount of sugars. This fluid (now called wort) is transferred to another vessel, the Brew Kettle.
Also steam heated, this is where the wort is boiled and hops added. The boiling is for many reasons. Among them killing stray organisms and precipitating out various proteins in the wort. After whirlpooling the wort is moved through a heat exchanger which cools it to about 70 degrees, oxygen in injected into the stream, and the wort is piped cooled and oxygenated into a Fermenter.
Yeast are then added. It can now be called beer. The yeast now have what they want-a nice temperature controlled home, lots to eat, oxygen to breathe, and plenty of friends. The yeast convert the sugars to carbon dioxide and alcohol as well as many flavor compounds. After about a week the food supply is used up and most of the yeast go dormant, where they fall to the bottom of the fermenter to be reused for the next batch. The beer is then transfered to conditioning tanks also called Brites.
The beer remains in the brite tanks for weeks or months where the flavor matures and the beer is carbonated further. When flavor is at a peak the beer is kegged or bottled and sold.