Newsletter: Happy Springiness!

Malt of different roasting levels

While many people celebrate spring, or Easter, around this time of year, we celebrate Daniel Wheeler Day! On March 28th of 1817 Daniel Wheeler received a patent for his malt roaster. This roaster allowed brewers to consistently and efficiently roast pale malts to create a darker brew, paving the way for the modern porter.

Ask the Brewer

How were Porters colored prior to roasted malts?

Initially when Porters were made, the brewers would create the deep rich colors by prolonged roasting of the grains between 392 degrees Fahrenheit and 608 degrees Fahrenheit.  It was soon realized by doing this that the majority of the sugar in the malt was destroyed, and that affected both the fermentation process and the richness of the beer.  Brewers then switched to adding various coloring agents to maintain the deep, rich colors associated with that type of beer.

In 1816, when an act of parliament made all forms of coloring in beer illegal, Porter brewers had a big problem. How could they brew a beer of the right color when using mostly pale malt? The answer was provided by Daniel Wheeler, who, by roasting malt in a way similar to coffee beans, created a malt capable of coloring a large quantity of wort. Pale malt was roasted at 360 to 400º F in metal cylinders, which revolved over a furnace.

By adding a portion of this dark malt to the pale malt, a beer could be crafted that had the rich roasted flavor, deep color, and full body of a Porter.  Wheeler acquired a patent for the process, hence the name patent malt. It was also known as black malt, porter malt or roast malt.

Taproom Tidings

We are going to be closed on Sunday in order to celebrate Easter with our families, and hope that all of you get to spend some time with friends and family as well.

On Friday, March 25th we are happy to have the Signature Cafe crew on hand, and Saturday the 26th features the Tatanka Truck.  Either day you join us, you will be assured of something delicious to eat with your beer!
Speaking of beer, we still have a small amount of the Irish Red Ale on tap for Thursday night, and then on Friday we will be tapping our latest batch of Dark Lager (or as Dane likes to call it, our good fishing beer).
  • Tap selection includes Pyro APA, Roasted Coffee Ale, Fused Orange Blossom Honey Ale, Cranberry Shandy, Raj-Agni IPA, Irish Red Ale on Thursday and Dark Lager on Friday and Saturday
  • Thirsty Thursdays $1 off pints and $2 off growler fills
  • Coconut Turtle Cupcake from Groundswell includes a coconut chocolate fudge cake with pecans, whipped cream, honey caramel sauce, and chocolate ganache

Final Thoughts

Stop in on Saturday March 26th to meet the minds behind the MN Craft Beer Passport & buy your own copy.  They help taprooms and craft beer drinkers find each other to build a community around a shared pride in good beer.  By purchasing the Northern Ale Guide for only $25, you get BOGO pints (Buy One Get One) at their 35 partner taprooms.

As always, if you have questions, drop us a note via Email, Facebook or Twitter.