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Use of unmalted Barley

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  • Use of unmalted Barley

    I think something similar has been done...but...
    For the purpose of dislilling vodka, we are trying to create a local beer of high alcohol content, using local Alaskan barley, without malting (or a combination of unlocal malted barley if absolutely necessary). Any feedback out there on methods or products?

    There is a beer marketed as using unmalted barley and a new enzyme called Ondea Pro from Novozyme.

  • #2
    Is there enough starch in unmalted barley to make this viable vs. malted barley?

    Not to sound odd, but why would you want to do this? Are you just avoiding the malting stage because of potential cost savings?

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    • #3
      Originally posted by einhorn
      Is there enough starch in unmalted barley to make this viable vs. malted barley?

      Not to sound odd, but why would you want to do this? Are you just avoiding the malting stage because of potential cost savings?
      There's more starch due to the losses experienced germinating the barley in the malting process, but it's locked in a tight network of cell walls. I'd say it's viable with a hammer mill and a mash filter, especially since there's no need to filter it since it'll be distilled.

      I'm with Einhorn here, though, why would you want to do this?

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      • #4
        I brewed a beer, 15BBl, with un-malted barley using external enzymes, and one with fast germinated barley, 2 day germ product. Not with the enzyme listed, but from Novozyme. Fermented, and filtered a clean light beer with 5.2ABV. Very thin and light.. If you are going to produce < 50BBls, this would not be worth the cost of the external enzymes. Stick to normal malted grains for your distillation product.
        Last edited by nohandslance; 02-07-2010, 01:27 AM.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by KyleTRyan
          I think something similar has been done...but...
          For the purpose of dislilling vodka, we are trying to create a local beer of high alcohol content, using local Alaskan barley, without malting (or a combination of unlocal malted barley if absolutely necessary). Any feedback out there on methods or products?

          There is a beer marketed as using unmalted barley and a new enzyme called Ondea Pro from Novozyme.
          I am not a distiller, nor have I ever tried it, but I know what you're suggesting is done all the time. Domestic whiskeys may contain as little as 10% distillers malt in their mash (30% being the high end). The key is mashing at the appropriate temperature to gelatinize your milled raw barley (or corn or rye or oats or pretty much anything starchy really) then adding your malt portion for the duration of the mash until your conversion is complete. Unmalted barley gelatinizes at a slightly lower temperature, I believe, than malted barley. I'm sure Mr. google can set you straight.

          You can ferment the entire mash and even do your first step distillation of it. Some distillers will then add as much as 25% of this 'spent' beer back into a new fermentation (sour mashing - in the Bourbon world). If you are making vodka, you will obviously need a rectification column on your still and perhaps a bed of charcoal for filtration of the pure spirit.

          Enzymes can be pretty neat, but they can also be expensive. Malt is pretty cheap and pretty easy to use and store.


          Pax.

          Liam
          Liam McKenna
          www.yellowbellybrewery.com

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