FST 102A - Malting and Brewing Science

(4 units) FALL QUARTER

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COURSE INFORMATIONThis course is open for seniors but also to juniors who have high grades in chemistry or biochemistry courses. FST102A is the first senior level course as part of the FST Brewing Science major which is recognized by the industry.  This course is a prerequisite to FST102B, Practical Malting and Brewing. Students who complete FST102A and FST102B have a high chance of being employed in the brewing industry.

COURSE GOALS: To provide a thorough knowledge and understanding of the science and technology of the brewing of beer. This will be achieved by study of brewing raw materials (water, malt, hops and yeast), brewing processes (malting, brewhouse procedures, fermentation, and finishing operation), and quality assurance methods of the industry. The influence of raw materials quality and process control on beer character is a recurring theme, to illustrate the confines within which successful brewing is performed. A student completing the course will have a good knowledge of what constitutes beer quality, and why and how this is achieved by contemporary methods of manufacture.


COURSE FORMAT: Two two-hour lectures will be presented weekly. Additionally, a plant visitation will be scheduled during the quarter (attendance optional). Students will be graded on two midterms and one final.


  1. Survey of brewing in the USA and around the world. Statistics of production. Regulatory agencies and the alcoholic beverage industry. History of brewing from earliest times to the present.
  2. Review and overview of the process from barley to beer and consideration of beer styles.
  3. Science and technology of malting: Selection and preparation of barley. Steeping, germination and kilning. Control of quality.
  4. Biochemistry of Malting: Relation of barley properties to malt properties. Biology of germination, and "modification" and control of embryo growth.
  5. Science and technology of brewhouse processes: milling, mashing, wort collection, boiling and cooling. Adjuncts.
  6. Biochemistry of brewhouse processes: mashing as an enzymic process and the relation of wort properties to the choices made in mashing. Importance of water quality. Polymer breakdown.
  7. Science and technology of the cultivation and utilization of hops. Hop products.
  8. Science and technology of fermentation. Yeast maintenance and handling in relation to product consistency. Fermenter design and implication.
  9. Yeast biology and properties, selection and analysis. Fermentation kinetics, flocculation and production of flavor compounds. Impact of wort and yeast on beer properties.
  10. Science and technology of finishing. Maturation of beer; clarification and filtration; stabilization; carbonation, packaging and pasteurization.
  11. Beer quality. Six aspects of stability: haze, flavor, foam, gushing, light, and microbiological.
  12. Quality assurance and quality control procedures.
  13. Environmental impact and outputs.