We get our specialty grains from Weyermann, which is a malting company in Bamberg, Germany. We get about 3-4 containers delivered a year, so a delivery is a big deal! The trick to ordering a container is to order it at such a time that we don’t run out of grain, but are low enough that we can fit it all in our storage annex.. it is a tricky process indeed. Lucky for us, we have our own puzzle master and forklift operator extraordinaire to handle a container delivery. There are 20 pallets, each with 40 bags of grain that are 55 pounds each, which is 800 bags of grain and 44,000 pounds of grain!
Malted barley is 1 of the 4 major components of beer (malted barley, water, yeast, hops). Malted barley is made by dumping barley seeds into hot water and letting them steep. Then the barely seeds are laid out to dry until they begin to sprout. After the malting process, the barley roasted to different lovibonds, which is a degree of color. The lightest roast is a 2-row malt, which is the base of most of our beers. The malting process starts the conversion of the starches in the grain into sugar. We finish that conversion of starch into sugar in the mash here in the brew house! We get all kinds of different grains roasted to a varying degree of lovibonds for our brews!
Chris, our head of brewing operations at Snake River Brewing, claims there is something magical about standing in front of the container right when its opened so you can breathe the German air! The container is packed in Bamberg, Germany and travels by train, boat, and truck, but is not opened until it gets here in Jackson, Wyoming.. so maybe he is on to something?
We now have a warehouse full of grain, so we can do a whole lot of brewing! Cheers!