How does the weather affect your cookies? Does soil affect your flour? What’s the difference between two-row and six-row barley? Can you “grow malt” in Wisconsin? What is malt anyway? What kind of beans are in bean-bags? Yes, these questions keep us up at night, too.

We are curious; so if we don’t know all the answers we will help you find out. If you have a question you’d like answered, please contact us.

How does the weather affect your cookies?

All weather conditions affect the growth of grain; protein levels in particular. This translate into the flour; and typically soft red wheat grown in average Wisconsin growing conditions produces excellent breads and cookies! If the growing conditions aren’t perfect, there are processes available to make adjustments to keep our sweet tooth happy.

Does soil affect flour?

Yes, but don’t worry. There are many adjustments we make throughout the growing season as well as the milling process that adjust for this.

What’s the difference between two-row barley and six-row barley?

In the simplest terms, two-row barley has two rows of kernels on the grain head, compared to six rows of kernels. There are other differences, too. Two-row barley has the reputation of lower protein levels prized by specialty brewers, while six-row is seen as the workhorse used for base malts and every other use – like soup. However, there is a wide range of available seed varieties for each of these barleys. Thus there are six-row varieties that match or out-perform two-row in the brew house when handled properly in the malt house. Admittedly, farmers are more comfortable growing six-row because the yield is significantly higher – and brewers are not comfortable with the additional cost of producing two-row.

Can you “grow malt” in Wisconsin?

Malt is a process, not a crop. Malting uses specialized steeping to germinate, kiln and sometimes roast a seed or kernel to produce sugars that may be released in the brewing, distilling or even the baking process. Typically, barley is what comes to mind when we think of malt, but many grains are malted including wheat, oats and rye. Sometimes corn is put through similar processing for added sweetness. Other alternatives are increasingly used for malting, such as amaranth, buckwheat and even peas! (I’ll have the Sweetpea Stout please…)

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