Grain Flavor Profiles
Malting: Barley is normally malted. Other grains, unless specifically stated, are unmalted. Unmalted grains have a different flavor than malted. Unmalted grains do not have available enzymes for conversion.
- Diastatic power (DP): Measures the enzymatic power of a grain. Measured in Degree Lintner.
- Color: The color of a grain is described on the Lovibond scale after kilning. Kilning causes the Maillard Reaction and adds complexity to the flavor of the grain. As a negative kilning reduces the DP and available usable sugars.
- Starch content: The prize, this is what is turned into fermentable sugars to feed the yeast to create alcohol.
- Flaked: Flaked grains are Gelatinized by the process of flaking. They also have no enzymes for conversion.
- Protein Content: For distilling protein content isn't meaningful other than as a nutrient for yeast.
- For brewing and distilling, barley is the most common and modified grain. Heavy flavors to use as the base for most whiskies.
- Malted 2 row barley is considered a base malt. It can comprise 100% of a grain bill for a simple basic single malt whiskey. It is high in starches.
- Lower sugar levels but higher conversion enzymes make this popular for distillers.
- Used in stouts and Belgium ale to create smoothness. Counteracts hard water. Does not affect color.
Maize or Corn
- For pure sugar content and cost corn can't be beat. Adds sweetness and lightens up flavor.
- Wheat adds a smooth gentle flavor to a whiskey. Added as minor part of a grain bill it makes a partner to other grains. Generally not used a majority of a grain bill.
- Used to increase body and head retention in moderate amounts (4-6 ounces) with other highly modified malts. 2.7L
- Used as one of the main grains in wheat beers or can be used in other style beers to aid in head retention, yeast activity, and mouth feel. 2L
- Rye is a very strongly flavored grain with spicey and grass like notes. While it can be used as 100% of a grain bill, it normally is an accent to bourbon.
- A bread grain used to add a dry rye flavor to beers. Hard to mash because of its lack of husk material, so the use of rice hulls is recommended. 2-5L
- Used with highly modified malts to deliver a dry, crisp, strong flavor. Not typically used in standard beer varieties. 1-3L