Patent No. 4154865A: Method For Processing Hops For Brewing

Today in 1979, US Patent 4154865 A was issued, an invention of Herbert L. Grant, assigned to S. S. Steiner, Inc., for his “Method for Processing Hops for Brewing.” Here’s the Abstract:

There is provided a method of processing hops or hop extracts for brewing in which hops and particularly the alpha acids in the hops are stabilized against deterioration and light sensitivity, the process broadly comprising isomerizing a substantial portion of the alpha acids in the hops and contacting said iso-alpha acids witha metallic hydride compound, the metal thereof being suitable for use in foods, until the reaction is substantially completed. In another aspect, the alpha acids present in the hops are converted to their reduced isomerized products which are desirable for brewing. The process is especially suitable for use in pelletizing operations.


Patent No. 2024484B1: Continuous Method For The Production Of A Yeast Fermented Beverage

Today in 2014, US Patent 2024484 B1 was issued, an invention of Hendrikus Mulder, Onno Cornelis Snip, Douglas John Banks, and Herman Hendrik Jan Bloemen, assigned to Heineken Supply Chain B.V., for their “Continuous Method for the Production of a Yeast Fermented Beverage.” There’s no Abstract, but it’s described as an “invention relat[ing] to a continuous method for the production of a yeast fermented beverage, such as beer. More particularly, the present invention relates to such a continuous method in which a high gravity mash is produced, i.e. a mash with a gravity in excess of 22° Plato.”It’s a fairly complicated application and invention, so you’re best bet is to read the whole thing.

Patent No. 3443958A: Method Of Preparing Ground Cereal Grains In The Production Of Brewery Mash

Today in 1969, US Patent 3443958 A was issued, an invention of George E. Dennis, Richard C. Quittenton, and Kenneth R. Robinson, assigned to John Labatt Ltd., for their “Method of Preparing Ground Cereal Grains in the Production of Brewery Mash.” There’s no Abstract, but the invention is described as a “process for producing brewers wort in which cereal grains are dehulled, the dehulled grain is ground to form a fine grist and at least part of the hulls removed before grinding are recombined with the ground dehulled grain and passed through the mashing stage in the usual manner.” Here’s why they think their method is better.

According to this invention it has been determined that the above difficulties [milling problems] can be overcome by removing the hull from the grain before the milling operation. With the hulls removed the kernels of grain can now be more finely ground than was possible in the past and then the finely ground kernels can be recombined with the hulls at any point before the lautering stage. The result of this is an increased yield without any significant sacrifice in run-off time. A series of pilot plant tests indicated that an average yield increase of up to 2% could be obtained with a less than a 15% increase in lautering time.

The degree to which the kernels can be more finely ground according to this invention will be entirely dependent upon the particular situation. Thus, the actual particle size will be dependent upon the nature of the grain, the balance of the lautering time against yield permissible in a given situation, etc.


Anchor To Release Liberty Ale In Cans

Anchor Brewery announced today that they will be releasing Liberty Ale in 12 oz. cans, at least for a limited time. The cans are “a commemorative offering celebrating the 40th anniversary of the historic beer that started a revolution.” From the press release:

“I remember brewing the first batch of Liberty Ale with Fritz Maytag 40 years ago. We were both young and eager beer lovers and knew we wanted to create a beer unlike anything else at that time,” said Anchor Brewing Brewmaster Mark Carpenter. “We had come across a new hop variety called Cascade that had a distinct piney bitterness that we used in the brew. Through Fritz’s interest in history and travel he’d learned of a process European brewers used called dry-hopping; adding dry hops to beer fermenting in the cellar to boost its hoppy aroma. So we dry-hopped the ale with whole-cone Cascade hops, as well. During an era when light lagers were prevalent, Liberty Ale was a very hoppy ale for most people. Their palates were shocked and delighted by such a unique beer.”

The beer was originally sold to the public beginning in 1975, when the country was seized by bicentennial fever. Liberty Ale commemorated the 200th anniversary of Paul Revere’s ride. Considered the first American IPA brewed after prohibition,” it was also “the first modern dry-hopped ale in the US and was the beer that popularized the now-iconic Cascade hop.” Beginning this month, Liberty Ale 6-pack cans, as well as bottles and kegs, will be available throughout the U.S.


Italy’s Tre Fontane Approved As Newest Trappist Brewery

trappist-brown tre-fontane
Last week, the International Trappist Association approved the 11th monastery brewery to be allowed to designate their beers as “officially” Trappist. There are now six Trappist breweries in Belgium, two in the Netherlands, and one each in Austria, the U.S.A. and now Italy. The latest monastery brewery, Abbey at Tre Fontane, is located in Rome, Italy. It was a religious spot since Roman times (from around the first century), and became affiliated with the Cistercian Order in 1625. According to Wikipedia:

Belonging to the monastery are three separate churches. The first, the Church of St. Paul of Three Fountains, was raised on the spot where St. Paul was beheaded by order of Emperor Nero. Legend accounts for the three springs (fontane) with the assertion that, when severed from Paul’s body, his head bounced and struck the earth in three different places, from which fountains sprang up. These still flow and are located in the sanctuary.


That’s where the beer’s name comes from, Three Fountains Tripel, which is an 8.5% a.b.v. Tripel, brewed with Eucalyptus. That’s because the monks of the Tre Fontane Abbey planted fields of eucalyptus to combat malaria beginning in 1870. They also make olive oil, honey (flower, acacia, and eucalyptus), chocolates, and a Trappist liqueur.


The beer is described by the ITA like this:

“The high carbonation gives the mouthfeel a pleasant dry finish. The mildly sweet aftertaste comes from the soothing flavor of eucalyptus herb, which cleanses and refreshes the palate. While the beer gives the impression of being light, it has abundant body. The high alcohol content adds a warm, refined feeling to the soothing highlights of the eucalyptus.”

American Craft Beer Week 2015

Today begins the 10th annual American Craft Beer Week, which is themed this year as Cheers to the Sweet Land of Li-beer-ty. This year it will take place May 11-17, and “all 50 states will hold events including exclusive brewery tours, special craft beer releases, food and beer pairings, tap takeovers and more to honor the ever-advancing craft beer culture and unite tens of thousands of beer lovers nationwide.”

“American Craft Beer Week has provided independent beer fans across the country a chance to support their local breweries since 2006,” said Julia Herz, publisher of and craft beer program director at the Brewers Association. “With celebrations happening in all 50 states, this is truly an annual national event that recognizes all those involved in making craft beer from small breweries in the U.S. such a success.”

You can also follow news of ACBW and see what events have been scheduled and the list can be searched by state. The BA this year has also “created an interactive graphic with fun facts to commemorate each state and their commitment to craft brewing.”

Click here to see the ACBW poster full size.

And here’s a larger view of what they had to say about California.


Patent No. 921032A: Counter-Pressure Bottling-Machine For Beer

Today in 1909, US Patent 921032 A was issued, an invention of Ralph Waldo Webster and Leuig Chew, for their “Counter-Pressure Bottling-Machine for Beer, Mineral Waters, and the Like.” There’s no Abstract, and all it says in the description is that Schwartz “invented new and useful Improvements in Counter-Pressure Bottling-Machines for Beer, Mineral Waters, and the Like,” which is essentially the title. A bit more is subsequently added, saying the “invention relates to improvements in machines for filling bottles, jars, and other like vessels, in which a counter-pressure is created to enable beers, mineral waters, and the like, having a natural or artificial condition or pressure, to be bottled Without undue foaming or loss of condition.” For the rest, you have to dive into a full reading of the application.

Patent No. 4383040A: Fermentation Process And Apparatus

Today in 1983, US Patent 4383040 A was issued, an invention of Richard Fricker, for his “Fermentation Process and Apparatus.” Here’s the Abstract:

A method for continuous fermentation in which carbohydrate solution is fed continuously into a fermentation zone containing substantially homogeneously distributed yeast and carbohydrate solution whereby the carbohydrate is fermented to ethanol, a proportion of the fermenting liquid continuously passing to a pressurized settling tank, yeast depleted liquid being withdrawn from the upper part of the settling tank and yeast enriched liquid being withdrawn from the lower part of said tank and returned to the fermentation zone, a proportion of yeast being withdrawn without being returned to the fermentation zone, said proportion being such that the concentration of yeast in the fermentation zone is substantially constant, and the pressure within the settling tank is sufficient to prevent the formation of gaseous carbon dioxide. The method enables rapid continuous fermentation to take place using high concentrations of yeast.


Patent No. 2936236A: Method Of Draining Off Wort From A Straining Tank

Today in 1960, US Patent 2936236 A was issued, an invention of Robert C. Gadsby, Schwaiger Joseph, and Frank H. Schwaiger, assigned to Anheuser Busch, for their “Method of Draining Off Wort From a Straining Tank.” There’s no Abstract, but the description states that the “invention relates to a straining tank or grain extractor or lauter tub, and more particularly to a new type of straining tank for use in the brewing industry to remove extract from brewers grains. This divisional application relates to the method of straining employed by said straining tank.”

Patent No. 1907994A: Cap

Today in 1933, US Patent 1907994 A was issued, an invention of Edward McManus Charles, assigned to Crown Cork & Seal Co., for his “Cap.” There’s no Abstract, but in the description they talk about an “invention relat[ing] to caps for containers and particularly contemplates a cap wherein a sealing ring or cushion is usually employed.” If you keep reading, it’s explained that this crown works better than previous ones for a variety of reasons, even though it looks pretty much the same as other crowns.