Mashing | Paulaner Brauerei München

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"Beer is an important Bavarian cultural asset." – Peter Winter Peter Winter
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Peter Winter

Hobbies: My garden, my forest and classic cars
Favourite beer: Salvator
For me, the art of brewing means ... ... brewing a broad variety of excellent beers, besides the familiar ones, from only four ingredients.
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It's all in the mix
It's all in the mix

A very special odour hangs over the Paulaner brewery. It smells sweet, malty, a bit like grain and – even now – a bit like beer. If you go hunting for the source of this smell, you will end up with master brewer Peter Winter, who is standing next to a mash tun. That's the vessel where water and crushed malt are blended. Winter raises the lid of the mash tun and looks at the liquid, which an agitator keeps constantly in motion. "Mmm, what a great smell!" says the master brewer.

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A natural transformation
A natural transformation

There is also a conspicuous amount of heat emanating from the brewing kettle. At various temperatures hovering around 60 degrees, the contents separate from the malt and liquefy. "That generates all of the substances in the malt that are important for the brewing process," Winter explains. That's a nice way of describing what is going on in the kettle: Natural enzymes in the malt transform the starch in the grain into soluble malt sugar. "And later on, it acts as food for the yeast," says the master brewer.

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Wheat beer times two
Wheat beer times two

When making Paulaner's wheat beer with yeast, the master brewers rely on the traditional double-mash process. About a third of the mash is heated gently in a separate mash pan to 72 degrees in order to dissolve the malt sugar. The mash is then boiled, the remaining mash is added again, and the process is repeated. "That takes a rather long time and is very laborious, but the taste makes it all worth it for us," Winter says.

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Tastes twice as good
Tastes twice as good

Paulaner adheres to the double-mash process for good reason. "For us, it's always about the taste," master brewer Winter explains. The advantages of the process are obvious: Individual adjustments can be made for different malts and recipes, and the process is key to a beer rich in character. The beer has a more full-bodied taste and a better head. "I'm happy to mash for a bit longer to achieve that," says Winter.

» About the master brewer