Organic acids in the brewing process—A new approach in “drinkability”

Yeast and Fermentation Session
Thomas Tyrell, VLB Berlin, Germany

ABSTRACT: Organic acids had been of minor interest due to relatively high flavor thresholds in beer. For that reason relatively little is known about technological possibilities to influence their concentration. Due to new knowledge from medical research about salubriousness a rising interest in organic acids has been observed. A few years ago a paper concerning gastric acid output introduced by alcoholic beverages was published. It was observed that alcoholic beverages from fermentation lead to a higher output of gastric acid then alcoholic beverages from distillation. As responsible substances organic acids, which are formed during fermentation, were described. From these findings it was assumed that it could present an improvement for fermented beverages to reduce the concentration of special organic acids. In this way the salubriousness of the beverage could be enhanced, and finally the drinkability could be improved. The presentation gives an overview of technological possibilities to influence the concentration of organic acids in brewing, pathways of their formation re discussed, and the latest research results of a VLB project are presented.

Thomas Tyrell apprenticed as a brewer and maltster at the Pott’s Brauerei in Oelde, Germany, from 1991 to 1994. After his apprenticeship, from 1994 to 2001 he gained working experience in different breweries, including Saxer Brewing Company (Portland, OR), Wettringer Brauhaus (Wettringen, Germany), Weißbräu Brauhaus (Cologne, Germany), and Magister Cervecerías Artesanales (La Coruña, Spain). Studying in Berlin at the Technical University he received a Diplom Ingenieur degree in brewing science (2001–2006) (diploma thesis at Cervecería Polar, Caracas Venezuela). Since early 2007 he has been at VLB, and since 2008 part of the VLB Department of Brewing and Beverage Science & Applications. At VLB he is responsible for research/consulting projects. In addition coordination of the institute’s activities for Iberoamerica are part of his responsibilities.