The Horn Bros.

All beers, are made from a basic combination of water, barley, malt, hops, and yeast.

What distinguishes an ale from a lager is a special type of yeast which likes to sink and chill.   After the barley malt has been milled, mashed and boiled, then carefully selected hops have been added, the “wort” is cooled and this special yeast is added.  This special yeast settles to the bottom of the tank while the beer is fermenting which prevents the yeast flavour to permeate the brew.  The best lagers need time, traditionally seven days in primary fermentation and three to eight weeks in conditioning or “lagering” in the chiller.  These cool temperatures help to inhibit the fruity characters of many hops.  After all this painful, thirsty waiting, lagers are traditionally filtered to remove fine solid residue from the hops, malt and yeast.  This critical final step cleanses the beer of all impurities to create the perfectly refined lager.  The extra effort is well worth it because the end result is a super crisp and sessionable beer.

We will never make an ale* (Scroll for disclaimer) 


The brew process starts with the selection of the malted barley depending on the colour, body and taste desired for the brew. Many modern day lagers use light pilsener malt that has been lightly kilned. Whereas, ales are commonly use darker malts that have been heavily kilned. The selected combination of malts are then milled and crushed to break apart the kernels and releases the carbohydrates required for mashing.


Mashing is the process of combining a mix of milled grain and water and heating this mixture. Mashing allows the natural enzymes in the malt to break down the starch in the grain into sugars to create a malty liquid called wort.


The wort is moved into a large tank known as a “copper” or kettle where it is boiled with carefully selected hops. This stage is where the true magic take place, and where important decisions about the bitterness, flavour and aroma of the beer are made. Many ales tend to be heavily hopped with very fruity and floral hops which dominate the flavour profile. Lagers today use less of the mild, earthy, herbal and spicy hops to create a more subtle bitterness profile. But the truth is that any hops may be selected for a lager such as the citrus hop varieties.  


A lot of other cool nerdy stuff happens after the boil but essentially when yeast is added to the cooled wort, the fermenting process begins, where the sugars turn into alcohol, carbon dioxide and other components. For a lager, the specialised lager yeast is used which settles to the bottom of the tank during primary fermentation for a week while the beer is fermenting which prevents the yeast flavour to permeate the brew.


When the fermentation is complete the brew is transferred into a conditioning tank.Conditioning of the beer is the process in which the beer ages, the flavour becomes smoother, and flavours that are unwanted dissipate. Ales will only condition for a short time sometimes only days. However for a lager this takes much longer. The best lagers need time, three to eight weeks conditioning or “lagering” in the chiller. These cool temperatures help to inhibit for example the fruity character of many hops.


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*We will never make ales BUT if were ever to do it, it may possibly one day make an ale that tastes like a lager. Think “i can’t believe its not butter” of the lager world.