Our malt is an essential ingredient for our customers, and we take that fact very seriously.
At Grouse, it is our brand promise to produce gluten-free malt, on time, with a consistency you can count on. We understand the significant impact if we don’t come through on any one of these promises.
Grouse has a detailed QA process in place to assure our customers their grain is reliable for every batch (oh and don’t forget gluten-free as well!). What is this QA process? Well I am glad you asked…
Let us pretend you are the grain of millet that has recently been dropped off at Grouse from a Colorado farm. Right as you were loaded off the truck, some of your friends were gathered and brought to the Grouse lab to be tested for gluten. Once the okay is given, you are one of the lucky few that were picked for immediate malting.
Your next few days are full of soaking and resting, while Grouse’s lab crew is testing grain moisture levels each day. Once the magic number is reached, you are shipped off to be germinated and kilned in a custom malt vessel. The air temperature, humidity and moisture levels are assessed throughout this entire process, making you feel at your best to grow!
Once your acrospire has sprouted to the right length, heat is applied and halts your growth spurt! Now you are invincible to live as sprouted grain for the next few months until you are applied to a brew. I hope you enjoyed thinking about your life as a millet seed, but the real testing work is only beginning for Grouse’s lab crew.
In Grouse’s lab after kilning is completed, sensory QA is the first hurdle that the grain must pass. The primary means for sensory evaluation is using ASBC Hot Steep method on the new batch vs. our standard batch. Grouse uses Draughtlab Pro® software to log every sample and allows us to perform blind panel testing. Each sample is evaluated on color, aroma, taste and mouthfeel.
Once the grain passes sensory, it is sent to another lab to be assessed on its product specifications. These specifications which are tested include SRM, moisture, extract %, diastaic power, alpha-amylase and FAN. Results are assessed with our standards for quality assurance!
At any point of the QA process we see a red flag; the grain will not be released for sale until it passes its QA checkpoints. If you have further questions on our quality program, please send us an email and we would be more than happy to talk with you. I hope you enjoyed learning a little more about your favorite malt!