#Mashtag Day 2: Malt Bill and ABV

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#Mashtag Day 2: Malt Bill and ABV

The votes are in. They have been counted, double counted and many bribes have been turned down in the name of true democracy.

And #Mashtag Day 1 winner is........................Brown Ale. It was close.

Brown Ale 222 votes

IPA 218 votes

Stout 198 votes


Here is how MashTag Works:

Every day this week we will post a blog at 12 noon offering you 3 options for various elements of the brew. You cast your votes on twitter, on facebook or on our blog.

Monday - Beer Style - decided as Brown Ale.

Tuesday - Malt Bill & ABV

Wednesday - Hops & IBU

Thursday - Special Twist (barrel aged? Dry hopped? Belgian yeast? Addition of a pasturised mouse?)

Friday - Name

Votes need for the malt bill and ABV need to be cast by 1800 GMT. Simcoe will count the votes on his abacus and announce them the following day when we give you the next round of options. So today, you guys need to vote on the ABV and malt bill of the brown ale we are going to brew.

Today's choices are:

4.5% ABV Session Brown Ale

Malt Bill: Wheat, Oats, Amber Malt, Pale Malt, Caramalt

This would be a rock n' roll session interpretation of a brown ale. Using wheat and oats to amp up the body and give it a substantial mouth-feel that bellies it's modest ABV.

7.5% American Brown Ale

Malt Bill: Caramalt, Amber Malt, Roasted Barley, Pale Malt

An American classic. A toasty palate with some sweetness would provide the perfect base to do some serious damage with a heavy hop profile. Think of this as an Indian Brown Ale.


10% Imperial Brown Ale

Malt Bill: Brown Malt, Amber Malt, Pale Malt, Munich Malt, Roasted Barley

An imperial monster. 10% and boasting a giant malt bill. This huge beer would be brown ale amplified and the 10% base would provide a huge flavour canvas for the next stage.

Here is a quick overview of the important the malt bill plays in the brewing process to help you make up your mind on how to cast your all important vote.


Malt brings many things to a beer - flavour, colour, aroma and the sugar which ultimately creates the alcohol. When mixed with hot water the complex sugars in the malt are broken down and extracted into the liquid.

The amount of malt we use in relation to water, ultimately determines the ABV. More malt in relation to the water = more sugar in the solution = more fermentation = higher alcohol content.


Here we have some Pale Malt, Munich Malt, Caramalt, De-husked roasted Crystal Malt and Chocolate Malt.

After the mash has converted the starch to sugars and drawn colour, flavour and aroma from the malt we gently add hot water (a process called sparging) to help flush out all this goodness and transfer the sweet solution to our kettle for boiling (more on the boiling process tomorrow).

 grpfun_copy_620Get voting scamps!

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Comments (114)

Raxta_b 27th March, 2013 11:36am
American Brown Ale
Maxbog 27th March, 2013 10:22am
session brown!
Nicobar 27th March, 2013 10:16am
Milmook 27th March, 2013 4:47am
IBA !!!!
David G 27th March, 2013 1:43am
iDrink 27th March, 2013 12:15am
American Brown!!
midikey 26th March, 2013 11:56pm
Session Brown!!low alcohol but full flavor would be more special nowadays.
Karlos 26th March, 2013 11:27pm
American all the way!
TheBBG 26th March, 2013 11:26pm
All three?Oh, if I've got to choose, I'll split the difference and go American. Though I'd be happy with any.
Stew 26th March, 2013 11:04pm
American Brown Ale would be great!
jazzyjeffery 26th March, 2013 9:53pm
Gotta be Imperial....
J.bax 26th March, 2013 7:38pm
American brown ale for me please!
Lucy Blue 26th March, 2013 7:33pm
Look at that beard! Bowman has got my vote, American FTW
GraemeWally 26th March, 2013 7:32pm
Make it American and make my day
Timburr 26th March, 2013 7:31pm
7,5 %
DannyG 26th March, 2013 7:30pm
American for sure!
JayBartons 26th March, 2013 7:10pm
Session Brown you Mothers
imac 26th March, 2013 6:57pm
Innes 26th March, 2013 6:33pm
Session brown for me dempy!
Alex15 26th March, 2013 6:31pm
Session Brown Ale lower ABV for a change
discoalla 26th March, 2013 6:23pm
Imperial brown for me
AR 26th March, 2013 6:12pm
americanbecause a beard is a beard
Grahamf4 26th March, 2013 6:12pm
Session please
Ghost 26th March, 2013 6:11pm
Imperial brown please
IMPERIAL 26th March, 2013 6:03pm
seames 26th March, 2013 6:01pm
Imperial Brown Ale
Puzzler 26th March, 2013 5:46pm
Session, please.
prc 26th March, 2013 5:31pm
Imperial sounds pretty tasty
randy 26th March, 2013 5:15pm
american ale please
Tommy 26th March, 2013 5:08pm
7.5% American Brown Ale
Mattias E 26th March, 2013 5:00pm
Session Brown Ale for me please!
Fatbaldingoldgit 26th March, 2013 4:58pm
American Brown Ale please....
InPivoVeritas 26th March, 2013 4:57pm
Imperial Brown Ale
Simon B 26th March, 2013 4:39pm
Am I letting the fact that Bowman is holding the sign sway me? Probably. American please.
Guy E 26th March, 2013 4:30pm
SJLunn 26th March, 2013 4:27pm
Imperial Brown Ale
stoms 26th March, 2013 4:10pm
Hachi 26th March, 2013 3:41pm
American please!
Teomando 26th March, 2013 3:41pm
steckmeister 26th March, 2013 3:32pm
IMPERIAL brown ale of course!
Beer Man 26th March, 2013 3:32pm
Imperial brown ale
gfunk 26th March, 2013 3:22pm
session brown ale
Damo 26th March, 2013 3:07pm
American brown! Not an easy style of beer to find, but they are so good.
Ingramator 26th March, 2013 3:06pm
American! Nom nom!
Rab 26th March, 2013 3:06pm
Stevepage405 26th March, 2013 3:04pm
Session ale, purely so i can drink lots of it without passing out.
Chris H 26th March, 2013 3:03pm
American Brown Ale
Hupsi 26th March, 2013 2:51pm
I vote for the session brown ale
Fran ! 26th March, 2013 2:50pm
Session Brown Ale !!!
MrNutz13 26th March, 2013 2:31pm
jbrewth 26th March, 2013 2:20pm
Tulio S 26th March, 2013 2:12pm
Imperial Brown Ale
Martin B 26th March, 2013 1:57pm
Session Brown Ale
Stephanos 26th March, 2013 1:44pm
imperial please, only because I prefer the malt bill, would prefer the abv of American
katieg 26th March, 2013 1:39pm
American Brown Ale
Graham Allen 26th March, 2013 1:38pm
American Brown!
Degmau5 26th March, 2013 1:34pm
I only chose brown ale becausse the woman holding the sign looks like Adrian from Rocky.10% Imperial Brown Ale for day 2
NickD 26th March, 2013 1:30pm
Mats 26th March, 2013 1:29pm
Andy H 26th March, 2013 1:25pm
American Brown Ale FTW!
Krissie J 26th March, 2013 1:21pm
Parkside Pete 26th March, 2013 1:21pm
10% Imperial Brown Ale works for me
Stephen T 26th March, 2013 1:20pm
I fancy a session in the Brown ;-)
Gabber 26th March, 2013 1:17pm
capn_gokey 26th March, 2013 1:13pm
American brown
Glynis 26th March, 2013 1:10pm
Imperial please. 10% why think of anything else.Thank you BD.
Paula 26th March, 2013 1:07pm
Imperial Brown Ale
fungus 26th March, 2013 1:05pm
go for the session ale, boys. Wouldn't mind having a couple and still be able to drive.
capn_gokey 26th March, 2013 1:04pm
American brown
music 26th March, 2013 1:00pm
imperial brown. i'll also back a core session brown
Charlotte 26th March, 2013 1:00pm
Session, innit.
Toninus 26th March, 2013 1:00pm
Session for me too !
Phil A 26th March, 2013 12:59pm
YES!! This is going to be an epic Brown ale so needs to stand out..Imperial Brown Ale !!!!
alec wallace 26th March, 2013 12:57pm
Imperial please
SourSalty 26th March, 2013 12:56pm
Imperial Brown
MarcoP 26th March, 2013 12:56pm
Imperial Brown Ale please!
Big Stu 26th March, 2013 12:52pm
Session brown ale would be brillant
Markstedt 26th March, 2013 12:52pm
James H 26th March, 2013 12:50pm
Session Brown Ale gets my vote.
Lewis B 26th March, 2013 12:49pm
Jeka 26th March, 2013 12:48pm
Session brown, Palun!
Daniel M 26th March, 2013 12:47pm
Go for the Imperial!
Andrew 26th March, 2013 12:46pm
Session please
Kummelnäs Uthusbryggeri 26th March, 2013 12:45pm
tpickering 26th March, 2013 12:44pm
Has to be Session Brown Ale as in need of something that can actually have a good few of
Immy 26th March, 2013 12:44pm
American Brown Ale please!
ellab19 26th March, 2013 12:41pm
session brown ale - 4.5% ABV.
Philuren 26th March, 2013 12:41pm
American Brown Ale please
BeerBelly 26th March, 2013 12:41pm
Imperial brown ale please
Doktorb 26th March, 2013 12:40pm
Session for me. People, don't rush for the 10% just for a laugh come on now.....
Jonny 26th March, 2013 12:40pm
Session Brown Ale
chedgefa 26th March, 2013 12:40pm
Session brown Ale
jacek 26th March, 2013 12:40pm
rnorstrom 26th March, 2013 12:40pm
Session brown ale
AlexO 26th March, 2013 12:39pm
Session Brown Ale!
thetondon 26th March, 2013 12:38pm
Session Brown so bars have an excuse to ditch run of mill drivel
vogod 26th March, 2013 12:37pm
Session 4,5%. Because I'd like to have several, get it at shops here in finland and because making everything big is so done.
colorado 26th March, 2013 12:37pm
Imperial Brown Ale, obviously...
JCowie 26th March, 2013 12:37pm
Session please!
Chris.john.moss@googlemail.com 26th March, 2013 12:36pm
American brown!
Young 26th March, 2013 12:36pm
There is a serious need for more Session Ales with attitude, So 4.5% ABV Session Brown Ale.
baldysteve 26th March, 2013 12:35pm
A nice 4.5% session ale gets my vote!
Sylvain 26th March, 2013 12:35pm
Session Brown Ale please
Don 26th March, 2013 12:34pm
Got the be the Imperial Brown Ale for me.
7ways 26th March, 2013 12:34pm
Session Brown Ale!!!
Frenchie 26th March, 2013 12:30pm
Pete H., Nottm 26th March, 2013 12:30pm
Imperial monster 10% !!Anything with Monster in the description has got to be worth a vote.
EccyEccyPtang 26th March, 2013 12:20pm
I want to be able to drink more than one, and a half, and another half. So 4.5% ABV Session Brown Ale please.
AleBeHonest 26th March, 2013 12:09pm
As a one off, I'd say go Imperial but the core range could do with a Session Ale.Because this beer will inevitably be awesome, I will vote for Session Brown Ale!
JasonDPD 26th March, 2013 12:09pm
Imperial Brown Ale!!!
TheCraftyBugger 26th March, 2013 12:07pm
It needs to be a 10% Imperial Brown Ale
Pete 26th March, 2013 12:06pm
Got to be an imperial brown ale for me please
MF 26th March, 2013 12:05pm
Session Brown Ale!
Mark C 26th March, 2013 12:03pm
A session brown ale would be great but I get the feeling I may be out-voted...