About the content
In this course of 12 modules, our team of academic scientists and brewmasters will introduce you to the science underlying beer brewing. At the end of this MOOC, you will understand the science underlying beer production, and why your beer tastes the way it does!
This MOOC also gives you a sneak peek inside some of Belgium’s most iconic breweries. It features talks from Belgian brewers and maltsters, as well as from some of the most renowned academics on key features of the malting and brewing process.
Thirsty for more? Also check out the new postgraduate in malting and brewing sciences that is organized by KU Leuven: https://www.biw.kuleuven.be/studeren/maltingbrewing
After completing this course, you will be able to:
- Explain the importance of the 4 basic ingredients of beer in shaping beer taste and aroma
- Understand the different processing steps in malting and beer brewing
- Understand the key biochemical reactions occurring during each of these steps
- Recognize and describe the main beer styles, and understand how the brewing process contributes to the different beers
- Identify key factors affecting beer identity, quality, and stability
- Carry out basic sensory analyses of beers and identify key flavors and off-flavors and their molecular origin
- Bachelor degree in Sciences is recommended
- Understanding of key biological and biochemical concepts (enzymes, proteins, lipids, DNA, ions,…)
See FAQ for more info on the level of scientific knowledge that is recommended for this MOOC.
Module 0: Course introduction
Introduction to the main topics and goals covered in this MOOC.
Module 1: History and Overview of the brewing process.
A brief history of beer brewing and an overview of the basic steps in the brewing process.
Module 2: Beer ingredients: Malt
Exploration of the typical characteristics of cereals used to make different types of beer, as well as the different steps in the malting process.
Expert speakers module 2 :
- Prof. Christophe Courtin, Full professor at KU Leuven, Leuven Food Science and Nutrition Center, BE
- Dr. Sofie Malfliet, Operations Manager at Albert Maltings, BE
Module 3: Beer ingredients: Water
Focus on the importance of water composition, how water is treated and its influence on beer quality and taste. You will also investigate your local water quality.
Expert speaker module 3 :
- Prof. Hedwig Neven, Master brewer, Duvel-Moortgat, BE
Module 4: Beer ingredients: Hops and spices
Exploration of the typical characteristics of hops and spices used in beer brewing, and their effect on beer taste and aroma.
Expert speakers module 4 :
- Prof. Thomas Shellhammer, Nor’Wester Professor of Fermentation Science, Oregon State University, USA
- Dr. Gert De Rouck, Brew Master, KU Leuven, BE
Module 5: Beer ingredients: Yeast
Introduction to the different brewing yeasts, as well as their metabolites that influence beer.
Expert speakers module 5 :
- Prof. Kevin Verstrepen, Full professor at KU Leuven, Director of the VIB-KU Leuven Center for Microbiology, BE
- Prof. Bart Lievens, Professor at KU Leuven, BE
Module 6: The brewing process
Explanation of the main stages involved in beer brewing.
Expert speaker module 6 :
- Dr. Gert De Rouck, Brew Master, KU Leuven, BE
Module 7: Fermentation
Exploration of key biochemical reactions during fermentation.
Expert speaker module 7 :
- Anne-Françoise Pypaert, Brew Master, Orval Brewery, BE
Module 8: Filtration and packaging
Overview of filtration and different packaging types.
Expert speaker module 8 :
- Dr. David De Schutter, Innovation & Technology Development Director Europe, AB InBev Brewery, BE
Module 9: Beer quality and stability
Overview of beer quality checks, and what parameters affect beer stability.
Expert speaker module 9 :
- Prof. Charlie Bamforth, Distinguished Professor Emeritus, Department of Food Science and Technology, UC Davis, USA
Module 10: Beer assessment and tasting
Get hands-on experience in beer tasting and identifying key (off)flavors.
Expert speaker module 10 :
- Dr. Veerle Daems, Senior Sensory Scientist, Haystack Consulting, BE
Module 11: Final exam
Innovation Manager at KU Leuven and the Leuven Institute for Beer Research
Staff Scientist & Coordinator of the KU Leuven postgraduate in Malting and Brewing Sciences
Full professor at KU Leuven, Director of the VIB- KU Leuven Center for Microbiology, Director of the Leuven Institute for Beer Research
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