Barley background
Barley background

The BrewDeck Podcast is a brewing podcast featuring exclusive interviews with your favorite brewers, distillers, and suppliers.

We’ll cover topics from selecting and sourcing raw materials for production to innovative new trends and products; you won’t want to miss an episode. So mark your calendars, grab your favorite craft beer or spirit, and join us for some inspiration – Cheers!




Smoothie Sours are an emerging infamous beer style. They’ve been around for a few years and have grown in popularity among craft beer consumers. The style consists of a soured beer with the addition of lactose (milk sugar) and different fruit purees combined to make a malt beverage big on fruit flavor and aroma with an added sour kick to enhance the flavors. The resulting beer tastes a lot like a typical fruit smoothie. While it may be a polarizing beer style, it is becoming an industry standard, even though it’s been criticized, perhaps unfairly, by many in the beer world for not being a beer. Why? Smoothie Sours tend to gush and slush out of the package. Yet, new Smoothie Sour releases continue to be some of the most sought-after and traded craft beer styles. Today’s guests are Dan Russo of Oakshire Brewing and John Galante of Alvarado Street Brewery, experts who share their different experiences as well as tips and tricks to brew Smoothie Sours successfully.


S.2, E.10 – Hot Take on Cold IPAs

Cold IPA is a newer term for a style of beer that aims for a crisper IPA coined by Kevin Davey. Kevin gets into the distinct flavor profile of the Cold IPA and how this feeds into his decision to name it as such, and then we take a deep dive into the types of hops barley, and adjuncts that go into it.

S.2, E.9 – Spill the Pils

What's the most important attribute in a pilsner malt? One veteran maltster and four craft brewers share their favorite pilsner malt and hop, plus different philosophies of malting and brewing from traditional to more modern interpretations of pilsners.

S.2, E.8 – Bulking Up, going from bags to silo

For breweries of a specific size, the question of silos will arise at some point or another. To help us get to grips with this critical yet intensive and expensive step, we are joined by Jack Paulson from Newleaf Equipment Solutions to share the vast amount of wisdom that he has gained from over two decades in the industry.
Jack takes us through some of that journey, looking back at landmark moments for himself and the culture, before diving into some specifics related to the choice to upgrade to a silo and the options available.
We get into the size of different silos, materials used, and some of the features that Jack recommends to his customers regularly. He then comments on some potential hurdles encountered when installing a silo, highlighting the challenges posed in smaller counties where municipalities are not accustomed to brewery-specific silos.
Listeners can expect an extremely comprehensive look at when to think about taking a step up, with particular attention given to the time and money involved in this regard. So for anyone who is considering this down the road, make sure to give this great episode an ear!

S.2, E.7 – Spring Cleaning

Maintaining a high standard of cleanliness is essential to brewing beer, and many brewers could produce a better product by taking sterilization more seriously.

Today we have Dana Johnson and George Allen from Birko on the show to share their expertise on best practices for sterilization in the brewing lifecycle. Dana is Technical Director of Craft Brewing and Distilling at Birko, and George is the Business Development Director for Brewing and Distilling at the same firm. Our conversation starts with George and Dana giving listeners a window into their different careers the how they got to occupy their current roles at Birko.

S.2, E.6 – Dextrin Malts, What’s up with that Chit?

Dextrin malts are specially made to boost your beer’s body, taste and mouthfeel.

To dive into the secrets of brewing with these malts, we’re joined by Mike Heinrich, Sales Manager at Great Western Malting, local expert Bob Hansen of Briess Malt & Ingredients Co, along with Dirk Schneider and Tom Lembrick of BESTMALZ in Germany.

S.2, E.5 – Breeding Hops & Growing Crops

The highest quality beer can only be made when there is a connection between farmers and brewers.

Today we talk about the importance of this connection while also hearing insights into hops growing and beer brewing from today’s guests; Yakima Chief Ranches CEO Jason Perrault and supply chain ‘hoperations’ manager Joe Catron, and Bale Break Brewery co-owners Kevin Smith and Kevin Quinn.

S.2, E.4 – Turning Rain into Whisky and Beer

Today we welcome Eddie Douglas onto the show to talk about the new Sassy varietal known as Malt 2.0. As the commercial director for Bairds Malt, Eddie comes with a wealth of knowledge and shares a variety of details on what makes Bairds’ barley so sensational. He tells us how care is taken from the very beginning of the barley’s life cycle, starting from the seed to its germination and beyond. The Sassy varietal itself came through demonstration plots in Scotland, which was a good testing ground where it proved itself to handle the tough climate.

S.2, E.3 – Life is Like a Bucket of Cholaca

Today we sit with Tim Matthews of CANarchy Craft Brewery Collective (Oskar Blues, Cigar City, Deep Ellum, Perrin, Squatters, Three Weavers, and Wasatch) and Ira Leibtag, founder of Cholaca. Tim and Ira teamed up to successfully create a tasty, refreshing beer with the addition of cacao, and later, coconut.

S.2, E.2 – Sucking Diesel

Today we sit with James Loughran from Loughran Family Malts to talk about the art of farming and preparing barley. According to some, this cornerstone ingredient of craft beer takes a tremendous amount of care, planning, and even magic.

We open the show by asking James about the challenges and rewards of farming this important grain. After learning about the finer nuances of the grain’s journey, James walks us through the history of his family’s farm, sharing stories about its evolution. James continues by explaining why the Irish climate is especially favorable to his farm and touches on harvesting months, frosty nights, and, of course, Irish mythology and local legend.

S.2, E.1 – This Juice is Worth the Squeeze!

With the ability to complement nearly every style of beer, crafting with fruit is how top breweries are creating some of their most innovative brews. Today we speak with Oregon Fruit Products Director of Brewing Sales Chris Hodge about the benefits of putting fruit in your beer.


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