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What is Malt Beer?

If craft beer is the great equalizer in the beer world, malt beer is the king of them all.

In this post, we’ll take a look at the fascinating and refreshing history of malt beer, along with its variety of flavors, brewing process, nutrition facts, and health benefits.

Malt alcoholic beverages have been around since ancient times. The use of barley and other grains to produce beer has been a tradition in many cultures for centuries.

Today, malt beer is one of the most popular drinks around the world. It’s an essential element in almost any craft brewery’s repertoire.

Definition Of Malt Beer

Malt beer is an alcoholic beverage made from malted grain (typically barley). It undergoes a process known as malting which involves soaking grains in water to start the germination process.

The germination process breaks down complex starches in the grain into simpler sugars which can then be fermented by yeast to create alcohol.

History Of Malt Beer

The history of malt beer goes back thousands of years. It was first developed by civilizations across Europe during medieval times and then spread to other parts of the world over time.

In America, colonial settlers adopted it as their own and helped popularize it even further during their time period. Today, it remains one of the most popular beer styles around the world with a wide range of varieties available to choose from.

Types Of Malt Beer

There are many different types of malt beer available on the market today including:

  • Pale Ale: A type that is light-colored with a slightly sweet flavor and a hoppy aroma.
  • Amber Ale: This type has a copper-brown color and milder flavor than pale ales with hints of caramelized sugar or roasted grains.
  • Brown Ale: A dark brown type that has a nutty flavor with notes of chocolate or coffee beans present in some varieties.
  • Bock: This type has a darker color than most other types and typically has a sweet malty flavor with subtle hints of hops present in some varieties.

Nutrition Facts Of Malt Beer

Those looking at leading healthier lives while still indulging in an occasional beverage choice can look towards malt beers due to its nutritional value! Here are some highlighted benefits you can get from certain brands:

  • Low carb content compared to other beers such as lagers or ales
  • Contains minerals such as magnesium, calcium, potassium, and iron
  • High levels of B vitamins which are important for energy production
  • Low-calorie content compared to other alcoholic beverages
  • Contains antioxidants that help fight oxidative damage from free radicals

Brewing Process For Malt Beer

Beer brewing can be broken down into four basic steps – malting, mashing/boiling, fermentation, and aging/conditioning – but there are variations depending on what type you’re making!

Generally speaking, when creating malt beers these would be its defining steps:

  • Malting – involves soaking grains (most commonly barley) in water which triggers sprouting before they are kilned at temperatures between 86–140°F (30–60°C) depending on if brewer wants a light or dark malt respectively
  • Mashing/Boiling – mash converts starches within grains into sugars that yeast can feed off during fermentation; the boiling phase helps extract bitterness from hops
  • Fermentation – sugar created from mashing is consumed by yeast which produces ethyl alcohol & carbon dioxide
  • Aging/Conditioning – allows flavors like hops & yeast characters to come together; how long depends on the brewer’s preference

Health Benefits Of Drinking Malt Beer

Malt beer may not only taste delicious but it could also provide some health benefits too! Here are just some potential positives associated with drinking responsibly this beverage:

  • Rich source of B vitamins (niacin & thiamin) which help metabolism & boost energy levels
  • Contains essential minerals such as iron phosphorus & potassium
  • Good source of fiber & antioxidants which reduce inflammation & damage caused by free radicals
  • Contains low cholesterol levels so might be beneficial for heart health overall


At its core malt beer is an alcoholic beverage made from malted grain (mainly barley). Its use dates back thousands of years across multiple civilizations making it one incredibly enduring drink!

Moreover, there’s lots of variety when comes to types so plenty of experiments to try out plus potential physical health benefits if taken responsibly! So why not seek locally brewed craft options near you next time looking for a pint?

Author Image Fabian
I’m Fabian, homebrewer and beer taster. I’m also the editor of Beer100. I love travelling the world and trying out new handcraft beer and different beer styles. I’m not an expert in brewing beer, but I know a few things about beer, which I share on this blog. If you need help or have a question, please comment below.

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