The Anatomy of Craft Beer

It’s no secret that at Harbor & Hops, we love a delicious craft beer at the end of a long day. That’s why we offer such a wide selection of beers on tap. From dark stouts to crisp pilsners and everything in between, we know you’ll be able to find something that you love at our Jeffersonville taphouse.

But what exactly goes into making that delicious beer that you enjoyed this weekend? What makes craft beer different from your age-old Budweiser, Coors, or Corona? In today’s blog, we’ll teach you all about the four main ingredients that are found in every craft beer in order to give you a better understanding of just what makes these brews better than the rest. Keep reading to learn more, and stop by and visit us at Harbor & Hops in Jeffersonville for a great meal and delicious beer tonight!


It may come as a surprise to find out that craft beer is made up of 95% water. That means it’s healthy, right? Well, maybe not, but it does mean that the quality of the water used to make your beer is important. Where the water comes from plays a huge role in the final taste of your favorite craft brew. This is because the water’s level of mineral content depends on its source. 


Malt is what gives color to your craft beer, anywhere from a corn-like color to a dark, mocha color and everywhere in between. It also contributes largely to the aroma of your brew and it plays a part in the fermentation process, as the sugars derived from the malt provide all of the food that the yeast will consume and convert into alcohol. The color of your beer varies in intensity based on the type of malt used in the brewing process.


Are you a fan of IPAs? While they may not be for everyone, you can define an IPA by its level of bitterness. This bitterness comes from the amount of hops that are added while the beer is being brewed. Hops are the flowers of a perennial vine that contain a yellow powder called lupulin, and the resins and oils in this powder are essential for creating that IPA. Whether or not you are a fan of IPAs or other bitter beers, hops are one of the four main ingredients in every craft brew.


The last major ingredient that you’ll find in every beer is yeast. During the fermentation process, yeast consumes the sugar from the malt and converts it into alcohol and carbon dioxide. There are two main types of yeast: ale yeast and lager yeast. The flavor you get from the beer is largely dependent on the type of yeast used. Milder strains will allow the malt and hops flavor to shine through, while others that are more prominent give lighter, wheatier beers their flavor.

Try a Craft Beer at Harbor & Hops Today

Now that you know what goes into your delicious craft beer, it’s time to try them all! Okay, maybe not all at once, but at Harbor & Hops, we have a huge selection of craft beers on tap from breweries all over the country. Stop by and visit us this weekend to try a few of them for yourself!