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Do It Yourself: From Cornfield to Floor Malt

In our previous post we talked about the difficulties we had finding someone to harvest our Wigrich Corn. With time running out, we picked the entire five acres ourselves by hand.  It was a hard and dirty job but it had to be done or the crop would go to waste.

Today our corn crop is at the Farmstead Malt House at Rogue Farms in Tygh Valley.  Now it’s time to shuck the corn to prepare it for malting.   The machines we bought to shuck the corn for us, let us down. So we were left with only option, to shuck our like farmers did centuries ago.

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Tygh Valley Corn Shucking_002

The task was daunting.  We had sixteen bins of ears to pick, each containing thousands of cobs and weighing thousands of pounds.

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Tygh Valley Corn Shucking_11-05-14_040

As difficult as it was to hand pick and hand shuck our corn, bigger challenges lie ahead.

Next, we have to shell the corn and don’t know if the machine we bought for that purpose will work either.

Finally, we will floor malt the corn.  This puts us in truly uncharted territory.  No-one has tried to floor malt corn before and so we have very little information to guide us.  Our team of maltsters has been experimenting with test batches of corn floor malt for the past several months, trying to figure out the best techniques and timing for steeping, germinating, flipping and kilning.

So, while we hope we have it all figured out, chances are we’ll make some more mistakes, but we’ll learn from those mistakes and eventually get it right.  And our Rogue Farms corn floor malt will find its way to our Brewery and Distillery in Newport where it will be milled and mashed into something unique and truly revolutionary.

Join us at Rogue Farms this fall and watch us grow beers, spirits, ciders and sodas from ground to glass.

roguefarms grow the revolution


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