Scientists unlock perfect beer foam
A mug of beer without a frothy head is like a bar tab without a tip. And now, it’s serious science to researchers at Cornell University, who have discovered the secret to a healthy foam.
Watch what happens to beer when placed in a hot pan:
Cornell’s Karl J. Siebert, principal investigator and author of "Recent Discoveries in Beer Foam," set for publication in the next issue of the Journal of the American Society of Brewing Chemists, said the key to a good head is just the right amount and kind of barley lipid transfer protein No. 1, also known as LTP1.
Bitter compounds found in hops, like iso-alpha acids, are important to brewers, says Siebert. "Dissolved gases in the beer – carbon dioxide and, in some instances, nitrogen – play a role. So do acidity, some ions, ethanol levels, viscosity and numerous other factors that have been tried by brewers and scientifically tested," says Siebert, professor of food science and technology at the New York State Agricultural Experiment Station in Geneva, N.Y. "But LTP1 is the key to perfect beer foam."