The Benefits of Rahr Two-Row Malt in Brewing

Rahr 2-Row Pale , also known as Brewer's Malt or simply Two-Row, is a highly popular base malt used in across the United States. This light-colored malt, with a Lovibond rating of around 1.8 (a very light gold), offers a range of desirable characteristics that make it a favorite among brewers.

One of the key features of Two-Row Malt is its sweet, clean, and smooth flavor profile. It has a slightly cracker-like taste that adds a pleasant element to the overall flavor. This malt is made from two-row barley, which is easily distinguishable by its two rows of seeds along the flowering head. This differs from six-row barley, which has, as the name suggests, six rows of seeds.

The production of Two-Row Malt involves the use of Harrington and Metcalf barley, which are grown on the western prairies of the United States. These high-quality barley varieties are carefully malted in Minnesota to produce a top-notch malt. The malt is low in total nitrogen, well modified, high in enzymes, and boasts excellent conversion properties during the brewing process.

One of the notable advantages of Rahr 2-Row Pale Malt is its ease of use in a single-step infusion mash. Brewers can rely on its high enzyme content to easily convert starches into fermentable sugars, making the brewing process more efficient. This malt also offers excellent fermentation characteristics, allowing for a smooth and consistent brewing experience.

In terms of appearance, Pilsen malt, a type of Two-Row malt, is renowned for its extremely light color. With a Lovibond rating ranging from 1.1 to 2 degrees, it is almost transparent in appearance. This light color contributes to the crisp and clean taste that is characteristic of Pilsen-style beers.

While the flavor of Pilsen malt may be thinner compared to regular Two-Row malt, this is intentional and desirable when brewing pilsners. The focus is on creating a light and refreshing beer, sacrificing some maltiness and aroma for a more delicate flavor profile.

Rahr 2-Row Pale Malt, especially in its Pilsen malt form, is a highly versatile and widely used base malt in the brewing industry. Its light color, clean flavor, and excellent conversion properties make it a go-to choice for brewers aiming to create a range of beers, from pilsners to pale ales and beyond.

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What Does 2 Row Mean In Brewing?

In brewing, the term “2 row” refers to a specific type of barley used as a key ingredient in the brewing process. This type of barley is called two-row barley because it is distinguished by having two rows of seeds along the flowering head.

Here are some key points about 2 row barley in brewing:

1. Definition: Two-row barley is a variety of barley that has two rows of seeds along the flowering head, as opposed to six-row barley, which has six rows of seeds.

2. Brewing significance: Two-row barley is the preferred choice for many brewers due to its specific characteristics that are beneficial for brewing beer.

3. Flavor: Two-row barley tends to have a milder, smoother flavor profile compared to six-row barley. This makes it more suitable for producing beers with a clean and balanced taste.

4. Enzyme content: Two-row barley has a higher enzyme content compared to six-row barley. Enzymes play a crucial role in converting starches into sugars during the mashing process, which is essential for fermentation.

5. Fermentability: Two-row barley typically has higher fermentability compared to six-row barley. This means that it provides a higher yield of fermentable sugars, resulting in a higher content in the finished beer.

6. Protein content: Two-row barley generally has a lower protein content compared to six-row barley. This is desirable for brewing because excessive protein can lead to haze formation in the beer.

7. Utilization: Two-row barley is widely used in the production of various beer styles, including lagers, ales, and stouts. It is a versatile grain that can contribute to a wide range of flavors and characteristics in the final product.

The term “2 row” in brewing refers to two-row barley, which is a preferred choice for many brewers due to its flavor, enzyme content, fermentability, and protein levels. It plays a crucial role in the brewing process and contributes to the overall quality and characteristics of the beer.


Rahr 2 Row, also known as Brewer's Malt or Two-Row, is the most commonly used base malt in the United States. It is a light-colored malt with a sweet, clean, and slightly cracker-like flavor profile. Made from two-row barley, this malt is distinguished by having two rows of seeds along the flowering head.

Rahr 2 Row is made from high-quality Harrington and Metcalf barley, which is grown on the western prairies of the US and malted in Minnesota. It is well modified, low in total nitrogen, and high in enzymes, making it easily convertible with a single step infusion mash.

One of the key features of Rahr 2 Row is its light and clean flavor. With a Lovibond measurement of around 1.8, it has a very light gold color. This makes it an excellent choice for brewing light-colored beers such as pilsners. Pilsen malt is typically very light in color, ranging from 1.1 to 2 degrees Lovibond. This lightness gives pilsner beers a crisp and thin taste, sacrificing some maltiness and aroma for a true pilsner experience.

Rahr 2 Row is a versatile and reliable base malt that is favored by brewers for its consistent quality and smooth flavor. Whether you are brewing a pilsner or any other style of beer, this malt provides a solid foundation for your brew, allowing the other ingredients to shine.

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Thomas Ashford

Thomas Ashford is a highly educated brewer with years of experience in the industry. He has a Bachelor Degree in Chemistry and a Master Degree in Brewing Science. He is also BJCP Certified Beer Judge. Tom has worked hard to become one of the most experienced brewers in the industry. He has experience monitoring brewhouse and cellaring operations, coordinating brewhouse projects, and optimizing brewery operations for maximum efficiency. He is also familiar mixology and an experienced sommelier. Tom is an expert organizer of beer festivals, wine tastings, and brewery tours.