Itâ€™s an unlikely beer-drinking toast: â€œHereâ€™s to El-Tee-Pee-Won!â€ Yet, the secret to optimal foam in the head of a freshly poured brew, according to Cornell food science research, is just the right amount and kind of barley lipid transfer protein No. 1, aka LTP1.
Bitter compounds found in hops, like iso-alpha acids, are important to brewers, says Cornellâ€™s Karl J. Siebert, principal investigator and author of â€œRecent Discoveries in Beer Foam,â€ set for publication in next issue of the Journal of the American Society of Brewing Chemists.
â€œDissolved gases in the beer â€“ carbon dioxide and, in some instances, nitrogen â€“ play a role. So do acidity, some ions, ethanol levels, viscosity and numerous other factors that have been tried by brewers and scientifically tested,â€ says Siebert, professor of food science and technology at the New York State Agricultural xperiment Station in Geneva, N.Y. â€œBut LTP1 is the key to perfect beer foam.â€
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