A brewery that combines state-of-the-art technology and the celebration of ingredients, increases the production potential and, at the same time, ensures that craft recipes are respected: Birra Baladin has made it all possible, making the dream of its founder Teo Musso come true.
We needed a brewery that could adapt to the variety of Baladin recipes and would make the job of our master brewers easier - despite higher volumes - ensuring consistent production and impeccable quality.
The technology of Birra Baladin - which has been growing its own ingredients since 2006 - starts from the fields and continues in the modern production facility.
The brewhouse uses a fully automated technology which optimizes production times and energy consumption, combined with a high level of quality control and full flexibility to create new beer recipes. In the mash tun, the water/malt loading operation and the wort heating phase to activate the enzymatic process have been improved. The lauter tun ensures optimal filtration and automatically manages the discharge of brewers grains (currently used as animal feed).
The double brew kettle and whirlpool means that two production processes can be carried out at the same time. The vessels are equipped with a system developed for the specific needs of Baladin: hops (pellets, buds, or a mix of buds and pellets) and spices can be added automatically.
Particular attention has been given to the system that controls the flow of liquids (wort and beer), to ensure that they are sterile and never get in contact with the outside environment. The entire system is integrated in an automated cleaning and sterilization cycle.
To build our new facilities, we have relied on the cooperation with important Italian technical partners. It was our intention to promote the Italian know-how with an ambitious project in the field of beer-brewing. Possibly the most important one in Italy, so far: Baladin is currently the largest Italian craft brewery, in terms of size and production capacity.
A few examples: the equipment in the brewhouse has been built by Meccanica Spadoni from Orvieto, which has also built the smaller , 3-hectoliter system. This is used for educational purposes and was originally built for the students from the University of Gastronomic Sciences in Pollenzo.
The bottling plant has been built by Mas Pack from San Marzano Oliveto, and Gai, from Ceresole d’Alba, a renowned company in the wine-making industry and currently very active in the beer sector too. Thanks to their technologies, we have increased the bottle filling and labeling speed (from 3,000 to 6,000 bottles per hour; 10,000 with 33 cl bottles). We can bottle at higher temperatures, which helps to kick-start the refermentation process and ensures that the process is 100% sterile, so that our non-pasteurized beer is free from contaminations.
We use a robot that can autonomously handle 2,500 pallets stocked in three separate areas: the refermentation room, the cold room and the storage warehouse for the finished products. This system, in addition to optimizing spaces, ensures greater efficiency during the refermentation process and better stability of our products, thanks to the use of the cold room.
A flexible technology - supported by the laboratory for the analysis and propagation of yeasts (our “control room”, with the four strains selected by Baladin) - at the service of craftsmanship. We are able to develop new products and always be at the forefront of the sector.
Think of cans: Baladin was the first brewery in Italy to offer craft beer in aluminum cans: the legendary Pop, which affirms the concept of quality regardless of packaging. For its production, we now have a small-scale canning system designed and built thanks to the partnership with GAI.
And now we have Beermouth. Even if it takes inspiration from an old wine-based Piedmontese recipe (vermouth), it is made with state-of-the-art technologies. The 13 traditional botanicals are extracted in a dedicated lab, using ultrasounds and low-temperature vacuum distillation to preserve their fragrant aromas.
These are just a few examples of how research, technology and automation are Baladin’s allies to ensure the quality of our live beers.
The new plant in Piozzo, completed in 2016 in the Open Garden area, is a unique example of automation in the Italian beer-brewing industry. And, of course, it is much larger than the previous facility: the production capacity has increased from 25 to 50 hectoliters and is now able to meet the growing demand for Baladin craft beer. Research and construction required more than one and a half year. During this time, we had to find a way to bring together two aspects that are equally essential to us, but are difficult to combine: the necessary efficiency to optimize production times and energy consumption, and the critical flexibility to fully express the character of many different ingredients and, thus, of very different beers.