We will explore the complex microbial interactions and succession seen in the production of some ales. This will be a research project based course focused on questions of interest to brewers. The microbiology of many of the Belgian ales and some American dry hopped beers is quite complex and largely unexplored at the molecular level. The fermentation is natural and often involves mixed cultures of yeasts, and bacteria. Some microorganisms may participate in parallel, while others act in a sequential manner with a changing dominant biota during the course of fermentation. Little work has been done to characterize these organisms at the molecular level. Even less is known about the environmental influences affecting the selection and displacement of the series of organisms that grow in these ales and the contribution of minor byproducts including flavor active esters and other bioactive molecules produced during fermentation. Previous course work in chemistry and microbiology or molecular biology is required. Prerequisite: NS 296, Zymurgy.