Saturday, 23 July 2016

Another tour

I'm starting to think of next year's schedule. In particular the spring.

I've only visited around half of the states in the US. I really need to cross off a few more. The Midwest seems the obvious place. I've only been to Michigan, Wisconsin and Illinois. So plenty of new states ripe for plucking.

So if you're in that part of the world and would like to host a fat, old English (actually, probably Dutch by then) bloke, get in touch. I put on quite a show. No tap-dancing, but plenty of jokes and maybe an occasional song.

Obviously I'll be trying to shift copies of my book.







The Home Brewer's Guide to Vintage Beer
http://www.amazon.com/Home-Brewers-Guide-Vintage-Beer/dp/1592538827

Let's Brew - 1921 William Younger Btg DBS

As promised, here’s the longest-lived of William Younger’s Stouts, DBS.

Which I assume stands for Double Brown Stout. It was brewed from at least 1851 to 1949. Which a decent run for any beer. Despite what brewers may want you to believe, few beers live for centuries. A single century is rare enough.

How does it differ from MBS? It’s a little bit stronger, for one thing. And more heavily hopped. The grists are pretty similar: pale, black and amber malts, grits and caramel. Rather a lot of caramel, so it can’t be the 15,000 SRM kind. 500 SRM is a random-ish guess, purely based on getting the colour about right. They’re not that different. It makes you wonder why they bothered with both.

This is right in the middle of Younger’s grits period. Between 1913 and 1933 they used crazily large percentages of it in all their beers. Up to as much as 45% of the grist. Sometime later in the 1930’s the proportion of grits was greatly reduced. Just after the war they were using none at all, instead going for flaked barley as an adjunct.

This wasn’t voluntary. The use of maize products – which had to be imported – stopped during WW II. Brewers were told to use first flaked oats and later flaked barley instead. Restrictions continued in the immediate post-war years but by the early 1950’s maize, usually in the form of flakes, was once again a very common ingredient.


1921 William Younger Btg DBS
pale malt 6.50 lb 48.15%
black malt 0.50 lb 3.70%
amber malt 1.00 lb 7.41%
grits 5.00 lb 37.04%
caramel 500 SRM 0.50 lb 3.70%
Cluster 90 min 1.75 oz
Cluster 60 min 1.75 oz
Saaz 30 min 0.50 oz
Fuggles 30 min 1.50 oz
Goldings dry hops 1.00 oz
OG 1060
FG 1019
ABV 5.42
Apparent attenuation 68.33%
IBU 90
SRM 30
Mash at 156º F
Sparge at 160º F
Boil time 120 minutes
pitching temp 60º F
Yeast WLP028 Edinburgh Ale

Friday, 22 July 2016

Munich Helles vs. Dunkles in 1902 and 2014


As thromised, some more lovely numbers pertaining to Munich’s two most popular styles, Helles and Dunkles.

It’s going to be mostly numbers. The day is warm and my arse is lazy. Starting with a comparison of Dunkles and Helles in 1902:

Dunkles vs Helles in 1902
style Acidity OG Plato OG FG ABV App. Atten-uation Colour
Dunkles 0.18 13.52 1054.66 1019.14 4.55 65.01% 29.71
Helles 0.17 12.35 1049.68 1014.07 4.58 71.71% 9.21
difference -0.01 -1.18 -4.98 -5.07 0.03 6.70% -20.50

Despite having a gravity more than 1º Plato higher, Dunkles is on average a tiny bit weaker than Helles. And an awful lot darker. Nothing particularly unexpected there.

The pattern in 2014 is remarkably similar:

Dunkles vs Helles in 2014
style OG Plato OG FG ABV App. Atten-uation
Dunkles 12.58 1050.64 1010.88 5.18 78.53%
Helles 11.62 1046.62 1007.65 5.08 83.58%
difference -0.96 -4.02 -3.23 -0.10 5.05%


About a difference of 1º Plato in the OG, but a broadly similar ABV. That tells me that while the styles themselves may have changed, the relationship between the two has remained broadly similar.

Now let’s take a look at how Dunkles has changed over the years:

Dunkles 1902 vs 2014
style Acidity OG Plato OG FG ABV App. Atten-uation Colour
Dunkles 1902 0.18 13.52 1054.66 1019.14 4.55 65.01% 29.71
Dunkles 2014 12.58 1050.64 1010.88 5.18 78.53%
difference -0.95 -4.03 -8.26 0.63 13.52%


The gravity has dropped by 1º Plato, but the ABV has increased by more than 0.5%. Obviously due to a huge increase in the rate of attenuation.

Finally, how Helles has changed:

Helles 1902 vs 2014
style Acidity OG Plato OG FG ABV App. Atten-uation Colour
Helles 1902 0.17 12.35 1049.68 1014.07 4.58 71.71% 9.21
Helles 2014 11.62 1046.62 1007.65 5.08 83.58%
difference -0.73 -3.06 -6.42 0.50 11.87%

A slightly smaller drop in OG, but a similar increase in ABV.

That’s enough tables for now.

Thursday, 21 July 2016

Provincial Mild Ale 1946 – 1949

More Mild Ale numbers. And some unexpected ones at that.

I’m so glad that I split the London and provincial Milds. Because the two sets are surprisingly dissimilar. Something I hadn’t spotted previously.

First a word about where the breweries were located. Six were from Birmingham: Ansell, Atkinson, Dare, Davenport, Frederick Smith and Mitchell & Butler. Two from Exeter: City Brewery and St. Annes. Two from Norwich: Morgans and Steward and Patteson. Two from Portsmouth: Brickwood and Portsmouth United. And finally Burtonwood of Warrington.

The Birmingham Milds all have relatively high gravities. Coupled my decent attenuation, it means they’re mostly over 3.5% ABV. Which is very high for the period. If you remember, most of the London Milds were under 3% ABV. I’m not surprised that the Norwich Milds have some of the lowest gravities. Beers from rural areas tended to be weaker, for some reason.

Most interesting of all is the colour. Or rather lack of it. Because there’s only one of this set – Burtonwood – that’s properly dark.  Three examples – City, Brickwood, Portsmouth United and St. Annes are pale. That is, all the ones from Exeter and Portsmouth. The Birmingham beers are all semi-dark, as are those from Norwich.

The real fun comes when you compare the colours of the London and provincial Milds. Only one London example was pale and one semi-dark. All the rest were properly dark. Here’s a comparison of the London and provincial analyses:

London vs. provincial Mild Ale 1946 - 1949
region Price per pint d Acidity OG FG ABV App. Atten-uation colour
London 12.5 0.06 1030.3 1008.6 2.82 71.69% 101.4
Provinces 13.1 0.07 1032.2 1005.2 3.51 83.94% 43.81

Provincial beers were a halfpenny a pint dearer, slightly higher in gravity, considerably higher in ABV and much paler in colour than their London counterparts. The difference is much greater than I would have imagined. Given the higher FG and lower attenuation, my guess is that London Milds were sweeter.

Provincial Mild Ale 1946 - 1949
Year Brewer Beer Price per pint d Acidity OG FG ABV App. Atten-uation colour
1946 Lees K 1028.0
1946 Lees Bot. B 1030.0
1946 Lees BM 1033.0
1948 Lees K 1028.0
1948 Lees BM 1032.0
1948 Lees Bot. B 1030.0
1949 Ansell Mild Ale 13 0.05 1035.4 1007.4 3.64 79.10% 50
1949 Atkinsons Mild Ale 13 0.07 1034.6 1004.8 3.88 86.13% 50
1949 Brickwoods Mild Ale 13 0.06 1033.2 1004.8 3.70 85.54% 20.5
1949 Burtonwood Mild Ale 13 0.06 1027.5 1003.5 3.12 87.27% 80
1949 City Brewery Mild Ale 13 0.06 1032.6 1006.8 3.35 79.14% 21
1949 Dare Mild Ale 13 0.08 1034.6 1006.9 3.60 80.06% 58
1949 Davenport Mild Ale 13 0.07 1032 1007.9 3.12 75.31% 58
1949 Frederick Smith Mild Ale 13 0.06 1035 1008.6 3.42 75.43% 58
1949 Mitchell & Butler XX 18 0.05 1034.6 1003.9 4.00 88.73% 35
1949 Morgans Mild Ale 11 0.08 1027.7 1002.8 3.24 89.89% 50
1949 Portsmouth United Mild Ale 13 0.08 1029.3 1003.1 3.41 89.42% 19
1949 St. Annes Brewery Mild Ale 13 0.06 1034.9 1003 4.16 91.40% 20
1949 Steward & Patteson Mild Ale 11 0.10 1027.7 1004.5 3.01 83.75% 50
Average 13.08 0.07 1032.2 1005.2 3.51 83.94% 43.8
Sources:
Lees brewing records held at the brewery.
Whitbread Gravity book held at the London Metropolitan Archives, document number LMA/4453/D/02/002.

Next we’ll be moving on to the 1950’s.

Wednesday, 20 July 2016

Summer is here

I've just grabbed a Guinness Special Export from the fridge and I'm sitting in my undertrolleys*. A sure sign that it's over 30º C.

Here's a label to put you in a summery mood:


Hang on. Dolores is serving garlic prawns. Back in a minute. Or so


. . . . . . .


Back again. Salad for tea, because of the heat. Not that you needed to know that.

Back even further to the whole point of this. Book tarting.

20% off the threee Mega Series books I can manage to update. No images, my arsing level not having improved.

http://www.lulu.com/shop/ronald-pattinson/strong/paperback/product-21861079.html
http://www.lulu.com/shop/ronald-pattinson/mild-plus/hardcover/product-22723500.html
http://www.lulu.com/shop/ronald-pattinson/porter/hardcover/product-21398311.html



* Dolores reckons the correct spelling is undertrollies.

"You know what undertolleys means Dolores?"

"Yes. Underkecks. And "ies" is always the ending of words like that. It's U N D E R T R O L L I E S. That's what I leaned at school."

It's easy to see why I love her.

Let's Brew Wednesday

I’ve already mentioned that William Younger was a bit odd with their beer range. Nowhere was that more true than with their Stouts.

In first half of the 19th century they brewed Stouts that looked very much like those from London. And different from Younger’s Scottish-style beers in that the rate of attenuation was significantly higher. In the 1870’s they started a new range of Stouts, much more lightly hopped and with a poorer degree of attenuation. Sometimes they contained no fresh hops at, just spent hops from previous brews.

MBS, which appeared just before WW I, seems to combine attributes of the two older sets of Stout. It had a reasonable degree of attenuation, but was lightly hopped and used spent hops. It seems to have been discontinued in the 1930’s

This post WW I version is rather more heavily and thankfully without spent hops. It’s a nightmare writing a recipe with lots of spent hops in it. I’ve assumed, for recipe purposes, that spent hops have a tenth of the power of unused hops. No idea how accurate that is.

For William Younger, the recipe is incredibly complicated, with three different sorts of malt and caramel. Obviously, there’s a shitload of grits, too. Though not quite as many as it some of their other beers.

The hopping, in terms of varieties, is exactly the same as for all their other beers of this period: Kent, Saaz, British Columbia and Pacific. Not quite sure what Saaz was bringing to the part as the amount used was always pretty small.

For a compare and contrast exercise, next I’ll give you the recipe for DBS, the most long-lived of Younger’s Stouts. And the most normal-looking one.


1921 William Younger MBS
pale malt 6.25 lb 50.00%
black malt 0.75 lb 6.00%
amber malt 0.75 lb 6.00%
grits 4.25 lb 34.00%
caramel 500 SRM 0.50 lb 4.00%
Cluster 90 min 1.25 oz
Cluster 60 min 1.25 oz
Saaz 30 min 0.50 oz
Fuggles 30 min 1.00 oz
Goldings dry hops 1.00 oz
OG 1055
FG 1017.5
ABV 4.96
Apparent attenuation 68.18%
IBU 67
SRM 34
Mash at 152º F
Sparge at 160º F
Boil time 150 minutes
pitching temp 60º F
Yeast WLP028 Edinburgh Ale

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

Summer sale - 20% off my Mega-Book series

apart from Bitter. I get some effing error when I try to update it. So it's still full price.

The other three in the series are 20% off. I would have nice linky images, but I'm feeling knacked. And hot.

http://www.lulu.com/shop/ronald-pattinson/strong/paperback/product-21861079.html
http://www.lulu.com/shop/ronald-pattinson/mild-plus/hardcover/product-22723500.html
http://www.lulu.com/shop/ronald-pattinson/porter/hardcover/product-21398311.html

Here's a pretty BP label instead:



London Mild Ale 1946 -1949

You’ve probably forgotten the series I started on post-war beer styles. I know I had.

Then I was wondering today: what the hell can I write about? I need something quick and easy to write and full of numbers. Mild Ale in the late 1940’s seems obvious. But there’s rather a lot of them. Narrowing it down to just London-brewed beers makes the set more manageable.

Back then, Mild was still very popular in London. Though its popularity began to collapse in the 1950’s as Bitter became the capital’s favourite style. The first time I drank in London in the mid-1970’s, cask Mild had all but disappeared. And many pubs didn’t sell Mild at all, not even keg.

The immediate post-war years are also when average gravity hit a new nadir, though not quite as low as during WW I. Mild, as a cheap mass drink, suffered the most in terms of reduced gravity.  You can see the average gravity of all the Milds in the table is just over 1030. And the highest gravity is just 1033.7º. For Mainline, a beer sold as a strong Mild.

Whoops. I missed the Truman Best Mild at 1042.5º. But it did cost about 50% more at 19d a pint. Back in the 1920’s, that would have counted as an Ordinary Mild. Sad, isn’t it?

There’s a reason why none of the beers has an OG under 1027º. The minimum tax on a barrel of beer assumed an OG of 1027º. A beer with a lower OG still paid that rate of tax, so it made no economic sense to have a beer weaker.

All but one example is a dark Mild. And most are pretty dark. Certainly darker than many Milds were pre-war.  When many were what I’d call semi-dark, with colour values of 40-50º Lovibond. I’d reckon 80º Lovibond to be about the minimum for a properly dark Mild.

London Mild Ale 1946 -1949
Year Brewer Beer Price per pint package Acidity OG FG ABV App. Atten-uation colour
1946 Barclay Perkins Ale 13.5 bottled 0.06 1031.1 1008.8 2.89 71.70% 19.5
1946 Charrington X 11 draught 0.05 1028.7 1008.4 2.63 70.73% 120
1946 Courage X 11 draught 0.07 1030.4 1006.8 3.06 77.63% 90
1946 Mann Crossman X 12 draught 0.05 1032.5 1011.5 2.71 64.62% 100
1946 Meux X 11 draught 0.05 1028.1 1008.8 2.50 68.68% 105
1946 Taylor Walker X 11 draught 0.05 1028.4 1009.9 2.39 65.14% 100
1946 Taylor Walker Mainline 12 draught 0.04 1032 1010.9 2.73 65.94% 85
1946 Truman X 11 draught 0.05 1030.1 1010.8 2.49 64.12% 130
1946 Watney X 11 draught 0.08 1030.8 1006.5 3.15 78.90%
1946 Wenlock X 11 draught 0.05 1029.8 1010.4 2.51 65.10% 80
1946 Whitbread XX 11 draught 0.05 1030.8 1012.1 2.41 60.71% 85
1947 Watney X 11 draught 0.04 1030.7 1010.6 2.60 65.47% 100
1947 Whitbread XX 1027.6 1006.5 2.79 76.45% 90
1948 Barclay Perkins XX 14 draught 0.05 1031.4 1011.3 2.60 64.01% 108
1948 Charrington  XX 14 draught 0.06 1028.9 1007 2.84 75.78% 105
1948 Courage XX 14 draught 0.07 1031.3 1005.1 3.41 83.71% 55
1948 Mann Crossman XX 14 draught 0.07 1032.3 1009.3 2.98 71.21% 110
1948 Meux XX 13 draught 0.06 1028.1 1006 2.87 78.65% 215
1948 Taylor Walker Mainline 15 draught 0.05 1033.7 1012.1 2.79 64.09% 95
1948 Taylor Walker XX 13 draught 0.07 1026.8 1006.9 2.58 74.25% 80
1948 Truman XX 13 draught 0.06 1028.9 1007.7 2.75 73.36% 95
1948 Truman B MA 19 draught 0.06 1042.5 1010.4 4.17 75.53% 105
1948 Watney Best Ale 13 draught 0.07 1031.5 1010.3 2.74 67.30% 95
1948 Whitbread XX 13 draught 0.06 1029.1 1006.5 2.93 77.66% 85
1949 Barclay Perkins X 13 draught 1030.47 128
1949 Charrington MA 12 draught 0.05 1029.4 1010.3 2.47 64.97% 130
1949 Charrington  MA 12 draught 0.06 1028.5 1009.8 2.42 65.61% 130
1949 Courage MA 12 draught 0.05 1028.3 1007.5 2.69 73.50% 100
1949 Mann Crossman Mild Ale 13 draught 0.07 1032 1004 3.64 87.50% 100
1949 Meux XX 12 draught 0.06 1028.4 1005.3 3.00 81.34% 190
1949 Taylor Walker MA 12 draught 0.05 1029.7 1009.5 2.61 68.01% 75
1949 Tollemache Mild Ale 11 draught 0.06 1027.7 1005.4 2.89 80.51% 70
1949 Truman MA 12 draught 0.06 1029.7 1005.8 3.10 80.47% 85
1949 Watney X 12 draught 1028.62 104
1949 Wenlock MA 12 draught 0.05 1031.1 1011.7 2.50 62.38% 85
1949 Whitbread Best Ale 13 draught 0.05 1032.5 1009 3.04 72.31% 100
Average 12.5 0.06 1030.3 1008.6 2.82 71.69% 101.4
Sources:
Whitbread Gravity book held at the London Metropolitan Archives, document number LMA/4453/D/02/002.
Truman Gravity Book held at the London Metropolitan Archives, document number B/THB/C/252
Whitbread brewing records

Attenuation isn’t great, averaging just over 70%. I reckon they were leaving the FG reasonably high so the beer didn’t taste too watery. But it does mean that the average ABV is below 3% ABV. Meaning you’d need to be very determined to get more than mildly intoxicated.

There are examples from 11 different London breweries in the table. And not all the breweries of the day are represented. Until recently, it would have seem weird that so many different beers of one style were brewed in the capital. Then London’s brewing industry was reborn in a very happy development. Though for all the number of brewers today, I bet there aren’t 11 Milds regularly brewed in the capital.