Wednesday, 27 May 2009

Let's Brew Wednesday - 1955 Whitbread Best Ale

The last Mild in the current series. Boo hoo.

Whitbread - Best Ale - 1955

We've seen the Whitbread Best Ale from 1950. Here is the same beer but 5 years on. What do we notice about this one? The numbers are pretty much same with the color being just a bit darker.

Very similar to the 1950 edition. They use mostly their own malt so the rules that I applied last time to choosing your own malts apply to here. You'll notice that the crystal is the same which is right around 75L or so. Same percentage of the final grist also. The biggest difference you'll see is the amount of sugar they use. In 1950 they used only 6% sugar, here, in 1955 they use over 14% most of it being the dark No. 3. This should give a little less attenuation but have a lot more of that dark fruity character.

This is the first time I've seen such old hops used in such quantity. You'll notice these are form 1947...thats 8 bloody years old. Even under the best possible conditions there would be massive degradation. Even though there are only 8BU this should have a good amount of grassy
hop character from the amount of 'greens' that go into this beer.

Tasting Notes
Dark stone fruits, sultanas with a marked caramel flavor. Definite biscuits, lots of hay and some tannins on the palate with a sweeter finish that doesn't dry out completely.


Bill in Oregon said...

Excellent choice to finish out the milds. It's interesting to see recipes that are a few years apart from the same breweries to see how the recipes changed and evolved. It does loook like they may have been using this mild as a way to clear out their old hops. Maybe economic moves like this were one more reason for Mild's continued decline.

Kristen England said...

Next month should be really good. Its 'anything alcoholic' month. Gives us a chance to do anything we choose! Suggestions perhaps?