Tuesday, 15 September 2009

Truman's Burton-brewed beers in 1914

Sometimes brewing logs are simple. Clear and in neat handwriting. Then there are Truman's. It's taken me a while to get the hang of them.

I blame those who catalogued them. Let me explain. I'd already looked at Truman's logs from the 19th century. Both Ale and Porter. Which is why the WW I logs were such a shock. I couldn't find any beer names I recognised. P2, P3. 4, 5, 7, 8. What the hell was all this stuff. Where were the Porters, Stouts and X Ales? I got all confused.

The answer was simple. They were logs from a different brewery. Not their original Brick Lane premises, but their Burton brewery. Despite what it says in the archive's catalogue. That's why I couldn't find the beers I expected. Because they didn't brew any of them there. Like at other Burton breweries, many beers had names that were just numbers. With 1 the strongest and 9 the weakest.

Once I'd got that sorted out and looked at them a little more closely, pretty much everything fell into place. Though the scrawly handwriting is still a pain. Here's what they were brewing in Burton in 1914:

Unfortunately, I missed a couple. Most notably No. 1. It's easily done. There were only a couple of brews each year.

You'll notice that the attenuation is greater than in some others we've looked at recently. There's a simple explanation. I'm pretty sure it really is the racking gravity that's given in the logs.

That's about all I have to say at the moment. When I've worked my way through the rest of WW I, there'll be more to discuss. Just wait until you see what happened in 1917.

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