Friday, 19 February 2010

Hop pocket

I'm feeling pretty stupid. How on earth could I have missed it? Through not looking properly. As simple as that.

What is it I've missed? Hop additions. Despite what I said yesterday, most 20th century Barclay Perkins logs contain them. I blame the way they noted the quantities: in pockets.And the fact it's just a scrawl in the top margin.

Here's an example from 1921:

Could be clearer, could it? Actually, it could.

The first lot of numbers show how many hops went into each of the coppers. 2.25 in copper 1, 2.5 in copper 2, 1.25 in copper 3, 0.5 in copper 4. 6.5 pockets in total. I assume there's a column for each of the three types of hops.

The second set of numbers give the timings of the additions for each copper. 0.5 poc Rogers at Inch; 0.5 poc Reeves at 1 hour. 0.5 poc Rogers at Inch; 0.5 poc Reeves at 1 hour. 0.25 poc Rogers at Inch; 0.25 poc Reeves at 1 hour. 3 poc Rogers at Inch; 0.25 poc Reeves at 1 hour.

All four coppers were boiled for 1.5 hours. So the last addition was half an hour before the end of the boil. The second addition at "inch" (whenever that might be). I assume the remainder were added at the start of the boil.

Rogers and Reeves are the names of hop merchants. The hops used were:

So the Reeves were 1920 Mid Kents, Rogers 1919 mid Kents.

Can you see what the problem is? The hop additions are given in pockets. The hop quantities are given in hundredweights, some unit of 28 pounds and pounds. (A hop pocket was between 1.5 and 2 hundredweights.) The hop additions add up to 6.5 hundredweights. Not a number divisible by three. Even though the quantities for each type of hop are almost identical.

I'm sure all the ionformation is there. I just can't quite make sense of them.Your help will be gratefully received.


Graham Wheeler said...

The bottom snippet makes sense, in hundredweight, stones, and pounds and the totals add up to 11 cwt 1 stone = 1260 lbs. The 1/3 refers to 1/3rd of a stone, but what they use that for I can't say. Perhaps it is rounded for entry into their stores book (the lbs column adds up to exactly 1 stone).

The top snippet I can hardly read, leave alone understand. Can't you just total the number of pockets and divide 1260 by that to determine the weight of a pocket?

A discrepancy might indicate that some hops are going somewhere other than the copper, like the underback.

Anyway, perhaps I didn't understand the question.

At "inch" is worthy of investigation. I have seen inch used elsewhere on here in conjunction with the fermentation vessels, and I assumed that it was a dip measurement. Can't see that being the case with a copper in full thrutch though. Must be brewerspeak for something else.

if a pocket is 1.5 cwt, a pock must be massive.

Ron Pattinson said...

Graham, the 1/3 just means that type of hops made up a third of the total (approximately).

The middle unit isn't stones because it's 28 pounds. Seems an odd unit to use, but I've seen it elsewhere for hops.

The problem is that pockets didn't have a fixed weight.

The inch thing has got we wondering. As you say, it sounds a bit like a dip thing. It's not a term I've seen used in conjuction with coppers in this way.

Graham Wheeler said...

Yes, of course, mental block, it is two stone, which apparently is a 'tod' and a wool measurement originally it would seem.

Graham Wheeler said...

A glance through Chamber's reveals that 'at inch' probably means 'at inchoation' = at the beginning.

Which puts you in another fix, because it leaves you with lots of hops with nowhere for them to go.

Ron Pattinson said...

Graham, I'm pretty sure I've seen "make up" and "inch" in one lot of additions.

Graham Wheeler said...

Ron, inchoation is probably the closest you can get without the aid of witchcraft.

Fortunately, there are not many places that hops can go, so it should be a process of elimination.

1). In the copper while it is filling and before boiling has begun.

2) At the beginning of the boil (at inchoation?)

3) Some time during the boil (needs a time)

4) At the end of the boil (probably also requires a time or some other indication)

5). In the hop back before the copper is cast onto them (for aroma).

At the moment, for various reasons, the good money should go on option 1.

As I can see no coherence between the two lists given in snippet 1, something quite different could be going on. Wrong tree springs to mind.

I should have said hopback and not underback in my first post here.