Saturday, 4 September 2010

Pale Stout

I've mentioned this before. Pale Stout. I'd seen a record of it, but had no photo. I had been on one of my first archive visits, when I just took notes.

I rediscovered it this spring. I've been meaning to post about it ever since. But, well, you know, I've been busy, man. Places to go, people to see, beers to drink. Now autumn's here, I've more time.

There's a reason why I just stumbled over the log again. Part of yet another time-consuming project. I'd tell you more, but I don't want to spoil the surprise.

But enough of my mindless burbling. Here's the log in question:

Cool, eh? P Stout. I'm pretty sure that stands for Pale Stout. The beer certainly wasn't dark. 120 HP at the bottom left. That's the grist. 120 quarters of Hertfordshire pale malt.. The 1040 EKs below are the hops. Some sort of East Kents, from the 1803 season. There were 260 barrels brewed, so that's about 4 pounds of hops per barrel. Quite a lot, but nothing extreme for the period. Barclay Perkins Brown Stout of the same year was also hopped at 4 pounds a barrel.

28.5 is the gravity, given in pounds per barrel. 1079º in new money. 62.41 is the yield in brewers pounds per quarter. It's rubbish. A couple of decades later, it would always be 80 plus.

I hope you enjoyed squinting at the dawn of modern brewing.


Anonymous said...

What makes it a stout?

Martyn Cornell said...

Read more about pale stout in the 1840s here, when Beamish and Crawford were making it.

ZakAvery said...

So what makes it stout? The strength?

Alan said...

What gorgeous penmanship. A penman for sure.

Ron Pattinson said...

What makes it a Stout? The brewery called it one.

What we think of today as Stout was originally called Brown Stout. A strong beer brewed from brown malt. Pale Stout is the same thing, just brewed from pale malt. It's a very 18th-century way of defining beers.

Martyn Cornell said...

"Stout" originally just meant "strong beer", regardless of colour.

Thomas Barnes said...

I guess in modern terminology this would get slotted as a stock ale, old ale or barleywine.

What do the other lines mean, like "A40 Rain" in the header row, columns like "In and Out" or "141 cold" at the bottom of the left-hand column?

Perhaps a post on "how to read a 19th century beer recipe" is in order, so that we can play along at home.

Ron Pattinson said...

A40 Rain. That's the weather. "In and out" are the worts pre- and post-boil. "141 cold" is 141 barrels of cold water used to make Table Beer.

Thomas Barnes said...

Ron, I'd sussed out that "A40 Rain" was probably the weather, since the brewing record for the EI Porter in your next post lists "A47 Fair EE18."

I'm puzzled as what the "A XX" entry means, though. If it's average temperature in Fahrenheit, there were some very cold days in May of 1805. If it's average temperature in Celsius, then I'm surprised that Nelson didn't see palm trees in Portsmouth as he was setting out for Trafalgar!

My guess is that brewers kept a keen eye on the weather until they figured out exactly what made beer ferment or become infected. Either that, or the Barlcay Perkins brewer with the elegant copperplate handwriting was a frustrated meteorologist.

Ron Pattinson said...

Thomas, my guess would be that the A stands for air temperature. When they started brewing, so some ungodly hour like 05:30. That would explain the low temperatures. That looks a bit cold, but I can remember it snowing in May