Wednesday, 2 February 2011

Let's Brew Wednesday - 1923 Barclay Perkins XLK

Funny thing, memory. It can play strange tricks on you. Just an observation.

XLK. It was one of Barclay Perkins standard beers for a very long time. It was first brewed in the 1880's and was still around after WW II. It started out with a gravity of 1053, but by 1945 was down to 1036. This beer is about in the middle of those two extremes.

What does XLK mean? The LK means "London Keeping". The X just that it was standard strength. Not that a 1920's drinker would have called it that. They'd have just ordered Bitter. Because that's what it was: Barclay Perkins ordinary draught Bitter.

If you look to your right you'll see a price list from the early 1940's. It shows you exactly where it slotted into their range: between Best Mild and Burton. Don't you just wish you could find that set of five draught beers on the bar? I know I do.

Just had a thought. What if me and Kristen do you a full set of Barclay Perkins draught beers for one particular year? Then you can recreate that old-time pub feeling in the comfort of your own shed, basement or garage. But remember, you'll have to invite me around for a few pints.




Not feeling that chatty today. I ate soemthing on Sunday that disagreed with my stomach. I would blame Dolores, but I cooked Sunday dinner. And made my own sandwiches for tea. Who else can I blame?



While I ponder that weighty question, over to Kristen . . . . .






Barclay Perkins - 1923 - XLK
General info: How about a tasty bitter shall we? A handsome fella with a bunch of different pale malts. The twist comes with the colorant being No2 and No3 invert. They give nearly the entire color to the beer. One could use caramel in their place but you would lose the flavor you bring with the color. Using dark inverts is a very cool way to bring along a lot of the dark stone fruit flavors without adding any sort of dark or roasty flavors you would get out of a darker crystal malt.
Beer Specifics

Recipe by percentages
Gravity (OG)
1.047

24.8% American 6 Row
13% Flaked Maize
Gravity (FG)
1.009

9.1% English 2 Row
8.7% Invert No2
ABV
5.07%

28.7% English 2 Row
5.2% Invert No3
Apparent attenuation
80.85%

10.4% English 2 Row
0% 0
Real attenuation
66.23%







IBU
33.1

Mash
1.5hmin@153°F
0.81qt/lb

SRM
9


1.5hmin@67.2°C
1.69L/kg

EBC
17.7










Boil
2.25 hours













Homebrew @ 70%
Craft @ 80%
Grist
5gal
19L
10bbl
10hl
American 6 Row
2.22
lb
1.013
kg
120.67
lb
46.62
kg
English 2 Row
0.82
lb
0.373
kg
44.46
lb
17.18
kg
English 2 Row
2.58
lb
1.173
kg
139.72
lb
53.98
kg
English 2 Row
0.94
lb
0.426
kg
50.81
lb
19.63
kg
Flaked Maize
1.17
lb
0.533
kg
63.51
lb
24.54
kg
Invert No2
0.78
lb
0.355
kg
42.34
lb
16.36
kg
Invert No3
0.47
oz
13.4
g
25.40
lb
9.81
kg





486.90



Hops








Goldings 4.5% 120min
1.27
oz
35.9
g
78.55
oz
1.898
kg
Goldings 4.5% 30min
0.62
oz
17.7
g
38.70
oz
0.935
kg
Goldings 4.5% dry hop
0.42
oz
11.8
g
25.77
oz
0.623
kg









Fermentation
68°F /20°C















Yeast
Nottingham ale yeast

1335 British Ale Yeast II  - WLP025 Southwold Ale Yeast









Tasting Notes:
Pomme fruit, grain husk, biscuits and a 'general' fruity character. Clean hop flavor with a punch of tannic hops at the end really dry this out. Very very crisp and clean. Very elegant notes of plums dance on the tongue after you swallow.

17 comments:

marquis said...

Looking at the price list from the 1940s was interesting.When at school we used to nip into the Wolds Hotel for a pint of Shipstone's during the lunch break;the bitter was 1/6d a pint then.That was 1962/3 so prices hadn't risen that steeply by then.

Korev said...

Why is this recipe different to the LBW XLK from 8 Dec 2010 different time of year? Yes, I'm paying attention!

Ron Pattinson said...

Korev, because not every brew was identical.

Ron Pattinson said...

Marquis, ah, the inflation of the 1970's.

Mild was still under 3 bob a pint when I started drinking in 1972.

Arctic Alchemy said...

Help me understand the three different 2 row malts ? Different Maltsters ?

Also same Q's as Korev

Oblivious said...

Is Kristen still using a combination of treacle and golden syrup to replicate No3 Sugar?

Andrew Elliott said...

Arctic Alchemy: 2-row isn't 2-row isn't 2-row... as simple as many people treat it, the base pale 2-row is different based on which maltster does the work. For example, Munton's Maris Otter to me has a deeper, sweeter flavor while Crisp Malting's version is a bit brighter and dryer tasting. Using a blend of different maltsters is a way to add complexity just from the base malt and also allows for wiggle room within the supply chain.

Kristen England said...

Re: Pale malts combinations

So when I write 3 different types of pale malt or the like thats what I mean. I'm not taking different ways to make it (high dried, etc) I'm talking straight pale malt. They can be from different maltsters or just different lots (happens a lot...ha ha). Each malt has a different character (even a little) and will lend that by proportion to the finished beer. If its something specific like mild malt I'll specify.

Re invert No2/3.

Yes, you can do a combo of Golden and treacle. After chatting with a sugar scientist from one of the major sugar companies I've been doing a lot lately experimenting with black strap and home made invert. The only reason basically is that mostly everyone on earth can get white sugar and blackstrap. A simple No1 invert is easy with some acid and white sugar. A little black strap and you are good. This works in a pinch and is better than doing without. That being said, if you can get Invert No3, get it.

Re: Same beer, diff recipe
Much more often than not do I see that the beers are not even close to being exactly the same. A few changes here and there. Definitely with the hopping. However, when you make the beers and drink them side by side they are very very similar. Its amazing to see what absolute knowledge of the processes and ingredients the brewers had back then. Sadly today, I would guess maybe 2% of the worlds brewers would have even a single idea of how to do this.

Mark Oregonensis said...

If you truly do choose to recreate a pub's beer and ale selection from a particular year, I'd ask you to consider a year in the 19th C, once the popularity of X ales is fully in swing. 1887, perhaps, although it is hard to defend a randomly selected number.

I just find that I really like the mild recipes you have provided from that time (the 1890 Whitbread X, from Mild!, is almost constantly on cask at my place).

Craig said...

So Kristen,

Is it possible to make an invert 3 from scratch? Is it just cooking the daylights out of the sugar? Invert 1 is easy, and 2 is just a more golden version of that, right? 3, it seems, is really dark. I've used demerra in the past, which goes golden nicely, and then a darker caramel colored fairly quickly, too. Can I just keep going to make 3?

Paul! said...

Kristen,
More information on how your making some of the inverts would be really helpful. I try to make most of the recipes that are posted here yet always feel a bit wonky about the sugars since golden treacle is the only available syrup in my area.

Graham Wheeler said...

Oblivious said...
Is Kristen still using a combination of treacle and golden syrup to replicate No3 Sugar?

One thing about producing homebrew recipes is to homebrewify them without distracting too much from the original idea.

I doubt if anybody could tell the difference between whether or not the sugar is inverted, so it seems pointless worrying much about inversion. All that is necessary to imitate brewers' invert is to get the blend of molasses and the colour somewhere near right.

Now muscovado sugar is unrefined sugar containing a high level of molasses and many bulk suppliers give a specification for it.

Dark muscovado is quoted by one supplier as having a colour of 30,000 ICUMSA (The sugar industry's colour method)@420nm.

By my calculation that equates to about 600 EBC, which directly matches Invert No.4. Indeed it indicates that invert no.4 is simply inverted muscovado.

Assuming invert No.3 to be 130EBC, then No.3 can be imitated by 22% dark muscovado plus 78% white cane, and so on.

If people wish to invert the combination, then there is no harm in doing so.

The colours are full on-product and need to be divided by ten, equivalent to a ten percent solution, to fall in line with IoB colour methods.

No.1 and No.2 have so little colour and therefore so little molasses that it is probably pointless trying to replicate them, certainly No.1.

It is a bit rough and ready, not least because the colour of muscovado will vary between suppliers and the colour is unlikely to printed on domestic packets. There is also a snag in converting from ICUMSA to EBC because ICUMSA use 420nm or 560nm as the mood suits them and the brewing industry uses 430nm.

But then the colour of brewers' invert varies between suppliers and there are quite wide tolerance spreads on the same stuff supplied by the same supplier.

However it has to be better than messing around with treacle and blackstrap of unknown colour and density or adding a dollop of gravy browning of unknown colour.

Adrian Avgerinos said...

RE: Sugar

Having also corresponded with a representative of a British sugar company I have a few tidbits of information to share:

* E150a class caramel is added to the darkest of syrups for extra color. E150c is not used anymore.
* Treacle is cane syrup mixed with molasses. No clue how dark the syrup is prior to adding the molasses.
* Many breweries use invert sugar in a semi-solid block/brick form.
* Amino acids and proteins in molasses generate the Maillard reaction causing natural darkening. Heating molasses for an extended period of time accelerates this reaction causing the already dark molasses to darken to an E150 level.
* Heating invert sugar at 50C for 48 hours will yield a color change but not very dark. 100-200 EBC and more like "wheat yellow". Dark syrups have molasses added. Very dark syrups have E150a caramel added as well.
* The molasses used is the "blackstrap" type and is sourced from places that produce a high quality product that doesn't taste astringent. So, probably not the animal feed type. Should have a more bitter liquorice character and color 2500 to 4000 EBC.
* This is all contemporary information and often times sugars can be custom ordered to suit the customer demands.

When I make brewing sugars I use a small amount of diammonium phosphate to help with color formation. With the addition of water to slow the temperature rise I can get pretty dark sugar by heating for a couple of hours and only reaching 270 degrees or so. I believe Kristen has done some experimenting with different sugar mixtures so he may have more input on this one.

Kristen England said...

There are really two ways of making invert no 3. One can just make invert and add molasses to get the right character. The other is to cook the sugar at a 'low' temperature over a longer period of time. I usually buy mine now but let me dig out my notes and post it somewhere.

Kristen England said...

Graham,

I buy my invert, which differs in color by lot number, so the color is always in fluctuation. Nearly all of the older log recipes have some sort of caramel colorant to 'fix' the color when dark inverts are used.

To me, It absolutely is worth the time and energy to try and recreate things. We have most of the specific numbers of what we are going for so it makes it much easier. I absolutely hate it when someone tries to recreate/clone recipes and all of them look nearly exactly the same with differing levels of the same 4 or so ingredients.

As to the invert vs sugar argument, people always get taste confused with effect. Meaning there is a definite difference in taste of invert vs sucrose however if it all ferments out there is no 'sugar' left to taste.

There, however, is quite a difference in the way reducing sugars are fermented and their fermentation byproducts. Tons of work has gone in to showing this. A specific example is higher levels of glucose in wort creating more amyl esters in beers. There are even specific mashes for this (eg. diauxic). Most other reducing sugars have been experimented on also and show similar findings in that each pushes by products in certain directions.

Paul! said...

that was all very helpful.
thanks

dave said...

Can "Let's Brew Wednesday - 1941 Barclay Perkins BS" be re-posted? I see it in my rss reader, but the bottom table ends at the "Goldings 4.5% 90min (22bu) 1.11 oz 31.5g 68.85 oz" bit, and I don't see the post on the website. Thanks!