My post about Irish Red Ale's lack of pedigree prompted some useful responses. Which have me once again contemplating the history of Irish Ale brewing. And questioning the assumptions I'd made.
I'd never seen any evidence for the brewing of Mild Ales in Ireland. You know, the things designated by a number of X's. Thanks to my readers I know have. And it's raised a whole new set of questions. I like questions, on the whole. They give me a reason to do more research. And unearthing stuff no-one knew is so satisfying.
Let's recap on what we know so far. First, there's an advert from 1867 for Fitts of Limerick:
So they were brewing an XX Ale in the 19th century.
Getting more recent, Perry's brewery in Rathdowney, county Laois were brewing this range of beers in the 1950's: Perry's India Pale Ale, Perry's Pale Ale, Perry's XX Ale, Perry's X Ale.
Something called XX Ale was brewed in both the 19th century and the 1950's. I think it's safe to assume that it was around in the intervening years, too. The next question is: what was it like? Was it similar to the X Ales brewed in England? Did it, like the English versions change colour around 1900? What was its gravity? How was it served?
That's enough questions to be going on with. It's now time to start searching for the answers.
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