Friday 27 April 2012

The UK and the USA

I meant to post a link to this earlier. A post that tells a little of the relationship between British and American brewing. Go and read it, then you'll understand what I'm on about.

I've been considering the topic for a while. (The kids complained about the clunking sounds, I was thinking so hard) How long it's been going. And how it swings from one direction to another. One type of connection to another.

Ignoring the obvious colonial links, you've got ingredients. Hops and barley from the USA flowed into Britain from 1850 onwards. English farmers couldn't keep up with the population growth and ceased to be able to grow enough ingredients for the demands of the brewing industry.

Then there are the techniques. The method of making "chilled and carbonated" bottled beers in the late 19th century was developed in the USA then adopted in Britain.

Equipment, too. In the 1890's Allsopp bought a shiny new Lager brewery from the USA. It was a big deal. They compared at Continental and Amercan brewhouses and chose the latter. I've been meaning to post about the Western Brewery article about it.

OK. It's really an enamelly brewery, but you get the idea. Ultra-modern. Love the poses those blokes are striking. Why's the one on the right all by himself? And why is the chav in the middle staring at him? The longer you look at it, the more disturbing it becomes.

Almost forgot a really basic piece of beer equipment. The crown cork. First produced in the USA.

And there's been plenty of traffic in the other direction. But that's not for me to write about.

Remeber I said the Lager brewery was a big deal. This is how they celebrated its arrival:

Special train. That's what I call making a fuss. It's the private jet of the steam age.

I remember now why I hadn't written yet about that fascinating Lager brewery. Page 504 of the Western Brewer article is missing in the scans I have. Did I lose it?


Arctic Alchemy said...

In the first Allsopp's picture, it's says "F. F. and Lager cellar" do you think that's stands for fermentation and finishing ? or something to do with the odd gentlemen about the place, like Financiers and Fat cats?

Ron Pattinson said...

Arctic, I was wondering about that, too.

Martyn Cornell said...

It's something to do with the tanks supplied by the American suppliers of the brewing kit, Pfaudler, "which specialized in the F.F. vacuum system", whatever tf that was.