Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Let's Brew Wednesday - 1895 Truman Export Stout

It's summer (not that you'd notice it in Amsterdam) and what's the perfect summer beer? Why Export Stout. At least that's what I think. And I'm going to do my best to force this particular prejudice of mine on you.

It all started with my visits to the tropics. The best beer on offer was Guinness. The strong export version. In fact that's all there was other than dull Pale Lager. And who wants to drink that when it's hot? Certainly not me.

Then there's the food. Most beer gets overwhelmed by spicy food. Especially the parings usually suggested: Pilsner and IPA. I don't care for either of those with a curry. A beefy Stout is another matter. A beer with enough balls to stand toe to toe with the fiercest of curries without flinching. And with a nice thump of alcohol, too.

Truman's brewed Export Stout from at least 1840. It was similar to their Double Stout, except with the hopping dialled up from crazy to ludicrous. Over 8.5 lbs per barrel in 1840. That's Russian Stout-like levels, though in a beer with a lower gravity. It also contained a higher percentage of brown and black malt in the grist. It didn't contain any sugar, unlike Double Stout, which often did after 1860.

Presumably the sea journey to wherever the beer was headed would have toned down the hops a bit before it hit the glass. I wonder where it was sent? There was a big trade in Stout to the West Indies. They preferred either Strong Ale or Stout in the Caribbean. Pale Ale only seems to have been exported eastwards.

Let's lead you by the hand over towards Kristen . . . . . . .

Kristen’s Version:

Notes: Not a whole lot to say about this bastard but make sure you have room in your kettle for all these damn hops. Tons of hops. Pick your favorite malts. I like Fawcett right down the line. If you are bored of Goldings, give some Fuggles, Willamette or First Gold a shot! This is one that should be added to the repertoire…do it!


RudeBoyBrewing said...

10 oz of hops???!! Thats insane. Is this really drinkable before any aging? You would think it would have a strong vegetal character from all those hops.

Nonetheless, I'm putting it in the brewing docket.

Cheers. Thanks for the Recipes.

Martyn Cornell said...

A man who is tired of Goldings is tired of life ...

Kristen England said...


I couldn't agree more. However, home brewers, especially the American kind, start getting bored if they can't chuck in all types of hullabaloo. Its always good to give options lets they go off the rez and really cock it up!

Kristen England said...


Sure its drinkable! Make sure you use fresh hops and you won't get that crap veg, just a wonderful hay character.

Jeff Renner said...

I'll add that I know from using a similar amount of EKG in the an IPA several years ago that if you use whole hops, you're going to lose a lot of wort in the hops, even if you sparge them. Pellets work much better.

It really did take six months before it was pleasantly drinkable. At a year it was fantastic. And it had amazing head retention.