Sunday, 20 January 2013

Eldridge Pope grists 1896 - 1897

Part two at my look at late 19th-century Eldridge Pope beers.

This is a brewery where not only did I drink their beers in the past, I still have bottles in my cellar. Of Hardy Ale, obviously. No rush to drink it as it should last pretty much indefinitely.

The answer is, yes, before you ask. I do have brewing records for Hardy Ale.  There are a couple of fascinating points about how they brewed it. But I'm saving those for later. I don't want to spoil Kristen's recipe for you.

I didn't mention this last time. I really should explain it. BAK, I'm pretty sure stands for Bottling AK. So an early Light Ale, really. That term seems to be fairly recent, Light Ale. Even between the wars they were mostly still called things like Light Dinner Ale or Light Bitter Ale. I suspect Light Ale only became the commonly accepted name for this type of beer after WW II.

The recipes are pretty much what I would expect: mostly pale malt and sugar. Note that it was the Pale Ales that contained the greatest proportion of sugar in the grist. Even though they were the more expensive beers. This is because sugar was used to keep the body light rather than to brew on the cheap.

Most of the sugar lumped together in "other sugar" for the 1896 entries is No. 2 and No. 3 invert, I'm sure. They just didn't bother specifying it exactly. Which is a bit annoying. I need to plug the recipe into brewing software, but I suspect the final XX Ale in the table will come out a dark amber.

I can guess what you're thinking: then why isn't the KK Pale Ale it was parti-gyled with dark, too. Because this is a special type of parti-gyling. There were two coppers and so two gyles. All of the first gyle was used in the KK and all of the second gyle in the XX. Which means the sugars weren't evenly distributed over the two beers. In most of the records they list which sugars went in which copper. In this one they didn't. My guess is that the No. 2 sugar went in the KK copper and the No.3 in the second.

Barnard, who was in the brewery a few years previously to the date of these records, mentions a Burton Ale. I wonder which of these beers it was? I'd go for the XXXX. That looks the right strength. If we were in London, a Burton would almost certainly have been called KK inside the brewery. But this one doesn't look right: not strong enough and called a Pale Ale.

Which reminds me. I must transcribe Bernard's description of the brewery. Maybe next time.

Eldridge Pope grists in 1896-1897
Year Beer Style OG FG ABV App. Atten-uation pale malt brown malt black malt no. 2 sugar no. 3 sugar caramel other sugar flaked maize
1896 AK Pale Ale 1048.5 1011.6 4.87 76.00% 78.72% 17.02% 4.26%
1896 AK Pale Ale 1048.5 1011.9 4.84 75.43% 75.56% 20.00% 4.44%
1896 BAK Pale Ale 1048.5 1011.9 4.84 75.43% 75.56% 20.00% 4.44%
1896 PA Pale Ale 1057.6 1014.4 5.72 75.00% 80.00% 15.00% 5.00%
1896 XX Mild 1049.0 1011.6 4.95 76.27% 80.00% 15.00% 5.00%
1896 S Stout 1061.5 1026.9 4.58 56.31% 68.14% 7.57% 7.57% 1.58% 15.14%
1896 LTS Stout 1051.2 1019.4 4.21 62.16% 71.76% 7.97% 7.97% 1.66% 10.63%
1897 XXX Mild 1065.1 1018.6 6.16 71.49% 85.45% 10.91% 3.64%
1897 XX Mild 1048.8 1013.9 4.62 71.59% 85.45% 10.91% 3.64%
1897 XXXX Strong Ale 1074.8 1023.8 6.74 68.15% 93.55% 3.23% 3.23%
1897 KK Pale Ale 1051.5 1014.1 4.95 72.58% 78.50% 2.80% 11.21% 1.87% 5.61%
1897 XX Mild 1049.6 1012.5 4.91 74.86% 78.50% 2.80% 11.21% 1.87% 5.61%
Eldridge Pope brewing records

1 comment:

Gary Gillman said...

I can't explain the AKK anomaly. Maybe it was a mix of an AK and an aged (K) beer that had become weaker through part of the alcohol consumed by bacterial action. One of those summer refreshers you read about that were partly sour, perhaps.

The ankel koyt explanation is interesting but I doubt it is true since AK is a classic 1800's designation. I can't recall ever seeing the term AK used in this sense in any 1700's book or other source. So why would it pop up all of a sudden in the 1800's? Doesn't make sense to me.

I have a number of times here mentioned here the only 1800's explanation I have ever seen of the term AK, by a brewer writing in one of those mechanics arts publications. He explains in parentheses that it meant keeping ale. Until a better contemporary or earlier source is found, this IMO is good evidence of the keeping meaning since it is the oldest known of so far.

While it is true that AK was not long-stored, it was conditioned for a longer period than running X ales. That is the important point.

Look here how Moritz in A Text-book of the Science of Brewing explains this at pp 233-234.

Even Moritz trips up on terminology since at one point for his "intermediate" AKs he calls them mild ales! But his overall meaning is clear.

The term keeping and its cognate kept, do not need to imply a storage of months on end. To this day, we use the expression "well-kept" to describe a cask ale that is well-served no matter what the style, and no beer today is stored for very long except by some eccentric American craft brewers. :)

Kept meant processed over the required period and AK was often at least in Moritz's time kept for longer than X ale before being sent out and served. That meets a test of keeping in English brewing terminology.