In my customary contextualisation effort, I'll be comparing the Milds of Tetley to those of London. Always a good laugh, that one. Doubtless you'll be chortling into your cornflakes as you read it. Much as I would be myself. If I chortled. And if I ate cornflakes.
Tetley's Milds covered a fair range of gravities, from 1044º to 1078º. Which just shows what a flexible concept Mild Ale was. How many current styles span 30-odd gravity points? None, clearly, because the pointy heads writing style guidelines wouldn't allow that. They like their styles caged like battery hens, unable to turn around or even stand up. Even that range was a trimming down of the situation in the first half of the nineteenth century when the upper end was 1100º plus.
But I've started to drive on the verge again. Back to the topic in hand. First let's take a look at the general characteristics of these Milds. There's one obvious difference between Tetley's Milds and the London ones: there was no equivalent in the capital of the two weakest varieties, X and X1. It's scary how the remaining three map virtually exactly to London beers.
A little background. In the first half of the 19th century London Milds went from X up to XXXX. The stronger Milds were mostly dropped and, as you can see in the table, by the 1870's XXX and XXXX had disappeared. And only Barclay Perkins of the three brewers were looking at even brewed an XX. Whitbread's XL and Truman's 40/- Ale are really X and a half. You can see that their gravities are a good bit lower than Barclay Perkins XX - about 10 gravity points.
The level of attenuation at Tetley varied quite a lot between individual batches, but was mostly in the range 68-78%. Fairly similar to in London.
Hopping. I always like looking at hopping levels. Easy bit first, the XX's. Both in terms of pounds of hops per quarter (around 14) and per barrel (around 5) they're pretty similar. The next to strongest Tetley Mild, X3, is significantly more heavily hopped than either Whitbread XL or Truman 40/-, the London beers with similar gravities. On the other hand, X2 had about 50% fewer hops than London X Ales of Whitbread and Barclay Perkins. And about the ssmae as Truman X Ale. Not much of an overall pattern there.
As for boiling, the London brewers boiled a tad longer, but not by a huge amount.
London brewers pitched 6 or 7 degrees cooler, at around 60º F, but let the temperature rise more during fermentation, 11-14º F. At Tetley the temperature never rose more than 4º F, never exceeding 70º F. Which probably explains why the fermentation period was a day or two less in London, at six or seven days.
That's it for the general specs. We'll be looking at the ingredients next time.
|Tetley Milds in 1878|
|Date||Year||Beer||OG||FG||ABV||App. Atten-uation||lbs hops/ qtr||hops lb/brl||boil time (hours)||Pitch temp||max. fermen-tation temp||length of fermen-tation (days)|
|Tetley brewing record held at the West Yorkshire Archive Service document number WYL756/25/ACC1903|
|London Milds 1875 - 1880|
|Date||Year||Brewer||Beer||OG||FG||ABV||App. Atten-uation||lbs hops/ qtr||hops lb/brl||boil time (hours)||boil time (hours)||boil time (hours)||Pitch temp||max. fermen-tation temp||length of fermen-tation (days)|
|17th Jan||1876||Truman||X Ale||1062.0||1013.9||6.38||77.68%||5.9||1.69||62º||73º|
|31st Mar||1875||Truman||40/- Ale||1068.1||1012.5||7.37||81.71%||7.5||2.42||60º||72º|
|31st Aug||1880||Barclay Perkins||X||1060.7||1013.6||6.23||77.63%||10.29||2.69||1.5||2||2||60º||74º||3 + 4|
|14th Feb||1880||Barclay Perkins||XX||1079.5||1024.1||7.33||69.69%||13.38||4.98||2||3||59º||73º||3 + 3|
|Whitbread brewing record held at the London Metropolitan Archives document number LMA/4453/D/01/044|
|Truman brewing record held at the London Metropolitan Archives document number B/THB/C/156|
|Barclay Perkins brewing record held at the London Metropolitan Archives document number ACC/2305/1/579|