Friday, 25 October 2013

Let's Brew Wednesday - 1885 Younger XP

It's been a while. Too long, since the last Let's Brew post. Not down to me. I guess Kristen is too busy with his brewery to write recipes. So . . .

I've decided to go it alone for a while. Because I realise how much some of you value the recipes. Kicking off with a preview of one of the recipes in The Homebrewer's Guide to Vintage Beer.

You may remember me banging on about what bollocks it was claiming Scottish brewers barely used hops, when Edinburgh and Alloa had been major centres of IPA brewing. So here's a Scottish IPA from the 1880's.

In one way, this recipe is a distinctively Scottish. In which way? The lack of sugar. An English IPA or Pale Ale recipe from this period would almost certainly have contained sugar. The Scots - like the Irish - weren't as enthusiastic in their use of sugar as the English. It's also quite low gravity, even for an IPA. A beer like Bass Pale Ale was around 10 points higher at 1065.

If you still believe any of the fantasy spread about Scottish beer, take a look at that pitching temperature. 59º F is nothing like the Lager-like temperatures some would have you believe Scottish beer was fermented at. It's the same pitching temperature that you'd see for an English beer.

The hop combination is also typically Scottish, in being a mix of American, Continental and English hops. Yes, they may not grow hops in Scotland, but they came up with this dead ingenious method of getting hold of them. They had these big wooden or metal things - ships I think they called them - that brought them in from elsewhere.

This recipe is for 6 US gallons.

1885 Younger XP
pale malt 2 row 12.50 lb 100.00%
Cluster 90 min 2.00 oz
Spalt 60 min 2.00 oz
Goldings 30 min 2.00 oz
OG 1054
FG 1013
ABV 5.42
Apparent attenuation 75.93%
IBU 92
Mash at 152º F
Sparge at 163º F
Boil time 90 minutes
pitching temp 59º F
Yeast WLP028 Edinburgh Ale

Ther were also the equivalent of 1.25 ounces of dry hops (for 6 US gallons). It doesn't say which variety, but I'd go for Goldings or Spalt.


dana said...

Ron, you can never say enough that the Scots myths are just that. You never know when a new reader will come along and have the wind taken out of their sails. I also don't always remember details, so hammering it into my head might just make it all stick.

Also, thanks for a recipe after all this time.

dana said...

Also, wow that's bitter.

Steve Wright said...

When is the book coming out?

Barm said...

Is this the recipe as it appears in the book? The publisher is not seriously proposing to give only pounds and ounces and SRM instead of the units most of the world uses?

Alistair Reece said...

I think that will be brewed in the near future as I have some Cluster and Goldings floating about.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for a new recipe!

Would this beer be aged for a year or so before shipping/consumption? And if so, is that FG from the end of primary fermentation and would it be likely to drop more if aged?

Thanks again, I'll be buying your recipe book


Ron Pattinson said...

Steve Wright,

the book is out in January.

Ron Pattinson said...


this is my draught recipe, not quite as it appears in the book. I did everything in old money and the publisher translated into modern.

The book has proper and foreign measures.

Ron Pattinson said...


if I'm honest, I have no evidence on what happened to this beer after primary fermentaion.

Knowing what generally happened to the better class of IPA and Pale Ale, I'd expect to have had at least 3 or 4 months maturing in cask. If bottled, more time in cask and a month or two in the bottle.

Edward said...

What was the source of the 2-row? English, Scottish? Would there have been any dry hops?

Ron Pattinson said...


not sure where the barley came from. Some is described as "Sy", some as "Hq". Pretty sure neither of those is Scottish. I'm pretty sure they usuall mark Scottish barley as "Ch", short for Cheviot.

Whoops! I should have mentioned the dry hops becuse there were quite a a lot - 9.25 ounces per barrel.

Barm said...

"Sy" could be Syrian, perhaps?

cswest said...

I'm very happy to see a "Let's Brew Wednesday" post, I was wondering why there were so few lately. If you're in need of/open to other homebrewers helping out I'm sure there're at least a few, including myself, who are looking for new recipes to brew.