Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Let's Brew Wednesday - 1957 Robert Younger Export

I'm maintaining my run of Let's Brews for at least one more week. I'm starting to get the hang of this lark again.

We're returning to Scotland after what seems like a very long absence. With a beer from one of the other Youngers, Robert of Edinburgh. The smaller and less fashionable Edinburgh Younger.

This is taken from their final brewing log. They were bought by Scottish & Newcastle in 1960 and closed in 1961. These were years of carnage for Scottish brewing. Between 1955 and 1965 pretty much all the independent brewers were bought up and mostly closed. The industry was left almost totally in the hands of large British brewing groups: Scottish & Newcastle, Bass Charrington, Allied Breweries, Watney and Whitbread. Which is the full set, except for Courage.

Robert Younger belong to the tradition of totally dull Scottish brewing records. They had a recipe. Just the one. From which they parti-gyled all of their beers, including their Stout. There's the classic 60/-, 70/-, 80/- combo. Though there's also a really watery 54/- at just 1028º.

The 1950's are when Scottish styles of 60/-, 70/- and 80/- really became fixed in their modern forms. Just to be totally clear about this, they're all types of Scottish Pale Ale. No matter how well 60/- was in passing itself off as Mild.

Now I've got started about Scottish styles, I may as well say something about hopping rates. As I already mentioned, 60/-, 70/- and 80/- are all types of Pale Ale. With the minimal hopping Scottish brewers employed, how could that be true? Other than that story being total bollocks, of course. It is true, however, that hopping rates fell more in Scotland than in England during the 20th century.

Shall we look at some examples? Yeah, 'course.

First archetypal English brewery Whitbread:

Whitbread hopping rates in 1957
Beer Style OG lbs hops / barrel
Best Ale Mild 1030.4 0.71
IPA IPA 1035.8 1.26
PA Pale Ale 1039.6 0.93
Whitbread brewing record held at the London Metropolitan Archives, document number LMA/4453/D/01/124.

Now Robert Younger:

Robert Younger hopping rates in 1957
Beer Style OG lbs hops / barrel
60/- Pale Ale 1030 0.58
70/- Pale Ale 1035 0.67
80/- Pale Ale 1043 0.83
Robert Younger brewing record held at the Scottish Brewing Archive, document number RY/6/1/2.

Whitbread's Best Ale has 22% more hops than Robert Younger's 60/-, PA 20% more than 80/- (after adjustment for the difference in gravity). I'd call that a significant, though not enormous, difference. Though you can see why Scottish 60/-, coloured dark with caramel, could pass for Mild in England.

Export seems to have established itself as a style between the wars, representing a brewery's strongest draught Pale Ale. The 80/- designation seems to come later, possibly only after WW II. In this brewing log it appears as both Ex and 80/-.

As I've doubtless told you 1,000 times, Scottish brewers rarely used any malt other than pale, with the exception of in Stouts. This recipe is no exception. It's just pale malt, flaked maize, sugar and caramel. The latter purely for colour. Feel free to colour this beer any way you like. Because I'm sure Robert Younger sold it in many different shades. That's just what Scottish brewers did.

The hops are a total guess. Other than that they were English, I've no idea. Feel free to fiddle, but stick to English varieties, please. Or just say fuck it and throw in bagfulls of Citra Nelson Sauvin.

The colour can be whatever you like. You can leave it naked as brewed or throw in any amount of caramel you care.

Right, time to pass you over to Ronald . . . . .

1957 Robert Younger Export
pale malt 6.50 lb 70.27%
flaked maize 1.50 lb 16.22%
No. 2 invert 1.25 lb 13.51%
caramel 1.00 oz 10.81%
Bramling Cross 90 min 0.75 oz
Bramling Cross 60 min 0.75 oz
Goldings 30 min 0.375 oz
OG 1045
FG 1012
ABV 4.37
Apparent attenuation 73.33%
IBU 33
SRM 20
Mash at 152º F
Sparge at 170º F
Boil time 90 minutes
pitching temp 61º F
Yeast White Labs WLP028 Edinburgh Ale (McEwan's)
Wyeast 1728 Scottish ale (McEwans)

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