Wednesday, 25 October 2017

Let's Brew Wednesday - 1921 Barclay Perkin IBS

Now here's a special treat for you: the session version of Barclay's Imperial Stout.

I know that rather an odd concept, but that's what this beer is. I'd always thought that Russian Stout was one of the few British beers that continued to be brewed at pre-WW I strength,. Until I looked in the brewing records. Then I noticed that for a while there were two versions of the beer, IBS and IBS ex. The latter did continue to be brewed at full strength. The former was much weaker.

Russian Stout was discontinued during WW I and reappeared in 1921. I assume it waas the general drop in beer strength that prompted them to produce a weaker, more affordable version. Which they continued to brew until 1941, when another war caused it to disappear. I assumed that was the end of it, but no, in 1946 it returned. At the rather feeble gravity of 1044º.

This version isn't quite as feeble as that. But it is weaker than a standard London Stout from before the WW I. BS, Barclay Perkins draught Stout, had an OG of 1074º in 1910.

Like its big brother, IBS has a very high percentage of roasted grains. To be honest, I wonder if there's enough base malt to provide enzymes to convert everything. But I guess there must be as they brewed in this way for several years. And I suppose that all those dark grains would have produced quite a think beer for its gravity. That and the high FG.

Though in the recipe I've used the racking gravity as FG. I know from analyses in the Whitbread Gravity Book that the real FG was lower, around 1016º. Also primings raised the effective OG by three points to 1064.3º.

It's fairly heavily hopped, with a combination of Pacific and Mid Kent hops. Which I've interpreted as Cluster and Fuggles. This seems to be the last version that was dry hopped, for some reason.

Surprisingly, this beer was sold on draught. At least according to the Whitbread Gravity Book. And who am I to doubt that?

1921 Barclay Perkin IBS
mild malt 6.50 lb 47.58%
brown malt 1.75 lb 12.81%
amber malt 1.50 lb 10.98%
roast barley 1.50 lb 10.98%
flaked maize 0.75 lb 5.49%
No. 3 invert sugar 1.50 lb 10.98%
caramel 1000 SRM 0.16 lb 1.17%
Cluster 120 mins 1.00 oz
Fuggles 90 mins 1.00 oz
Fuggles 60 mins 1.00 oz
Fuggles 30 mins 1.00 oz
Goldings dry hops 0.25 oz
OG 1061.3
FG 1020
ABV 5.46
Apparent attenuation 67.37%
IBU 54
SRM 41
Mash at 150º F
Sparge at 172º F
Boil time 120 minutes
pitching temp 58.5º F
Yeast Wyeast 1099 Whitbread Ale


The Beer Wrangler said...

Hi Ron

Fascinating stuff. One thing I have a question on is the use of unmalted roasted barley earlier than the Ron/Martyn estimated date range of its use in Guinness stouts. I'm wondering how long after the Free Mash Tun act it took for porter and stout brewers to reduce costs and use roasted barley, and was it British as well as Irish brewers making this change?

Does this mean Barclay Perkins were unknowingly making Imperial 'Irish Dry' Stout before the Irish?

I feel the BJCP should be warned!!!

Ron Pattinson said...

Beer Wrangler,

Barclay Perkins swapped around between black malt and roast barley.

How malted the barley was that was roasted before 1880 is a matter for discussion. From some stuff I've read, they just went thought the motions to hit the legal definition of malted. Because they knew it didn't matter. Breweries were after colour, not extract.

Ron Pattinson said...

Beer Wrangler,

black malt was also made from the worst quality malt. Again, because it really didn't matter, You were going to scorch the stuff anyway.