Sunday 8 December 2019

Harvey's beers in 1889

I've already extracted the details from the Harvey's brewing records which fell into my hands.

How this Harvey's brewing book ended up in the Beards archive is also becoming clearer. Mr. Miles Jenner, head brewers at Harvey's, tells me that Henry John Barrett served an apprenticeship at Harvery's and then later went on to be head brewer at Beards. This looks like it was his personal brewing book.

Moving onto the beeers themsleves, it's quite a small range. Two Milds, a Stock Ale a Pale Ale and a Stout. Even for a small-town brewery, that's pretty minimal. By this late, most breweries would have brewed multiple Stouts and probably a Light Pale Ale (1045-1050º).

All the beers are around the same strength as London equivalents, which slightly surprised me. I'm accustomed to provincial beers being weaker. You can see from the two tables below that there's a very close sorrelatioon between the graities of Harvey and Barclay Perkins.

A couple of the Harvey's beers - SB and Stout - have slightly lower hopping rates. But PA and X have roughly similar rates to the Barclay Perkins beers of the same class.

Interestingly, the rate of attenuation is generally a bit higher in the Harvey's beers.

Harvey's beers in 1889
Beer Style OG FG ABV App. Atten-uation lbs hops/ qtr hops lb/brl
X Mild 1057.6 1013.9 5.79 75.96% 5.70 1.47
XXX Mild 1075.3 1020.8 7.22 72.43% 6.66 2.39
SB Stock Ale 1078.9 1018.8 7.95 76.14% 9.02 3.21
PA Pale Ale 1066.5 1020.2 6.12 69.58% 12.90 3.96
Stout Stout 1078.7 1026.3 6.93 66.55% 6.65 2.43
Harvey brewing record held at the East Sussex Record Office, document number BBR 2/1/3.

Barclay Perkins beers 1891 - 1892
Beer Style OG FG ABV App. Atten-uation lbs hops/ qtr hops lb/brl
X Mild 1057.0 1016.6 5.34 70.84% 5.95 1.47
KK Stock Ale 1074.0 1021.1 7.00 71.55% 14.22 4.61
PA Pale Ale 1063.0 1021.1 5.55 66.58% 12.46 3.03
BS Stout 1077.0 1027.0 6.61 64.94% 8.56 2.98
Barclay Perkins brewing records held at the London Metropolitan Archives, document numbers ACC/2305/1/587 and ACC/2305/1/588.


Mike in NSW said...

I'd love to travel back to the 1880s and get on the piss for a week. I'll be brewing a couple of those.. as far as possible with modern ingredients.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps the similarity in gravities was due to the proximity to Brighton. One might have even then wished to accommodate the tastes of London's daytrippers...

Barm said...

I wonder if Harvey’s had Debaryomyces hansenii lurking in their kit even then, which might have contributed to higher attenuation.

Ron Pattinson said...


these are racking gravities, recorded after 6-8 days of primary fermentation. That's far too short for Debaromyces to have got started.