Friday 28 February 2020

English Lager Beer

There was considerable interest in British brewing circles in Lager towards the end of the 19th century. Though few were willing to commit to the expense of building a Lager plant.

Doubtless many were put off by the fate of several company's which did. There were some spectacular bankruptcies and large amounts of capital were lost. Which goes some way to explaining this curious advertisement:

FRANK J. Roper-Nunn, Practical and Scientitic Maltster, Brewer, and Analyst; with nearly twenty vears experience at the Mash Tun, North, South, East and West of England; Brewer for Torquay Brewing Co., February to November, 1882; who discovered the processes for Brewing a "Lager Beer", and has successfully produced "Lager Beer" upon the top fermentation system without ice in different parts of England (reference can be given). He offers written instructions and copy of Brewing, for £5 5s. The true secrets of obtaining a "Lager Flavour" are well known to F. J. R. N. who personally conducted all the "Lager Beer" Brewings for The Torquay Co. from February to November 1882. He questions if they be known to any one else excepting those who purchased his instructions. Address Frank J. Roper-Nunn, care of Editor of The Brewing Trade Gazette."
Holmes' Brewing Trade Gazette - Tuesday 01 May 1883, page 17.
I can understand why it might have been tempting for a brewer to be able  to brew "Lager" without any of the expensive equipment. But I somehow doubt whether there really was some magical secret to brewing Lager in a top-fermenting brewery.

Mr. Roper-Nunn clearly believed that his "secret" was valuable. £5 5s would have bought you 630 pints of Mild down the pub. I wonder if anyone ever asked for their money back?

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