Wednesday 18 March 2020

Let's Brew Wednesday - 1940 Barclay Perkins Imperial Russian Stout

Wartime Russian Stout might come as a shock when you look at its strength. It’s barely more than 50% of gravity of the full-strength version.

Between the wars, rather confusingly, Barclay Perkins brewed two strengths of Russian Stout, called, in the Brewhouse, IBS and IBS Ex, the latter being the strong one. I’m not quite sure what was sold where. But, looking at wartime price lists, it looks like the strong version was being sold in Barclay’s pubs.

How do I come to this conclusion? I looked at Best Stout, which I know the OG of: 1041.5º. In 1943 it cost 13.5d per pint. While Russian Stout was 33d. Assuming that the two beers costed the same per gravity point, that would give Russian Stout a gravity of 1101º. That is, full strength.

Should you want to recreate that version, just double all the quantities given in the recipe below.

The recipe is the same as their other Stouts, with four different malts, two adjuncts and three types of sugar. One of those sugars – lactose – is slightly odd to find in an Imperial Stout. But that’s probably because some of the London Stout with which it was parti-gyled was being sold as Milk Stout.

1940 Barclay Perkins Imperial Russian Stout
mild malt 5.50 lb 42.72%
brown malt 0.75 lb 5.83%
amber malt 1.25 lb 9.71%
crystal malt 60 L 0.75 lb 5.83%
roast barley 1.25 lb 9.71%
flaked rice 1.25 lb 9.71%
lactose 0.25 lb 1.94%
No. 3 invert sugar 1.75 lb 13.59%
caramel 1000 SRM 0.125 lb 0.97%
Fuggles 120 mins 1.50 oz
Fuggles 60 mins 1.25 oz
Fuggles 30 mins 1.25 oz
OG 1057
FG 1022.5
ABV 4.56
Apparent attenuation 60.53%
IBU 29
SRM 37
Mash at 142º F
After underlet 149º F
Sparge at 172º F
Boil time 120 minutes
pitching temp 60.5º F
Yeast Wyeast 1099 Whitbread ale

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