Wednesday, 17 March 2021

Let's Brew Wednesday - 1878 Adnams AK

Ooh, yes. An AK. One of my favourite obsessions, AK is. I can remember how excited when I found my first one in a Fullers brewing record.

AK was the classic name for the new-fangled type of running Pale Ale which was all the rage in the second half of the 19th century. A type of beer brewed by dozens, if not hundreds, of breweries across England. And definitely not a fucking Light Mild.

In typical 19th-century style, there’s very little to the recipe. One type of malt, one type of sugar and one of hops. Very simple stuff. Unlike some modern recipes, with half a dozen malts, five types of hops and all sorts of other shit, like vanilla, lactose and fruit juice.

While today this would count as a Best Bitter with its gravity of well over 1040º. At the time, it was considered as a Light Beer. AKs were often described as “Light Bitter Ale” or "Luncheon Ale".

1878 Adnams AK
mild malt 5.50 lb 66.67%
No. 1 invert sugar 2.75 lb 33.33%
Goldings 105 mins 3.00 oz
Goldings 30 mins 3.00 oz
Goldings dry hops 0.50 oz
OG 1044
FG 1010
ABV 4.50
Apparent attenuation 77.27%
IBU 79
Mash at 152º F
Sparge at 172º F
Boil time 105 minutes
pitching temp 65º F
Yeast WLP025 Southwold


Chris Pickles said...

"Asquith's Knockout" supposedly being a weak beer brewed during world war I. But I guess that must be a furphy.

Daniel Boisvert said...

Please forgive my ignorance, as my brewing knowledge is far from full bloom, but in comparison with the Adnams XX (listed Saturday), with the same amount of fermentables, we have difference of 10 points on the OG. Could you help me understand?

Ron Pattinson said...


well spotted. A slight mistake in the recipe there.