Sunday 12 February 2023

Whitbread Porter OG 1805 - 1940

Long term. That's my USP. Looking at beers over ridiculously long periods of time. And analysing the changes they went through.

Often, focus is on no more than a decade or two. If it isn't a spread that spans at least two wars, I'm not interested. 

For a really wide spread, it's hard to beat Whitbread. The anal-retentive bunch held onto everything. Including the brewing documents I'm so interested in. Me, being as obsessive as Whitbread, 

It's hard to get more long term than this. The OG of Whitbread Porter over 135 years.

Can you spot any sort of trend? HINT: look at the later years.

The long view. That's what I've been taking. Looking at stupidly long runs of data. The tortoise view. One that exceeds the span of a human lifetime. 

Perhaps my desire to assemble such long sets of data is a vain attempt to fight off my own mortality. Maybe it will work. Nothing is going to stop me assembling this information. Other than death, obviously. Which sort of finisher everything off.

Back to the chart. Can you spot any trends? Let me know.


Chris Pickles said...

There's a big drop at the time of WW1, which is no surprise, then it rallies for a short while, then falls even lower by 1922. Then it gradually crawls a little higher before expiring in 1940.

The surprise is in the sudden collapse after the partial recovery after WW1 - what caused that?

Christoph Riedel said...

Seems to be incredibly stable from 1850 to 1914. Interesting to see it was a tad higher before, but Porter seems to have always been a bit on the weaker side, if even X Ale was 1075 before 1850.

Of course, after the world wars nothing was as it used to be. Sad, especially since you showed that around 1900 ale was driven back a tad and porter and stout were back on the rise.

Pierce said...

I believe it was John Maynard Keynes who once said that, in the long run, our OG reaches 0.

Ron Pattinson said...

Chris Pickles,

it was a choice of brewers. Initially after WW I they pitched Porter as a 6d per pint beer, i.e. around 1043º, the same as X Ale. They changed their minds and went for a 5d or even a 4d per pint beer. In my opinion, it's that change that doomed Porter.