Saturday, 2 September 2023

Let's Brew - 1970 Drybrough 60/-

As is normally the case, Keg! is going to have homebrew recipes. In addition to all my usual masses of tables and minimal text.

One of the joys, for me, is being able to write recipes for very mainstream, boring beers. Crap, even. Ones I wouldn't have crossed the street to drink. This is such a beer. Not that I want to put you off brewing it.

What a delight to have a genuine Light recipe. A style already hurtling towards obscurity in the early 1970s. And pretty much stone-cold dead today.

At the time, there was a fair bit of confusion about 60/-. As it was often coloured quite dark and was around 3% ABV, it was often considered as a sub-class of Dark Mild. When I looked at Scottish brewing records I was soon disavowed of that illusion. It was really just the weakest of the Scottish Pale Ale set.

There’s nothing complicated about the recipe. Which is just base malt, flaked maize and invert sugar. Along with a tiny amount of black malt for colour. Though there was almost certainly caramel added at racking time to colour it up to around 20 SRM.

The few hops were spread between three types of English and one of Hallertau. Along with a few dry hops.

1970 Drybrough 60/-
pale malt 5.00 lb 76.78%
black malt 0.013 lb 0.19%
flaked maize 0.75 lb 11.52%
No. 2 invert sugar 0.75 lb 11.52%
Fuggles 90 min 0.50 oz
Hallertau 30 min 0.25 oz
Goldings dry hops 0.125 oz
OG 1031
FG 1009
ABV 2.91
Apparent attenuation 70.97%
IBU 11
SRM 5.5
Mash at 146º F
Sparge at 165º F
Boil time 90 minutes
pitching temp 61º F
Yeast WLP028 Edinburgh Ale


Phil said...

What makes this "a genuine Light"? Light ale is a style that's always puzzled me (if it *is* a style). I'm old enough to remember when bottled Light Ale was one of the few bottled beers you could get in pubs (and, if you think about it, one of an only slightly larger number of bottled beers you could get anywhere), but I'd always vaguely assumed it just meant "bitter in a bottle".

Ron Pattinson said...


Scottish Light is something completely different to English Light Ale. The former was principally a draught beer, the latter exclusively a bottled beer. Basically a bottled low-gravity Bitter.

Bribie G said...

Ron it's almost impossible to comment here anymore because captcha is again popping up those grids "click all squares where there is not a rabbit / power station / jellyfish. Then just keeps repeating up to four times so I just give up.
Hopefully this will get through.

Brad Mc said...

I think a homebrewed version would likely end up tasting far superior than the original beer.

Ron Pattinson said...

Bribie G,

I'm afraid that I have no control over that.

Brad Mc said...

Bribie, reCaptcha should only ask you to solve a puzzle if it can't identify your browser history. There could be issues with browser add-ons, javascript or some other settings at your end. If clicking the box doesn't result in a green tick, then the problem is at your end.

John said...

Is Tennent's Special a Scottish light ale?

Ron Pattinson said...


no, that's a Scott6ish Heavy.

Rob Sterowski said...

The remarkable decline and disappearance of Light is worth a book. During the war it was the only draught beer that some breweries produced. It’s more often called 60 shilling these days, if you can find it at all.

Tennent’s 60/– was still around about seven or eight years ago. The last pub in Glasgow I am aware of selling it was the Press Bar. Tennent’s have recycled the name and there is now a low-gravity lager called Tennent’s Light which has nothing to do with the previous product.

I know of one pub in Glasgow with Belhaven Light and there are a couple of pubs I remember serving McEwan’s 60/- in Lanarkshire but I haven’t been out to check for a decade or so. (In small pack the McEwan’s Light was called Pale Ale with a green label.)

These are all keg products. Cask 60/- is extinct to the best of my knowledge, possibly Belhaven fill a few firkins now and then.