Wednesday 25 October 2023

Let's Brew Wednesday - 1940 Adnams XXXX

While it might have been no surprise that weedy XX was able to hold onto its gravity, it’s more of a shock to see a beer of XXX’s strength unaffected.

It remains pretty much a double-strength version of XX. So the designation XXXX isn’t unwarranted. The recipe is still identical to that of XX, other than the quantity of water. Meaning the replacement of 1 quarter of No. 3 invert sugar with an extra quarter of base malt. Of which there are two types, both English.

The principal difference with XX, other than the quantity of water, was still the hopping rate: 7 lbs per quarter (336 lbs) of malt, as opposed to 5 lbs. Making it quite heavily hopped for a dark beer. Especially one brewed out in the sticks like this.

Three types of English hops were used. Though not exactly the same three types as in XX. As with PA, the dry hopping is very heavy, though not quite so unexpected due to the higher gravity.

XXXX seems to have been discontinued in 1940 and only reappeared in 1949.

1940 Adnams XXXX
mild malt 10.25 lb 84.85%
crystal malt 80 L 0.50 lb 4.14%
amber malt 0.50 lb 4.14%
No. 3 invert sugar 0.75 lb 6.21%
caramel 2000 SRM 0.08 lb 0.66%
Fuggles 120 mins 1.00 oz
Fuggles 60 mins 1.00 oz
Fuggles 30 mins 1.00 oz
Goldings dry hops 1.00 oz
OG 1055
FG 1017.5
ABV 4.96
Apparent attenuation 68.18%
IBU 35
SRM 20
Mash at 147º F
After underlet 154º F
Sparge at 165º F
Boil time 120 minutes
pitching temp 59.5º F
Yeast WLP025 Southwold


This recipe is from my recently-released Blitzkrieg!, the definitive book on brewing during WW II.

Get your copy now!

The second volume contains the recipes. But not just that. There are also overviews of some of the breweries covered, showing their beers at the start and the end of the conflict.

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Anonymous said...

Wasn’t Fisherman at one stage the Adnams brown ale?

Christoph Riedel said...

Was it really just 35 IBU? I find that surprising given that you said the hopping was significant. Something like 50 IBU would be what I would expect in a XXXX.

Ron Pattinson said...

Christoph Riedel,

35 IBU is pretty hoppy for what is basically just a strong Mild.

Ron Pattinson said...