Monday 27 November 2023

Shepherd Neame grists in 1971

Time to look at what went into these beers. Starting off with the malts and adjuncts.

Pale malt was the only base employed. Nothing very unusual about that. More uncommon is the presence of crystal malt in every single beer. Which was a bit of a turnaround. Because up until at least 1966, they didn’t use crystal malt at all.

Even more odd is the presence of amber malt in one of the Pale Ale parti-gyles. It’s not a malt you’d usually find in a Pale Ale. In fact, you rarely see it in anything other than Porter and Stout. And then mostly before WW I.

I’m not 100% that the wheat was in malted form. It’s not clear from the brewing record. Though, as it just says “wheat” and not “flaked wheat” but it does say “flaked maize”. I assume wheat is there for its head-promoting properties.

Speaking of which, it’s a little strange that flaked maize only appears in the one Pale Ale parti-gyle. And not in the Mild and Brown Ale. Looking back through the logs, it’s another ingredient which was only introduced sometime after 1966. 

Shepherd Neame grists in 1971
Beer Style pale malt amber malt crystal malt wheat malt total malt flaked maize
Brown Ale Brown Ale 67.28%   4.81%   72.08%  
Mild Mild 67.28%   4.81%   72.08%  
Light Ale Pale Ale 60.55% 5.50% 5.50% 5.50% 77.06% 5.50%
Bitter Pale Ale 84.65%   7.43%   92.08%  
Best Bitter Pale Ale 84.07%   8.24%   92.31%  
Abbey Ale Pale Ale 61.15% 5.73% 5.73% 3.82% 76.43% 3.82%
Old English Stock Ale Pale Ale 60.55% 5.50% 5.50% 5.50% 77.06% 5.50%
Bishop's Finger Strong Ale 59.57% 6.38% 6.38% 4.26% 76.60% 4.26%
Stout Stout 85.71%   6.12%   91.84%  
Shepherd Neame brewing book held at the brewery, document number H-5O5.

1 comment:

Chris Pickles said...

What sort of effect would 7 or 8% crystal malt have on the colour of the bitter/best bitter?

I never got to drink much Sheps back then but I did have some in 1983 and it was definitely paler than average.