Sunday, 8 November 2009

Truman's Burton Ales in 1877

Continuing my erratic series of random beer tables, today we've details of Truman's Ales. From their Burton brewery. Just a couple of years after it opened.

A small note on the beer names. I say names, but they're really just combinations of letters and numbers. The Ales ran from 1 to 9, the Pale Ales from P1 to Pale Ale. This is what the other bits mean:

K = Keeping,
B = Bottling,
R = Runner.

Unfortunately, I didn't photograph logs for the strongest 3 Ales, No.1 , No.2 and No.3. Sorry about that. But they only brewed them a few times a year. You try finding one when there are several hundred pages to look through. And you've allotted just 4 minutes per book.

I'd love to know where Truman sold all these beers. With the Pale Ales it's simple enough. They were sold in their pubs in London. But what about all the Milds. Where the hell did they go? The brewery in Brick Lane produced Mild Ales. What would be the point of shipping them down from Burton?

Maybe more of this tomorrow. Or perhaps that's enough tables for this week. I'll think about it overnight.


Anonymous said...

I'm guessing, with some evidence to back this up, that there was a market for Burton-style milds (ie milds with Burton Ale characteristics) in the North of England - the Fed brewery introduced a Burton Mild around the end of 1924 - and Truman's was supplying this want ... in any case, since mild was, by definition, not a beer for storing for very long, you wouldn't want to be sending it trundling round Britain via Brtish Rail.

Ron Pattinson said...

Zythophile, I would love to know more about the beers from Truman's Burton brewery. Things like 4 and 5. What the hell were they?

There's still much more to discover. Enough to keep me busy for a few more decades.

Anonymous said...


As a beginner in English Ales, I'm very intrigued by the carbonation. This week I'm brewing a clone of this beer and I wonder how were the beer carbonated. In other words, if they were shipped in bottles - were they conditioned with remaining fermentation sugar or with add-on sugar?


Ron Pattinson said...


these were mostly cask beers, so would have been cask conditioned. Bottled versions would probably have depended on residual sugars.

1877 is a funny date. Sugar was allowed in brewing after 1847, but only really became common after the Free Mash Tun Act of 1880. After 1880, it would almost certainly have been primed with sugar.