Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Let’s Brew 1930 Barclay Perkins X

After the turmoil of WW I and its immediate aftermath there was a period of stability in the 1920’s. But that doesn’t mean that everything was static.

The recipe of Barclay Perkins X Ale did undergo a couple of changes during the decade. The most notable being to the base malt. In 1921 the base was 100% pale malt, but that was altered a year later to a combination of Californian pale malt, mild malt and SA malt.

My first thought was that this was an economy measure. As this period of Barclay Perkins logs includes the price of the ingredients, it’s easy enough to check. The pale malt was 56 shillings per quarter, the SA malt 53/6 and the mild malt 53/-. Using 100% pale malt would have cost 198/- more. Not that significant when you consider that the total cost of the grist was 10,494/-. Pale malt would have increased the overall cost by just 1.89%.

So I assume that there must have been other reasons. SA malt produces a less easily fermentable wort, which might be handy if you want to keep the FG up. Otherwise, your guess is as good as mine. Feel free to replace the SA malt with mild malt, which is probably the closest available equivalent.

The grist is about as complicated as they got, as there was also amber and crystal malt included. Which remain at around the same proportion as in 1921, 7% and 5%, respectively. The sugar content has risen a little, from 10% to 11%, and is now all No. 3 invert. The flaked maize content is stable at 13%.

Another nice feature of this period of Barclay Perkins logs is that given the hop variety as well as the region in which they were grown. So I know for certain that most of them were Fuggles, other than the Oregon hops which I’m assuming were Cluster. There’s also 28 lbs (out of a total of 1320 lbs) od something described as “Dust”. It can’t have been shit as it cost almost double the price of the Fuggles.

X Ale is just one of four beers parti-gyled together in this brew. X Sp was almost identical to X, but had an OG just 1º lower. The others were RA 1031º and Ale at 1029º.

Barclay’s range of Milds was radically transformed in 1931, when there was a big hike in the tax rate. Brewers responded by cutting gravities so they could retail their beers at the same price. We’ll be looking at those beers later.

1930 Barclay Perkins X
pale malt 2.25 lb 24.48%
mild malt 1.75 lb 19.04%
SA malt 1.75 lb 19.04%
amber malt 0.66 lb 7.18%
crystal malt 60 L 0.50 lb 5.44%
flaked maize 1.25 lb 13.60%
No. 3 invert sugar 1.00 lb 10.88%
caramel 1000 SRM 0.03 lb 0.33%
Cluster 120 mins 0.25 oz
Fuggles 90 mins 0.75 oz
Fuggles 60 mins 0.75 oz
Fuggles 30 mins 0.50 oz
OG 1043
FG 1013.5
ABV 3.90
Apparent attenuation 68.60%
IBU 31
SRM 19
Mash at 153º F
Sparge at 170º F
Boil time 150 minutes
pitching temp 60.5º F
Yeast Wyeast 1099 Whitbread Ale


Pierce said...

"Dust." I wonder if that's the 1930's equivalent of lupulin powder?

qq said...

...or the equivalent of hop extract, for adjusting the final bitterness for consistency's sake?

Always interesting to see Oregon hops making it to the UK at this time - Prohibition and the Great Depression must have done wonders for pricing. Something like 90% of the US hop crop was Cluster then, so it's a fair bet - but even that was a decline from the turn of the century when it was 96% Cluster.

Anonymous said...

# Just Sayin' alert.

The 'dust' (also known as 'shake') from cannabis plants is usually pollen and leavenings from the part of the plant with the highest concentration of THC - female flowering heads. Often found at the bottom of big bags or after harvesting.

As such it is highly prized (and priced) amongst aficionados and dealers alike. You don't need much of that to get the desired effects, or so I'm told.

You could conduct your research into this matter in the Netherlands without much difficulty, I would say, Ron. Or send Lexi out on a mission with a €20 note???


Maybe this is a highly flavoured/potent residue from when the hops are sacked up??? And as such has a more concentrated flavour, so less is needed and is more expensive?