Wednesday, 17 January 2018

Let's Brew Wednesday - 1918 Courage Double Stout

A surprisingly strong Stout for this phase of the war. Very little beer of this strength was being brewed in 1918.

In May 1918, when this beer was brewed, the average OG of everything made in a brewery could only be 1030º. To brew something of this strength, you’d need to brew a lot of sub-1030º beer. Why did brewers bother, then? Because anything over 1034º didn’t fall under government price controls. Brewers could charge what they wanted, making such beers very profitable.

I used to think that WW I had been a disaster for British brewing. In fact, despite all the restrictions, the opposite was true. Many breweries had struggled in the years leading up to the war, increased licence duties in the 1909 budget had greatly reduced the value of pubs. Many breweries saw the value of their assets so reduced that they had to reduce the value of their share capital. Few brewers were making much money. The war changed all that. Despite brewing far less beer, brewery profits were up.

1918 Courage Double Stout
pale malt 10.00 lb 68.97%
brown malt 1.25 lb 8.62%
black malt 1.75 lb 12.07%
No. 4 invert sugar 1.25 lb 8.62%
caramel 0.25 lb 1.72%
Strisselspalt 120 mins 1.00 oz
Fuggles 60 mins 1.00 oz
Fuggles 30 mins 0.75 oz
OG 1064
FG 1021
ABV 5.69
Apparent attenuation 67.19%
IBU 29
SRM 62
Mash at 151º F
Sparge at 170º F
Boil time 120 minutes
pitching temp 61º F
Yeast Wyeast 1099 Whitbread Ale


Lee said...

Never seen that much black malt in a recipe before!

By the way, nice talk(if brief by your standards) on the MBAA podcast!

Raoul Duke said...

I thought the same about the amount of black malt.
Haven't been down the archives myself (well, not yet) - I am wondering why there is a difference between the proportion of the grist, Courage 1918 DS, given in your books (Porter! & Homebrewers Guide...) and the one shown here?
Do the logs show different percentages at different brew days?
Apart from that - Looks like one that is worth a sip!

Unknown said...

I haven't seen any Courage brewing records as yet , but I'd imagine that not all of the Patent/ Black malt was added to the mash, rather some copper and hop back additions + some to the mash .

Ron Pattinson said...

Raoul Duke,

it's the same brew. The difference is how I've interpreted quarters.

In the Vintage Beer recipe, I interpreted the roasted malts as volume quarters, so used a weight of about 250 lbs for a quarter. In the more recent recipe, I went for weight quarters of 336 lbs.

I'm not 100% sure which is correct. I think they went over to weight quarters after 1880.

Raoul Duke said...


thanks for clarification!!
Intrigued by the amount of black malt in your most recent interpretation, I might brew a small batch within the next couple of days.

Looking Forward to some info on your latest book project!

cheers Peter

Raoul Duke said...

just a quick update on the above brew.
despite the high amount of black malt, the beer turned out well - none of the expected harshness at all.
It would be interesting to brew this again and do as Ed suggested to compare with the recent batch.