Monday 30 April 2018

More clubs stuff

Some more randomish stuff from Anthony Avis about clubs.

Clubs formed the major part of the free trade in the North of England. And the importance of this trade is shown by the numbers. In 1961 the ratio of pubs to clubs was 3 to 1. Making clubs approximately 25% of the on trade. Leaving a lot of business up for grabs.

The management consultants brought in by Hammonds didn't seem to understand how the club trade worked:

"The consultants had the notion, and they held to it firmly, and convinced the managing director and the sales director of Hammonds, that selling beer was no different from selling any other product. The free trade sales force was reconstituted in the image of young, keen men, smartly suited, who worked normal daylight hours, did not drink on duty, met customers by appointment, and who extolled the range of beers with a portable display case and a price structure requiring the mental agility of an Einstein to comprehend. We were still in that era when the workingmen's clubs did gigantic trade in beer, and the committees which ran them were composed of men who wanted to be entertained, made much of; and who only dealt with salesmen with whom they were comfortable and, above all, with whom they were familiar. We endured some two years of this fantastical organisation and the derision of our rivals. At the end of it all, some good resulted, but not as our expensive consultants intended and charged for; it did make us look at what we were doing and how we went about it, and whether we were doing it in the right way. We did learn the lessons and in the end we found ourselves well set up for the next twenty years to sell into the free trade - in the north of England anyway. Our ideas and organisation however, despite their proven success, were not adopted elsewhere in the BC group [Bass Charrington]."
"The Brewing Industry 1950 - 1990", by Anthony Avis, 1997, page 49.
The problem looks like one of class. Middle-class marketing men having to deal with working class buyers.

This next passage again demonstrates how important the club trade was for brewers:

"Later in the same year [1954], in conjunction with Tennants of Sheffield, they acquired Sheffield Free Brewery company, which as the name suggests, was a free brewery with only a limited number of tied outlets, but an extensive free trade customer list, particularly workingmen's clubs in the coalfields of south Yorkshire, Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire - highly desirable then. The two purchasers shared the list between them, and the tied outlets and control of the company passed entirely to Tennants a year later."
"The Brewing Industry 1950 - 1990", by Anthony Avis, 1997, page 62.
I'm intrigued by the hybrid clubs mentioned in this section, which were both owned by, and tied to, breweries:

"Throughout the first half of the present century the Hull area was dominated by two resident brewery companies, the Hull Brewery company ably run by the Cooper family as a personal fiefdom despite having no realistic financial control, but a very great deal of self assertion (not unlike the Nicholson family with regard to Vaux in Sunderland); and Moors & Robsons, itself a merger of two family breweries, with the Robsons ultimately dominating. Bass had acquired a number of outlets in Hull before the First World War, and their beer had a good following, but it was the two locals who commanded the market with ownership of the bulk of the pubs and those curious hybrid clubs peculiar to Hull, which operated in a kind of legal no man's land. These clubs were tied to their brewery owners for their supplies, and were a substantial slice of those breweries' trade, particularly as the biggest of them were in the Hessle Road area of the city, close to the fish docks, at a time when the fishing industry was extensive and prosperous."
"The Brewing Industry 1950 - 1990", by Anthony Avis, 1997, pages 88 - 89.
What were these hybrid clubs exactly? It doesn't sound like the yfell within the normal framework of the law.

Sunday 29 April 2018

The Gothenburg licensing System (part two)

It's worth remembering that the author of the pamphlet was there at the behest of the Country Brewers' Society. The very people responsible for the Brewers' Guardian.

I mention that because the author is about to get very negative about the Gothenburg system. Not surprising, seeing as UK brewers would be dead set against it spreading to where they operated. Brewers were just in the process of investing vast sums in purchasing tied houses. The last thing they wanted was for them to be taken away from them.

"Coming now to the number of licensed houses, the author gives a detailed table showing the total number controlled by the company in each year from 1865 down to September 30, 1892, in examining which we find that the number of licensed houses have increased during that period from 23 to 39. These houses are conducted by managers for the company, and these former do not benefit at all from increased sales; many only sell wines and spirits for ready money; must not supply anyone “visibly” intoxicated, or “apparently” below eighteen years of age; and many more restrictions are put upon them in order to reduce drunkenness. And what do we find as the result? In a table showing the number of convictions for drunkenness, and the number of paupers, for each year, beginning with the year 1865, Mr. Mortimer tells us that the numbers in each case have very greatly increased. It appears that “the convictions per 1,000 of the population in the year 1866 were 30.0, in 1875 they were 41.5, and in 1891 they were 44.3. The number of paupers per 1,000 of the population was, in 1866, 68.4; in 1875, 94.5; in 1891, 114.1.” These figures are very largely above those for this country. Mr. Mortimer has given a table for England and Wales, concerning which he says:— "It will be observed that the convictions for England and Wales per thousand inhabitants for the year 1870 amount only to 4.8, for 1875 to 7.6, for 1880 to 5.8, and for 1891 to 5.7. The number of paupers per 1,000 of the population in England and Wales was, in 1870, 48.1; in 1875, 33.9; in 1880, 32.5; and in 1891, 26.6.”

The pamphlet contains many other matters concern ing the Gothenburg licensing system, but we think we have given sufficient to show that it should never find a home in this country—unless it were desirable to terminate the rapid decrease in crime and drunkenness which is going on apace in Great Britain. Thanks are due from “all sorts and conditions of men” for the lucid and painstaking manner in which Mr. Mortimer has done his task, which will be of great assistance to anyone wanting to study the working of this system in all its details."
The Brewers' Guardian 1893, page 3.
To put this into context, there was quite a bit of discussion - some of it prompted by bishops in the House of Lords - about introducing the Gothenburg system in the UK. Nothing ever came of it, thankfully. At least not in the 20th century. There was Carlisle from WW I onwards, but that wasn't exactly the same.

There were a some pubs in Scotland run by trusts along the classic Gothenburg lines, mostly in mining districts. A handful are still run that way today.

I'm pretty dubious of the use of statistics in the article, as the author is clearly not impartial.

Saturday 28 April 2018

Let's Brew - 1914 Crowley AK

As far as beer ranges go, Crowley’s is pretty confusing. Making AK a welcome, understandable sight.

The OG is right where I would expect a pre-war AK to be: somewhere in the mid-1040ºs. I keep finding new AK’s from this period. But the war was not kind to them. As they were often a brewery’s weakest Pale Ale, they disappeared as strengths fell and what had been posher beers took their gravity slot.

The recipe, which consists of just pale malt and No. 3 invert sugar, is almost Whitbread-like in its simplicity. Though it is odd to see No. 3 in a Bitter. The colour is a little on the dark side, but not crazily so. I’ve other brews which use No. 2 instead of No. 3. It all depends on what AK was being parti-gyled with. This one was brewed with L, others with B. It’s the L parti-gyles that have the No. 3.

The hops are English from 1912 and 1913 plus Oregon from 1913. Given the age of some of the hops, I’ve reduced the quantity.

1914 Crowley AK
pale malt 10.00 lb 93.02%
No. 3 invert sugar 0.75 lb 6.98%
Cluster 120 mins 0.75 oz
Fuggles 90 mins 0.50 oz
Goldings 30 mins 0.50 oz
Goldings dry hops 0.25 oz
OG 1047
FG 1011
ABV 4.76
Apparent attenuation 76.60%
IBU 28
Mash at 148º F
Sparge at 160º F
Boil time 120 minutes
pitching temp 60º F
Yeast Wyeast 1275 Thames Valley ale

Friday 27 April 2018

The Gothenburg licensing System (part one)

The Gothenburg system was often held up in Britain as an example of an alternative - and better - way of running pubs.

The basic tenet being that there should be no financial incentive to the person running the pub to sell more alcohol. Instead they would receive a share in the profits on sales of non-alcoholic drinks and food.

This article gives a little background into why the original system in the Swedish city of Gothenburg was set up and what had preceded it. First, how things worked before it was set up.

"The Gothenburg licensing System.
A LITTLE pamphlet dealing with this subject is the result of a visit by Mr. R. Mortimer to Gothenburg, whither he was sent by the Country Brewers' Society, to make an inquiry into the real working of the licensing system adopted there. The author first briefly describes the manner in which licences were granted before the present system came into vogue. Under the old system “which was in existence up to the year 1865, the town authorities owned all the licences, and put them up to public aution, some being sold for a term of one year, and others for a term of three years; and upon the expiration of the term for which they were sold they were again put up to auction—the result being that the purchasers naturally made every effort during their term to sell as much liquor as they could, in order to recoup themselves for their outlay. There were also certain ‘privileged' houses, whose licences did not expire in this manner, but which were granted usually for the life of the holder. It should be borne in mind that the liquor almost exclusively sold was called Bränvin (the native brandy)-—a strong liquid drunk undiluted, which cost six öre, or something less than 0.5d. per liqueur glass, and which was the favourite and ordinary drink of the working classes. The result of this system was that something like one person in every seven of the population was, during one year, convicted of drunkenness, accompanied by violent or disorderly conduct, as without such the police have no authority to arrest."
The Brewers' Guardian 1893, page 2.
 That does sound like a recipe for disaster. Publicans would have to work mostly on a very short-term basis and need to recoup their investment quickly. Selling lots of booze would seem to be the logical approach for them.

This is what replaced it:

"Mr. Mortimer next proceeds to deal somewhat extensively with the present system, which was started in October, 1865, a licensing company being formed with the following objects :—-“(1) Of controlling the sale of this Bränvin to the working classes; (2) of bringing the Bränvin shops under strict control ; (3) of improving the quality of the spirit; (4) of raising the price of the spirit; (5) of opening eating-houses where food of good quality and at a cheap rate (meat or fish, bread, and potatoes for 3d.) could be obtained, and at which the supply of Branvin was limited to two glasses a head ; and (6) of establishing a system which, as far as the sale of this Bränvin was concerned, would give no opportunities of private gain, and by the unattractiveness of the premises offer no inducement to customers to loiter.” With regard to the finances of the company, the highest authorised capital was £11,000, and the present amount of capital called up is £5,700. The shares are sometimes sold on the market, but cannot be held by anyone except with the authority of the directors. Under the original grant of licences by the town authorities referred to below, a statutory rate of 6 per cent. only was to be paid to the shareholders, and the balance of profit was to be paid to the town authorities to be devoted to the betterment of the working classes. But in 1868 the town authorities insisted upon devoting the profits — which have averaged £30,000 a year — towards the reduction of the local rates. In 1865, under their contract with the new licensing company, the town authorities offered no licences by auction, but handed over forty to the company, seventeen of which they held in abeyance and did not use. The question of compensation, as understood in this country, did not arise. It is, however, a fact that the company, in order to obtain possession of certain of the “privileged ” houses, did pay sums of money, the exact amount of which I was unable to ascertain, to the then licence holders."
The Brewers' Guardian 1893, pages 2 - 3.
 Making premises unattractive, supplying food, limiting the amount of booze customers could drink. It sounds much like what went on in Carlisle during WW I. Which is no coincidence. The Gothenburg system was used as a template.

The "improved public" house movement in the UK between the wars took a slightly different approach. That sought to make pubs more attractive and used by a broader public. As well as providing activities other than drinking, such as bowling greens. A better concept, in my opinion, but one which was opposed by most temperance bastards. They wanted pubs to be as horrible as possible because then they were easier to campaign against.

A more sensible approach might have been to encourage drinkers to witch from spirits to beer. Having spirits as the standard drink is asking for trouble.

Next time we'll have a look at the effect of the Gothenburg system in its home town.

Thursday 26 April 2018

Richdale's clubs

John Richdale was a small brewery in Sheffield which was gobbled up by Hammonds (the core of what would later become Bass Charrington) in the 1950's.

Richdale had an unusual tactic to deal with unprofitable pubs: turn them into clubs. Though this had its dangers.

"The history of Richdale's clubs arose out of an idea they had after the First World War of closing poor trading pubs, de-licensing them, and then letting them to groups of people wanting to start up a workingmen's club. It was a good solution so long as the brewery did not press any tie for the supply of beer, which could not be enforced under the law as it then stood. Whilst the original founders were in control of the club the understanding prevailed, namely, to buy all their needs from the brewery; they passed from the scene over the years. After the Second World War Richdale held on to their trade just as long as there was a shortage of beer. With the rise of a new generation of club committeemen not bound by the morality of personal undertakings, and being aware of their legal position, and with supplies becoming more plentiful, the clubs went off to their favourite breweries. Mr Morris felt this all to be bitterly unfair, especially when he had let the clubs have supplies in times of shortage. His approach to the problem was one of passionate and reproachful historical argument with committees; which got him nowhere, and which inflamed him the greater. As mentioned, Hammonds, believing him to be well in with Sheffield club trade, made him free trade sales manager for the area, which he took as a sign that he had been appointed to carry the gospel into the territory of the heathen, and if necessary, to suffer a glorious death and transfiguration. It was not what Hammonds had in mind at all; it was also not what Mr Morris really had in mind either, as he thought he was to be brewing director of a combined BOB and Richdale, as Canklow Brewery had been closed soon after the take-over. However, he put their mistake down to a fundamental misunderstanding of his abilities and prepared to face the enemy. It was into this boiling cauldron that I was dropped, in an attempt to persuade the citizens of Sheffield to drink Hammonds' beer."
"The Brewing Industry 1950 - 1990", by Anthony Avis, 1997, page 46.

BOB stands for Bentley's Old Brewery. Mr. Morris was the manager and head brewer of Richdale. Like many in the industry at the time, he seems to have been quite a character.

Owning clubs where it wasn't possible to enforce a beer tie, doesn't seem like a very clever situation. Especially as Richdale only owned a handful of pubs in addition to five clubs.

The relationship between breweries and clubs was sometimes complicated. On the one hand, they were some of the few truly free of tie outlets. On the other, they competed with a brewery's own pubs.

The rules on tying clubs must have changed because in the 1970's I'm sure that most clubs were tied.

Wednesday 25 April 2018

Let's Brew Wednesday - 1921 Boddington Stout

Boddington Stout fared better than some of their other beers gravity-wise during the war years. Even at its nadir in early 1919, it still had an OG of 1037º. When some of their beers were below 1030º.

By 1921, Stout was almost back to its pre-war level of 1054º, being just 3 gravity points lower. Interestingly, this left it at a similar gravity to London Stouts, while before the war it had been considerably weaker. It’s another example of the war erasing regional variations in strength.

There’s been quite a substantial change to the grist. In 1920 the amber malt was dropped and replaced by more pale malt. Surprisingly, this hasn’t had an impact on the beer’s colour. Otherwise, the grist is identical to previous versions.

Surprisingly, the hops are all foreign: Saaz (1918), Alost (1920) and Pacific (1920). And mostly reasonably fresh. Which was a change from the final years of the war, when their hops were becoming increasingly older.

1921 Boddington Stout
pale malt 5.75 lb 50.00%
black malt 0.25 lb 2.17%
high dried malt 4.25 lb 36.96%
No. 3 invert sugar 1.00 lb 8.70%
caramel 2000 SRM 0.25 lb 2.17%
Cluster 120 mins 0.75 oz
Strisselspalt 90 mins 0.75 oz
Saaz 30 mins 0.75 oz
OG 1051
FG 1015
ABV 4.76
Apparent attenuation 70.59%
IBU 26
SRM 38
Mash at 149º F
Sparge at 165º F
Boil time 120 minutes
pitching temp 61.5º F
Yeast Wyeast 1318 London ale III (Boddingtons)

Tuesday 24 April 2018

The rise of clubs 1905 - 1930

One of the principal effects of the 1869 Licensing Act was a steady erosion of the number of pub licenses. Which it seems had been one of the Act's intentions.

Clubs, on the other hand, were regulated differently. And that difference could be seen in the growth of the number of clubs. In the quarter century between 1905 and 1930 their number doubled. With the majority of that growth coming in the last decade. I suspect that WW I slowed down the growth between 1914 and 1920.

Over the same period the number of pubs fell by 25%. Meaning that the percentage of clubs in the total number of on-licences rose from 6% to 15%. This, along with the fact that in many districts clubs had their own brewery, must have had an impact on brewers.

Though, as we'll see later, clubs became important outlets for some big brewers.

The rise of clubs 1905 - 1930
Date  Full Beer / wine Total Pubs  Registered clubs  total % clubs
1905 99,478 6,589 106,067 6.21%
1910 64,129 28,355 92,484 7,536 100,020 7.53%
1914 62,104 25,556 87,660 8,738 96,398 9.06%
1915 8,902
1920 60,021 23,411 83,432 8,994 92,426 9.73%
1923 58,887 22,100 80,987 11,471 92,458 12.41%
1924 58,610 21,810 80,420 11,780 92,200 12.78%
1925 58,336 21,524 79,860 12,138 91,998 13.19%
1926 58,103 21,227 79,330 12,481 91,811 13.59%
1927 57,896 20,907 78,803 12,775 91,578 13.95%
1928 57,896 21,524 79,420 12,755 92,175 13.84%
1929 57,465 20,356 77,821 13,526 91,347 14.81%
1930 57,525 20,080 77,605 13,947 91,552 15.23%
1924 – 1972: The Brewers' Society Statistical handbook 1973”, page 50.
"Brewers' Almanack 1971", page 83.

Monday 23 April 2018

A Modern Lager Brewery - the end of primary fermentation

It was important to know when a beer was ready to go into the lagering tanks. This paragraph tells you how to recognise when primary fermentation was done.

"As fermentation nears completion, the yeast settles in a compact mass on the bottom of the vessel, the supernatant beer gradually clearing itself, its condition for running off to the store casks being determined by its "break," gravity, and temperature, the former being judged by the brilliancy or otherwise of the liquid, which has settled for an hour or so after filling, as compared with a sample drawn fresh from the tun. If the malt was of good quality, the brewhouse manipulation conducted properly, and the yeast pure and strong, the first specimen will have dropped quite bright, the yeast having settled firmly on the bottom of the glass, while the sample fresh from the tun will exhibit a perfect "break," i.e., the yeast cells floating separately in a clear beer. Another factor determining the casking of the beer, is whether it is to be stored for a short or long time; if the latter, then it will be run down at a higher gravity than if intended for a shorter lagering, as is the case with a quick draught beer. Before dropping, the scum or thin head is removed, the beer is then drawn off through a special adjustable pipe, which is pushed up from underneath to just above the yeast level, and, when all the beer hits ran out of the vessel, the yeast is removed in three portions, the two first layers through a bung-hole situated in the side, and the residue through an outlet in the bottom of the vessel. Only the middle layer is reserved for pitching purposes, the other two portions being removed to the yeast drying department, whence it issues as a valuable tonic food, the sale price of which is about 2s. 6d. per pound, rather different to the price obtained by English brewers, who, if they do not wash their yeast away, have to sell it for as much per hundred weight. The pitching yeast is kept under pure iced water until required for use."
Journal of the Institute of Brewing, vol. XVII, 1920, page 496.

That's a very different method of yeast collection compared to a standard UK brewery of the time. The initial dirty head was skimmed off and when there was a clean, white head, yeast was removed using a parachute. That's a cone that was dragged dalong the surface of the fermenting wort.

I'm scratching my head as to why Lager yeast was more valuable as a food product than top-fermenting yeast. Perhaps it's because it was cleaner, being from a pure yeast culture, unlike the mixed strains usually employed in UK breweries.

At Barclay Perkins in 1925, primary fermentation of their Lagers uusally took two weeks. They seem to have employed a pretty traditional cold fermentation, pitching the yeast at 48º F.

Lagering next.

Sunday 22 April 2018

Clubs Registration Bill (part two)

As I said in the frist part, the authorities seemd very keen on limiting entrance to clubs to mainly genuine members.

Hence the insistence on keeping an accurate list of members. That would make it easy to check, should the police come calling, who was entitled to be in the club and who wasn't.
"(2) The secretary or person delivering the copies aforesaid shall at the same time, out of the funds of the club, pay or remit to the registrar the sum of five shillings; and (3) Upon compliance with the foregoing provisions of this section, the registrar shall cause the club and the rules and the particulars relating to the club as set forth in the copies so delivered to him to be registered in a book (hereinafter referred to as ‘the register’), which he shall keep for that purpose. It is explained in Clause 8 that the constitution of a club means the “rules,” and it is provided that there shall be no departure from the registered rules. The secretary of each club is to keep a list of the members and honorary members, and these are to be distinguished. Then follow the penalties for contravention of the Act, Clause 12 enacting that the person responsible for the carrying out of the rules of a club might be summoned, and on conviction fined £5, or 20s. a day, if the offence was a continuing one. A sub-section provides that if a secretary should wilfully make default in complying with the provisions of the Act requiring him to enter, and keep entered, the names of members and honorary members of such club, and to correct such entries, and to make such returns to the registrar as by this Act are required, he shall be deemed guilty of an offence against the provisions of this Act, and shall upon conviction for every such offence be liable to a penalty not exceeding £5. A secretary or any other person delivering a document relating to a club to the registrar which is proved to be inaccurate, incomplete, or misleading, is to be liable to a fine of £20, the penalties to be recoverable in a court of summary jurisdiction. Power is given to the justices to cancel a certificate of registration. An Inland Revenue officer is to have power to enter any club."
The Brewers' Guardian 1893, page 206.
The quite high fines are obviously intended as a deterrent. The last sentence removes one of the objections of brewers to clubs: them being outside the supervision of the law. With revenue officers allowed entry, that would come to an end.

There's yet more about membership restrictions. A temporary membership would, of course, be a way for a club to operate more like a pub.
"As regards the limitation in number of temporary members of the clubs clause 15 enacts: “No persons shall be allowed to become temporary members of a club, or be relieved of the payment of the regular entrance fee or subscription, except where the rules of the club provide for such cases and in accordance with such rules, and the number of such temporary or privileged members who shall be admitted to, or shall use the club at any one time, under conditions which admit of their being in the club during any of the hours in which licensed premises in the licensing district in which such club is situated are required by law to be closed, shall not exceed one twentieth part of the total number of the members of the club. Provided always that nothing in this Act shall prevent any club from admitting to all the privileges of membership the duly elected members of any other club during such time as their own club may be closed for alterations or repairs, or from some other temporary cause, or from allowing of the affiliation of members of other clubs in accordance with the rules of such clubs.” Before registering the rules of any club, the registrar must satisfy himself that the rules for the admission of visitors to such club are such as will not lead to the purposes of the Act being evaded."
The Brewers' Guardian 1893, pages 206 - 207.
The wording of the restriction of the number of temporary members is interesting: "during any of the hours in which licensed premises in the licensing district in which such club is situated are required by law to be closed". Basically when the pubs were closed. They really didn't want to let clubs operate like a pub.

The first bit of the next chunk looks like it's designed to stop people using clubs as an out of hours off-licence:
"Intoxicating liquors are to be consumed on the premises only, and the penalty fixed for contravention of the Act in this particular is £5 for every such offence. No person under the age of eighteen is to be a member or honorary member of any club. As regards the application of the fees and moneys remitted to the registrar under the Act, it is provided that (1) he shall retain thereout, for defraying expenses incurred by him and remunerating services rendered by him in performance of duties imposed upon him by this Act, so much thereof as shall from time to time be appointed or approved by the licensing justices of the licensing district in which it is the duty of such registrar to keep the register of licences by the Licensing Act, 1872, required to be kept ; and (2) he shall pay the balance thereof to the treasurer of the county, riding, division, liberty, city, borough, or place for which such licensing justices act."
The Brewers' Guardian 1893, page 207.
It's slightly odd that under-18's weren't allowed to be members. Given that the drinking age was 13 at the time.

I wonder how much dosh the registrar ever handed over to the local authority? Bugger all would be my bet.

Saturday 21 April 2018

Let's Brew - 1956 Tennant's No. 1

It wasn’t just the long list of ingredients in their grists that made Tennant unusual. They also brewed two Barley Wines over 1100º.

There were only a handful of beers of that strength in the UK at the time. Why did Tennant brew two? I’ve absolutely no idea. Though it looks as if Gold Label might have been a derivative of No. 1 Barley Wine. At one time both of them were called No. 1. My guess is that they decided to try a paler Barley Wine and it was a hit. This darker No. 1 was eventually dropped.

Unsurprisingly given the difference in colour, the grists of the two beers were quite different. The darker beer had No. 2 rather than No. 1 invert and contained two coloured malts, crystal and black.

The big difference in the hopping, is that the darker beer has three times the quantity of dry hops. Which is a sign to me that it,  too, just like Gold Label, was matured for a long period before sale. It also says on the label "Specially brewed and long matured". Sort of a hint.

1956 Tennant's No. 1
pale malt 16.75 lb 75.28%
crystal malt 60 L 0.50 lb 2.25%
black malt 0.50 lb 2.25%
enzymic malt 0.25 lb 1.12%
flaked maize 1.50 lb 6.74%
No. 2 invert sugar 2.75 lb 12.36%
Goldings 240 mins 3.00 oz
Goldings 120 mins 1.75 oz
Goldings 60 mins 1.75 oz
Hallertau dry hops 0.75 oz
OG 1101
FG 1023.5
ABV 10.25
Apparent attenuation 76.73%
IBU 78
SRM 25
Mash at 149º F
Sparge at 165º F
Boil time 240 minutes
pitching temp 57º F
Yeast Wyeast 1099 Whitbread ale

Friday 20 April 2018

The Liquor Traffic (Local Control) Bill

One of the pet projects of the temperance bastards was local control, or as it was usually and more realistically called, the local veto.

The idea was to give districts the chance to vote on whether all or some of the liquor licences in that district should be abolished. The temperance twats saw this as a way of gradually turning the whole country dry. But it was all based on an illusion.

Temperance wankers had fallen for their own propaganda. They'd managed to persuade themselves that licensed premises were imposed on the working classes and, given the chance they'd willingly free themselves from them. Obviously this was total bollocks. If it had been true, the pubs would have been empty.

From this article it's clear that temperance lunatics employed some pretty dodgy tactics.
"The Liquor Traffic (Local Control) Bill
Out of parliament

THE opposition to the Local Veto proposals of the present Government, which has been very strongly marked from the first, is rapidly increasing in all parts of the Kingdom, and in many unexpected quarters. Of course it went without saying that these proposals would meet with the determined hostility of all branches of the liquor trade, but it could hardly have been anticipated that so many Radical organisations would express such emphatic disapproval as they have. Especially is this the case in the Metropolitan districts.

It may be of some interest to our readers if we reproduce here a few facts relating to the licensed victual lers’ trade in London. The capital invested, according to Mr. Charles Walker, the Chairman of the Central Board of the Licensed Victuallers’ Protection Society of the Metropolis, is £60,000,000. There are 14,000 licence holders, and if the Veto on the issue of licences was put in operation it would throw 100,000 people out of employment. The licence duties paid amount to between £50,000 and £60,000, which sum is passed to the London County Council for the relief of taxation. The leases are long, and when originally granted are seldom for less than fifty years. Some are for 100 years, and others even longer than that. These leases are very valuable, and bring large sums in the open market, £20,000 or £30,000 being common prices to pay for publichouse businesses, and houses have been known to change hands for as much as £100,000. The tied-house system does not prevail to any-great extent, but the brewers and the distillers advance loans to the lessees, and a man with £2,000 or £3,000 — and perhaps even less sometimes — would be able to purchase a business which cost, it might be, £20,000 or £30,000: the difference between what the tenant owns and what he pays remaining as a loan on the lease, &c., which are mortgaged to the brewer and distiller. If the Liquor Traffic (Local Control) Bill passed and came into operation throughout London, 75 per cent. of the publicans would have to pass through the Bankruptcy Court, and be irretrievably ruined, for they would be saddled with a load of debt they could never repay. Money to the tune of about £45,000,000 would be simply thrown away in London alone. It must not be supposed that this enormous loss would fall wholly upon the shoulders of the licensed victuallers, for they are financed by the brewers and distillers. It is safe to say that many more people would be seriously injured by the Bill than could by any possibility receive benefit from it.

We commend to our readers the lengthy report published in another part of this number, of a speech delivered by Mr. Chamberlain at a large public meeting held at Birmingham last Thursday to protest against the Liquor Traffic (Local Control) Bill. The speaker’s main objections to the Liquor Traffic (Local Control) Bill were that “it will be ineffective; it involves the maximum of inconvenience and the minimum of real temperance reform; it is invidious, because it will press hardly upon the working classes, and it will not touch the propertied classes at all; in the third place, it is unjust, because it destroys the means of subsistence of one class of the community without giving them the compensation which has always been given in similar cases; . . . it is dishonest, because it is brought in to serve political exigencies and not to promote conscientious convictions." Such objections as these, which are illustrative of the views of the population in all parts of the Kingdom, cannot be honestly contradicted as far as the propositions in the Government measure are concerned. The meeting of workmen held in Trafalgar-square last Saturday to demonstrate against the principles of the Veto Bill was certainly not the success it was expected to be. The disgraceful rioting by organised teetotal mobs on this, as also on several other occasions, will do a great deal towards killing this most absurd measure, since it shows the sort of spirit in which they would work the Veto if ever they got the chance. Dr. Dawson Burns, speaking on behalf of the teetotalers, caused it to be believed that there was no intention of moving amendments or in any way interfering with the meeting, and relying upon his promise, the promoters made no effort to guard against surprise. But, at the very moment when Dr. Burns’ promise appeared in print, a confidential circular was being issued to members of teetotal societies calling upon them to be present in the Square by three o’clock, the meeting not being called until 4.30 p.m. The circular continued: “It is earnestly requested that no members will appear in regalia, or any attempt made to organise a procession; and, further, that no member will attempt to address the meeting or move amend ment to resolution.” The whole thing was a carefully planned surprise, by which the Square was seized before the legitimate meeting had assembled, and as discussion was prohibited, nothing other than deliberate disorder could have been intended. How well this intention was carried out by the brutal ruffians who have taken “Temperance ” as their watchword we are all aware. The lesson is one to be laid to heart. If all this can be done whilst we are still unshackled, what is likely to be the fate of average non-teetotal humanity when the fetters of the Veto are upon us?" Fraud, cunning, deceit, and ruffianly violence are the forces by which the Veto will be worked."
The Brewers' Guardian 1893, pages 105 - 106.
Of course, the temperance madmen would have loved to see everyone in the liquor trade bankrupted. They didn't give a fuck about how many livelihoods they would destroy, nor that they would be robbing working men and women of one of their few pleasures. Like all fanatics, they weren't concerned about what sacrifices others would have to endure as long as they achieved their insane goals.

In the end, the local veto must have been a huge disappointment to temperance idiots. When a scheme was introduced in Scotland after WW I, it wasn't met the expected enthusiasm of the working classes. Only a few, mostly well-heeled, districts opted for the veto. And as new votes were held in later years, the number of districts suppressing the liquor trade tended to decline rather than increase.

Thursday 19 April 2018

Clubs Registration Bill (part one)

It wasn't just brewers who were concerned about unregulated clubs. The government was, too, as evidenced by this piece of legislation. Many of its provisions still apply to clubs today.

Clearly the bill was designed to prevent the abuse of bogus clubs which effectively operated like pubs, but without any sort of control. It makes clewar right form the start that it's only worried about clubs where alcohol is served.

THE Select Committee of the House of Commons, presided over by Mr. T. Burt, M.P., the Parliamentary Secretary to the Board of Trade, have presented a Bill as amended by them, to the House. and it is now issued in its amended form. The Bill is backed by Mr. F. A. Newdigate, Captain Grice-Hutchinson, Mr. Caine, Sir A. Rollit, Mr. Gordon, and Mr. R. G. Webster. It states in the preamble that it is intended to “provide for the more effectual registration of clubs," and goes on to say that, “whereas it is expedient that certain clubs using premises on which intoxicating liquor is consumed by members of such clubs be registered, unless such premises be licensed premises," the provisions it contains should be brought into force. There are 19 clauses and a Schedule, which gives the form of certificate of registration. The short title of the Act is the Clubs Registration Act, 1893. It is not to apply to Scotland or Ireland. The interpretation clause states that the expressions “intoxicating liquor,” “licensed premises," “licensing justices," and “ licensing district " have the meanings assigned to them respectively by the Licensing Act, 1872.
The Brewers' Guardian 1893, page 206.
I've split the article up as the concept of paragraphs seems to have been foreign to the author.

After stating that all clubs serving alcohol need to be registered, the next section gives a long list of exceptions:

"After defining the terms “registrar," “secretary," and “honorary members,” the Bill in Clause 4 says “subject to the exceptions in this section mentioned any body of persons associated for any purpose, any of which persons by reason of being so associated, use or intend to use any premises whereon they do or may consume any intoxicating liquor, shall be deemed to be a club to which this Act applies, and this Act shall apply to every such body, but not to any other body. The exceptions above referred to are the following :—(1) Where such premises are licensed premises ; (2) Where such premises are under the management or control of (a) any department of Her Majesty’s Government; or (b) any members of Her Majesty's naval, military, reserve or auxiliary forces in pursuance of their duties as such; or (c) the council of any county or magistrates meeting in quarter sessions; or (d) the mayor, aldermen, and commons of the City of London in common council assembled; or (e) any local authority as defined by the Public Health Act, 1875 ; or (f) any vestry or district board constituted pursuant to the Metropolis Management Act, 1885; or (g) any body incorporated by charter, letters patent, or local Act; or (h) any governing body or other authority of any university, college, school, hospital, or other institution or establishment, religious, educational, or charitable ; or (i) the treasurer and masters of the bench of any of the inns of court. (3) Where all the persons constituting such body are resident, or bond-fide employed upon such premises ; and (4) lodges of Freemasons registered pursuant to the Unlawlul Societies Act, 1799."
The Brewers' Guardian 1893, page 206.
The exemptions give an interesting insight into British society at the time. Basically it's anything connected with the government, military, local authorities, educational establishments and the legal profession. So pretty much any organistion the posher classes might belong to.

You might find the inclusion of universities and schools odd, but many Oxford and Cambridge colleges at this time hasd their own breweries and served alcohol with meals. Some public schools, such as Eton, gave their pupils beer.

Strange how the Freemasons get a free ride, too. Especially the name of the legislation relevant to them: the Unlawlul Societies Act. It sounds weird registering organisations as unlawful.

"Clause 5 provides that every club now subsisting or established within three months from the passing of this Act shall within that period, and every club established after the expiration of three months from the passing of the Acts should before any person can as a member of such club use the premises of such club he registered. Clause 6 provides for the way in which clubs are to be registered. It is as follows :—“ (1) The secretary of, or one of the persons intending to establish the club, shall, on original representation, and on or before 25th March in each succeed ing year deliver to the registrar two copies respectively signed by such secretary or person (as the case may be) of the rules of the club, and two copies, signed in like manner, of a statement in writing setting forth such of the following particulars relating to the club as shall not be stated in such rules, that is to say—(a) The name of the club; (b) the postal addresses of all premises used, or to be used, by the club; (c) the objects of the club; (d) the names and addresses of the committee of management and of the trustees and treasurer of the club. and how the committee, trustees, and treasurer are, or are to be, elected or appointed and removed, and what are, or are to be, their respective duties and powers; (e) The purposes to which the funds of the club are, or are to be, applied or applicable; (f) Whether the members of the club have, or are to have, and, if any, what control over the disposal of the funds of the club ; (g) What procedure is, or is to be, necessary to confer on a person membership of the club; (h) What entrance fees, subscriptions, and other pay ments are, or are to be, payable by members of the club; (i) Whether any, and, if any, what persons are, or are to be, admissible to the club as visitors or as temporary members, and under what circumstances and upon what terms and conditions ; and (j) Whether there is, or is to be any, and, if any, what means of altering or adding to the rules of the club."
The Brewers' Guardian 1893, page 206.

One of the things the bill seemed worried about was who could be admitted to a club on a temporary basis. The reason is obvious: if a club could let in large numbers of non-members, then it was really more like a pub. We'll be learning more about those restrictions next time.

Wednesday 18 April 2018

Let's Brew Wednesday - 1956 Tennant's Glucose Stout

Tennant is a very confusing brewery when it comes to ingredients. They seem to use some of them in the wrong beers.

Take Glucose Stout, for example. The name implies that it’s a Sweet Stout. An obvious candidate for a dose of lactose, you’d think. Hang on. I think I’m missing something here. I’ve just taken a look at the Whitbread Gravity Book entries for Glucose Stout. And every example has an OG of around 1040º and an FG of around 1019º. I reckon Tennant used the Whitbread trick of adding the lactose after primary fermentation. I need to tinker with the recipe.

Right, that’s it fixed. 1.5 lbs of lactose is what’s needed. Without the Gravity Book to guide me, I would have got this terribly wrong. It’s much sweeter

Hang on again. The label goes on about the glucose content. I don’t see any in the grist. And the Gravity Book doesn’t mention the presence of lactose, which it often did. I reckon they’ve primed with glucose at the end of secondary conditioning and then pasteurised.

For some reason the enzymic malt and malt extract are missing in this case. As is the flaked maize. Perhaps that explains it. If the enzymic malt and malt extract are there to provide enzymes, they might not be needed here where there are no adjuncts.

It was mashed quite a bit warmer than their other beers. Presumably to produce a less fermentable wort.

Unlike all their other beers, there’s a single hop addition at the start of the boil. As it’s a bit more heavily hopped than most Tennant’s beers, the (calculated) IBUs are quite high at 29.

1956 Tennant's Glucose Stout
pale malt 5.50 lb 63.18%
crystal malt 60 L 0.33 lb 3.79%
black malt 0.125 lb 1.44%
amber malt 0.50 lb 5.74%
glucose 1.00 lb 11.49%
No. 2 invert sugar 0.25 lb 2.87%
caramel 1000 SRM 1.00 lb 11.49%
Fuggles 90 mins 1.75 oz
OG 1040
FG 1019
ABV 2.78
Apparent attenuation 52.50%
IBU 29
SRM 48
Mash at 152º F
Sparge at 165º F
Boil time 90 minutes
pitching temp 60º F
Yeast Wyeast 1099 Whitbread ale

Tuesday 17 April 2018

A Modern Lager Brewery - Fermentation

We're looking today at another process very specific to Lager brewing: cold fermentation.

First, the types of fermentation vessels employed in Lager brewing.

"Fermentation.— Fermentation is conducted usually in small oak tuns, the insides of which are either varnished or impregnated with paraffin (the latter being considered by many authorities the better method); this is done to avoid absorption of the beer by the wood and consequent infection. Other materials are making their way for the construction of fermenting vessels; for example, ferro-concrete, lined with a form of asphalt, as constructed by the Swiss firm of Borsari. Again, aluminium in iron casings, with a special insulating mixture between the two metals, has also met with a certain amount of support, but the glass enamelled steel tank appears to be the favourite among those who are not so conservative as to believe that nothing can be as good as the small oak tun. The principal reasons why these glass-lined vessels are making such headway are that the smooth surface favours a somewhat slower fermentation, it conduces also to a better settlement of the yeast (on the bottom of the tun), and a more thorough saturation of the beer with the carbonic acid gas. Further, no periodical scraping and re-varnishing is necessary, while attemperation is also in great measure dispensed with.

Although what is known as the vacuum system of fermentation has met with considerable success in America (where lagers are produced from heavy percentages of substitutes), and, notwithstanding that, it was tried on the Continent, I think that I am correct in saying that it has been practically abandoned in Europe, while the one installation in England did not apparently yield results such as would have justified its further adoption in this country."
Journal of the Institute of Brewing, vol. XVII, 1920, page 494.
It's amazing to think that until a couple of decades ago Pilsner Urquell was fermented in quite small oak tuns. Note that, as was usual on the continent, wooden vessels were lined so that the beer didn't come into direct contact with the timber.

I assume that those glass-lined steel tanks must have been enclosed. Otherwise how could they have increased the amount of CO2 in solution in the beer?

The Pfaudler vaccum system was indeed popular in the USA. I know who used the system in the UK: Allsopp. Though by the time this article was published their Lager brewery had been moved to Alloa. Allsopp, despite a lot of effort and expense, were never able to make a go of Lager brewing.

The need for ice was one of the factors that restricted the spread of Lager brewing until the 1870's, when Van Linde's ice machines made manufactured ice practical. Before then, Lager brewing was mostly limited to Central Europe and Scandinavia where there was plenty of natural ice that could be harvested and stored through the summer.

"As the temperature of fermentation ranges between 40° F. and 50º F., the room or cellar in which it is conducted must obviously stand at not more than the pitching temperature of 40° F. This necessitates either the employment of natural ice or the services of a refrigerating machine; where a plentiful and certain supply of the former can be relied on in the winter; the system is to construct the fermenting and storage cellars round a central ice cellar, provided with suitable air ducts, through which the cold will be transmitted to the various rooms. The ice is collected from the rivers and lakes by means of a combined conveyer and elevator attached to a wagon, and is delivered either direct into the various ice cellars or into a central dump. Obviously, natural ice produces the requisite cold at a much less cost than does refrigerating machinery, but, where any doubt exists as to a regular and ample supply of the natural article being available, then a cooling plant must be installed, if only as a stand-by. Perhaps it is needless to say that, in all lager breweries of any importance, pure yeast is employed exclusively, the pure yeast culture room being as essential a part of such a brewery as the brewhouse. Attemperation is effected in breweries provided with ice machinery by means of flat or tubular attemperators, through which iced water circulates, while, in those depending upon natural ice, floating dishes or cans containing lumps of ice are used."
Journal of the Institute of Brewing, vol. XVII, 1920, page 495.

The system of constructing fermenting and lagering cellars around an ice plant sounds similar to that employed by Carlsberg.

In the UK it was usual to run brine through the attemperators. Floating cans of ice doesn't sound a particularly sophisticated method of cooling.

More on Lager fermentation to come.

Monday 16 April 2018

Bogus Cubs

The relationship between brewers and licensed clubs was a complex one. When workingmen's clubs started to appear towards the end of the 19th century, brewers were generally hostile.

Of course, brewers had invested heavily in pubs and they weren't keen on having what they considered unfair competition from another type of drinking establishment. You often find hostile references to clubs by brewers.

Theew was mistrust on both sides. Unhappy with the price they were charged for beer in the years immediately after WW I, clubs in many areas banded together and started their own breweries. Which annoyed brewers even more, because now clubs were not only competing with their pubs, they weren't even buying their beer.

The cases below are the result of the 1869 Licensing Act, which allowed magistrates to refuse t orenew the licences of pubs deemed to be surplus to requirements.

"Bogus Cubs v. Publichouses.
THE evidence given by Mr. Shaw-Lefevre, M.P., before the Select Committee on the Registration of Clubs Bill, ought to be well noted by all who desire to obtain a true in sight into the licensing problem. Speaking with all the weight of a member of the Government and of a magistrate having jurisdiction over the district to which his evidence referred, he said that three years ago the justices refused to renew the licence of a public house in West Malling, as they considered that the number in existence was beyond the number necessary. As a result, the owner turned the house into a club, With a merely nominal entrance fee and no subscription whatever, and the tenant was appointed manager. Nearly every householder in the place became a member, and in a very short time the club was selling twice as much beer per week as the publichouse had done, and the police could not interfere as “they could not go into the club to see what was going on.” The only other effect of shutting up the publichouse, Mr. Shaw-Lefevre declared to be that poor people who could not afford to pay one shilling entrance fee could not enter, and had to go on to the ordinary licensed house. Mr. Lefevre added that at the village of Wroughton, the magistrates also closed a publichouse, and it was turned into a club. This club was appropriately named the “Gladstone,” and “exactly the same kind of thing had occurred as at West Malling.” The right hon. gentleman admitted that these clubs were to all intents and purposes publichouses, and that it was hard that the licensed victuallers should have to pay licence duty whilst these places went free. He also thought there ought to be some authority to determine whether a club was bogus or not, and did not stop far short of the true moral that the shutting up of publichouses is the most absurd of all ways of attempt ing to reduce drunkenness. The experience of West Malling and Wroughton is universal. Wherever public houses are closed, bogus clubs, or shebeens, or “field clubs,” spring up, with the result that drunkenness is intensified, because it is indulged in beyond the area of police supervision and under circumstances in which public opinion has no corrective force. It is something to have got a member of the Government to see these facts clearly, and Mr. Shaw-Lefevre cannot put his abilities to a more useful task than that of enlightening his colleagues in the Government. If he himself now votes for the Veto Bill or any other mischievous attempts at repression he will indeed be sinning against the light."
The Brewers' Guardian 1893, page 162.
It's quite clever, really, to just turn your closed pub into a club. But you can see why it would drive brewers crazy. Not only had they lost a pub, but it had been replaced by a new competitor that didn't have the same level of restrictions.