Even after WW II, there were still multiple categories of Stout in London. The weaker ones were in the low 1030ºs and cost 22d per pint. The stronger ones were in the mid-1040º and cost around 30d per pint.
The rate of attenuation of the weaker ones was mostly pretty crap, with the majority of examples well under 60%. Not quite as bad as Scottish Sweet Stout, but poor enough to leave them under 2.5% ABV. The Isleworth Stout looks pretty pathetic, with an OG of barely 1020º and less than 1.5% ABV. How on earth can watery beer be a Stout?
Attenuation was a smidgin better in the stronger Stouts, but still averaged below 60%. Most of the beers are pretty feeble in terms of ABV considering their gravity. This is a big change from the 1930s, when the majority of London Stouts were over 70% apparent attenuation.
It’s odd that the attenuation of London Stouts should have got poorer after WW II when the exact opposite took place with Guinness. With the rate increasing considerably in the early 1950s.
As you would expect, the stronger examples were a bit darker on average. That’s despite there being considerable variation across the different beers, the palest being just 150 and the darkest 425.
|London Stout after WW II|
|Year||Brewer||Beer||Price per pint (d)||OG||FG||ABV||App. Atten-uation||colour|
|1957||Taylor Walker||Nourishing Stout||22||1033.3||1012.9||2.63||61.26%||300|
|1957||Courage & Barclay||London Stout||22||1034.9||1016.3||2.39||53.30%||340|
|1957||Watney||Reids Special Stout||35||1045.2||1011.8||4.33||73.89%||225|
|1959||Taylor Walker||Cannon Stout||29||1045.8||1018.1||3.57||60.48%||425|
|Whitbread Gravity book held at the London Metropolitan Archives, document number LMA/4453/D/02/002.|
I'll be giving a talk on the history of London Stout at the taproom on Saturday, 18th November, 13:00 to 14:00.
Probably the only time I'll give a talk in Holland this year. Don't miss it.
Poesiat & Kater
1093 KP Amsterdam
Here is the link for the event: