Saturday, 29 August 2015

DDR Beer Styles

I just came across this dead handy document I’d forgotten I had. It’s TGL 7764: the official DDR standard document for beer.

One of the useful bits of information is something on beers styles. A little table documenting the characteristics of each type of beer. It’s rather longer than the table in Kunze and includes some styles I never came across. Things like Lagerbier Dunkel, Lagerbier Spezial and Dunkel.

It doesn’t include ABV, so I’ve calculated it from the OG and rate of attenuation. I’ve used the middle of the gravity range and either the middle of the attenuation range or the minimum value. What it shows is quite a narrow range of ABVs, with the vast majority of styles between 3.5 and 5%.

I’d been wondering about Doppel-Karamelbier. It always specifies Vollbier on the label, but I was fairly certain it was low ABV. The fact no rate of attenuation is specified implies to me that it’s very low. And that it’s one of those weird German styles with a normal OG, but minimal amount of alcohol. Consulting Kunze*, I see that it had an ABC of 0.63% to 1.5%. So hardly fermented at all.

Another odd feature is the number of Pilsner styles: four in total. I’m not sure why Deutsches Pilsator and Deutsches Pilsner Spezial get separate entries as their specifications seem identical. As do Lagerbier Hell and Lagerbier Spezial, Lagerbier Dunkel and Lagerbier Dunkel Spezial.

It’s handy that there’s an indication of bitterness, though I’m not sure how that relates to IBUs. It does indicate the relative bitterness of the types, at least.

You'll notice that every DDR label has TGL 7764 on it somewhere.

Here you go:


DDR beer styles 1987 - 1990
Type OG Plato ABV App. Atten-uation CO2 Content Isohumulon Content EBC colour
% % % % min. Mg/l
Dunkel (Einfachbier) 5.7 - 6.2 1.84 55 - 65 0.35 3 - 11 min 79
Alkoholfreies Bier 6.5 - 7.0 10 - 15 0.42 22 - 28 max 12
Weissbier 7.0 - 8.0 2.90 min 75 0.60 nothing specified 9 - 15
Extra 8.5 - 9.0 3.41 min 75 0.45 22 - 34 max 12
Hell 9.5 - 10.0 3.82 min 75 0.40 16 - 26 max 14
Edel-Bräu Hell 10.5 - 11.0 4.23 min 75 0.42 16 - 28 max 14
Dunkel (Vollbier) 10.0 - 10.5 4.02 min 75 0.40 16 - 26 min 79
Doppel-Karamelbier 11.7 - 12.2 0.63 - 1.5 nothing specified 0.42 3 - 10 min 93
Schwarzbier 11.7 - 12.2 4.12 60 - 70 0.42 20 - 34 min 160
Deutsches Pilsner 10.5 - 11.0 4.23 min 75 0.40 22 - 34 max 12
Diabetiker-Pils 10.0 - 10.5 0.42 22 - 34 max 13
Lagerbier Hell 11.5 - 12.0 4.65 min 75 0.42 20 - 34 max 31
Lagerbier Dunkel 11.5 - 12.0 4.65 min 75 0.42 14 - 26 min 40
Lagerbier Spezial 11.5 - 12.0 4.65 min 75 0.42 20 - 34 max 31
Lagerbier Dunkel Spezial 11.5 - 12.0 4.65 min 75 0.42 14 - 26 min 40
Deutsches Pilsator 11.5 - 12.0 4.83 min 78 0.42 26 - 39 max 12
Deutsches Pilsner Spezial 11.5 - 12.0 4.83 min 78 0.42 26 - 39 max 12
Spitzenbier 12.0 - 12.5 4.86 min 73 0.45 28 - 40 max 18
Märzen 13.5 - 14.0 5.13 min 70 0.42 20 - 34 max 110
Weißer Bock oder Bockbier Hell 15.0 - 15.5 5.86 68 - 75 0.40 14 - 26 21 - 43
Dunkler Bock oder Bockbier Dunkel 15.0 - 15.5 5.62 65 - 72 0.40 10 - 25 min 83
Deutscher Porter 17.5 - 18.0 6.10 min 64 0.42 35 - 50 min 160
Source:
TGL 7764


* "Technologie für Brauer und Mälzer" by Wolfgang Kunze, 1975, page 422.

Friday, 28 August 2015

Cannewitzer beers

Some more DDR fun, this time in the form of some old labels. Yes, you've guessed it. I can't be arsed to write anything and this is an easy cop out.

Cannewitz is a tiny place which is part of Grimma, a small town to the Southeast of Leipzig. Surprisingly, since the brewery closed in 1999, there are still beers available under the Cannewitzer name. They're brewed at the Glückauf brewery, around 100 km further south, but Still in Saxony.

This the current beer range:

Cannewitzer beers in 2015
Beer style OG Plato ABV
Cannewitzer "Nerchauer Pumpernickel" Schwarzbier 11.7º 4.9%
Cannewitzer Pilsner Pilsner 11.5º 4.9%
Cannewitzer Bock Bock 16.2º 5.9%
Cannewitzer "Gold Quell" Hell Helles 11.7º 4.9%
Wurzener Ringelnatz Pils 11.5º 4.9%
Cannewitzer "Wilder Robert" Pilsner Pils 11.5º 4.9%
Cannewitzer „Disco Cola“ Cola - 0%
Source:
Cannewitzer website http://www.cannewitzer.de/.

Looks to me like there are only really four beers as the three Pilsners look remarkably similar. Who wouldn't want to drink something called Disco Cola?

This is what they usede to brew:





Three beers have the same name as DDR-period brews. Though the Nerchauer Pumpernickel has transformed itself from Pilsator to Schwarzbier.

I may continue this series. Depending on how easy it is. And if there's some audience interest. Though the latter is optional.





Klaus Fruchtsäfte & Cannewitzer Biere
Apfelweg 11,
04808 Wurzen.
Tel: (0 34 25) 81 35 95
Fax: (0 34 25) 81 66 97
http://www.cannewitzer.de/



Glückauf-Brauerei
Hauptstraße 176,
09355 Gersdorf.
http://www.glueckaufbiere.de/

Thursday, 27 August 2015

Manchester here I come!

Doesn't have quite the same ring as California here I come! But this year's travel budget is almost up. Can't afford anything too expensive.

I'll be in Manchester for the weekend. Any recommendations for good pubs in the city centre? They have to sell cask Bitter (a requirement of Dolores) and preferably pub-like.

Suggestions for curry houses would be welcome, too.

Berlin day four

The day starts as every other. In a sweaty hotel room.

It’s followed by another wasp skirmish and a light breakfast of fried things. For me at least. Andrew tries to stare down another croissant, Dolores sticks with salmon and Alexei grazes from all sections of the buffet.

Today we’re finally getting around to the main purpose of this trip: visiting the beer festival. The Internationales Berliner Bierfestival, to be precise. A beer festival not quite like any other. In that it’s a linear affair, strung out along a wide avenue. Then there’s the beer selection. But we’ll be getting to that later.

We’ve arranged to meet fellow beer writer Joe Stange at the festival.

“Hurry up, we’re supposed to be meeting Joe at 10:30.” I tell Dolores.

“What? I thought it was 11.”


I’m sure I told her the time yesterday. We’re running a bit late. Fortunately the festival is only a few minutes’ walk from our hotel and we’ve arranged to meet at just about the closest spot.

The plan is to arrive early, grab seats and drink beer until we get bored. With a little food thrown in, possibly. We leave Dolores to hold our seats while Andrew and I grab some beers. Luckily we’re right next to a nest of Czech breweries. Well, not really luckily, as Joe chose this spot to meet for that very reason. I love me some Czech beer. I get a Novopacké Dark. Andrew gets two Pales for him and Dolores.


Novopacké Dark
A bit sweet, bit of diacetyl. OK.

While I’m ordering the beers I spot Joe, who has brought a friend along, another American living in Berlin.

We start on the serious business of drinking while Dolores drops Alexei off at the computer game museum, which is handily nearby. Hopefully it will entertain him long enough for us to knock back a few beers.


I love this festival. For many reasons. First is the total absence of geekiness. It’s a festival for people, not geeks. People of all ages and shapes. Second it’s on one of my favourite streets, Stalin Allee. Sorry, Karl Marx Allee. Home to the best Stalinist architecture in Berlin. Then there’s the beer selection. Always lots of Czech breweries present. And there are no geeks. Have I already mentioned that? Good food, reasonably priced and country-coordinated with the beer. It’s pretty much the exact opposite of the Borefts Festival.


True, there are loads of dreadful beers. Desperados, Fosters, Carlsberg, Heineken. It appears as if the participants have been chosen at random from a directory of breweries. Doesn’t bother me. There are far too many beers to drink more than a tiny percentage. And there are plenty of good ones I can’t usually drink.

Oddly, there are a few classic geek breweries present. I’m surprised some didn’t turn their noses up at the company they have to keep. I don’t pay them a huge amount of attention because you can find them effing everywhere. The same handful of geek brewers fill the taps of geek pubs worldwide. It’s one of the reasons I find the “craft” scene unbearably dull. The same bloody Mikkeller beers from San Francisco to Seoul.

My next beer comes from a local geek brewery, Hop’s. Strange use of the apostrophe in their name.


Hop’s Fransmann No. 1
A dry-hopped Lager. Quite pleasantly hoppy.

My tasting notes are particularly expansive today. Here’s the full set for your delectation:


Opat Dark Lager
Pretty nicely dark. Liquiricey – in a good way.


Chodovar Dark
Sweetish and a bit dull.

Chodovar Skalni Lezak (unfiltered)
Quite buttery.


Svijany Kellerbier
Quite pleasant.

Klosterbräu thing


Pretty impressive, eh?

Andrew has a reasonable thirst and is finishing his beers quicker than me. It makes me feel so proud as a father. He’s turning into quite a pisshead.


The computer game museum keeps Alexei occupied for a good few hours. Plenty of time for us to drink at our leisure. And indulge in the occasional bit of food. I know, I’ve turned into a boring old twat, keeping myself fed as well as beered.

Eventually it’s time for Joe to leave. He has a babysitter to relieve and he lives quite a way across time.

“Daad, what to Novgorod?” Alexei asks on the way home.

“Which, Novgorod? Nizhny?”

“No, he means the other one, dad.” Andrew adds helpfully.

One more afternoon at the festival, then a flight home.






Internationales Berliner Bierfestival
http://www.bierfestival-berlin.de


Computerspielemuseum Berlin
Karl-Marx-Allee 93A,
10243 Berlin.
Tel: +49 30 60988577
http://www.computerspielemuseum.de/

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Let's Brew Wednesday - 1955 Flowers BX

I’m continuing my slow walk through the fields of Flowers 1950’s beer range. This time it’s the turn of their Brown Ale, Brownex.

It’s a slightly weird name. Sounds like some sort of stain remover for underpants. In reality, it forms a pair with their Light Ale, Palex. I’m glad to have found both. Because Light Ale and Brown Ale are surprisingly rare in brewing records. The explanation is quite simple: they were often just tweaked bottled versions of another beer. Many Brown Ales were bottled Dark Mild, perhaps with slightly different priming. While Light Ale was a bottled weak Bitter.

A quick scan of the newspaper archives reveal that Brownex first appeared in the 1930’s:

A WINTER'S (T)ALE
"Brownex," a new brown ale, specially brewed as a cold weather drink, is now at the disposal of the discriminating purchaser. It is, of course, the brunette of the twins "Palex" and "Brownex" —"Palex," you may remember, is the special light summer ale which made its appearance this year. While "Palex" is extra light in colour, in gravity and flavour, so is "Brownex" heavy and darker in colour tone, heavier in weight and fuller in flavour. It is a warming tasteful drink with plenty of body in it and agreeable to degree.

Its sponsors, Messrs. Flower and Sons, of Stratford-on-Avon, consider that its success will equal that of "Palex."

"Brownex " is obtainable all Flower's houses, or from licensed grocers, bottles only (not on draught) at 3s. 6d. per dozen small, or 6s. 6d. per dozen large. Ample local stocks are available at Flower and Sons, Ltd., 377 High-street, Cheltenham.”
Cheltenham Chronicle - Saturday 18 November 1933, page 10.

Some interesting details in there. It implies that Brownex is stronger than Palex. That definitely wasn’t true in 1955 – the gravities were identical. 3s. 6d.for a dozen small bottles implies a gravity of around 1037º. So not particularly strong. Below average gravity, in fact. Also fascinating that they pushed Palex as a summer drink and Brownex as a winter drink.

What on earth does “agreeable to degree” mean? That it’s a bit agreeable? Reads like nonsense to me.

On with the beer. The combination of pale malt, crystal malt and No.3 invert looks like a classic Dark Mild grist. Though including lactose, presumably to add residual sweetness, isn’t usual in Mild. The hopping is pretty light, but that’s what you’d expect.

Will any of you brew this? Probably not, I suspect. It’s a bit weak, well, unexciting. Though I’m certain large quantities of it were consumed 60 years ago. Who drinks Brown Ale in Britain today? A few old blokes and bikers.



Time to pass you over to myself for the recipe . . . . .




1955 Flowers BX
pale malt 5.25 lb 79.25%
crystal malt 60 L 0.25 lb 3.77%
No. 3 invert sugar 0.50 lb 7.55%
lactose 0.50 lb 7.55%
malt extract 0.13 lb 1.89%
Fuggles 90 min 0.50 oz
Fuggles 60 min 0.50 oz
Goldings 30 min 0.25 oz
OG 1030.4
FG 1009
ABV 2.83
Apparent attenuation 70.39%
IBU 19
SRM 23
Mash at 152º F
Sparge at 160º F
Boil time 90 minutes
pitching temp 60º F
Yeast WLP007 Dry English Ale

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Adnams output by type 1940 - 1951

Brewing records often contain more information than just a record of a particular brew. Things like the amount of tax paid in a month. And from that it’s possible to pluck other handy stuff. Like how much was being brewed of each type of beer.

Here’s an example from Adnams:


It’s simple enough to use the amount of duty paid to work out which beer it refers to. There only were four beers and each had a different gravity. Though it is slightly complicated by it being a month when the rate of duty increased, meaning there are two sets of figures for each beer.

This is what I derived from the information:

Adnams output in April 1940
beer OG barrels gallons % of total
XX 1029 790.50 28,458 66.89%
PA 1039 201.08 7,239 17.02%
DS 1042 46.42 1,671 3.93%
XXXX 1055 143.75 5,175 12.16%
total 1,181.75 42,543
Source:
Adnams brewing record Book 27

Basically, it tells us that Adnams brewed mostly Mild. It amounted to more than two thirds of their output, the other third mostly being split fairly evenly between Bitter and Old Ale. Only tiny amounts of Stout were brewed.

A few months later and there had been some changes:

Adnams output in August 1940
beer OG barrels gallons % of total
XX 1027 134.64 4,847 8.55%
XX 1028 132.56 4,772 8.42%
XX 1029 911.14 32,801 57.87%
PA 1039 301.83 10,866 19.17%
DS 1042 46.42 1,671 2.95%
XXXX 1055 47.83 1,722 3.04%
total 1,574.42 56,679
Source:
Adnams brewing record Book 27

Total production had increased a fair bit, from 1,181 barrels to almost 1,600 barrels. Three quarters was now Mild and output of Old Ale had declined considerably. While the percentage of Bitter produced had increased a little.

A few year further into the war and the beer range was down to just three:

Adnams output in March 1944
beer OG barrels gallons % of total
XX 1027 1,137.97 40,967 64.48%
PA 1036 458.11 16,492 25.96%
DS 1039 168.72 6,074 9.56%
total 1,764.81 63,533
Source:
Adnams brewing record Book 31

Total output was up again, as was the percentage of Bitter brewed. Surprisingly, the amount of Stout had increased, too. But there may well have been several months’ supply brewed in March, as there was none made the following month or in July:

Adnams output in April 1944
beer OG barrels gallons % of total
XX 1027 1,051.64 37,859 66.62%
PA 1036 526.83 18,966 33.38%
total 1,578.47 56,825
Source:
Adnams brewing record Book 31

Adnams output in July 1944
beer OG barrels gallons % of total
XX 1027 1,310.08 47,163 76.88%
PA 1036 393.97 14,183 23.12%
total 1,704.06 61,346
Source:
Adnams brewing record Book 31
By the time the war was just about over the proportion of Bitter brewed had just about doubled compared to 1940:

Adnams output in March 1945
beer OG barrels gallons % of total
XX 1027 1,140.28 41,050 66.11%
PA 1036 524.69 18,889 30.42%
DS 1039 59.89 2,156 3.47%
total 1,724.86 62,095
Source:
Adnams brewing record Book 32

By 1951 the amount brewed was back down to around the level of 1940:

Adnams output in September 1951
beer OG barrels gallons % of total
XXX 1031 736.19 26,503 59.58%
PA 1036 450.81 16,229 36.48%
DS 1039 48.61 1,750 3.93%
XXXX 1054 33.94 1,222 2.75%
total 1,235.61 44,482
Source:
Adnams brewing record Book 32

And Bitter was rapidly closing in on Mild. The Old Ale was back, but far less was brewed than in 1940. Though, surprisingly, the gravity of XXXX was just about at its pre-war level.

I think we’ve learned some useful stuff about the long slow swing from Mild to Bitter. Looks to me as if WW II spurred it along.

Monday, 24 August 2015

Dutch Lager Styles 1870 - 1960 (part twelve)

Post WW II

This is when the real transformation of Dutch brewing took place. After 1955, with Heineken increasingly successful in the American market, Dutch exports and production soared. Between then at 1970, beer output more than quadrupled.

Dutch beer output 1946 - 1970
year output (hl) year output (hl) year output (hl)
1946 1,873,000 1955 2,321,000 1963 4,408,000
1947 1,852,000 1956 2,485,000 1964 4,965,000
1948 1,514,000 1957 2,733,000 1965 5,402,000
1949 1,336,000 1958 2,941,000 1966 5,695,000
1950 1,413,000 1959 3,398,000 1967 6,571,000
1951 1,603,000 1960 3,552,000 1968 6,849,000
1952 1,611,000 1961 3,802,000 1969 7,841,000
1953 1,832,000 1962 3,965,000 1970 8,772,000
1954 1,978,000
Source:
European Statistics 1750-1970 by B. R. Mitchell, 1978.

Pils came to dominate the Dutch market, with some of the older styles such as Licht and Donker  Lager disappearing, the latter replaced by Oud Bruin. Münchener, a stronger dark Lager, gradually faded into extinction in the 1950’s and 1960’s.

Heineken Rotterdam beers in 1949
Bier OG Balling FG Balling app.degree attenuation % ABV Colour hops (gm/hl)
Pils for UK 8.05 2.7 66.46% 3 0.48 143.9
Münchner 12.7 5.6 55.91% 4.9 14 147.1
Oud Bruin 8.15 3.6 55.83% 3.1 19 116.3
Pils 12.2 4 67.21% 4.7 0.8 214.8
Pils. Export 12.15 3.9 67.90% 4.7 0.8 218.4
Bok 16.35 6.3 61.47% 6.5 19 171.3
Source:
Heineken brewing records held at the Amsterdam Stadsarchief

Two new Pils versions were introduced: a low-strength one for the UK and a slightly tweaked full-strength one for the USA. All Heineken beers contained adjuncts: maize and sugar in everything plus caramel and colouring in the dark Lagers.




Dutch Lager styles around 1960

This comes from a booklet distributed by the Centraal Brouwerij Kantoor:

Dutch Lager styles around 1960
Beer OG (Plato) ABV Description
Pilsener 11 - 12 5% Golden yellow and clear.
Münchener 11.5 - 12.5 5% Less heavily hopped than Pils with a full taste
Donker Lager (Oud Bruin) 8 - 9 3.50% Artificially sweetened
Bokbier 16 6.50% Warm robin-red colour, creamy head and special aroma
Dortmunder 11 - 12 5% Fuller but less heavily hopped
Stout 16 6.50% Especially nourishing.
Source:
"Het Bier is Weer Best", Centraal Brouwerij Kantoor, ca. 1960.

It’s pretty much the same styles as are around today, except Münchener has disappeared and Meibok has become a new seasonal beer.

The last reference I can find to Münchener in Heineken’s advertising is from 22nd October 1965. It must have disappeared soon after that.

It’s surprising that Heineken’s Donker Lager survived WW II, being advertised until about 1955.

Heineken’s leading position in the Dutch market was cemented in 1968 with the takeover of their main rivals, Amstel. The number of breweries continued to decline, falling from 85 in 1945* to a meager 19 in 1979**.

By the 1970’s, The Dutch industry was highly concentrated, dominated by a handful of large breweries – Heineken, Oranjeboom, Grolsch and Bavaria – making almost exclusively Pils. It was the low point of Dutch brewing.





* Centraal Brouwerij Kantoor
** Nederlands Etiketten Logboek, 1998.

Sunday, 23 August 2015

Adnams PA 1945 - 1959

Right. I really am doing PA. Really.

I thought I’d already done this, to be honest. Just shows how busy I am. This being one of several series I’m currently engaged in. Oh, before we start one thing: this is going to be very number heavy. Thought I’d best warn you.

Adnams PA, or Bitter as it was doubtless called down the boozer, has a long history. It shows up in the first Adnams brewing record that’s been preserved, one from 1878-79. Back then it was a reasonably strong beer, with an OG of 1058.2º.  It was little changed when WW I erupted, still having a very respectable gravity of 1056º and an ABV of around 6%.

As with everything else, WW I knocked the stuffing out of PA. By 1918 it was down to 1033º and 3.25% ABV. In the interwar period it bounced back a bit, to 1039º where it remained until 1941, when another slow reduction in strength set in. It ended the war at 1036º.

Our first table shows what I’ve said many times: the hardest years came after war’s end. Its nadir was reached in 1949, when, oddly enough, PA was exactly where it had been in 1928: 1033º. A tax cut in 1950 saw it rise back to 1036º, before slipping back a little again.

What can I say about PA? It’s a classic Ordinary Bitter at around 3.5% ABV. A beer of which there were hundreds in the 1950’s. Even though the biggest shift in the 1950’s was from draught to bottled, there was also a swing from Mild to Bitter.

Adnams PA 1945 - 1959
Date Year OG FG ABV App. Atten-uation lbs hops/ qtr hops lb/brl boil time (hours)
4th Jan 1945 1036.0 1008.9 3.59 75.38% 7.20 1.02 2
16th Jan 1945 1036.0 1009.4 3.52 73.84% 7.20 1.02 2
1st Jan 1946 1036.0 1008.9 3.59 75.38% 7.20 1.02 2
7th Jan 1947 1034.1 1009.4 3.26 72.36% 8.00 1.06 2
1st Jan 1948 1034.0 1008.9 3.33 73.93% 7.58 1.02 2
1st Jun 1948 1034.0 1008.3 3.40 75.56% 7.58 1.02 2
7th Apr 1949 1034.0 1006.1 3.69 82.08% 7.58 1.00 2
4th Oct 1949 1033.0 1006.1 3.56 81.53% 8.00 1.00 2
1st Jun 1950 1036.0 1008.9 3.59 75.38% 7.58 1.03 2
2nd Aug 1951 1036.0 1008.9 3.59 75.38% 7.37 1.02 2
8th Nov 1951 1036.0 1009.4 3.52 73.84% 6.67 0.97 2
8th Jan 1952 1036.0 1008.9 3.59 75.38% 7.00 1.01 2
5th Mar 1952 1035.0 1010.5 3.24 69.93% 6.67 0.92 2
4th Nov 1953 1035.0 1008.3 3.53 76.26% 6.67 0.92 2
18th Jun 1954 1035.0 1008.9 3.46 74.67% 5.56 0.92 2
13th Sep 1954 1035.0 1009.4 3.38 73.09% 7.08 0.96 2
21st Jul 1955 1036.0 1013.3 3.00 63.07% 8.00 1.12 2
3rd Sep 1956 1035.0 1010.5 3.24 69.93% 8.56 1.21 2
22nd Oct 1956 1034.0 1011.1 3.03 67.41% 8.00 1.10 2
25th Jan 1957 1034.0 1008.9 3.33 73.93% 8.00 1.08 2
7th Aug 1957 1035.0 1012.2 3.02 65.18% 8.56 1.20 2
5th Dec 1959 1034.0 1011.1 3.03 67.41% 7.99 1.08 1.58
Source:
Adnams brewing records held at the brewery.


Let’s take a look at the grist. Another point that I’ve made often and loudly is that crystal malt in Bitter is, for the most part, a recent phenomenon. Post WW II. And Adnams Bitter confirms this. The grist is just base malt an No. 1 invert sugar. The only exception is in the immediate post-war years when government-mandated flaked barley was also included.

The hopping is equally simple: overwhelmingly English hops. With occasionally a few from Eastern Europe. At this time Britain was self-sufficient and had no need to import any. Unlike in the late 19th and early 20th century. The same was true of malt. A huge increase in barley acreage had seen British brewing wean itself off imported barley. In particular, Californian barley, malt made from which had been an essential ingredient in pre-WW II beers, especially Pale Ales.

Adnams PA grists 1945 - 1959
Date Year OG pale malt MA malt medium malt PA malt flaked barley no. 1 sugar Hydrol hops
4th Jan 1945 1036.0 93.10% 6.90% English
16th Jan 1945 1036.0 87.93% 5.17% 6.90% English
1st Jan 1946 1036.0 41.38% 46.55% 5.17% 6.90% English
7th Jan 1947 1034.1 86.54% 5.77% 7.69% English, Czech
1st Jan 1948 1034.0 21.82% 65.45% 5.45% 7.27% English
1st Jun 1948 1034.0 53.57% 37.50% 5.36% 3.57% English
7th Apr 1949 1034.0 92.73% 7.27% English
4th Oct 1949 1033.0 92.31% 7.69% English
1st Jun 1950 1036.0 92.73% 7.27% English
2nd Aug 1951 1036.0 92.73% 7.27% English
8th Nov 1951 1036.0 48.84% 41.86% 9.30% English
8th Jan 1952 1036.0 93.10% 6.90% English
5th Mar 1952 1035.0 90.70% 9.30% English
4th Nov 1953 1035.0 90.70% 9.30% English
18th Jun 1954 1035.0 92.31% 7.69% English
13th Sep 1954 1035.0 89.19% 10.81% English
21st Jul 1955 1036.0 88.24% 11.76% English
3rd Sep 1956 1035.0 52.94% 35.29% 11.76% English
22nd Oct 1956 1034.0 23.53% 64.71% 11.76% English
25th Jan 1957 1034.0 15.79% 78.95% 5.26% English
7th Aug 1957 1035.0 76.47% 11.76% 7.84% 3.92% English
5th Dec 1959 1034.0 75.00% 8.33% 11.11% 5.56% English, Styrian
Source:
Adnams brewing records held at the brewery.


I’m going to finish with another table. This time showing the decline in gravity in Whitbread’s Pale Ales and Adnams PA:

Changing gravities 1939 - 1950
1939 1945 1946 1947 1948 1949 1950 1939 - 1950
Whitbread PA 1048.2 1039.5 1039.7 1034.2 1034.4 1035.9 1039.9
% change -18.05% 0.51% -13.85% 0.58% 4.36% 11.14% -17.22%
Whitbread IPA 1037.1 1031.6 1031.3 1032.4 1032.3 1032.4 1034.5
% change -14.82% -0.95% 3.51% -0.31% 0.31% 6.48% -7.01%
Adnams PA 1039 1036.0 1036.0 1034.0 1034.0 1033.0 1036.0
% change -7.69% 0.00% -5.56% 0.00% -2.94% 9.09% -7.69%
average OG 1040.93 1034.54 1034.72 1032.59 1032.66 1033.43 1033.88
% change -15.61% 0.52% -6.13% 0.21% 2.36% 1.35% -17.22%
Sources:
Brewers' Almanack 1955, p. 50
Whitbread brewing records held at the London Metropolitan Archives, document numbers LMA/4453/D/01/107, LMA/4453/D/01/112, LMA/4453/D/01/113, LMA/4453/D/01/115, LMA/4453/D/01/116, LMA/4453/D/01/117 and LMA/4453/D/01/118.
Adnams brewing records held at the brewery.

It’s weird how Whitbread PA fell by exactly the overall average. Whereas the weaker Whitbread IPA and Adnams PA declined in gravity by less than half the average. What is that telling us? That stronger beers were harder hit? Or that once you’d hit a certain low level of gravity, you really couldn’t drop much further? Anyway, you can see that the strength differential between Whitbread PA and IPA was seriously eroded.

I do know what’s coming next. In this series, at least. It’s Adnams Mild. I know because I’ve already started writing it.