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02-12-2015, 09:17
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If you’ve been getting bored with my weedy 1950’s recipes, here’s something with a little more oomph. Quite a lot more oomph, actually.

The early 1800’s were a simpler time. Recipes were very simple, partly because there was a sort of Reinheitsgebot until 1880 (though after 1847 sugar was allowed). But partly just because they liked to keep things simple.

Truman brewed two parallel sets of Ales: Mild Ales X, XX, XXX and Keeping Ales KXX, KXXX and KXXXX. Hard as it may be to believe, this wasn’t the strongest beer in their range. The gravities of the Mild and Stock versions were the same, only the hopping differed. You’ll note that even the bottom-level X Ale had a pretty hefty gravity.

Interestingly, there’s an Export India Pale Ale in the 1850 set. Guess what it’s OG was? 1055º. Considerably weaker than the weakest Mild. Just thought I’d mention that to remind you that, far from being brewed stronger for the trip to India, IPA was one of the weakest beers around. About the only thing weaker was Table Beer.

Obviously, Stock Ales were aged before sale. Though I’m not sure how this took place at this time at Truman. I suspect probably in vats, though smaller ones than for Porter, as the quantities brewed were much smaller. At the end of the 19th century it seems that Stock Ales were often aged in trade casks in the brewery cellar.

Here’s a nice table of Ales:

Truman's Ales around 1850

hops lb/brl

X Ale

XX Ale


Stock Ale

Stock Ale

Stock Ale


Truman's brewing records held at the London Metropolitan Archives, document numbers B/THB/C/127 and B/THB/C/132

And now over to Kristen . . . . .

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Kristen’s Version:
Notes: Sometimes there is a log that comes along that is so damn simple, it lends the ability to have an infinite number of variations. That would be this log. Spartan, would be understatement when it comes to this log. Pages are mostly blank but it’s so simple maybe that’s why. I would suggest highly aging this beer, specifically in wood, absolutely specifically not in X-booze barrels. Cake on cake doesn’t taste better than cake.
Malt: One malt. The End. Make a good choice. Or a combo of choices. This is the time to get the very best tip top, spendy hard to find, floor malted, air dried, whatsahoosit. Spend the money.

Hops: One Hop. There was no info about dry hopping so I added it. This beer begs a nice dry hopping. If you are planning to age this for an extended period, I prefer to dry hop after aging as I really don’t like oxidized hops in beer. You really can choose anything but if you wont have the same beer if you use higher alpha acid hops. This has a massive amount of hops so be mindful with how much beer you will actually be losing.

Yeast: You should have no problem with the beer finishing too dry with this one. The high mash temp, along with no sugar, should be easy to have a nice, rich finish. Just make sure it doesn’t finish too sweet!! A nice London ale yeast that lends some nice fruit but also will ferment this thing where it needs to finish.

Standard procedure:
1) let the beer ferment until finished and then give it another day or so. For me right around 5-7 days.
2) Rack the beer to your vessel of choice (firkin, polypin, cornie, whatever).
3) Add primings at ~3.5g/L
4) Add prepared isinglass at 1ml/L
5) ONLY add dry hops at 0.25g/l – 1g/L.
6) Bung it up and roll it around to mix. Condition at 55F or so for 4-5 days and its ready to go. Spile/vent. Tap. Settle. Serve at 55F.

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