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10-01-2018, 07:07
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Brewers got up to some weird shit during WW I. Especially when it came to extremely low-gravity beer.

Brewers were restricted both with regards to how much they could brew, and its strength. For them the Holy Grail was higher gravity beer, on which there were no price controls and was consequently more profitable.

This beer was originally brewed 5th April 1918, just a few days after new harsh regulations were introduce on 1st April:

“average gravity of all beer brewed shall not exceed 1030º for great Britain and 1045º for Ireland, and that no beer shall be brewed below 1010º: and prices fixed at 4d. per pint below 1030º, and 5d. per pint for 1030º to 1034º.”
"The Brewers' Almanack 1928" pages 100 - 101.
The goal was to brew enough beer below 1030º so that you could brew some above 1034º. This set of regulations were the first to specify a minimum OG for beer. That they bothered to set a limit as low as 1010º implies that brewers had been making weaker beers, incredible as that might sound.

The 145 barrels Kidd brewed of DA meant that they could brew 145 barrels of beer at 1045º, or a larger quantity at, say, 1036º.

Whitbread brewed a version of their GA that was even weaker than this, just 1011º. But that was a very weak parti-gyle of conventionally-brewed GA. Whereas I wouldn’t really count Kidd DA as a beer as it contains no malt, being brewed from just sugar and hops.

It’s a bit of a weird devil. It’s hardly fermented, which I guess was deliberate to leave some body. They achieved the low attenuation, I believe, by keeping the fermentation cool. It was pitched at 59º and the temperature dropped a little to 58.5º F. Believe it or not, it fermented for 5 days. It was also massively underpitched. Kidd usually pitched 70-80 lbs of yeast for a brew of this size. DA received just 12 lbs.

1918 Kidd DA

2.00 lb

cane sugar
0.13 lb

caramel 2000 L
0.05 lb

Fuggles 30 mins
1.25 oz

Goldings dry hops
0.01 oz




Apparent attenuation



Mash at

Sparge at

Boil time
90 minutes

pitching temp
59º F

Wyeast 1099 Whitbread Ale

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