London Porter (1850) Whitbread's Porter Brewery

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London Porter (1850) Whitbread's Porter Brewery

Postby Andy EW » Mon Mar 20, 2017 10:16 am

I was intrigued by PhilB's post on the Simmonds 1880 Bitter recipe so I ordered myself a copy of the 'Old British Beers and How To Make Them' booklet by Dr. John Harrison and members of the Durden Park Beer Circle. It's a fascinating read but also contains 131 recipes for old beers. These range from pale and amber beers, brown beers (including mild), stouts and porters. At under £10 (including UK postage) it is a bargain.

Having read through the booklet and taken on board some recommendations, I selected recipe 97 - London Porter (1850) from Whitbread's London Porter Brewery as the one to try. While I won't have time to brew it for a few weeks yet, I thought I'd start this thread I would welcome a bit of feedback on a couple of things...

The booklet gives the ingredients for brewing 1 imperial gallon so using the magic of spreadsheets I scaled it up to my usual brew size of 23 litres:

Pale Malt 5,163g
Brown Malt 1,004g
Black Malt 359g

The text in the booklet says Goldings was a favoured hop in the country up until 1875 when Fuggles replaced it. As this is an 1850 brew I'm going to stick with Goldings. The recipe calls for 1oz of hops per imperial gallon so that equates to 143g for a 23 litre brew. The AA is assumed to be 4%. The output from Beer Engine is:

Original Gravity: 1.061
Final Gravity: 1.015
Alcohol Content: 5.9% ABV
Total Liquor: 34.6 Litres
Mash Liquor: 15.8 Litres
Mash Efficiency 75%
Bitterness: 56 EBU
Colour: 118 EBC

It's going to be a dark brew but the thing to note is the bitterness. None of the recipes in my brewers bible (GW's BYOBRA 3rd Edition) goes beyond 42 EBU, so this is unchartered territory for me ;)

Where things get interesting is that the booklet suggests a mashing method for ales with OG under 80. The mashing temperature is 66°C for three hours raising to 77°C for 30 minutes before sparging with water at a temperature of 82 - 85°C. With my converted coolbox mash tun, raising the temperature to 77°C involves adding more hot water but there's not an awful lot of room to play with when there's already 6.5kg of grain and 15.8 lt.'s of liquor already in there :?

Assuming I successfully mash there's a 90 minute boil which is standard for my brewing. I'm not sure which yeast to use but might just go for Muntons Gold Yeast.

This brings me onto the maturing. It is suggested that the beret is matured for 4-5 months and I was thinking of putting it into a 5 gallon plastic keg (which I would have to buy) and possibly bottling it at a later date. Or, I could just bottle it straight from the FV but would have to contend with storing 44 bottles somewhere for 4-5 months. I don't have a lot of free space :!:
Any comments or suggestions from the forum guru's?

Cheers :cheers:

Andy
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Re: London Porter (1850) Whitbread's Porter Brewery

Postby ed_m » Mon Mar 20, 2017 11:01 am

Build a garage.
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Re: London Porter (1850) Whitbread's Porter Brewery

Postby PhilB » Mon Mar 20, 2017 3:14 pm

Hi Andy

Planning started, it's a slippery slope downhill, with only one outcome from here buddy ;) ...

Andy EW wrote:The AA is assumed to be 4%
... I think I must have missed that bit of the booklet :oops:

Andy EW wrote:It's going to be a dark brew but the thing to note is the bitterness. None of the recipes in my brewers bible (GW's BYOBRA 3rd Edition) goes beyond 42 EBU, so this is unchartered territory for me ;)
... have you checked the stout and porter recipes in that book, ISTR the recipe for Guinness has a higher EBU than that :? ... but anyway, it's worth bearing in mind that dark beers can "carry" bitterness better than pale beers anyway ... and beers will reduce (the perception of) bitterness levels as they age ... and so I think you should go with this bitterness level for this dark, longer matured beer (but of course, you are the head-brewer) :?

Andy EW wrote:Where things get interesting is that the booklet suggests a mashing method ...
... I followed my "standard" mashing routine for my Simonds' Bitter and found no difference in outcomes (as yet) ... as it happens, for that brew, I did an overnight mash (just because it "suited", but doing that does usually get me a 1-2% uplift in efficiency) so I suppose I did a long mash like they suggest, but otherwise, I (batch) sparged with water in the low-mid 80sC (to increase the temp of the mash to mash-out temps) and carried on as I would any other brew :?

Andy EW wrote:... might just go for Muntons Gold Yeast
... not a yeast I'm experienced with myself, but OE has recommended it in the past ... if I had to guess which of the two yeast strains of Whitbread's that are still available commercially would have been used for this beer (either the Whitbread Dry (WLP007/Wy1098) or the Whitbread Ale (Wy1099/S04)), I'd have guessed the less dry version, which also has the advantage of coming in a dried yeast version (as S04) :?

Andy EW wrote:I was thinking of putting it into a 5 gallon plastic keg (which I would have to buy)
... hmmm, do you have a spare FV that you might be willing to tie up for this amount of time (in discussions about this problem on forums, I've even seen people put airlocks into the caps on 20+ lts plastic jerry cans to convert them into "bulk conditioning vessels" (sometimes referred to as "bright tanks" in breweries, because the yeast settles out more and the beer becomes "bright" during the period in there)) ... I'm sure a "rack to secondary" and leave it under airlock for the maturation period would suffice (ideally you'd do that while the yeast were close to finished, but still active, AIUI) ... I only used a PB because it gave me the "advantage" of being able to purge with CO2 and re-prime to consume any oxygen that had got in in transfer (and because I had two in my garage that were unlikely to have beer in them again until later this Summer or possibly into the Autumn, anyway) ... AIUI though, beer does mature quicker in bulk, so finding a vessel big enough and suitable to store it in is not just about reducing the storage space tied up during the maturation period :?

Cheers, PhilB
The answer is probably ... RDWHAHB ... Relax, Don't Worry, Have A Home-Brew ;) :cheers:
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Re: London Porter (1850) Whitbread's Porter Brewery

Postby Andy EW » Mon Mar 20, 2017 10:25 pm

Hi Phil,

You are right, in that Guinness Extra Stout has an EBU of 45. The brew with the highest EBU rating that I have actually brewed is the Worthington White Shield which comes in at 40 EBU. Looking back through my notes, I didn't mention the bitterness just that it was very nice and I should do it again :) For this brew I'm prepared to go for the full EBU as what your saying about dark beers being able to carry the bitterness seems eminently plausible to me.

Based on your feedback I'm also going to go with my normal 90 minute mash and sparging. I have had no trouble hitting OG's of 1.060 with ruby milds for example. These have a similar grain weight and mashing liquor volume.

I have used Muntons Gold Yeast as my standard yeast unless a brew called for something a bit special. It seems to be very unfussy and just gets on with the job. While I have no complaints, I did read an article a couple of years back where a Scottish Camra group that did some tests using a range of different yeasts. On blind testing of the resultant brews the one fermented with Muntons Gold came out last :(

For the maturing I think I will to go back into my comfort zone and just bottle it in standard brown glass bottles. 40 of the bottles will be stored in the two cardboard boxes I get the bottles in. They will be recreated in a corner out of the way somewhere. The 4 "extra" bottles (44 bottle brew) will go into one of the normal crates for sampling at opportune moments, just to see how the brew is maturing ;) I might have to write clues or reminders on the labels of these, just to remind me of where I have hidden the rest of the brew.

Cheers :cheers:

Andy

P.S. ed_m - I have a garage which is full of "stuff". There's more brewing stuff in it than there are things to do with cars. In fact if it didn't have the up and over sliding door it would probably be called a warehouse. :D
So many different beers to brew, so little time....
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Re: London Porter (1850) Whitbread's Porter Brewery

Postby PhilB » Tue Mar 21, 2017 12:00 pm

Hi Andy

Andy EW wrote:You are right, in that Guinness Extra Stout has an EBU of 45. The brew with the highest EBU rating that I have actually brewed is the Worthington White Shield which comes in at 40 EBU.
... there's a really useful resource (that I finally found again, you can get it over there (link) by following the link to "Laripu's Wheeler's Real Ale List Spreadsheet") that lists the recipes in BYOBRA along with their "vital statistics" ... an oft quoted "rule of thumb" around recipes is to look at the ratio of Bitterness Units to (OG) Gravity Units to give an indication of the "perceived bitterness" of the finish beer ... for your recipe above that comes out at 56/61 = 0.91 ... and (if you wanted) you can add a column in the spreadhseet of Wheeler recipes to calculate and compare what sorts of beers have those levels of bitterness impressions ... when you think that beers like Adnam's Bitter and Deuchars IPA have similar BU:GU proportions (admittedly in lower OG beers and so lower BU levels in absolute terms :? ) then it might not be quite so frightening when you're throwing ALL those hops in, early on in the boil ;)

Anyway, it looks like you've got your plans together, so when's brewday? ... and will there be pictures?

Cheers, PhilB
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Re: London Porter (1850) Whitbread's Porter Brewery

Postby Kyle_T » Tue Mar 21, 2017 10:46 pm

I have made this beer and there are a couple of video reviews on YouTube for it, one by Kevin Black and the other by Grant of BeerloverTV, if you search around you will find the OG is 1060 and the FG should be 1018 giving 5.5% abv and the bitterness is 55/56.

I would suggest using a higher AA hop that is similar in profile to Goldings or Fuggles as a large quantity of low AA hops may result in vegital or grass notes in the finished brew.

I did a post on another forum but I'm not sure if we can cross link forums here?

For the mash a standard 90 minutes at 65°C will be fine as the modern malts don't need the extended mash, I will be rebrewing this beer using the Chevallier Heritage Malt and possibly Diastatic brown malt or home roasted brown malt.

Here is the link to the videos:

https://youtu.be/grtQVxmiyDA
https://youtu.be/x7LACef8UFg
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Re: London Porter (1850) Whitbread's Porter Brewery

Postby Hamish » Wed Mar 22, 2017 11:19 am

Kyle_T wrote:I did a post on another forum but I'm not sure if we can cross link forums here?


Thats fine Kyle, theres no problem linking to other forums.
Planning: A new 'shiny' mash tun
Fermenting:
Maturing/Conditioning:
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Re: London Porter (1850) Whitbread's Porter Brewery

Postby Kyle_T » Wed Mar 22, 2017 11:53 am

Excellent! In that case...

Here is the Boadicea version I did back in May last year:

http://forum.craftbrewing.org.uk/viewto ... er#p135692

This is the reviews I got online from some home brewers and professional brewers/judges:

http://forum.craftbrewing.org.uk/viewto ... er#p135675

And this is the next installment:

http://forum.craftbrewing.org.uk/viewto ... er#p149741

Hopefully this will give you an idea of what to expect from the beer.

Cheers.
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Re: London Porter (1850) Whitbread's Porter Brewery

Postby Andy EW » Wed Mar 22, 2017 10:34 pm

Kyle_T - thanks very much for posting the links to the reviews for your beers. Very impressive stuff.
You must tell me your secret about head retention. Mine always dissipates fairly quickly so I'm either not doing something or are doing something wrong :facepalm:

PhilB - thanks for the link to the spreadsheet. I can see this is going to be very useful indeed. It looks like the brewday will be in late April as there's a few other brews I need to get out of the way. By then I should have got my Flickr account sorted out so I can login again. Either that or there will be a new photo account but there will be pictures!

Cheers :cheers:

Andy
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