Feedback on English Dark Mild Recipe?

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Witherby

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Although since the TV series is set in Grassington, they probably would have been drinking Pennine mild.... (whereas "Herriot" actually practised the other side of the A1 in Thirsk)

Ron Pattinson in his Vintage Beer book says that mild (which in the 19th century was always pale) "continued to darken throughout the interwar period, and most examples were either dark amber or brown in color. In some regions, for example the northwest of England, breweries had an ordinary mild that was dark and a best mild that was pale."

I see that Timothy Taylor says that Golden Best is the "last of the true Pennine light milds."

So is Pennine mild basically pale best mild? Or is there something more than that?
 

Northern_Brewer

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In some regions, for example the northwest of England, breweries had an ordinary mild that was dark and a best mild that was pale."

I see that Timothy Taylor says that Golden Best is the "last of the true Pennine light milds."

So is Pennine mild basically pale best mild? Or is there something more than that?

It wasn't always true that the best mild was pale and the ordinary one was dark - Lees is an example of a brewery that had them "the wrong way round".

The concept of Pennine mild is in contrast to what people expect of mild which is that for the last century or so it's been dark, regardless of whether it's a best mild or not.
 
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rhys333

rhys333

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I'm originally from a border town in Yorkshire where historically the Lancashire-Yorkshire line ran right through the middle of the town hall. The town's history is tied culturally to Lancashire, perhaps because of its strong industrial link to the cotton industry. Yorkshire was wool production.

Anyway, my hometown is situated in the Pennines and for generations the people there have been drinking dark mild. Lancashire mild, I suppose. My dad happened to tell me the other day that some years ago he visited a friend just a few miles further into Yorkshire. They visited the local pub and he asked the landlady for a dark mild. She stared at him for a moment before replying bluntly "this is Yorkshire, luv".
 

Beermeister32

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Timothy Taylor uses Savinjski Goldings. The clone recipes of Landlord I've found call for EKG and lots of Styrian (!)
A few years ago when Northern Brewer was running their multi kit specials I ordered their Innkeeper/Landlord clone kit. I was very impressed and went down to Bevmo and bought some real Landlord to compare. It really was spot on, used the Styrian Goldings.

I can't seem to find Landlord in California anywhere this year, (none at Total Wine or anywhere) - anyone know if this is a Covid slowdown or lack of distributorship, etc? I may need to brew another batch!
 

Northern_Brewer

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I imagine Covid has a bit to do with it, also the problems at this end due to the impact of Brexit on trade facilities - when we're desperately short of customs agents etc who know how third-party trade works, a few cases of beer for California are probably fairly low down the list of priorities.
 

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Innkeeper/Landlord clone kit.

Interesting. I was looking around NB's site last night for inspiration for my next brew and read about that one. The recipe seemed so basic, and w/ golden promise and dark crystal it sounded really sweet. I figured it couldn't truly be very good. I'll have to rethink it...
 

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Interesting. I was looking around NB's site last night for inspiration for my next brew and read about that one. The recipe seemed so basic, and w/ golden promise and dark crystal it sounded really sweet. I figured it couldn't truly be very good. I'll have to rethink it...

Gordon Strong's Landlord clone recipe is very simple and very good:
Timothy Taylor Brewery: Landlord clone - Brew Your Own

I brewed that earlier this year and it was amazing. I dry hopped it with 1 ounce of Styrian Goldings, which isn't in the recipe, but really adds a lot. I kicked that keg very quickly. If it weren't for the fact that I picked up a sack of Crisp Maris Otter for $20 that I am trying to use up, that is what I would be brewing next.
 

kmarkstevens

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Witherby, what yeast did you use for the Timothy Taylor Landlord?

I don't mean to pick nits, but Gordon's reconmnendation of Wyeast 1469 (West Yorkshire Ale) or White Labs WLP037 (Yorkshire Square Ale) or Lallemand Windsor Ale yeast has me scratching my head. These 3 yeasts produce wildly different tastes. In my humble opinion, W Yorkie is pretty nice but I am so not a fan of Yorkie Squares or Windsor.
 

Witherby

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Witherby, what yeast did you use for the Timothy Taylor Landlord?

I don't mean to pick nits, but Gordon's reconmnendation of Wyeast 1469 (West Yorkshire Ale) or White Labs WLP037 (Yorkshire Square Ale) or Lallemand Windsor Ale yeast has me scratching my head. These 3 yeasts produce wildly different tastes. In my humble opinion, W Yorkie is pretty nice but I am so not a fan of Yorkie Squares or Windsor.

That link is to an earlier version of his recipe that might be from when 1469 wasn’t available year round, which it now is. In his book Modern Homebrew Recipes and in the September 2017 BYO style profile on Best Bitter ( where I first saw this recipe) he specifies 1469.
 

Witherby

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Tapped my cask of dark mild today. It is quite lovely.
D30B3DE7-6811-497D-88BD-C00A5AED96DC.jpeg
 

kmarkstevens

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Got it, thanks. And I hope everyone understands that West Yorkshire is not equivalent to Yorkshire Squares. I got the Yorkshire Square WLP vault release. Did about 5 batches before giving up that these yeast is too much for me. POF+, temperature control is really important, and I was unable to dial in to a good, repeatable performance.

On the other hand, Wyeast West Yorkshire is lovely in my opinion. It's one of my go to yeasts

BTW, your mild looks great.
 

Witherby

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5 lbs Maris Otter (71.4 %)
1 lb Corn Grits [cereal mash] (14.3 %)
1 lb #3 Invert [Boil] (14.3 %)
Mash at 152F

1.00 oz Goldings [5.00 %] - Boil 60.0 min (19.2 IBUs)
0.50 oz Goldings [5.00 %] - Boil 5.0 min (1.9 IBUs)

West Yorkshire Ale (Wyeast Labs #1469)

OG 1.033

Open fermented (loose lid) at 63 for 10 days. Added 20 ml of Brupaks brewers caramel along to the priming sugar. Cask conditioned.
 
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rhys333

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I'm making a test batch of invert #3 right now (oven method). If it works, it's going into a 100% Golden Promise 1.045 beer to test the flavor contribution. If I'm happy with it, I may try some in the next dark mild.

This post is about the results of my 5 gallon test batch, where I added 1 pound of homemade #3 to a simple Golden Promise ale. Off topic somewhat from dark mild.

The invert I used was from my earlier attempt using turbinado sugar. As per my above post, it's lighter and less complex than my most recent batch of invert #3 made from the Mexican store piloncillo. Here's the recipe:

GP BITTER WITH INVERT #3
Predicted stats: 1.055 - 1.015, 5.2% ABV, 30 IBU
85.5% Golden Promise
9.5% Invert #3
5% White wheat
Bittering @ 60 (20 IBU)
EKG @ 15 (9 IBU)
Willamette @ 2 (1 IBU)
WY 1469 West Yorks

I just pulled the gravity sample and it tastes good but the predictions are off in two areas:
1) The colour is paler than the calculator predicted, but I expected this. The invert clearly added some colour but the beer is golden rather than amber. I wonder if my darker piloncillo invert #3 will add more colour.
2) The final gravity is considerably lower than expected, which puzzles me. With my 155F mash and WY 1469, I expected ~69% attenuation, or 1.055 - 1.017. The actual FG is 1.007 or 86% attenuation! There's a chance I may have screwed up the reading and will take a second sample before kegging this afternoon.

EDIT: second sample confirms 1.007 FG. No idea how this happened.
 

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monkeymath

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This post is about the results of my 5 gallon test batch, where I added 1 pound of homemade #3 (Turbinado sugar) to a simple Golden Promise ale. Off topic somewhat from dark mild.

The invert I used was from my earlier attempt using turbinado sugar. As per my above post, it's lighter and less complex than my most recent batch of invert #3 made from the Mexican store piloncillo. Here's the recipe:

GP BITTER WITH INVERT #3
Predicted stats: 1.055 - 1.015, 5.2% ABV, 30 IBU
85.5% Golden Promise
9.5% Invert #3
5% White wheat
Bittering @ 60 (20 IBU)
EKG @ 15 (9 IBU)
Willamette @ 2 (1 IBU)
WY 1469 West Yorks

I just pulled the gravity sample and it tastes good but the predictions are off in two areas:
1) The colour is paler than the calculator predicted, but I expected this. The invert clearly added some colour but the beer is golden rather than amber. I wonder if my darker piloncillo invert #3 will add more colour.
2) The final gravity is considerably lower than expected, which puzzles me. With my 155F mash and WY 1469, I expected ~69% attenuation, or 1.055 - 1.017. The actual FG is 1.007 or 86% attenuation! There's a chance I may have screwed up the reading and will take a second sample before kegging this afternoon.

I'm very curious about the homemade invert sugar. Just yesterday I bottled a bitter made with the same yeast, but a dash of Crisp Crystal (150 EBC) in lieu of any invert sugar. I regret not going the extra mile and making some invert sugar.

Can you give a brief description of your process and of the resulting product?
Thanks a lot!

(By the way: I was also surprised to see 80% apparent attenuation with an all-malt wort and WY 1469.)
 
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rhys333

rhys333

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I'm very curious about the homemade invert sugar. Just yesterday I bottled a bitter made with the same yeast, but a dash of Crisp Crystal (150 EBC) in lieu of any invert sugar. I regret not going the extra mile and making some invert sugar.

Can you give a brief description of your process and of the resulting product?
Thanks a lot!

(By the way: I was also surprised to see 80% apparent attenuation with an all-malt wort and WY 1469.)


Sure. I used the method explained in this thread: Made Simple Invert Sugars. - Jeff Alworth's Method.

I also used the oven trick to maintain temperature, which made it a set-and-forget procedure. Importantly, I calibrated the oven beforehand (it was 100F off). One modification I made to the Alworth method is that I neutralized the lactic acid by adding 3g of baking soda at the end (1 pound batch size). I detail my results earlier in this thread.
 

patto1ro

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Ron Pattinson in his Vintage Beer book says that mild (which in the 19th century was always pale) "continued to darken throughout the interwar period, and most examples were either dark amber or brown in color. In some regions, for example the northwest of England, breweries had an ordinary mild that was dark and a best mild that was pale."

I see that Timothy Taylor says that Golden Best is the "last of the true Pennine light milds."

So is Pennine mild basically pale best mild? Or is there something more than that?
More complicated than that, as always. Especially as Tim Taylor's Dark Mild is just Golden Best with caramel added at racking time.
 

Northern_Brewer

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That can be a lot of beer for the US, Samuel Smith has a large amount at Bevmo and Total Wine. No Timothy Taylor though. Bummer.

Sam Smiths has very good distribution in the US (far more so in the UK tbh, outside their own pubs) so I guess they're coming in in pretty decent volume, whereas I imagine Timmys is more ad-hoc and so much smaller volumes, which are exactly the kind of products that stop being traded when things get sticky.

I don't mean to pick nits, but Gordon's reconmnendation of Wyeast 1469 (West Yorkshire Ale) or White Labs WLP037 (Yorkshire Square Ale) or Lallemand Windsor Ale yeast has me scratching my head. These 3 yeasts produce wildly different tastes. In my humble opinion, W Yorkie is pretty nice but I am so not a fan of Yorkie Squares or Windsor.

I think you'll find that's pretty typical of how yeast recommendations work. Look up Jamil's list - see that he says 1469 is from TT so that's the first recommendation. Then get the closest from the White Labs list for people who can't get Wyeast - ah, WLP037 mentions Yorkshire, that must be close. And then something for the people who can only get dry yeast - well there aren't too many options, Windsor has a bit more character than most so we'll suggest that.

It's not terribly sophisticated and doesn't take too much account of the actual character of the yeast, but at the same time I have some sympathy for recipe writers trying to suggest ingredients that people can actually buy - no slur intended on Gordon.
 

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Regarding invert, I don't want to claim that this is THE way, but it's certainly an easy way and doesn't consume extra time or equipment.

What I did last time I tried to brew an old school Manchester blonde ale, I basically heated the amount of sugar I wanted in the beer as raw cane sugar in a pot with some water and a slice of lemon, without the rind.

I kept this boiling during the mash and wort boiling, added a bit of water when it became to thick and removed the lemon after about one hour. It has a nice copper colour at the end and the taste changed during the process and became quite nice.

Not sophisticated and probably not 100% repeatable, but doesn't consume extra time or equipment and worked for me!

Obviously, I have no idea how the beer would have tasted without it....
 

ba-brewer

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When I found out corn sugar was almost all glucose I lost a lot of interest in invert. You don't get the color and flavor of darker invert but I am looking to enhance esters.
 

kmarkstevens

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I think you'll find that's pretty typical of how yeast recommendations work. Look up Jamil's list - see that he says 1469 is from TT so that's the first recommendation. Then get the closest from the White Labs list for people who can't get Wyeast - ah, WLP037 mentions Yorkshire, that must be close. And then something for the people who can only get dry yeast - well there aren't too many options, Windsor has a bit more character than most so we'll suggest that.
Ha ha, that's a really obvious observation that I hadn't made the connection on.

Reminds me of being a fledgling homebrewer in Japan in the early 1990s with a dog eared copy of The Joy of Homebrewing (without an index) and trying to replicate any of Chuck P's recipes. Homebrewing was illegal in Japan (and still may be), and had to do workarounds like using their cooking malt that contained yam starch and converting that with koji enzymes as a substitute for John Bull extract. Those were the days. :D
 
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rhys333

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I'm making a test batch of invert #3 right now (oven method). If it works, it's going into a 100% Golden Promise 1.045 beer to test the flavor contribution. If I'm happy with it, I may try some in the next dark mild.

Results of my Golden Peomise and invert #3 experiment. Not much in the way of colour contribution.
 

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rhys333

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How much invert #3 did you use?

I bought a pound of Becker's #3, and that stuff is dark. SRM = 50


I used a pound. It's not nearly as dark though as my last batch of invert made with piloncillo. Light doesn't pass through it at all. I'll experiment with that one on a future beer recipe.
 
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rhys333

rhys333

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How much invert #3 did you use?

I bought a pound of Becker's #3, and that stuff is dark. SRM = 50

This is what my #3 piloncillo looks like. It has been thinned out with water for easy pouring, and would be darker on the fork otherwise. I'm curious how it compares with your Becker's syrup...

20210206_114800.jpg
 
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rhys333

rhys333

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Results of my Golden Peomise and invert #3 experiment. Not much in the way of colour contribution.

The Golden Promise bitter, after conditioning. The #3 invert did add some colour, which I think is more apparent as it clears. It definitely brings an interesting flavor too. I'd describe it as a pleasant caramel and fruit character, but not as you might expect from malt, hops or yeast.

20210216_145327.jpg
 

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Thanks for starting this awesome thread, rhys333!

I got in on the action today and tried out a pound of Becker's #3 in place of the C-malts in one of my standard milds.

Right away it is obvious that the invert is going to produce a markedly different beer to the standard C120 and Carastan combo that I've used in the past. The #3 invert is bringing the stone fruit flavors that the C120 delivers, but it's much lighter on the pallet and it's mixed with other fruity flavors. I'm eager to get this one into a keg!
 
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rhys333

rhys333

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Thanks for starting this awesome thread, rhys333!

I got in on the action today and tried out a pound of Becker's #3 in place of the C-malts in one of my standard milds.

Right away it is obvious that the invert is going to produce a markedly different beer to the standard C120 and Carastan combo that I've used in the past. The #3 invert is bringing the stone fruit flavors that the C120 delivers, but it's much lighter on the pallet and it's mixed with other fruity flavors. I'm eager to get this one into a keg!

I'm curious to know how it turns out for you.
 

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Here is my last deuchars based beer that uses invert, which i see is very similar to @rhys333 recipe
IMG_20210305_173825181-01.jpeg
albeit a fair bit weaker. i unfortunately had to transfer it twice during fermentation due to leaks, all my own fault, and there was a lot of foaming which I think has killed the head. Tastes excellent at least and served its purpose of building up a lot of yeast for a strong stout.

Og 1.042

85% golden promise
10% invert no 2
5% torrified wheat

Slovenian goldings and Willamette, to about 30 ibu and a late hop stand.

Wyeast 1469 yeast, 1 litre shaken not stirred starter.
 
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rhys333

rhys333

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Here is my last deuchars based beer that uses invert, which i see is very similar to @rhys333 recipeView attachment 721157 albeit a fair bit weaker. i unfortunately had to transfer it twice during fermentation due to leaks, all my own fault, and there was a lot of foaming which I think has killed the head. Tastes excellent at least and served its purpose of building up a lot of yeast for a strong stout.

Og 1.042

85% golden promise
10% invert no 2
5% torrified wheat

Slovenian goldings and Willamette, to about 30 ibu and a late hop stand.

Wyeast 1469 yeast, 1 litre shaken not stirred starter.

It's a tad lighter than mine, and that's good to know how invert #2 affects colour vs the #3. I'll be trying this again soon with my raw sugar #3 which I'm hoping will add even more colour.
 

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With a week in the keg, here's my stab at the Invert #3 in a Dark Mild thing that we're doing (among other awesome things. I love this thread!)

yrHAHG7q2Vh_R42prEHSW5V5ZCE3Xws5gfTj88zPI-wf7VqfzzB51EsJc1OeAFSUDrkEErVeeRvzSaZaxHeSMQ3SP9_9Jz0eEIPTasbNuApC-QKbmM6R8Vbmyt4T4Q06-KWpAqNUofRVnFC0x1zjYrECQ6nCNDXB5cMTl8G9WZXjMt6GsEJvLqaIWmaTCEL8Xvbas5BbA1ix52p8SkTlxiARvY5P62sw-DD0Zf94jnLdtzfaD3XFaFrK9PVcy98lbSqAqgCstAo0LnhEWiqPBGSdkn59QCoWlCDpmRZEg482hOrfBlEP_LJnML1mqUylFfIT6KqveGnkpM8cWVmuFUzjgZI87I8dhAb7NWLe9ZBdom4ZGBLGjE5CsNtJqyAXw4T0rO26c2bKPFiNCmjumftte--jNJ9MpUu9jAOo9BoBW4H6EQdCYxeCukMO_1lTshxAUy9aOrA7E6PQJ8vektt8o0Ix8aWY6wuSTXyQFEfZNMKUf1MG0dU1U1vE9RfDTXv8dE6wnRCyz0h_J1OsWBOF0raKD8esGmY87tODNfZaaBFW5mdlMrknlqjT4VokejLatSUFStPKzJpKcgaOJAz75kIcyjNI4-I3WKECKiCmBQ_5BowOmlflO91m46PK60zklFd_jlEzuTkjbBwFmXa8sj96m4aJiwRBF3ibPI2Io3wc8PDXYTgrA5od2C5-NMhhn6bwVWlxalnIjDOG5SRA=w703-h937-no


This is the second pour, so it's not brilliant, but you're mostly seeing condensation on the glass. I opted to photograph the ale in a pils glass to better demonstrate the color. A photo of a standard UK pint glass didn't yield much information aside from brown-ness. While I'll concede that this ale is certainly on the light end of what AHA thinks a dark mild should be, I like the color and think it honestly represents how the ale drinks. I wouldn't argue if you said it's more of a brown ale. Having had a sip, I'm confident you would say, "Yeah, that's a mild."

As for how it drinks, the Invert #3 is a revelation! Dark mild has always been a tricky target for me. Between Bitter, Southern Brown, Northern Brown, and Brown Porter, it has a lot of neighbors. Making an unambiguously Dark Mild version of Dark Mild can be a bit tricky. A bit too much dark grain and you're in brown porter territory, a bit too sweet and you're in S. Brown territory, a bit too much hops and you can spill into either Bitter or Northern Brown's yards. It's a balancing act, for sure, and a fun challenge. I wonder what our UK-based brothers think of all that AHA balderdash?

Back to the Invert #3 as a revelation thing, based on a pint and half of a small pilsner glass, I'm a full-on convert to the idea that Invert #3 is core to the success of a Dark Mild recipe. The Invert #3 coupled with the Imperial Pub brings all of the dark and light fruit and deeper dark sugar flavors that I previously utilized darker crystal malts to provide. However, and this is where the revelation lives, the Invert #3 has none of the heavy, cloying, plodding attributes that crystal ruins a beer with. This ale is substantial on the tongue (it feels like a 1.055 beer), but it's light on its toes, it's not at all plodding, heavy, and one-dimensional like crystal malt. It finishes dry, but there's lots of stuff still going on after the swallow. Best of all, it's a pint that wants you to drink more. There's a lot of subtle flavors in there, if you keep looking.

I like this beer.

Design for this recipe was simple, I used the Invert #3 as the variable and simply subbed it for the crystal malt additions in a long-established Dark Mild recipe.

OG: 1.041
IBU: 19
est. SRM 15

DC Water w/ 3g Calcium Chloride in the mash, 2g Calcium Chloride pre-boil, 1g Gypsum pre-boil. Mash pH 5.5, after pre-boil mineral additions, pre-boil pH adjusted down to pH 5.2 w/ phosphoric.

76% Otter (Warminster)
11% Corn
1.5% Pale Chocolate (ie 2oz as colorant, but does provide some dark toast if you look for it)
.5% Midnight wheat (ie one once as colorant, in lieu of caramel coloring)
11% Becker's Invert #3 (added at run off, boiled the full duration)

90min boil

13 IBU Fuggles @60 (.75oz for 6gal)
2 IBU EKG and 2IBU Fuggles @20 (.25oz each for 6gal)
1.5 IBU of EKG @10 (.25oz for 6gal)

Imperial Pub, 4th generation pitched at 66F, raised to 68F as soon as the yeast became active, raised to 72F at 1/2 gravity, held for two weeks at 72, kegged, cold-crashed, then fined 24hrs later.
 
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kmarkstevens

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That looks mighty tasty.

I'll keep making my own invert. Beckers is pretty pricey. I saved a bit back for the 1# invert 3 I got just to kinda color match my home attempts.

Ron Pattinson consistently says that invert #3 is the secret. That American milds may look right, but never taste quite right owing to the use of crystal instead of invert.

I've taken a break but I'll soon be ready to re-tackle the Machine House Brewery mild. It uses Bairds C50-60, C120-150, & chocolate. It's the dogs bollocks and definately in my top 10 beers of all time list. When I finally get a clone I'm happy with, I will post it here. When I chatted with the brewer/owner, who is English, he said he doesn't use invert because you can't really get it commercially in the US like one can in the UK. So, he made his take on Dark Mild using crystal, and it is a damn fine beer.
 
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rhys333

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With a week in the keg, here's my stab at the Invert #3 in a Dark Mild thing that we're doing (among other awesome things. I love this thread!)

yrHAHG7q2Vh_R42prEHSW5V5ZCE3Xws5gfTj88zPI-wf7VqfzzB51EsJc1OeAFSUDrkEErVeeRvzSaZaxHeSMQ3SP9_9Jz0eEIPTasbNuApC-QKbmM6R8Vbmyt4T4Q06-KWpAqNUofRVnFC0x1zjYrECQ6nCNDXB5cMTl8G9WZXjMt6GsEJvLqaIWmaTCEL8Xvbas5BbA1ix52p8SkTlxiARvY5P62sw-DD0Zf94jnLdtzfaD3XFaFrK9PVcy98lbSqAqgCstAo0LnhEWiqPBGSdkn59QCoWlCDpmRZEg482hOrfBlEP_LJnML1mqUylFfIT6KqveGnkpM8cWVmuFUzjgZI87I8dhAb7NWLe9ZBdom4ZGBLGjE5CsNtJqyAXw4T0rO26c2bKPFiNCmjumftte--jNJ9MpUu9jAOo9BoBW4H6EQdCYxeCukMO_1lTshxAUy9aOrA7E6PQJ8vektt8o0Ix8aWY6wuSTXyQFEfZNMKUf1MG0dU1U1vE9RfDTXv8dE6wnRCyz0h_J1OsWBOF0raKD8esGmY87tODNfZaaBFW5mdlMrknlqjT4VokejLatSUFStPKzJpKcgaOJAz75kIcyjNI4-I3WKECKiCmBQ_5BowOmlflO91m46PK60zklFd_jlEzuTkjbBwFmXa8sj96m4aJiwRBF3ibPI2Io3wc8PDXYTgrA5od2C5-NMhhn6bwVWlxalnIjDOG5SRA=w703-h937-no


This is the second pour, so it's not brilliant, but you're mostly seeing condensation on the glass. I opted to photograph the ale in a pils glass to better demonstrate the color. A photo of a standard UK pint glass didn't yield much information aside from brown-ness. While I'll concede that this ale is certainly on the light end of what AHA thinks a dark mild should be, I like the color and think it honestly represents how the ale drinks. I wouldn't argue if you said it's more of a brown ale. Having had a sip, I'm confident you would say, "Yeah, that's a mild."

As for how it drinks, the Invert #3 is a revelation! Dark mild has always been a tricky target for me. Between Bitter, Southern Brown, Northern Brown, and Brown Porter, it has a lot of neighbors. Making an unambiguously Dark Mild version of Dark Mild can be a bit tricky. A bit too much dark grain and you're in brown porter territory, a bit too sweet and you're in S. Brown territory, a bit too much hops and you can spill into either Bitter or Northern Brown's yards. It's a balancing act, for sure, and a fun challenge. I wonder what our UK-based brothers think of all that AHA balderdash?

Back to the Invert #3 as a revelation thing, based on a pint and half of a small pilsner glass, I'm a full-on convert to the idea that Invert #3 is core to the success of a Dark Mild recipe. The Invert #3 coupled with the Imperial Pub brings all of the dark and light fruit and deeper dark sugar flavors that I previously utilized darker crystal malts to provide. However, and this is where the revelation lives, the Invert #3 has none of the heavy, cloying, plodding attributes that crystal ruins a beer with. This ale is substantial on the tongue (it feels like a 1.055 beer), but it's light on its toes, it's not at all plodding, heavy, and one-dimensional like crystal malt. It finishes dry, but there's lots of stuff still going on after the swallow. Best of all, it's a pint that wants you to drink more. There's a lot of subtle flavors in there, if you keep looking.

I like this beer.

Design for this recipe was simple, I used the Invert #3 as the variable and simply subbed it for the crystal malt additions in a long-established Dark Mild recipe.

OG: 1.041
IBU: 19
est. SRM 15

DC Water w/ 3g Calcium Chloride in the mash, 2g Calcium Chloride pre-boil, 1g Gypsum pre-boil. Mash pH 5.5, after pre-boil mineral additions, pre-boil pH adjusted down to pH 5.2 w/ phosphoric.

76% Otter (Warminster)
11% Corn
1.5% Pale Chocolate (ie 2oz as colorant, but does provide some dark toast if you look for it)
.5% Midnight wheat (ie one once as colorant, in lieu of caramel coloring)
11% Becker's Invert #3 (added at run off, boiled the full duration)

90min boil

13 IBU Fuggles @60 (.75oz for 6gal)
2 IBU EKG and 2IBU Fuggles @20 (.25oz each for 6gal)
1.5 IBU of EKG @10 (.25oz for 6gal)

Imperial Pub, 4th generation pitched at 66F, raised to 68F as soon as the yeast became active, raised to 72F at 1/2 gravity, held for two weeks at 72, kegged, cold-crashed, then fined 24hrs later.

It sounds tasty. I can't see the photo though for some reason.
 

Erik the Anglophile

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How do you guys treat the invert when it comes to fermentability? I just made a British strong using 8% invert #3 and 6% crystal.
Mashed at 67c wich is not really low but not really high either, fermented with wlp007 and got 78% AA even with a fair amount of sugar, it also leaves taste so it seems some of the invert get left unfermented.
 

cire

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How do you guys treat the invert when it comes to fermentability? I just made a British strong using 8% invert #3 and 6% crystal.
Mashed at 67c wich is not really low but not really high either, fermented with wlp007 and got 78% AA even with a fair amount of sugar, it also leaves taste so it seems some of the invert get left unfermented.

Brewer's invert sugar should be 95% fermentable as advised here. Some crystal malts are less fermentable than malted barley and could be the reason for your measured attenuation.
 

Bramling Cross

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That looks mighty tasty.

I'll keep making my own invert. Beckers is pretty pricey. I saved a bit back for the 1# invert 3 I got just to kinda color match my home attempts.

Ron Pattinson consistently says that invert #3 is the secret. That American milds may look right, but never taste quite right owing to the use of crystal instead of invert.

I've taken a break but I'll soon be ready to re-tackle the Machine House Brewery mild. It uses Bairds C50-60, C120-150, & chocolate. It's the dogs bollocks and definately in my top 10 beers of all time list. When I finally get a clone I'm happy with, I will post it here. When I chatted with the brewer/owner, who is English, he said he doesn't use invert because you can't really get it commercially in the US like one can in the UK. So, he made his take on Dark Mild using crystal, and it is a damn fine beer.

I agree. I bought 3lbs each of Becker's Invert #3 and #2 and those six pounds came uncomfortably close to the price of a 55lb bag of domestic malt. I would like to support what they're doing, I think it's great, but I just can't justify having such a high proportion of the cost of batch tied up in 11% of the grist.

So after swearing off ever trying to make invert again, I'll get back on that horse. Fortunately, there's a lot more information available on the process and thanks to Becker's I'll have the benefit of knowing what it looks and tastes like, how it behaves in beer, and how to write recipes for it.

As for the crystal rout, it certainly can be done! I used to have a banger of recipe that revolved around domestic C-120, C-150 and jaggery. Unfortunately, it died in a hard drive crash.
 
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