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Need a substitute for London Ale III aka Boddinton's yeast

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ba-brewer

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Maybe they will do another purge to flush the system.

I am rethinking the vault and seasonal offering, think about pick something easy to get and figure out how to get the most of it.
 
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kmarkstevens

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Oh, I'm well aware of how the Vault works, which is why it's so frustrating that it only works with US credit cards - I'm sure some of the rarer British strains would get a few more orders if that was changed.

The other interesting one would be WLP037 Manchester which is another POF+ saison type, but at current progress it will hit the 150 some time in the late 2020s...
That's a pisser. Brewlab and White Labs should do a cross continent deal. Sea ship probably is fine in the winter months, but not sure about when it gets warmer. Anyhoo, ping me if there's something incredible coming on offer, and will see if I can send you a tube or a slant.

That said, I think there is a reason why the yeasts are in the vault and not in the standard greatest hits collection available year round. :) I take that back. WLP085 for example is fantastic (it's WLP02 and 07? mixed), flocculates like a cottage cheese, is very clean, and avoids the overly sweetness of 02. (I only got it because I did a 15 minute drive by of White Labs in San Diego 18 months ago, and it's been stuck in the vault with only 2 orders for months). It should be a standard offering. Yorkshire Squares, on the other hand, is beyond my modest ability. Furthermore, I found that the 100+ lab hours spent on WLP611/Torulaspora delbrueckii didn't help humanity much.

I will say again that I think the Vault program is completely awesome. $9.43 including shipping to your door, so what's not to like? I know even with cherry picking the offerings, that it will be hit and miss for me, but I still have about 10 strains on order and eagerly awaiting delivery of each one.
 

Northern_Brewer

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That's a pisser. Brewlab and White Labs should do a cross continent deal. Sea ship probably is fine in the winter months, but not sure about when it gets warmer. Anyhoo, ping me if there's something incredible coming on offer, and will see if I can send you a tube or a slant.
That's kind of you, I should be OK thanks, my ratio of brewing to yeasts waiting in the fridge is already too low! Brewlab aren't really interested in homebrewers any more, more trouble than it's worth. We do have access to Vault strains as there's some kind of system for our retailers to order them but White Labs have been in such chaos for the last year that it's not been terribly reliable even for the seasonal releases. There are signs they are slowly sorting themselves out, but they've annoyed a lot of people in the process. Even if WLP037 just becomes my saison strain, I can live with that. WLP002 isn't overly sweet, your recipe may be.;) If you look back in history a lot of British brewers were only getting 60% attenuation.
 
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kmarkstevens

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Calling all Yeastie Boys. White Labs is going to put all vault yeast into production on 1 July. Here's your chance to get something like WLP85 that is collecting an order every 6 months.

@Northern_Brewer Offer still stands if I can shout you a vial of yeast
 

couchsending

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Where did you see this about all vault strains going into production? Been really wanting to try wlp030 and 072 forever.
 
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kmarkstevens

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The email:
Our strains are breaking out of the Vault
We're releasing all of our Vault Strains, making it easier for you to get your hands on our specialty, creative, and unique strains that typically require 150 pre-orders to get out...until now!

All Vault Strains will go into production July 1st unless a strain hits 150 orders... then it will be pushed into production right away. That means you're not going to want to wait to order your favorites!
 
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kmarkstevens

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Here's the email highlights:
Our strains are breaking out of the Vault
We're releasing all of our Vault Strains, making it easier for you to get your hands on our specialty, creative, and unique strains that typically require 150 pre-orders to get out...until now!

All Vault Strains will go into production July 1st unless a strain hits 150 orders... then it will be pushed into production right away. That means you're not going to want to wait to order your favorites!
 
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kmarkstevens

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I've had my eye on WLP011 for ages and are one of 7 that have pre-ordered.

85 I got during my visit to whitelabs almost 2 years ago. I'm going to reorder for a back up.

grabbing Whitbread II because of Shut up About Barclay Perkins
 

ba-brewer

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I've had my eye on WLP011 for ages and are one of 7 that have pre-ordered.

85 I got during my visit to whitelabs almost 2 years ago. I'm going to reorder for a back up.

grabbing Whitbread II because of Shut up About Barclay Perkins
I am debating which strains to get from the vault with this purge. Any chance you have a link to a post in Shut up About Barclay Perkins which talks about the Whitbread II yeast.

whites says it is a mixed culture so I wonder how long it would take to diverge from the initial mix. I would slant the yeast from the pouch but it seems like there might be drift with time.
 
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kmarkstevens

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@ba-brewer There wasn't a specific Whitbread yeast piece in Shut Up. More that there are a lot of recipes from Whitbread, so makes sense to use Whitbread yeast.

My understanding is that Wyeast 1098 is the "dry" strain, and WLP 017 being the other half of the mixed culture

If you look at the http://beer.suregork.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/Brewing_yeast_family_tree_nov_2018_v11.pdf yeast genome mapping, these two strains are right next to each other.

I'm using the brewing yeast family tree to make some selections from the Vault. Picking out a few strains that are further from what I have banked. For me that translates to 13, 17, 26, 85 and 725. Would appreciate if anyone has a head's up on any of these.

Me, I quite like 85. It's clean and flocculant, but not quite so attenuative as 02 (which I find a little too sweet).

725 as it is the Sake 7 strain, and not available elsewhere that I know of. I'm done with trying sake, but I found the Sake 9 strain to be good in cysers (once the ~2 week smells like puke phase is passed).

Some of these strains are not a mainstream offering for a reason. For example, WLP37 Yorkshire Squares is way beyond my inclination and ability as a brewer. I was so excited, did 3-4 batches, and the outcome was all over the place with seemingly random POF coming and going...
 

Northern_Brewer

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My understanding is that Wyeast 1098 is the "dry" strain, and WLP 017 being the other half of the mixed culture

If you look at the http://beer.suregork.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/Brewing_yeast_family_tree_nov_2018_v11.pdf yeast genome mapping, these two strains are right next to each other.
Exactly - they're too closely related to be different halves of a strain, it looks like WLP017 Whitbread II is the White Labs version of 1098, if there is another member of the Whitbread multistrain available from the homebrew suppliers, it looks like it's WLP007 and friends.

Some of these strains are not a mainstream offering for a reason. For example, WLP37 Yorkshire Squares is way beyond my inclination and ability as a brewer. I was so excited, did 3-4 batches, and the outcome was all over the place with seemingly random POF coming and going...
Possibly related to aeration?

I'll get back to you on that DM, waiting for someone else to get back to me.
 
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kmarkstevens

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Possibly related to aeration?
Most likely. I take ok brewing notes but Mao on a pogo stick Yorkie Squares was all over the place. Including POF after about 2 weeks in the bottle, then it disappearing a month later. Far beyond the effort needed to even try tame that beast. And I'm not even sure if at the end of the day it would be something I like.

Fun for a few batches but I surrendered. Plenty of other yeasties out there to keep me occupied for years.
 
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kmarkstevens

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@Northern_Brewer Checking in to see if there has been any advance in the quest for the one true Boddington's yeast?

I just contacted RVA Yeast Labs in the US as they have RVA 132 Manchester yeast that they believe is from Boddingtons. When I asked if they could share the provenance of RVA132 or at least confirm it was not related to or a derivative of London III, they replied: "I cannot speak to the our strains relatedness to London III. I can tell you that it is not var. diastaticus and we do believe this to be from Boddington's. I have heard that London III was from Boddington's as well. Have you heard differently?"

The reply above makes me nervous that they are peddling London III. It's $13/vial, and with shipping one vial is about $50. I'd be really disappointed if this is simply London III. I'd consider it if it is a descendant of the WLP Manchester, and certainly get it if it is the real Boddington's yeast.

Any thoughts on poster Orfy (who I suspect has gone to the great pub in the sky and is quaffing a bottomless pint of true Boddy's) and his thread on Boddington's cask: (225) Ordinary Bitter - Boddington's Bitter | HomeBrewTalk.com - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Community.

His Boddington recipe calls for Generic Youngs Ale yeast. Might Young's be Boddington yeast, or a close substitute?
 

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kmarkstevens

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@IslandLizard It was 2 day air shipping. The price also included the packaging/ice pack. And they can ship 4 vials in a pack, so not as bad as first glance.

I suspect RVA Labs is just a guy in his garage with yeast banked from the majors. This might be London III and it might be the WLP Manchester, although based on his reply, I'm guessing it's London III.

BTW, I did register on White Labs for 3 vials of WLP038, which doubled the amount of preorders, so only 144 more orders before it goes into production. ;) I'll probably visit Manchester before this gets out of the yeast vault...
 

Northern_Brewer

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Not really.

I'd assume that RVA 132 is 1318 or a very close derivative unless there was strong evidence to say otherwise.

Young's ale yeast is one of the cheapest dry yeasts here, so I wouldn't read anything into him using it - Pinto on Jim's thinks it's Mauribrew Y514 which is certainly plausible. AFAIK there's no connection between Young's brewing supplies and the London brewery, in this discussion on Jim's which is mostly about the dry yeast, Clibit reports " I read a post a couple of years ago from someone who had emailed the Youngs brewery and they had replied confirming 1318 to be their yeast"

Don't shoot the messenger...!!!
 

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A couple thoughts: The old Boddington Bitter was unique in that it was fermented out to <1.000. I've found a comment in the Institute of Brewing Journal that says as much, indicating that the beer needed time to ferment all the sugars before it was primed, lest it over-carbonate in the casks. The only Manchester yeast that matches this feature is WLP038, which is also a STA1 diastaticus yeast. I've also found a reference to a former employee that recommends using a dry and clean yeast to approximate the old Boddies flavor. This doesn't sound like WY1318.

The two supposed sources of WY1318 before the Mr. Malty list went up (and introduce the Boddies connection) was Courage and Young's. I don't believe it is the Young's strain as I have two different sources of that and they behave nothing like 1318. Curiously, the Courage yeast is very similar to 1318, with the same sweet-candy note, top cropping, and soft profile. WY1945 is also very similar, almost identical really.
 

ba-brewer

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wlp038 does not seem to have an active STA1 gene. I get reasonable mid 70s attenuation with that yeast. It is also phenolic, but seems less pronounced than wlp037.

WLP026 and WLP037 seem to have active STA1 genes.

edit: should of checked my notes first, I got only 68% attenuation from wlp038 the couple times I used it. WLP026 in the upper 70s but the keg became turned over carbonated with time.
 
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bierhaus15

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Are you saying you know definitively that it does not have an active STA1 gene? Care to provide evidence?

Otherwise, "Through this genetic testing, we have determined WLP038 Manchester Ale Yeast to contain the STA1 gene (glucoamylase), a potential indicator of Saccharomyces cerevisiae var. diastaticus. Brewers yeast are natural hybrids, which make it possible for certain strains to display elements of the STA1 gene."
 

ba-brewer

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it is my understanding that yeast can have a STA1 gene but not be active. When I say active I mean super attenuate like WLP037 or Wyeast 3711.

The listed attenuations for WLP026, wlp038 and wlp037 suggest that they are not active, but wlp037 is known to over attenuate. It also appears to me that WLP026 over attenuates.
 

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I've used WLP 038 Manchester. I got it a couple of years ago when White Labs opened up the vault producing all the strains. I agree with ba-brewer that it doesn't over-attenuate. Although, it is most definitely POF+. It does produce phenols, and the resulting beer will have a subtle "saisony" quality to it. I liked the beers I made with it, but I don't ever remember reading anywhere that Boddingtons was ever "saisony."
 
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kmarkstevens

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A couple thoughts: The old Boddington Bitter was unique in that it was fermented out to <1.000. I've found a comment in the Institute of Brewing Journal that says as much, indicating that the beer needed time to ferment all the sugars before it was primed, lest it over-carbonate in the casks. The only Manchester yeast that matches this feature is WLP038, which is also a STA1 diastaticus yeast. I've also found a reference to a former employee that recommends using a dry and clean yeast to approximate the old Boddies flavor. This doesn't sound like WY1318.
Interesting. The Barclay Perkins Boddington recipes don't finish below 1006, and the bigger beers are more like 1015.

I shan't be trying the RVA yeast lab offering after getting validation of my concerns on their provenance.

My only experience is the Boddington nitro cans. I started on those in the early 1990's in Hong Kong, and I still grab a 4 pack in the supermarket more than a couple times a year. In my humble opinion, it's a good solid beer and I would love to get to a credible clone. I could be mistaken, but methinks the yeast is pretty key to brewing a clone.

We seem to be no closer to finding the unicorn that is the true Boddy yeast. Le sigh
 

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The FG in rons recipes might just be at racking to maturation tanks etc. I presume the low FG of boddies a long time ago attributed to it's perception of being incredibly bitter, at least in comparison to other bitters. As they cleaned up their yeast it would start to finish higher, so would lose some of its perceived bitterness even if it was bittered the same. The boddies I drank a little in the 90s was only notable for their adverts with Mel Sykes.

Worthington White Shield was another beer that finished incredibly dry back in the day, having diastatic yeast too
 

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My boss has had good results from the Danstar Nottingham dry yeast. Haven't verified myself as of yet.

Interesting. The Barclay Perkins Boddington recipes don't finish below 1006, and the bigger beers are more like 1015.

I shan't be trying the RVA yeast lab offering after getting validation of my concerns on their provenance.

My only experience is the Boddington nitro cans. I started on those in the early 1990's in Hong Kong, and I still grab a 4 pack in the supermarket more than a couple times a year. In my humble opinion, it's a good solid beer and I would love to get to a credible clone. I could be mistaken, but methinks the yeast is pretty key to brewing a clone.

We seem to be no closer to finding the unicorn that is the true Boddy yeast. Le sigh
 

Northern_Brewer

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A couple thoughts: The old Boddington Bitter was unique in that it was fermented out to <1.000.
Well that's where it gets complicated when people start talking about Boddies' yeast, as at least three or more were used just in the course of the 20th century. There's at least one pre-WWII yeast - in 1901 the apparent attenuation (AA) was 75%, it dropped below 62% in January 1919 - presumably a combination of ingredient quality and attempting to retain some mouthfeel at a time when ABV was under a lot of government pressure, but was back up to 69% in 1921 and was 75-77% by the late 1930s.

After the Luftwaffe "reconfigured" the brewery in the Manchester Blitz of 22-23 December 1940, they got a new yeast in from Tadcaster that was obviously diastatic to give the bone dryness of what's now regarded as the "classic" Boddies of the 1970s. In 1951 it was giving 87.5% AA, in 1966 89.6% AA, in 1971 91.6% AA, in 1974 88.4% AA.

There's a general consensus that "Boddies went wrong" some time in the late 1970s to early 1980s and it's been claimed that they "lost the yeast" around that time and replaced it with another one, and/or "cleaned up" the yeast -which is plausible, a lot of family brewers did that in the 1970s.

Boak and Bailey have a good article/comments on the subject. It's complicated, but the core of it seems to have been that after lager exploded in popularity during the droughts of 1975/6, management made a concerted effort to reduce the characteristic dryness and bitterness to make it more palatable to the majority. They weren't the only ones - perhaps the most famous example was the replacement of Red Barrel with the much blander Watney Red in 1971. Some of this was through process changes, so it's not clear whether a new yeast was involved. There were also changes forced on them, like Tate & Lyle ending production of one of the sugars used (presumably due to the changes in the sugar industry around the time of our entry to the EEC in the mid 1970s) which may be the reason it apparently got a little darker. And the pressures of recession may have been behind the switch from "classic malting varieties" in 1980 to Triumph barley "of which many brewers privately are scathing".

General thought seems to be that the changes started around 1976 with a particularly obvious change in around 1981/2, but it's worth noting that Ron has an apparent attenuation of 83.6% in 1987, by which time they'd dropped all the adjuncts in the recipe bar a smidge of invert presumably to adjust the gravity for consistency. So given that we know they'd changed the process and recipe, it feels like they probably hadn't completely changed the yeast.

Then in 1989 Whitbread took them over (having first bought a 13% stake in 1961). Some obvious things to say - Whitbread were based in London, had one of the biggest yeast libraries in the world, had two strains that have become widespread in British brewing, and had several breweries around the UK.

Boddies became huge in the UK in the 1990s thanks to smart advertising, Whitbread's distribution and nitro "widget" cans. They tried brand extensions, including a stronger Export which didn't last long here but AIUI is what is still sold Stateside as Pub Ale. Pub Ale is different to the stuff we're talking about here which is Boddington's Bitter. In November 2003 the cask version was rebranded as Boddington's Cask with the ABV tweaked from 3.8% to 4.1%, wheat malt dropped to leave it all-barley malt, and reportedly drier and more bitter again. Was that a process change or was it a yeast change? Had Whitbread switched to one of their yeasts in the 1990s?????

But in 2000 Whitbread sold to Interbrew (which became AB InBev) who closed down the Strangeways brewery in 2005. They moved keg and smallpack production to the former Whitbread greenfield breweries at Samlesbury in Lancashire and Magor in South Wales, and the Tennent's Wellpark brewery in Glasgow (bought from Bass). By that stage cask was <10% of production and was contracted out to Hyde's to keep it in Manchester, but the contract ended in 2012 and that was the end of cask Boddies. Supposedly they ended up using the Hyde's yeast because "the Boddies yeast fell apart at Hyde's and there was too much wastage". That sounds like a multistrain failing to adapt - possibly a switch from open fermenters to conicals?????

We also know from sequencing that 1318 and 1945 NeoBritannia are close relatives, and both are almost as closely related to 1098 and WLP017 Whitbread II. This is a key point I think.

Also we know that for most of the time that strains were being harvested that ended up in US lab collections, Boddies was either owned by Whitbread or brewed at a Whitbread brewery under Interbrew ownership. To me this confusion about London Ale III being linked to Boddies must be down to a version of Boddies that was brewed with Whitbread yeast. Maybe they used Whitbread yeast at Strangeways during the 1990s, maybe someone managed to harvest some (or source some direct from the brewery) from Samlesbury/Magor/Wellpark after Strangeways closed. My current guess - and that's all it is - is that Export/Pub Ale is/was brewed with Whitbread yeast which to a US collector would be "the" Boddington yeast, and/or if someone asked Wellpark for "the Boddington yeast" they were probably using the Whitbread yeast for all their ales (since it's mainly a lager brewery).

All speculation at this point, but the murk is beginning to clear a little I think.
 
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kmarkstevens

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dah-yumm, that is a helluva treatise on Boddington yeast, Northern Brewer!!! And the linked citations are awesome too!:ban:

I just finished the Boak and Bailey. So, now, what recipe and accompanying yeast do you think would get to the "A highly evocative description of how Boddington’s tasted in its prime comes from a letter to What’s Brewing from Mike Field of Batley, published in May 1984: “[It had a] bitterness that clawed at the back of the throat and took you back to the bar for another one.” "

This is the holy grail I want to get to! Much as the nitro cans hit a sweet spot, the above description is now what I need to replicate.
 
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kmarkstevens

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Well, I am almost at the end of brewing up this beauty: 1939 Boddington's XX Mild. Decided to go with Notty as it attenuates approximately the same as Boddy brewing records.

Also, I purchased a pound of Becker's Brewing Sugar invert #3, and this is the recipe to test it out on. Ron Pattinson has often pontificated that #3 is what one needs for a classic Mild flavor, and the Septic practice of using specialty malts hits the right colour but is lacking in the proper flavour. Will post back in a couple of weeks on how this turns out.
 

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Pattison is in the midst of posting information tables on Boddington Bitter 1971-87. This is the first of what seems will be a series of posts.

 
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kmarkstevens

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Thanks for posting. If you read the comments to that post, Northern Brewer added his above analysis (or someone cut and pasted from here to Ron's blog).

Second, a comment in the link mentioned Tony's Pre-1970's Boddington's Clone Recipe, so that answer's my recipe request above. In the linked article, there was this gem: "He (Tony) also spoke to someone who used to work at the brewery (on the phone, having been put through by the pub landlord) who advised him to use Nottingham dried yeast rather than the liquid strain that is supposedly the Boddington’s strain."

Tony's is also more or less in line with this recipe for 1971 Boddington IP from Shut Up.

Wish I had seen this before last Saturday. No worries, I shall be trying out Tony's or the 1971 recipe very soon!
 

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I have brewed the 1971 recipe a number of times with different yeasts, and I plan to use Lalbrew Verdant dry yeast on my next batch. I have used WLP 038 Manchester, Wy 1318 London III ale yeast, and Safale 04. The Manchester had a slight taste of clove, which is appropriate given that it's POF+. It was still very good, though. The 04 was very good also, but a bit neutral. The London III was the best of all to my taste. I wouldn't use the Notty. The malt quality is subtle as it uses a number of adjuncts and only a small amount of actual Malt. The London III brought the malt out a bit whereas the other yeasts were more neutral. Because Verdant is supposedly the dry equivalent of the London III, and I've tried it and like it very much, I think it is going to be perfect for the 1971 Boddies. The recipe is excellent, but with that said, the yeast choice is important IMHO. Oh, and you must use the Invert #2; it is key to the overall flavor.
 
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kmarkstevens

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Appreciate that feedback @Franktalk. Happy to hear you like the 1971 recipe. I'll do that as well as Tony's pretty soon.

I am NOT a fan of London III. I've tried several yeast offs with London III, and it's lost every cage match and ditto with my LHBS. To my palate, it is dull, lifeless and produces mediocre beer.
 
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kmarkstevens

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I am preparing to brew Tony's Pre-1970 Boddington Clone (see below). I'm guessing that deleting the Dextrine and doubling the torrified wheat won't make a difference, simplify a bit, and I know from Northern Brewer's comments that torrified wheat is a signature ingredient in the northern ales. So, I'll be subbing out the carapils and doubling the torrified wheat.

Silly me, if I had been thinking ahead, I would have bought the 1971 Boddington ingredients and brewed both side by side. Next time.

Now, when I plug into the recipe calculator with Nottingham, the Boddington Clone finishes at 1008, so not quite at Tony's and 5 points off of the 1971 Boddy recipe. I'll pitch big and see where it goes. (BTW, London III, finishes at 1010...)


Tony's Old Boddies Pre-1970
English Pale Ale
Recipe Specs
------------
Batch Size (litres): 23
Total Grain (kg): 3.425
Total Hops (g): 54
Original Gravity: 1.036
Final Gravity: 1.006
Alcohol by Volume: 3.93%
Colour (SRM/EBC): 6.6/13
Bitterness (IBU): 28.7
Efficiency: 75%
Boil Time: 75 mins

Grain
-----
2.5 kg Maris Otter Malt (73%) = 5.5#
0.5 kg Pilsner Malt (14.6%) = 1.1#
0.2 kg Golden Syrup (5.8%) = 7oz
80g Carapils (Dextrine) (2.3%) = 2.8 oz
80g Torrefied Wheat (2.3%) =2.8oz
60g Flaked Corn (1.9%) = 2.1oz

Hops
----
24g Northern Brewer (7.8% Alpha) @ 75 mins
24g Goldings (5.5% Alpha) @ 15 mins
6g Goldings (5.5% Alpha) for dry hop

Misc
----
Single-step infusion mash at 65°C for 90 mins; mash PH adjusted to 5.3.
Fermented at 18°C with Danstar Nottingham dried yeast
Water: 'Stockport corporation pop dechlorinated with a crushy.'
 
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Think I will ferment out, bottle half, and then pitch a more attenuative yeast to get down a few more gravity points. Any suggestions on the attenuative yeast? none of my ale yeasts drop that much. I do have some old wine and champagne yeast in the library. Maybe a kveik? thoughts?

I did mash at 149F for 60 minutes, so that may also increase the attenuation. And I did a big pitch with an active starter. Will see
 
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kmarkstevens

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Tony's Boddington's is in the keg with a little dry hop action. Spunded at 70F and it is pressurized. Will tap it in a few days. The Notty big pitch finished at 1004 following the 149F mash.

I am in the midst of a second half batch right now. Mashing this one at 152F just to see if it finishes differently.

Also the Nottingham High Performance Ale Yeast seems to attenuate about 2 points below the regular Notty. Might be worth trying to mash a bit higher and using the Notty High Perf to finish dry.

Will report back on the tasting in a few days
 
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