Due to work, I spent allot of time flying around the country to different bases for training or to train people. The last couple of months there hasn’t been allot of flying going on since the government didn’t pass a budget again this year. All those can’s have been kicked down to the road to the point we have to do them, so over the next two months I’ll get a solid 48 hours of time in the back of a plane. This means I get allot of reading done. So expect more book reviews like the one below.
Mild Ale History Brewing Techniques, Recipes by David Sutula.
This was the first book in the Classic Beer Style Series I’ve read, I plan on ordering the rest of them since I had such a good time reading this book. The book is mostly a history of the brew and it puts in some real information in how to make your own at home. I like history so it was great to ready about the English brewing system and the vast changes to the quality and type of beer consumed. It seems that beer smelled of “wet goat” and had a final gravity often around 1.60-1.70. Clearly there was allot of extra junk in that beer. Even the term beer is fairly modern which is pretty cool. The History section talks about the raise of victoria brewing towers as well as a float of Porter that killed. Also the use of Finings(fish bladder goo) to pull out suspended sediment in the beer was something I had thought gone away ages ago. The books claim it’s the only way to make a proper English Mild. I’m not sure if I’m going to try that one anytime soon.
A bit more about the beerThe English Mild by style is normally a tea like brew in color and in taste with an underwhelming 3-4% ABV, its mildly hopped by Fuggle or Golding that help develop the tea like characters of the brew. Somehow an English brew tasting like tea is fitting.
The confusion of Brown Ale and Mild is explained as well. Also the history of the rise of brown Ale and many brewers renaming there Mild a Brown Ale did more to hurt the style than anything else. Even with in Mild there are some big variations.
He closes with a collection of home brewing recipes to replicate some of the biggest Mild’s still in production as well as a formula to approximate the brew as it was in the early 1800s.
I highly encourage anyone who’s interested in the history of brewing as well as this style to enjoy the book. Its only 200 pages and the print is big, front to back it only took about 3 hours to read. Below you’ll find the link the amazon for the book: