Dawes Black Horse Ale

The second alcohol ad of interest in the October 15, 1941 issue of the Montreal Gazette was for Dawes Black Horse Ale.

I discussed the Dawes Brewery in an earlier post. In that article, I assumed Black Horse Ale evolved from an India Pale Ale which is surely correct, as below we see an 1890 listing for “Dawes I.P. Ale”, clearly an India Pale Ale. It’s from a menu of the Windsor Hotel in Montreal.

There was no India Pale Ale in Dawes’ product line as such by 1941. A chilled, well-carbonated “sparkling ale” type had replaced it, the Black Horse Ale. In , I cite a statement from a director of the Molson Brewery 20 years earlier that the new type of ale supplanted the strong, cellared ales of English tradition.

By the time I started to drink beer in the 1970s, Black Horse Ale was long off the market although you would still see old signs for it in groceries.

Black Horse Ale was probably pretty good. It would have been top-fermented in open vats, well-hopped, and given a reasonable period of cold-aging, or maybe a combination of cold and warm aging.

王爷不要了尿在里面No beer available today in my view gets at this older Canadian palate, the closest are Labatt 50 and Alexander Keith’s India Pale Ale.

On the craft side, Sleeman Cream Ale may recall mid-1900s Canadian sparkling ale, or one form of it. Some of the craft breweries claim to make a mid-1900s Canadian ale but it is hard to know how close these are. Some remind me of bottled and canned English pale ale from the 1970s and 80s. But maybe the earlier Canadian ales were like that. In my own memory by the 1970s certainly, the eastern Canadian ale brands were fairly anodyne. They were somewhat different to the lagers of the same companies, but not that different.

Black Horse was well-marketed in its heyday including among the francophone majority. Quebec used to be proud of its adherence to the ale tradition, inherited not just from the English who dominated business after the Conquest, but the earlier, French-derived brewing tradition. All this background was top-fermented brewing, so the ales, even in modified hybrid form, remained favourites into the 1970s.

O’Keefe Ale, Molson Export Ale, Laurentide Ale, and Labatt 50 Ale were the main brands. Molson was the home favourite, made on the St. Lawrence River in an old part of the city since the late 1700s. Labatt was an incomer from Ontario but making gains. O’Keefe Ale also came from Ontario, it vaunted its seedless hops method around this time. The ad copy said the ale was less bitter as a result – the writing was on the wall for Canadian ale even in its modified, sparkling ale form.

What remained of the old ale culture was swept aside largely by lager proper. First came Labatt Blue, then Budweiser and Miller. Molson Canadian Lager never was marketed actively in Quebec, the name and image were too “national Canadian”. Budweiser was brewed in Canada but quite close to the U.S. one (and had the apple-biscuit flavour it has since lost IMO).

So tastes started to change and with the dry and ice beer phenomenon of the 80s and 90s, the beer palate became altered in a fundamental way.

Despite the rise of the small breweries, most beer sold in Quebec and eastern Canada remains the generic, adjunct lager type. Still, in beer-aware circles, India Pale Ale is le dernier cri. And it?has brought back not the Dawes taste of 1941, but 1890, more or less.

But in 1941, zesty Dawes Black Horse Ale was a local favourite. The Gazette ad shows an older man drinking it, probably in deference to the fact that an important demographic for beer was in uniform.

Still, it is interesting to see an older person in an ad like this. Older people are almost completely ignored in modern beer advertising, which is a serious omission as people are living longer. The superannuated like beer no less than the bright young things. They may not pound it, but they can make money for breweries who see the opportunity.

Note re images: The first image above was extracted from the original news story linked in the text and the second from www.chadbourneantique.com, ?All intellectual property in the sources belongs solely to their lawful owner or authorized user, as applicable. Images are used for educational and historical purposes. All feedback welcomed.



Max Wallerstein, American Brewing Scientist

The Wallersteins, And Notes on English Brewing

I have mentioned the careers of influential early American brewing scientists Anton Schwarz, John Siebel, Max Henius, and Robert Wahl. To this group must be added Dr. Max Wallerstein who with his brother Leo ran Wallerstein Laboratories in New York from about 1900. The business continued until the 1960s as far as we can determine.

王爷不要了尿在里面Max died at 62 in 1937, Leo in his 70s in 1957. Many scientific studies were published by their company, dealing with brewing principally and also other areas of food and beverage technology.

As it happens, the Wallersteins were yet further examples of Jews from Europe who distinguished themselves in this field in America. They were born in Fuerth, Bavaria, see 王爷不要了尿在里面and for more detail and images of Max and Leo, respectively.

Of the six important scientists mentioned, four were Jewish, Schwarz and Henius were the others. We find this of interest simply as a social datum, and because Jews were relatively rare in brewing in the 1800s – 1900s.

They did, however, make a mark in America in brewing science.

As an example of his activities, Max filed a patent before WW I for perfecting the use of calcium sulphate in brewing (Burtonization), see details

He also assisted the brewing industry on the problem of ensuring clarity for bottled beer, a preoccupation of U.S. brewers in the first part of the 1900s.

Max deliveredpublished in the 1904-1907 Transactions of the American Brewing Institute, Vol. 3, on English brewing methods. This followed a trip to Britain to study the topic. His careful citation and summaries of technical data on brewing materials, malting, mashing, the kettle, and fermentation are well worth pondering. Gaps are filled in or confirmations provided on numerous questions of interest to brewing historians.

Just a few points here:

– porter was still using some “oak-smoked” malt, the context makes it clear this was brown malt

– anthracite, and some coke, were used to dry pale malt

– ?sparging was in general use

– ?hops were generally added twice during the boil, at the beginning and then within an hour before the end

– ?the Burton Union system was retained partly because beer flavour was considered superior, and this was due to reduced atmospheric impact on the beer

– ?sugar was in general use, it did not exceed 25% and often was held to 10% of the total extract. Stout and porter production used little of this material.

His paper in general is of interest, as apart the articles in the Journal of the Institute of Brewing王爷不要了尿在里面, there aren’t many English brewing studies available between the 1890s and the 1930s, to our knowledge.

Note re image: The above image was sourced from the Internet. All intellectual property therein belongs solely to the lawful owner or authorized user, as applicable. Image is used for educational and historical purposes. All feedback welcomed.


A Taste of the Old Country in 1941 Montreal

Guinness Foreign Extra Touted in a Mobilized Canada

In October 1941, the war was accelerating on all fronts. Things looked perilous for the Russian army as hundreds of thousands of German troops encircled them. The Nazi persecution of the Jews had reached an unprecedented level of depravity, and would get much worse. Imperial Japan continued its pitiless military conquests. Pearl Harbor was a few weeks away. And much else.

王爷不要了尿在里面The outlook was and would remain grim for years to come.

Canada had been on a war-footing for two years, and local newspapers were full of war news. At the same time, life went on. The reflected the war but also local life as it had always been – local and church news, fashion ads, other business news and ads, political developments.

I grew up in Montreal, indeed with the Gazette as we called it tout court. The paper carries on, which I always read on my return visits there.

Many of the ads or other mentions from 1941 resonate from things I remember as a kid, e.g., Morgan’s Department Store on Ste. Catherine Street. (It is still there, now called The Bay). If I was 12 in 1962 – I was – this is only 20 years later. Lots had changed by then including the suburbanization of the city and rising French nationalism, but lots hadn’t changed.

Reading the 1941 Gazette reminds me of my youth but as an alternate version so to speak.

The actual physical stuff of 1940s Canadian war-making was still in evidence in c. 1960 Montreal. Armouries were still active and advertised for cadets. I almost signed up once. Newspapers still carried ads for surplus clothing, vehicles, and weapons. I remember the .303 Lee Enfield rifle in particular offered for sale. You could find it and much more in the numerous army surplus stores.

Of course war memories were still fresh, added to by the Korean War. My father was a 17-year-old private in the in 1945 and trained at Farnham, QC. A number in the family had enlisted, some fought in Europe. There were no direct persecutions from the Germans as our people came before WW I. But I remember the stories from friends. At the corner Jewish bakery, the ladies serving had blue-inked numbers on their arms.

The 1941 papers still carried beverage alcohol ads, whether this continued until VE Day I can’t say. The availability of alcohol to the populace was surely seen as a morale-booster and it was probably felt a few ads would do no harm. ?The ads themselves have both a pre- and post-war feel, that is they reflect the interests of a consumer society, just as the fashion ads do. This was part of the binary mentality that always continues in any war setting. People carry on but it’s always on the backdrop of something out of kilter – at least that’s how it strikes me reading the 1941?Gazette 75 years later.

I will look at three of the ads. ?The first is for Guinness Foreign Extra Stout, the strong, exported version of Guinness still sold (but not in Canada, today). The beer perhaps was still being imported from a bottler in neutral Ireland. Either that or it was prewar stock, or perhaps obtained from a Guinness warehouse in New York.

A few things to note. The ad made hay of a number of Guinness attributes:

  • all-barley malt
  • no filtration (“never, never“)
  • aged for at least one year in “oak vats”
  • not pasteurized and retaining “active yeast”.

None of those selling points characterizes Guinness today, to my knowledge.

It’s interesting that the ad invites readers to ask anyone “from England” about the beer. It goes on to state that anyone in “the Old Country” knows its value. These vague references perhaps were intended to suggest Guinness was at least as British as Irish. Ireland had only been independent for some 20 years, so this was a natural connection anyway. Also, the appeal to Britannic and Irish (the ad does refer to Dublin) tastes implies the superiority of Old World production.

This was a big part of British beer’s appeal for generations in North America. The tug was strongest from the mid-1800s until perhaps the 1930s but endured until about 20 years ago. Finally the turnaround came with the success of American craft beer, especially IPA, in Britain today. It took a while though, like 200 years.

I’ll deal with the next two drinks in subsequent posts.


Note re image: Above image was extracted from the news story linked in the text. All intellectual property therein belongs solely to the lawful owner or authorized user, as applicable. Image is used for educational and historical purposes. All feedback welcomed.

Guinness Stout in the Wood Barrel Days

A Taste Report on 1960s Wood Barrel Guinness

I have discussed often, e.g., here, and? here, that Guinness stout used to be a naturally-conditioned beer. This meant it was racked (transferred) to wood barrels, or bottled, with its residual live yeast. In brewing, much of the yeast which has turned the maltose into alcohol and CO2 is removed in the traditional process. Some always remained, sometimes throwing a haze unless the beer was left to stand for a while or certain clarification methods were used.

王爷不要了尿在里面During the 1960s, the draft system more or less employed since the inception of Guinness in the 1700s was replaced in Ireland. The beer was now filtered and chilled (later pasteurized, too) and dispensed from a metal canister by a mix of CO2 and nitrogen gas. This was a technical innovation of some sophistication.

The unfiltered bottling was retained for about 20 years still, but finally this form too was eliminated. All bottled and canned Guinness has been filtered and pasteurized for decades.

Beer containing residual yeast, especially where dispensed from wood containers in which bacteria and wild yeast could lurk, is liable to deterioration in various ways. Obviously Guinness’s fame meant most pints must have been sound during its lengthy history, but the brewery wanted to promote a greater level of stability. The new system ensured this. In general, similar technological changes were occurring elsewhere in brewing.

Indeed most large plants had become “sterile” (in the technical sense), a change also meant to favour product stability and consistency. Guinness adopted this as well.

We have always wondered how Irish bar customers reacted to the new form of the beer. There must still be people in Dublin today who remember Guinness before the switch to the current system.

王爷不要了尿在里面To me, it is interesting to glean their thoughts from a palate or “gastronomic” standpoint. In a word, did any of them notice a change in taste? Was the new form different, if so how??Today, in the wake of the craft brewing renaissance, many beer fanciers would state they prefer beer in unfiltered and unpasteurized form.

Was that the case for the beer fanciers of 1960s Dublin, or some of them?

王爷不要了尿在里面Recently, via the kind offices of a museum in Dublin, I was put in touch with a gentleman, Edwin, who remembered the old Guinness. He stated he was just an occasional drinker of Guinness, but he did recall when the system changed over. He was in his late teens at the time. I’ll quote his own words to me:

I’m no expert. I do remember Guinness from the old days. It came in barrels as you describe or bottles.?Draft from wooden barrels was very creamy and had a nice head. You would find it not cold or even warm. The bottled beer which I preferred had a malty flavour. It was served unchilled, mostly. From the fridge might have been an option, however most bars would not have been so modern as to boast a fridge.?The main change with the metal casks was the beer came out cold. Soon most drinkers wanted it that way.? I would have been in my late teens when the changes were introduced. I preferred the old products, however one got used to the new.

Later, I asked Edwin if he recalled that any customers grumbled about the change. He said for a time, you could get Guinness in both forms in the city, so both tastes were satisfied, but finally the old system was phased out and people just accustomed to the new form. Although he didn’t say this, I’d guess that some who really liked the unfiltered character of the old draft switched to bottles, since bottled Guinness remained unfiltered for a considerable time as I said.

The takeaway for me is, even in the great beer-drinking country of Ireland, people just accepted over time changes in their beer.

And it was true elsewhere. In eastern Canada before WW I, ale was still a strong beer, c. 7% abv, and aged in the cellar for months, similar to its model of English stock ale including India Pale Ale.

王爷不要了尿在里面By the 1920s, the norm in Quebec and Ontario had become cold, fizzy, medium-strength ale (5% abv). People accepted the change and there is reason to think many welcomed it.

王爷不要了尿在里面It’s the same with milk – I can just recall that some bottled milk – it came in large, skittle-shaped bottles – had a layer of cream on top. Who remembers that now or cares?

It’s an old story though whether a brewer or any supplier of comestibles responds to or creates the public taste. The answer probably is, it’s somewhere in the middle, a complex process where each factor has more or less influence for various reasons.

For example, by the 1970s England was characterized by relative prosperity, better communications, and a more assertive public. The favoured the creation of The Campaign For Real Ale, or CAMRA.?CAMRA’s lobbying ensured the preservation of English cask-conditioned beer. CAMRA also helped spark the craft/indie brewing renaissance underway for the last generation, now internationally.?CAMRA was called by renowned brewing writer Michael Jackson Europe’s most successful consumer movement.

CAMRA started about a decade after Guinness implemented its new draft system in Ireland.?Perhaps had Guinness waited another 10 years a campaign to save the old Guinness would have started. ?But regardless of that, changes for a mass-produced product like Guinness were probably inevitable. Had an Irish CAMRA existed in 1964, at most maybe a small supply of naturally-conditioned Guinness would have been assured. That would have been valuable unto itself, though.

Edwin’s comments about temperature are interesting, and probably reflect the typical reaction of the day. Probably too in practice some pubs served the new beer warmer, or arrayed the glasses on the bar to let them settle and warm a bit. So any temperature/palate needs of a specific clientele were probably handled that way, or by people switching to the bottled form as I said.

王爷不要了尿在里面Net-net, people took to the new Guinness.

王爷不要了尿在里面Today, the need for a cask-conditioned Guinness is less strong. Ireland now has a few dozen small, independent breweries, spawned in the wake of CAMRA and the success of U.S. craft brewing. Numerous of them make a stout or porter in the old way.

王爷不要了尿在里面The history took care of itself, finally.

N.B. Guinness is starting to address the demand for more distinctive – and historical – forms of its famous stout. The porter pictured, which I found in Paris recently, is a first-rate product albeit not bottle-conditioned. One hopes it will be sent to all important markets for Guinness internationally, including Ontario. It’s been out for a couple of years though, and I haven’t seen it here yet.

Note re image: the second image above shows the handling of Guinness casks on a Dublin quay in the mid-1950s. It was sourced from Pinterest,?Image is used for?educational and historical purposes. All intellectual property therein belongs solely to its lawful owner or authorized user. All feedback welcomed.




A Cool Visit


Recently I passed by Cool Brewery in Etobicoke, Toronto and had a chance to chat with brewer Adrian Popowycz (pictured). The brewery has operated for two decades, in recent years at the south end of Islington road near the lake. Adrian has impressive professional brewing credentials and considerable experience in the industry.

The plant expanded since my last visit to encompass part of the parking area on the west side. The new space houses some of the 36 stainless steel cylindro-conical fermenters in the plant, the latest Chinese-made to Cool’s specs.

王爷不要了尿在里面Cool is known for its Cool Lager, Stonewall Light and the darker Buzz, the last with a hemp addition. The first two are styled to the mass market, using some grain adjunct, while Buzz is more a craft style with light toasted malt and a racy edge.

王爷不要了尿在里面Cool’s line is value-priced, which assists its sales as it does little marketing.?It is easy to forget that most beer sold in Ontario (and Canada) offers a mainstream taste. Cool has a space in that market but in distinction to the “big names” is locally-owned and operated.

I tasted the lager on draft which on a 90 F day went down like no trouble, the flavours of clean malt, corn and German hop lingering in the mouth. The beer’s?helles inspiration is obvious, except it’s lightened with the corn. This style of beer emerged in the U.S. in the last quarter of the 1800s and is still going strong for a large part of the market.

To my taste, and irrespective of price, Cool Lager is superior to most of the lager made by the international brewers. It just seems more beer-like, and fresher. The company makes a point of advertising that no preservatives or additives are used.

Does Cool ignore the burgeoning craft/indie market with its IPAs, saisons, stouts, and much more? Not at all, it makes all these and more but for contract brewers, under co-pack arrangements as it’s termed in the industry. Cool can make any kind of beer it wants, and to a high degree of proficiency. Beer fans in town tend to know where some of the contract beers are made, and Cool is one of the specialists in the co-pack field. Two or three other breweries in Ontario handle this market as well.

王爷不要了尿在里面In the business of brewing, Cool has carved out its space. Any beer fan has to be impressed with many of the products it makes both for itself and others, but also simply its success in staying the course in a competitive, highly-regulated field.




A Carrot For Your Thoughts

In 1996, the Adirondack Daily Enterprise 王爷不要了尿在里面for carrot cake “with a tropical twist”.

王爷不要了尿在里面A propos the cake, famous now in North America including its muffin form, the paper wrote:

Carrot cakes have been an American favorite since the 1960s, when home cooks and restaurant chefs started combining carrots, walnuts, raisins and spices to bake a fruit-and-nut cake, smothered with a cream cheese frosting.

Many standard American cooking references state a similar time period for the origin of the cake. I recall that it became common in the 1970s, and was seen initially as a novelty. Once you ate it and it didn’t taste of carrots, everything was cool. ??

These cakes have also been called loaves, as the article shows, and occasionally just carrot bread, maybe because the small bread shape is often still favoured for it. It was always vaguely associated with health food although the typical carrot cake is anything but. It did become popular among the back to the land crowd, of a piece with muesli, trail mix, home-brewed beer and wine (yay), vegan eating, that general thing.

王爷不要了尿在里面Generally the modern recipe is a blend of flour, ground carrot, sugar or honey, nuts of some kind, spices, but beyond that there are many variations including a fruit addition. If a beer carrot cake hasn’t been devised, I’d be surprised. (Anyone got one?).

In fact, carrot cake is very old: it didn’t start in the 1960s, certainly. There are recipes in American newspapers from the early 1900s, and British cooking manuals of the 1800s offer recipes although sometimes the cake is different from today’s. 王爷不要了尿在里面from California is essentially today’s standard recipe except for the addition of chocolate, which seems out of place, but maybe it worked.

One early 1800s English recipe states the cake should be eaten hot. Here we see an influence of the older tradition the cake sprung from, the carrot pudding. It may be that the English books took the idea from the Continent, see the history notes ,王爷不要了尿在里面 which suggest a French and Swiss connection.

The history is further explicated in王爷不要了尿在里面?from the splendid, virtual World Carrot Museum.

The European Jews always had, a sweetened carrot pudding eaten for the High Holidays. The rather anodyne one pictured in Wikipedia is not what I remember, ours used well-minced carrot to form a smooth but substantial pudding. It had salt, white pepper – the Montreal Jewish homes I knew always used white, never black – and honey, not too much it. That was it, but some people added pieces of prune or other fruit. Dumplings sometimes went in too, just plain white ones, the kind in chicken soup from matzo meal.?Sometimes pieces of beef brisket or flank meat are mixed in, or the next day if you see what I mean.

This pudding is always served hot with the main courses and has a decided carrot taste. It is quite different from carrot cake, but one can see that medieval carrot puddings, of which tzimmis王爷不要了尿在里面 is probably a descendant, morphed into the cake form known today.

The recipe shown, from the Lorraine volume (1980) of the superb regional gastronomy series of Editions S.A.E.P Ingersheim, Colmar, is styled cake (gateau) and clearly meant to be served cold, as dessert. But it bears some resemblance to the kind of carrot pudding of which tzimmes王爷不要了尿在里面 is an example. It has no flour, just a little starch to bind, and almond, which appears in some American carrot cake as well. The kirsch addition would lend a spicy cherry note, and is an analogue to the spicy, often fruity note in American carrot cake.

The Lorraine version kind of stands mid-way between medieval and Middle Ages carrot pudding and the modern American cake.

王爷不要了尿在里面U.S. carrot cake may derive from the Alsace-Lorraine, Swiss, or German form. Lots of families have that background in the Midwest in particular. Later, maybe to reduce the carrot taste, flour was added to arrive at the form we know today. An English origin seems less likely to me even though many classic American foods have that history. One reason is that today’s carrot cake seems not to exist in Britain before the 1800s. I doubt the Mayflower brought it over. There are desserts associated with New England which must have a provincial English origin, apple pandowdy, say, but carrot cake is probably not one.

Note re images: Images shown were extracted from the book identified in the text. They are included herein for educational and historical purposes. All intellectual property in the sources belongs solely to the publisher stated in the text. All feedback welcomed.




Chop Suey all Over Again

The Wanton Winds of Cuisine

Chop Suey is one of those lodestones of American cuisine, in the sense that, like the hot dog, or hamburger, it has mysterious origins. Long considered a bastardization of “real” Chinese food the picture today is more nuanced.

First, the dish under the same or similar names exists in other places, mostly far-flung outposts of early China trade, reached by sea. Jack Kerouac wrote in On The Road, “The waves are Chinese … the earth is an Indian thing”).

So you find it in East End London, in Port Darwin, in Rio de Janeiro, and in what was called Malaya.

王爷不要了尿在里面Recent advances in food history have confirmed that it is an original Chinese dish, from a distant southern province whence many emigrants departed, hence the implantation in other places.

王爷不要了尿在里面See the details in the? well-referenced for chop suey. At least two books have been written on chop suey, both cited in the entry mentioned, hunting its origins and contributing to its status as an American dish of equal cultural importance to pizza, the burger, or the bagel.

We found?in the Amador Ledger in California, which states an (American) Consul to Amoy, in the Chinese province mentioned, gave his chop suey recipe to the paper.*

王爷不要了尿在里面Sadly few millennials know what chop suey is. Today, Chinese cooking is at a high pitch in North America with every conceivable regional type presented, not to mention fusion and other novel styles. Older dishes that sound half-American and evoke the small town to boot don’t appeal as much. It’s dad’s era, if not gran-dad’s.

Still, you find chop suey on menus around Toronto without, I’m glad to say, ironic overtones. Not yet anyway.

王爷不要了尿在里面Maybe now is the time to say I have never eaten chop suey. It’s not intentional, but for some reason we don’t think of ordering it when eating Chinese food.? think I had egg foo young, a dish with some parallels to chop suey, once. I plan to remedy the omission noted soon!

When researching the history of American musty ale I also came across an early (1903) description of chop suey in a Chicago newspaper, the Quincy Daily Tribune. It is a detailed and interesting account, the dish is like a “hot salad”, the journalist said. The same scribe stated? was enhanced with a rich sauce unknown to the place of origin, but whether that is true is hard to say. Clearly chop suey underwent modifications in the diaspora.

The English food scholar Elizabeth David wrote ca.1960 that “the girl in West End theatre programmes” stated ,”I want everything Chinese tonight”. This was the kind of atmosphere developing in our big cities from that period (although starting much earlier).

Chinese food for North Americans was not just a single dish but an experience, eaten along with numerous sister dishes and the tea for which China is also justly renowned. The decor and general atmosphere of these restaurants added allure, as the makes clear.

Chinese cuisine, of which chop suey was an early symbol, jostled for attention with locally established food and drinks. The Daily Herald?worried there would be no more post-show tètes-à-tètes王爷不要了尿在里面 with musty ale and red lobster, as it’s tea and chop suey now. Later the trendy chop suey, soon adopted by the canning industry, was replaced by other fashions.

Note re image: the first image above was extracted from the news article contained in the newspaper issue linked in the text, archived by the California digital archive service stated in the link. Image is used herein for educational and historical purposes. All intellectual property in the source belongs solely to its lawful owner, as applicable All feedback welcomed.


*Note added Feb. 26, 2018. However, the consul’s apparent role in popularizing chop suey was adverted to earlier in literature, I have just learned. See this update.


Early Craft IPA and Bert Grant

Alan at A Better Beer Blog has writtenon the late Bert Grant, a Scottish-born Canadian who worked at Carling in Ontario in the 1940s and 1950s. Grant later moved to Yakima Valley in Washington State, did hop research and helped pioneer the modern IPA style via his Bert Grant’s India Pale Ale first released in 1982. Grant was also noted for his Scottish Style Ale, a beer that excited comment at the time for its apparent non-Scottish character. It was darker and more malty than the India Pale Ale but fairly well-hopped.

Alan makes a good case for Canadian involvement in the worldwide fashion for IPA via Grant’s obsession with hops and his IPA.

王爷不要了尿在里面Well-hopped beers had appeared earlier in U.S. craft brewing including from Anchor Brewery in San Francisco. Sierra Nevada Pale Ale was released around the same time as Grant’s first beers, perhaps a little earlier (1980-81). There was also Henry Weinhard’s Private Reserve, a mid-1970s lager from Blitz-Weinhard, an old-established regional, which had a Cascade accent quite different from regular adjunct lager of the day.

But Grant was the first craft brewer to market a bottled beer, at any rate, under the India Pale Ale label. Ballantine India Pale Ale, which has 19th century, East Coast roots, was in the market until about 1996 (and was returned again some years ago). Ballantine India Pale Ale influenced the early American craft ale brewers. Why no one thought of using the India part of the name on their label until Grant is an interesting question.

王爷不要了尿在里面Perhaps they thought the word was too exotic and would not be understood by consumers. Perhaps some were worried about being sued by Ballantine for trade mark infringement. Today we know that India Pale Ale is an old type-description for beer but early craft brewers may not have realized that. Grant would have known it, as beers were still sold in the 1980s in Canada using the generic description India Pale Ale, e.g., by Labatt and Alexander Keith.

王爷不要了尿在里面Alan explains that Grant was influenced by a beer he liked at Carling’s Dominion Brewery in the mid-1940s, a White Label brewed by emigrant Scottish brewmasters. It was amber and used lots of English hops.

王爷不要了尿在里面I remember both of Grant’s beers well. His IPA was austere in flavour, very dry and very hoppy/herbal. While Liberty Ale from Anchor Brewery was in this vein, Liberty Ale was not styled IPA then. A version of Liberty Ale is now available under the IPA moniker, incidentally.

So while Liberty Ale’s importance in the history remains – indeed it had to have influenced Grant’s IPA – ?it had no influence on the use of IPA or India Pale Ale as a beer description.

Todd Alstr?m at beeradvocate.com has an excellent王爷不要了尿在里面 on Grant’s India Pale Ale, which is exactly as I recall the beer. At the time, I didn’t really like it but I see now how the high attenuation was authentic to the 1800s. Beers like that were the type actually sent to India, the “tonics” spoken of then, very hoppy and dry except using English hops not American-citric ones. Grant used the very bitter Galena hop and some Cascade.The beer was a floral/grapefruit bomb as most IPAs are to this day.

As for Grant’s Scottish Style Ale, I think it is quite clear that it was really an English pale ale. It was in the vein of Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, Boulder Pale Ale, and other early craft ales.?See e.g., the same Todd’s review from 1998.

It is not surprising that emigrant Scottish brewers would make this type of beer because breweries in Scotland were brewing IPA since the 1800s. At times this Scottish IPA has been confused with the older, Scottish strong ale which is the type people thought of when assessing Grant’s Scottish Style Ale, e.g., c. 8% abv McEwan Scotch Ale.?Ballantine Brewery’s brewmaster after 1933 was also a Scot who arrived on our shores (North America) to brew after long experience at home.

Any professional Scottish brewmaster of the mid-1900s would have been an expert at brewing pale ale.

王爷不要了尿在里面I think Grant would have been better off calling it a pale ale, it would have been a good stablemate to the “export” or India version he rightly called India Pale Ale.

Underlying all this of course is that pale ale and India Pale Ale are really the same thing. They can be differentiated, if at all, only by their extremes. This is why Grant’s Scottish Ale was not dissimilar to Ballantine India Pale Ale, there is no “contradiction” in saying that. But in general it’s fair to say, pale ale was probably less hoppy, and richer in taste, than IPA. Beer that didn’t need to go to India didn’t need a ton of hops and could afford an ample body. The beer would be drunk before bacterial or wild yeast infection got to it.

王爷不要了尿在里面In this loose way, one can say that Grant’s Scottish Style Ale, really a pale ale with apparent influence from a 1940s pale ale brewed in Toronto, was in the same class as Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, Pete’s Wicked Ale, and similar early craft U.S. ales. Whereas Grant’s resolutely pale (blondish) India Pale Ale:

  • was at the “export” end of the spectrum, as Liberty Ale earlier
  • resulted from Grant’s obsession with hops and probably history he absorbed working in breweries in Canada
  • was innovative in establishing the India Pale Ale/IPA terminology

Note re image: the image above was obtained from label collection website. Image is used herein for educational and historical purposes. All intellectual property in the image belongs solely to its lawful owner, as applicable. All feedback welcomed.






Ace Bar Server Margaret Winfield of The Eagle, London

What was , the U.S. war correspondent who wrote about how to get a drink in wartime London, doing some 25 years after the war? He was only 57, and still writing his column.

He was still interested in what goes on in bars including English ones. So interested he wrotein 1968 on a London server, Mrs. Margaret Winfield, who won an award for the Ideal Barmaid in England.

She was on a promotional visit to the U.S., I’d guess for Whitbread who probably organized the competition.

While a touch condescending, the article sheds light on contemporary bar customs in both countries. England’s best servers never wasted a drop pulling a pint, while American bartenders lost too much beer when pouring.

王爷不要了尿在里面How the English avoided drippings isn’t explained. Maybe the system they once had of recycling the leavings into the cask explains it. The Americans are pictured as more laissez-faire, hence more generous. The same implication arises when Boyle mentions the low wages a server received in England then.

Particularly interesting to us is the recitation of 19th century English names for drink concoctions, especially the dog’s nose (gin and beer), but also the granny (old and mild beer) or mother-in-law. In 1968 in greater London, at the height of flower power and Carnaby Street, there were still calls for these tastes of Sherlock Holmes’ era.?The term wallop is mentioned as well, for mild, a term we believe originated in the 1800s when mild was c. 7% abv.

Americans were gulping the bullshot, a mix of vodka and beef bouillon. Until recently at any rate this drink was almost forgotten, as lost in time as the dog’s nose, frankly. But Colleen Graham argues at ?it is coming back. What’s old is new again, maybe.

Gin is popular now in hipster circles, so perhaps we are a hop and skip from the return of the dog’s nose, too.

Boyle stated where Margaret Winfield worked, the Eagle pub “not far from London”, but not the precise location. Still, we can deduce it: Tamworth Road, Croydon. Croydon is in what Michael Jackson called transpontine London, the south part. It was and is a busy place, a business hive of Greater London.

We know it was Croydon because she is pictured there in a on youtube. She looks very cheerful and expert, it’s not hard to see why she did well in the business. Here, she draws a Whitbread Tankard bitter (pressure dispense) and does it like a pro indeed, hi watt smile in full evidence.

王爷不要了尿在里面The announcer mentioned her age, 27, so at 75 she may still be living, presumably in well-earned retirement. If she is still with us, one wonders what she thinks of pubs today and today’s fashions in beers and drinks. Her recollections of pubs and the “chaffing” culture in vogue then would be interesting to hear.

王爷不要了尿在里面Chaff is a term new to us, evidently different from chav and chuffed – it means to tease or speak with someone in a joshing or jocular way.

王爷不要了尿在里面They still chaff in England, yah?

As to the Eagle itself, the building still stands but the invaluable Beer in the Evening site 王爷不要了尿在里面it closed in 2010 and is used now as community centre. Judging by readers’ comments between 2004 and closing date, the pub was on the slide in the last years: the sad but frequent denouement of a once-vibrant bar or restaurant.

The bottles behind the bar in the newsreel are Whitbread Pale Ale and Whitbread is the advertised name in the first image above of the Eagle in its prime. Hence the thought it was Whitbread who organized the competition Margaret won. See?王爷不要了尿在里面 in 1968 standing behind the Whitbread handpumps.

Note re images: the first image above was?sourced from this trolley bus history site,. The second image was sourced from the Beer in Evening site linked in the text.?Images appear herein for educational and historical purposes. All intellectual property in the sources resides solely in their lawful owner, as applicable. All feedback welcomed.


Anchor California Lager

After The Gold Rush

I’m always on the lookout for a really good blonde lager. I have had very few, most IMO do not reach the heights the style is capable of. In Europe, there is Pilsner Urquell, still probably the best. I like the Bernard beers as well from Czech Republic.

I now include in their class , a beer from Westerham Brewery in Kent, England I discovered in France.

王爷不要了尿在里面Few lagers I’ve had anywhere can approach those mentioned, but of course I’ve had only a comparative few, so must hold judgment until I taste the rest. ??

王爷不要了尿在里面In Ontario, my favourites are Side Launch Mountain Lager and Ace Hill Pilsener. As for any crafted beer, some variation is noted glass to glass, but in general those are the best in Ontario currently, IMO.

Outside Ontario in North America, the acme is probably Anchor Brewery’s lager pictured. It commemorates California’s first lager brewery, a tiny, short-lived operation called Boca in the north of the state. The beer uses 100% 2-row California barley and all-Cluster hops, the classic West Coast variety before the modern C-hop, etc. era.

The beer just arrived in Ontario and judging by the best-by date – March, 2019 – is very fresh, probably three months old. It has a creamy/milky taste hard to describe, but I recall it in Tuborg and Michelob from the 1970s. It is kind of a cross of those, which is high praise.

It bears some similarities to Side Launch lager as well, or rather I consider all these as exemplary of a certain, non-Pilsen, non-Bavarian type beer. (Ace Hill’s is more in the Bavarian vein IMO).

The California Lager may well deliver a taste similar to the best lager on the West Coast at the end of the 1800s, a period when steam beer was starting to decline and lager taking its place.

I tasted it half-warm and I’ll be darned if I don’t taste a tinge of the pasteurization. It’s a slight roast caramel or perhaps day-old bread taste. It probably isn’t noticeable at full chilling, and doesn’t bother me, but is a reminder that we perhaps pay a price for a delicate lager of high quality to be shipped and enjoyed so far. Ideally, it would be unpasteurized but when expected to last two years, evidently the treatment is necessary to ensure palatability.

The Anchor has no green flavours, no DMS in particular, a taste I don’t like. Anchor Steam Beer seems clearly to have a touch of it, not surprising given it is a type of lager not aged very long and krausened with yet newer beer.

But the brother lager skips the taste somehow, to its credit.

We get very few Anchor line extensions here. After years of Steam Beer and Liberty Ale, it’s good to see something different from Anchor, which brews an impressive line today. Bring more.