hist-brewing: Postings???

Cindy Renfrow renfrow at skylands.net
Wed Sep 17 21:05:51 PDT 1997


Hello!  I have tried unsuccessfully to contact you in the past regarding my
interpretation of this recipe.  First off, thank you for catching that typo
that called for only 160 gallons of water.  The list of ingredients should
indeed have read 240 gallons - mea culpa.

Also, please do not confuse my lists of ingredients at the beginning of
each recipe with an actual redaction of the recipe.  As I stated in the
introduction, I have not done the redactions, but am merely offering
clarification, and an easy-to-read list of ingredients.

We differ in our interpretations of this recipe in that you see "One premium
beer, one good quality brew, and "small-beer", in addition to the
brackwort/charwort, while I see only one beer plus the brackwort/charwort.
I have no doubt that 3 separate beers can be produced as you described -
several of the recipes in my book do the same thing; however, I disagree
that that is what Mr. Harrison was describing.  Please allow me to explain
my reasoning.

Harrison says:
"The first liquor which is full eightie gallons according to the proportion
of our furnace..."  (In other words, their furnace only held eighty
gallons.)

"she maketh boiling hot, and then powreth it softlie into the malt, where
it resteth... untill hir second liquor be almost ready to boile..." (She
emptied the furnace onto the malt in the mash tub & boiled another 80
gallons in the furnace.)

"This doone she letteth hir mash run till the malt be left without
liquor..." (She drained the liquid out of the mash tub to make room for the
2nd batch of boiled liquid.)

"..second liquor in the furnace is ready to seeth, which is put also to the
malt as the first woort also againe into the furnace..." (She puts the 2nd
batch into the mash tub & re-heats the first in order to add hops.)

"...second woort is let runne, and the first being taken out of the furnace
and placed to coole, she returneth the middle woort into the furnace, where
it is striken over, or from whence it is taken againe..." (The 2nd batch is
drained off the malt & reheated.)

"When she hath mashed also the last liquor (and set the second to coole by
the first) she letteth it runne and then seetheth it againe with a pound
and a half of new hops..." ( A 3rd batch of 80 gallons is similarly treated.)

"...and when it hath sodden in summer two hours, and in winter an houre and
a halfe, she striketh it also and RESERVETH IT UNTO MIXTURE WITH THE REST
when time doth serve therefore."  (IMO, this is the crucial sentence - Mrs.
Harrison's furnace, and presumably her mash tub and cooling tub - only held
roughly 80 gallons each, yet she brewed 240 gallons at a time.  She did it
in 3 batches and then MIXED THE BATCHES TOGETHER to create "three
hoggesheads of good beere.")

As someone who has fed a crowd using only a single-burner hotplate & 2
small pots, I can empathize with Mrs. Harrison. (An old joke about a farmer
with a 1-ton truck who was transporting 3-tons of chickens comes to mind...)

Anyway, this is too long already.  You folks at hist-brewing have a look &
let us know what you think.

Regards,

Cindy Renfrow
renfrow at skylands.net
http://www.alcasoft.com/renfrow/

_______________________________________________________________________
<snip>
>Here is the other text documentation for the Hopped/Unhopped base recipe:
>
>Being a redaction and recreation of a 1577 beer recipe
>
>Brewed and Presented by HLS Rauþúlfr Rúnameistari
>
>
>This beverage is the redaction of a recipe which appears in: A Sip Through
>time: A collection of Old Brewing Recipes, by Cindy Renfrow, 1994. It came
>about as I was looking over the redaction which Ms. Renfrow gave for the
>recipe and upon close comparison with the original found it wanting. The
>matter of her error lead me to ignore her proposed redaction in preparing
>the one which I give. The key was her failure to recognize the fact that
>the recipe was intended to yield three batches of eighty gallons each,
>while she numbered only two.[ A Sip Through time: A collection of Old
>Brewing Recipes, by Cindy Renfrow, 1994, p. 4.]
<snip>

The original:
	"Nevertheless," he says, "sith I have taken occasion to speake of
bruing, I will exemplifie in such a proportion as I am best skilled in,
bicause it is the usuall rate for mine owne familie, and once in a moneth
practised by my wife and hir maid servants, who proceed withall after this
maner, as she hath oft informed me.
	Having therefore groond eight bushels of good malt upon our querne,
where the toll is saved, she addeth unto it half a bushel of wheat meale,
and so much of otes small groond, and so tempereth or mixeth them with the
malt, that you cannot easily discerne the one from the other, otherwise
these later would clunter, fall into lumps, and thereby become
unprofitable.  The first liquor which is full eightie gallons according to
the proportion of our furnace, she maketh boiling hot, and then powreth it
softlie into the malt, where it resteth (but without stirring) untill hir
second liquor be almost ready to boile.  This doone she letteth hir mash
run till the malt be left without liquor, or at the leastwise the greater
part of the moisture, which she perceiveth by the staie and softe issue
thereof, and by this time hir second liquor in the furnace is ready to
seeth, which is put also to the malt as the first woort also againe into
the furnace, whereunto she addeth two pounds of the best English hops, and
so letteth them seeth together by the space of two hours in summer, or an
houre and a halfe in winter, whereby it getteth an excellent colour and
continuance without impeachment, or anie superfluous tartnesse.   But
before she putteth her first woort into the furnace, or mingleth it with
the hops, she taketh out a vessel full, of eight or nine gallons, which she
shutteth up close, and suffereth no aire to come into it till it become
yellow, and this she reserveth by it selfe unto further use, as shall
appeare hereafter, calling it Brackwoort or Charwoort, and as she saith it
addeth also to the colour of the drinke, whereby it yeeldeth not unto amber
or fine gold in hew unto the eie.    By this time also hir second woort is
let runne, and the first being taken out of the furnace and placed to
coole, she returneth the middle woort into the furnace, where it is striken
over, or from whence it is taken againe.
	"When she hath mashed also the last liquor (and set the second to
coole by the first) she letteth it runne and then seetheth it againe with a
pound and a half of new hops or peradventure two pounds as she seeth cause
by the goodness or baseness of the hops; and when it hath sodden in summer
two hours, and in winter an houre and a halfe, she striketh it also and
reserveth it unto mixture with the rest when time doth serve therefore.
Finallie when she setteth hir drinke together, she addeth to hir brackwoort
or charwoort halfe an ounce of arras and halfe a quarterne of an ounce of
baiberries finelie powdered, and then putteth the same into hir woort with
an handful of wheate floure, she proceedeth in such usuall order as common
bruing requireth.  Some in steed of arras and baies add so much long peper
onely, but in hir opinion and my lyking it is not so good as the first,
and hereof we make three hoggesheads of good beere, such (I meane) as is
meet for poore men as am I to live withall whose small maintenance (for
what great thing is fortie pounds a yeare computatis computandis, able to
performe?) may indure no deeper cut, the charges whereof groweth in this
manner.
	I value my malt at ten shillings, my wood at foure shillings which
I buie, my hops at twenty pence, the spice at two pence, servants wages two
shillings sixpence, both meat and drinke, and the wearing of my vessell at
twentie pence, so that for my twenty shillings I have ten score gallons of
beer or more, notwithstanding the loss in seething.  The continuance of the
drinke is always determined after the quantitie of the hops, so that being
well hopped it lasteth longer.  For it feedeth upon the hop and holdeth out
so long as the force of the same endureth which being extinguished the
drinke must be spent or else it dieth and becometh of no value.
(From The Description of England, by William Harrison, 1577.




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