hist-brewing: brewster wardrobe

Henry Davis henry at henry-davis.com
Wed Jun 5 22:07:11 PDT 2002

At 07:29 PM 6/5/02 -0700, you wrote:
>A brewster friend and I are planning to serve our friends with some of our 
>special herbal brews - and I am wondering if anyone out there knows about 
>traditional dress for brewsters.

Typical housewife clothes are just fine for England and France (and 
probably for the rest of Europe). I don't have a lot of information on 
by-industrial brewing or house brewing in the low countries, so most of the 
clothes that I'd suggest for that part would be men's clothes.

>  Really it could be from any European country - and preferably from the 
> time when gruit ale was popular.

For England you can assume anytime before the end of the sixteenth century 
as gruited ales retained popularity longer there than in the low countires. 
For the low countries, figure pre sixteenth century (it depends a lot on 
where exactly you want to be from. Some parts had abandoned gruit by the 
late fourteenth century, others in the mid fifteenth.

>The only tidbit I know about is that in Great Britian it was common for a 
>broom to be turned upside down outside of house when there was ale for sale.

You can also use a zoigle in Germany (also called a beirzeiger) and France 
(also called a touche a bierre) (think wooden Star of David) or a yeast 
stick in Scandinavia (a piece of fir with think shavings carved into it so 
that it looks like a pine cone with the shavings sticking out). These all 
were used to bring the yeast to the wort. A wreath on a stick was also used 
to indicate beer was to be/was brewed and served.


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