British Beer | Marty Nachel | Skillshare

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

6 Lessons (18m)
    • 1. British Beer Introduction

    • 2. British Beer Culture

    • 3. Real Ale

    • 4. British Beer Ingredients

    • 5. Burton Ales

    • 6. British Beer Styles

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About This Class

You've probably heard that British beer is served dark, flat and warm?  This class takes a look at the world of British beer, taking time to dispel a couple of misconceptions along the way.

This course is taught by professional beer judge, beer educator and the author of "Beer for Dummies" and "Homebrewing for Dummies", Marty Nachel

Meet Your Teacher

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Marty Nachel

Beer Me


* Author, "Beer for Dummies", "Homebrewing for Dummies"

* Beer Education Director for Tapville Social 

* Advisory Board member and adjunct instructor, College of DuPage (IL) "Business of Craft Beer" certificate program

* Professional International Beer Judge- Great American Beer Festival, World Beer Cup, Festival of Barrel Aged Beers, Copa Cerveza de Americas 

* Draught Master and former trainer for the Heineken brand



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1. British Beer Introduction: Welcome to this class. I'm British Beer of your instructor. My name is Marty Natural. I'm a B J c P Certified beer Judge. A professional beer judge. A beer educator of 20 years. I'm the author of Beer for Dummies and Home Growing Her Numbers. 2. British Beer Culture: in this segment, I'm gonna talk a little bit about British beer culture, and I would like to start with dealing with some misperceptions about British beer. A lot of people think that British beer is dark. That's mostly wrong. Certainly they have their beer styles that are dark stouts, porters, bro nails. Of course, those are all on the darker side, but many, many other beers, book lagers and ales, our golden Teoh amber in color. So to think or say that they're all dark is flatly incorrect. The next first misperception is that British beer is flat, and that really depends on the beer and the cervix style. Certainly there are some beers that, if ordered on draft, might have a lower carbonation content than other beers. You're going to run across that on occasion, but again, it depends on the beer, beer style and the serving style. So you aware of that? And horse? Ah, a lot of people think that British beer is served warm and, yes, relative to American beer. It is under warmer side, but consider that American beer, when served on draft, is used. The appellate numbing 36 to 38 degrees so that's extremely cold in comparison, British ales, which tend to be served in the mid forties and upwards of that. Yes, it does tend to to seem very warm, especially to American palates. When you consider, however, that many, many years ago, prior to the advent of compressed gas refrigeration, hub owners would have to keep their casks and kegs in their cellars, which were maintained at a pretty consistent 55 F. And today, that's considered proper British cellar temperature, and certain dark beers like stouts might still be served at 55 F. But your typical serving temperature for Ailes now, as I said, is about 46 maybe a little bit warmer than that. So if you travel to Britain, you have to keep these things in mind. If you ask for a beer, it's automatically assumed that you mean ales, so beer equals ale. If you want a lager, you have to be very specific and ask or a locker. Now, with regards to British lagers, they're very international in derivation. Britain doesn't have a every now lager history. They don't really have a culture of brewing lagers, so the ones they produced today, we're not as happy as a Czech or German Pilsner Burnett as clean as a Dutch or Danish lager . We're not as light as North American pale lagers. They're basically very generic, and they don't offer anything of real notes. Now the British, they do have what would be considered national brands. These air particular breweries that are large enough to actually produce enough beer and market it throughout. The That's about Britain and the national brands you're likely to encounter are from Allied Breweries Bass Courage, Green on whittling Guinness, Scottish and Newcastle, Watney, Mann and Truman and Whitbread Brewery's. But British beer is still very, very regional. As you travel throughout the country or countries. What you find is that there are a lot of local breweries, and these local breweries are supported very well within their counties or within their regions. In UK, here are just some examples of some very good one 3. Real Ale: so no discussion of British beer would be complete without discussing rial Ale. Rial ale is We know it today is really about British culture, and this states back to about the 19 seventies or British gentlemen wanted to preserve their British beer culture. So they formed what is today recognized this camera or the Campaign for Real Ale. And they have set guidelines for what Rial Ailes is. According to camera, Real Ale is living beer, really a Lissa beer brewed from traditional ingredients, which would include malted barley hops you some water. It's matured by secondary fermentation in the container from which it is dispensed and served without the use of extraneous carbon dioxide. Now what does that mean exactly? Well, the average keg beer today is pushed out of the container using pressurized guess. Typically, carbon dioxide Co two and on occasion, nature. Jenna's well, according to K camera Real Ale is not pushed out of its cask by extremist gas. It is either, uh, scored by gravity orders pulled out of a cask, and we will talk about those concepts in the upcoming slides. Keeping in mind that real ale is also referred to his cask ale. These vessels that you see in these pictures, these are casks. Uh, these appear to be, uh at least the one on the left appears to be a pin, which is approximately five gallons or so and the vessels on the right, maybe for kins, which, uh, run a little bit more than 10 gallons. The cast on the left has not yet been. There's no spigot in it yet, whereas they are. You can see that the spigots have already been put into the casks on the right. These are all sitting in what's called a still image. This is where the casks rest prior to being served and the, um, you notice that they're all facing downward towards the front where the spigot would be. This is what's called a gravity porn, and his next picture you'll see again. Here is a cask. You see, it's in its tillage and spacing downwards towards the spigot. So when a bartender or a person wants to pour a beer, they simply open up The spigot in the bureau will pour out thanks to Mother Nature or ravaging. On the other hand, if a cask is sitting in a cellar, or under the bar somewhere. The beer needs to be pulled out of that cast, and they do that by using what's called a beer engine often referred to as a handful. The bartender or the person serving beer literally has to pull the beer out of the cask. They do that by holding onto the handle of the beer engine and giving it a couple of good pulls. And this this requires a little bit of muscles to do that. This is where you see that there is no gas pushing the beer out of the cast. There it is, being home up through the system, into the glass. Now you see the word on screen. There's the r a u G h today t today what we call draft beer the R a f t. That the original spelling was, er au GHT. And if you look that up in the dictionary where draft means toe pull so literally, you are pulling the beer out of the container 4. British Beer Ingredients: in this segment. We're gonna talk about British beer ingredients now. I don't normally talk a lot about beer ingredients, but I think that the ingredients that I used to group British beers are unique enough that they merit some discussion when it comes to British mullets. These are very popular throughout the world. There are a lot of different monsters throughout the United Kingdom, and you can see that there are some examples shown here. Mountains, Baird, Simpson, Crispin Faucet, among others. What makes British malts not so much unique but easy to work with from a professional and a homebrewers level? Most of the months produced, grown and malted in England tend to be of the two row variety, which most people think of as being L'm ALS and British months tend to be very highly modified, which, simply put means they're very easy to work with regarding British hops. Considering that hops were used on the European mainland as early as the ninth century and they were being cultivated as early as the 12th century, it's interesting to note that hops in Britain we're not really used in making a British beer until about the 14th century And it's especially interesting to note that England is only separated by the main from the mainland by about 31 miles of the English Channel. So a couple of 100 years past of before British Brewer started using hops, a very steadfastly refused to use hops. They consider them vile, but eventually they caved in and they started using them. Now the varieties that are used are grown in Aalen. The two most well known and popular are the Fungal and the East Kent Goldings, and you can see on the map in the upper right, where in the UK those are located. The description of these two are these varieties of hops. They tend to be very earthy and herbal. 01 other point I'd like to make is that when British brewers first started using hops, they continue brewing there. Ailes, as they always did for hundreds of years. But then they started brewing the hops beer, and they wanted to use a term to separate the new hot beer from the old fashioned ale and what they dubbed that beer style, as they called it. Bitter simply enough because now, with the addition of hops, this beer was going to be more bitter than the regular ale. And it's interesting that all these hundreds of years later that term is still in use. And the beer style known as bitter ironically, is nowhere near as bitter in terms of bitterness, units or else acid content as many other beer styles big produced, especially by American craft brews. Now British yeast across the board tends to be top fermenting, which means they're ale use. What distinguishes these is that they're very highly attenuated, and what that means is that thes yeasts eat more of the available multi sugars in the work where your average beer ease tend to eat. About 70 to 75% of the available sugar is the multi sugars. Uh, these British trains might tend to heat a little bit more than the 75% of the available sugars. And what that means is that's going to leave the remaining words less sweet or more dry. These years were also more flak Hewlett, and that simply means that they have a tendency to clump together and fall out of solution very quickly and easily. The description light a tribute to British yeasts and the beers they produced is that they tend to be very fruity. They can occasionally be floral and that their high die astle producing yeast and anybody who is familiar with the buttery or butterscotch e character in certain beer styles. That is traced back to the diacetyl production in these yeasts. And we know that water used throughout the UK tends to be what we call hard water means it has very high mineral content and resulting beers made with this water. They're gonna be very, in some cases, chalky or mentally, and I'll talk a little bit more about this in the segment called Burden ales. 5. Burton Ales: because of the popularity of pale ales and all of their derivations throughout the world. I thought it would be interesting to talk just a little bit about there, uh, the origins of pale ale. What you see here is a town called Burton on Trent, and you can see it's located in the British Midland's north of London. Burden on Front and many other small towns in the region they had many did many breweries. They were producing a lot of beer at that time, and the water source in the region is considered very hard. Water has a high minerality due to the gypsum deposits in that region. Now brewers throughout the world today who want to produce pale ales and emulate those beers from that region, they will use what's called Burton salt, which is simply calcium sulfate. They add that to the brewing water to create or recreate that hard water high minerality of the region around Burton on Trent Now, the burden Ailes, as they were known at that time, were basically bidders, orbiter ales and they were all undrafted when they began bottling these bidders for export to London and elsewhere, they started using the term pale ale to describe them. And the use of the term Pale was intended to distinguish these beers from the porters and brown of back beers that were being in produced in London at that time. Now, Bass Ale was one of the most important and popular beers from the region. It was. It is recognized as the world's very first pale ale and anybody who is familiar with basses Red Triangle logo that is considered the world's first international trademark. Now keep in mind that all pale ales being brewed 100 and 50 years ago were fermented in Union. So let's take a closer look at that. The city of Burton on Trent had a vigorous brewing industry in the 17 and 18 hundreds, but more significant for that town was its invention or what's called the Burton union. This fermentation system was a row of wooden casks connected to a trough by a Siris of pipes that would recirculate the beer throughout them. The purpose of this was to allow the excess use bone to be expelled from the casks, one of a kind you strange to then form, and ultimately to produce a bright and crisp ale, a unique flavor for it's time. We now recognize that as pale ale. And here you get a little look at what the Burton Union system is all about. You can see all of the casks lined up side by side. These are actually wooden barrels, and the fermentation is taking place within those barrels on the top. There, you can see the truck that was discussed. 6. British Beer Styles: in this last segment will be looking at British beer styles. As always, I'll be using the Beer Judge certification program and their beer style guidelines. And according to the B J C P British beer styles, appeared at least seven different beer style categories with multiple sub categorization. In the 1st 1 British bidder, we find ordinary, bitter, best bitter and strong bitter, also occasionally known as E. S B or extra special Bitter. In the British pale ale category, we find Golden Ale in India Pale Ale, also known as I P A. In the British brown beer category, we find dark, mild brown ale and porter, which is occasionally known as brown porter or British Court. In the British Doubts category, we find sweet stout, which is also known as cream stout or milk stout, due to the use of lactose in the beer. It is also open your South tropical stout and or an extra stout. In the British and Scottish strong L category, we find strong ale, which includes Imperial Stop that was not found in the stock category. Old Ale Scotch Ale, which is known cologne, really, as we heavy and barleywine in the Scottish ale category. We find light, heavy and export versions. Finally, in the Irish l category, we find red ale, my wrist out and extra stout. Cheers, mate.