Category: Brewing

Brewing – Hydromel (1664)

This sort of activity usually follows after drinking mead. Hydromel literally means “water-honey” in Greek. This was our third entry for the brewing competition at the Conferention and results in a drink not unlike a light honeyed ginger beer. Glenda did it on her own and used a 50% proportion to fit the pot but … Continue reading Brewing – Hydromel (1664)


Brewing – Cock Ale (1644) part 2

Continued from the background post earlier… This post is the process we followed making the Cock Ale. Here’s Digby’s recipe again so you don’t have to keep looking back. TO MAKE COCK-ALE Take eight Gallons of Ale; take a Cock and boil him well; then take four pounds of Raisins of the Sun well stoned, … Continue reading Brewing – Cock Ale (1644) part 2

Brewing – Cock Ale (1644, 1677, 1727, 1742, 1886, 1903) part 1

Another repost from the PanGalactic Routier. This is the story of how Glenda and I made the most legendary of all historical drinks, cock ale. The tale begins in 2007 at the “brewing” workshop at the Conferention at Dunghaven which, for those who didn’t attend, mainly consisted of people sitting around talking about how much … Continue reading Brewing – Cock Ale (1644, 1677, 1727, 1742, 1886, 1903) part 1

Brewing – scaling historical recipes

Unless you have an 80 gallon boiler at home, you'll have to scale the recipes to fit the equipment you have. An awareness of the units the author is using is useful to keep the recipe reasonably accurate. Harrison (1577) uses the bushel as his primary measure of dry volume for malt and grain. The … Continue reading Brewing – scaling historical recipes

Brewing – Mr Webb’s Ale and a Mead Ale (both 1644)

ALE WITH HONEY Sir Thomas Gower makes his pleasant and wholesom drink of Ale and Honey thus. Take fourty Gallons of small Ale, and five Gallons of Honey. When the Ale is ready to Tun, and is still warm, take out ten Gallons of it; which, whiles it is hot, mingle with it the five … Continue reading Brewing – Mr Webb’s Ale and a Mead Ale (both 1644)

Medieval Brewing Myths

Beer and ale were made differently to how they are now and didn't keep more than a few weeks Despite what is written on the Internet, early modern people used top fermentation in sealed fermenters with rudimentary air-locks and followed with secondary bottle fermentation (sealed with corks!) using wheat grains, raisins, honey or even cane … Continue reading Medieval Brewing Myths

Brewing – Small Ale – After Markham (1615)

Now for your second or small drink which are left upon the grains, you shall suffer it there to stay for an hour or a little better and drain it off also; which done, put it into the lead with the former and boil the other also, then clear it from the hops and cover … Continue reading Brewing – Small Ale – After Markham (1615)