Friday, October 14, 2011

Brew Day: English Dark Mild

Yorkshire. Leeds. Mild?

While I have not a drop of English ancestry in me or have ventured very far from the South of England, I have always thought fondly of that place called Yorkshire. Just as the areas around Munich, Plzen, Edinburgh, and Dublin conjures images of specific beer styles - the very place that those styles were perfected - so too does the North of England remind me of the wonderful little beer we know as Mild. It might just be that I've been reading too much historical 'fluff' about the North's brewing history or that I am completely mistaken, but I have always thought of Yorkshire as the rightful home of Mild in the UK. It is also nice, albeit fanciful, to think that the beer that slaked the thirst of the industrial revolution is still alive and well in towns like Leeds, York, Bolton, and Manchester. Regardless, I thought it would be appropriate to brew up a Mild for the fall weather and to give me something to drink while wearing my flat cap and tweed jacket (kidding). Thinking about it, I probably should have brewed one of Ron's historical mild recipes instead, though this one will have to do for the time being.

How to become a Yorkshireman
Ploughman Mild : English Dark Mild

Recipe Specifics:
Batch Size (Gal): 4.5
Total Grain (Lbs): 6.6
Anticipated OG: 1.038
Anticipated FG: 1.012                                               Anticipated SRM: 22                                                   Anticipated IBU: 20
Efficiency: 70%
Boil Time: 60 Minutes                                                                                                                Grain/Sugar:
75.8% - 5.0 lbs. Pale Malt, Maris Otter
9.8%  - 0.65 lbs. Crystal Malt 60L
5.3%  - 0.35 lbs. Crystal Malt 120L
4.5%  - 0.30 lbs. Chocolate Malt 330L
3.0%  - 0.20 lbs. Brown Malt (TF)
1.5%  - 0.10 lbs. Black Malt

1.0 oz. UK Fuggles @ 60 min for 20 IBU
Yeast: Wyeast 1968 London ESB
Brewed on 14 September

Water profile: Ca - 62, Mg - 9, Na - 25, Sulfate - 42, Cl - 64


  1. What mash temp do you like for Milds?

  2. Jeff,

    I typically mash my dark milds at 156-58F.

    Not that you asked, but another trick to brewing great milds is going the no-sparge route. It takes more grain than usual and requires a bigger setup, but the resulting beer is richer in flavor and has better mouthfeel, body, ect. I'd do it for all my English style beers if it wasn't so expensive...

  3. G-day mate from Tasmania,
    I used to drink John Smiths dark mild, years ago.
    Do you know if it is still sold or have you heard of anybody brewing similar dark milds
    Would your mild taste similar??

  4. Anonymous,

    I can't say I've ever had the John Smith's mild - drank plenty of their bitter in my University days - but generally my milds are a bit darker and more roast forward than many of the UK commercial ones.

    Are there are any good milds down in OZ?


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