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English Bitter

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Beer Style Series

The Bitter style came from brewers who wanted to differentiate these ales from other mild brews, enter pale malts and more hops. Most are gold to copper in color and are light bodied. Low carbonation. Alcohol should be low and not perceived. Hop bitterness is moderate to assertive. Most have a fruitiness in the aroma and flavor, diacetyl can also be present. These are traditionally served cask conditioned, but many breweries have bottled versions.

There are three classic styles of English Bitters. They are the Ordinary (mild), the Special (moderate strength), and the Extra Special (a stong bitter). They are typically characterized with traditional hops such as Kent Goldings, Fuggles, or Brewers Gold. Just as they range from mild to strong, the color and alcohol percentage also follow.

Style statistics:

OG (Original Gravity): 1.039–1.042
FG (Finished Gravity): 1.006–1.012
IBU’s (International Bittering Units): 28–46
SRM (Standard Reference Method): 12-14
Alcohol (% by volume): 4.2–4.8



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