Recipe

British Dark Mild Ale

Dark Mild Ale

(5 gallons/19 L, all-grain)
OG = 1.036 (8.9 °P)  FG = 1.011 (2.8 °P)
IBU = 17  SRM = 22  ABV = 3.2%

Ingredients
6.25 lb. (2.83 kg) Crisp British pale ale malt or similar (3 °L)
5 oz. (142 g) crystal malt (60 °L)
5 oz. (142 g) crystal malt (120 °L)
4 oz. (113 g) black patent malt (525 °L)
4 oz. (113 g) pale chocolate malt (200 °L)
3.5 AAU East Kent Goldings hops (60 min.)(0.7 oz./20 g at 5% alpha acids)
White Labs WLP002 (English Ale), Wyeast 1968 (London ESB Ale) or Fermentis Safale S-04 yeast

Step by Step
Mill the grains and dough-in targeting a mash of around 1.5 quarts of water to 1 pound of grain (a liquor-to-grist ratio of about 3:1 by weight) and a temperature of 154 °F (68 °C). Hold the mash at 154 °F (68 °C) until enzymatic conversion is complete. Infuse the mash with near boiling water while stirring or with a recirculating mash system raise the temperature to mash out at 168 °F (76 °C). Sparge slowly with 170 °F (77 °C) water, collecting wort until the pre-boil kettle volume is around 5.9 gallons (22.3 L) and the gravity is 1.030 (7.6 °P).

Once the wort is boiling, add the bittering hops. The total wort boil time is 1 hour after adding the bittering hops. During that time add the Irish moss or other kettle finings with 15 minutes left in the boil. Chill the wort to 67 °F (19 °C) and aerate thoroughly. The proper pitch rate is 6 grams of properly rehydrated dry yeast or 1 package of liquid yeast.

Ferment around 67 °F (19 °C) until the yeast drops clear. With healthy yeast, fermentation should be complete in a week or less. Allow the lees to settle and the brew to mature without pressure for another two days after fermentation appears finished. Rack to a keg and force carbonate or rack to a bottling bucket, add priming sugar, and bottle. Target a carbonation level of 1 to 2 volumes depending on your packaging. Serve at 50 to 55 °F (10 to 13 °C).

Dark Mild

(5 gallons/19 L, extract with grains)
OG = 1.036 (9.1 °P) FG = 1.011 (2.9 °P)
IBU = 17 SRM = 22 ABV = 3.3%

Ingredients
4.25 lb. (1.92 kg) Maris Otter English pale liquid malt extract
5 oz. (142 g) crystal malt (60 °L)
5 oz. (142 g) crystal malt (120 °L)
4 oz. (113 g)  black patent (525 °L)
4 oz. (113 g) pale chocolate malt (200 °L)
3.5 AAU East Kent Goldings hops (60 min.) (0.7 oz./20 g at 5% alpha acids)
White Labs WLP002 (English Ale ), Wyeast 1968 (London ESB Ale) or Fermentis Safale S-04 yeast

Step by Step
Always choose the freshest extract that fits the beer style instead of focusing on the brand name. If you can’t get fresh liquid malt extract, it is better to use about 3.4 lb (1.5 kg) dried malt extract (DME) instead.

Mill or coarsely crack the specialty malt and place loosely in a grain bag. Avoid packing the grains too tightly in the bag, using more bags if needed. Steep the bag in about 1 gallon (~4 liters) of water at roughly 170 °F (77 °C) for about 30 minutes. Lift the grain bag out of the steeping liquid and rinse with warm water. Allow the bags to drip into the kettle for a few minutes while you add the malt extract. Do not squeeze the bags. Add enough water to the steeping liquor and malt extract to make a pre-boil volume of 5.9 gallons (22.3 L) and a gravity of 1.031 (7.7 °P). Stir thoroughly to help dissolve the extract and bring to a boil.

Once the wort is boiling, add the bittering hops. The total wort boil time is 1 hour after adding the bittering hops. During that time add the Irish moss or other kettle finings with 15 minutes left in the boil. Follow the fermentation and packaging instructions for the all-grain version.

Jamil Zainasheff provides readers with a recipe for a British Dark Mild. This British session ale is known for it’s low hop character when compared to bitters and pale ales with a lot more toasted malt presence in the dark milds. Often served via cask in it’s native land.