Patent No. WO2007113292A3: Mashing Process

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Today in 2007, US Patent WO 2007113292 A3 was issued, an invention of Niels Elvig, for his “Mashing Process.” Here’s the Abstract:

The present invention provides processes for production of wort and beer from a granular starch adjunct grist mashed-in at a temperature below the gelatinization temperature of said starch.

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Patent No. 268186A: Measuring Vessel

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Today in 1882, US Patent 268186 A was issued, an invention of George J. Gave, for his “Measuring Vessel.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes these claims:

This invention relates to that class of measuring-vessels designed to automatically indicate from the outside the quantity of beer or other fermenting liquor as it is poured into said measuring vessels, the object being to save labor and material in the construction and render the vessels less liable to get out of repair.

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Patent No. WO1999060090A1: Premix Composition For Clarifying Beer

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Today in 1999, US Patent WO 1999060090 A1 was issued, an invention of Mustafa Rehmanji, Andrew Mola, Robert Ianniello, Kolazi S. Narayanan, and Tom Cheng, assigned to Isp Investments Inc., for their “Premix Composition For Clarifying Beer.” Here’s the Abstract:

A premix composition for clarifying beverages like beer includes, by weight, (a) about 40 to 90 %, preferably 60-85 %, of silica xerogel having less than 10 % water therein, preferably 5 % or less, and a particle size, as defined by its mean volume average diameter MV, in both the dry state and as a 10 % aqueous slurry, of less than 50 ν, preferably about 5-30 ν, and (b) about 10 to 60 %, preferably 15-40 %, of crosslinked polyvinylpyrrolidone having a particle size as defined, in the dry state, of about 10 to 50 ν, and about 30-60 ν in a 10 % aqueous slurry, and a process of obtaining, chill-haze stabilized beer with substantial reduction in high molecular weight proteins, as well as polyphenols, flavanoids and tannins, in an efficient and effective single-step process at a rapid filter-flow rate, with undetectable residual soluble polyvinylpyrrolidone thereafter, and no microbiological growth in the premix, effective haze stability after time, and advantageous redispersibility of the premix used in the process.

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Patent No. 775780A: Art Of Brewing

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Today in 1904, US Patent 775780 A was issued, an invention of Joseph Schneible, for his “Art Of Brewing.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes these claims:

This invention relates particularly to the preparation of beer-wort, and has for its object to make-it possible to produce with certainty a wort of definite character, with reference particularly to the relationship between sugar and non-sugar, maltodextrins and dextrin, etc.

According to the methods of brewing now practiced the production of a wort of a definite or the best character in so far as it is dependent upon the relative amounts present in it of the different starch derivatives is practically impossible. This is largely due to the fact that the malt mash is subjected for a time long enough to permit conversion of the starch to take place to varying temperatures without so controlling the temperatures as to obtain the different starch derivatives in the desired proportions. This variation of temperature necessarily results from delivering, as is the customary practice, the cooked unmalted cereal mash or other heating medium,”such as hot water, which in some systems of brewing is used to raise the temperature of the malt mash, at substantially the boiling temperature to the mash-tub, which already contains the peptonized malt mash, which is at a temperature much below the boiling-point. The stream of boiling-hot cooked mash raises the temperature of the adjacent portions of the malt mash to a heat approximating its own temperature,which unduly elevated temperature continues long enough for conversion of the starch obviously where the hot cereal to begin. mash or other heating medium is thus introduced into the malt mash it is not only impossible to regulate the temperature to which portions of the malt mash are thus raised, but it is also impossible to regulate the quantity of the malt mash which has its temperature thus unduly raised, and the degree and extent Serial No. 186,592. (No specimens) of conversion or saccharification is therefore impossible of regulation under such methods.

According to the present invention the temperature of the peptonized malt mash is raised to the proper converting degree by the heat of the cooked unmalted cereal mash or other heating medium; but the attainment of the desired temperature .,is effected in so short a space of time that no reaction at other temperatures will take place, the contact of the malt mash at the peptonizing temperature with the substantially boiling hot cooked mash or other heating medium being only momentary, or rather the thorough mixture of the two being so quickly effected that no undesired reaction takes place. The contact or mingling of the malt mash and cooked mash or other heating medium preferably takes place as the two mashes or the malt mash and heating medium are moving on together in a comparatively small stream, and no portion of the malt mash remains in contact for any appreciable length of time with the cooked mash or other heating medium while the latter is at boiling temperature. In other words, the malt mash is raised to the desired converting temperature without subjecting the malt mash to reaction at any temperature other than that which is predetermined.

It will be obvious that the invention can be practiced in different ways and with different forms of apparatus, the most convenient and practicable mode of practicing the invention being to thoroughly mingle the malt mash and the hot cooked mash or other heating medium while in movement from the respective tanks or sources of supply tothe common mash-tub or strainer-tub, so that the desired converting temperature is attained at once in the commingled mashes or commingled malt mash and heating medium. After being so mingled the combined liquor is allowed to stand for the usual period of time required for conversion.

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Patent Nos. 805305A & 805306A: Air Filter

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Today in 1905, both US Patent 805305 A and US Patent 805306 A were issued, and both are related inventions of Albert Lieber, under the same name: “Air Filter.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes these claims for the first one:

The object of this invention is to provide an improved construction of air-filter for filtering compressed air and removing from it impurities as well as chemically treating it during its passage through the filter.

The use to which I. have put this filter is for pitching the interior of beer-kegs and the like for blowing and spreading the warm pitch upon the internal surface of a keg by compressed air passing through this filter. In such case the bacteria and germs in the air will be embedded in the pitch and thus affect the beer, impairing its preserving qualities as well as its taste. It is therefore found very important by me that the compressed air used for the purpose mentioned be rendered chemically pure by passing the air through medicated cotton, thus arresting the particles of dust, microbes, germs, and the like. Beer-kegs treated in this way can be used immediately after being pitched and after prior use without the necessity of treating the kegs as heretofore.

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And here’s a description of the claims for the second patent:

The chief feature of this invention consists of means for compressing the cotton or filtering material to the degree best suited for the chemical through which the air passed through the device is being treated.

The purpose of the invention, therefore, is to more thoroughly arrest the bacteria and germs of the air in the filter before the same passes through the filter. I have used it for pitching the interior of beer-kegs, the air being passed through the filter and compressed for blowing and spreading warm pitch upon the internal surface of the keg. This device prevents the bacteria and germs from the air entering the pitch.

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Patent No. 3773222A: Beer Yeast Dosing Installation

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Today in 1973, US Patent 3773222 A was issued, an invention of Erich Fiebinger, assigned to Draft Systems, Inc., for his beer yeast “Dosing Installation.” Here’s the Abstract:

A dosing system for continuously dosing and dispensing the respective quantities of auxiliary filtering substances to be added in connection with a settling filtration to a cloudy liquid, especially beer, for the cooling and yeast sediments, according to which for dispensing an auxiliary filtering substance for the cooling sediments as well as an auxiliary filtering for the yeast sediment there is provided one dosing device each equipped with a flow meter while both devices which are directly connected to the cloudy liquid conveying conduit are preceded by a flow meter and a device for measuring the total cloudiness of the liquid and by a measuring device provided with a heating zone for measuring the yeast sediment in the cloudy liquid conveying conduit. The dosing installation includes a control device for controlling the dosing devices in conformity with the cloudiness measured by the respective devices.

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Historic Beer Birthday: Eugene Hack

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Today is the birthday of Eugene Hack (November 18, 1840-June 12, 1916). He was born in Wurtenburg, Germany, but emigrated to Indiana and settled in Vincennes in 1868. In 1875, he and a partner, Anton Simon, bought a small brewery in Vincennes, Indiana from John Ebner, who had established in 1859. They continued to call it the Eagle Brewery, although it was also referred to as the Hack & Simon Eagle Brewery, though in 1918, its official name became the Hack & Simon Brewery, until closed by prohibition. The brewery briefly reopened after prohibition as the Old Vincennes Brewery Inc., but they appear to have never actually brewed any beer, before closing for good in 1934.

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Here’s Hack’s obituary, from the Brewers Journal, Volume 47, published in 1916:

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And this account is from “Vincennes in Picture and Story: History of the Old Town, Appearance of the New,” written by J.P. Hodge, and originally published in 1902.

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In 1859 the Eagle Brewery was established by John Ebner on Indianapolis Avenue in Vincennes, Indiana. It operated under his management until 1875 when it was sold to Eugene Hack and Anton Simon. They kept the name and added an eagle logo identifying their flagship brand. Hack and Simon successfully operated the brewery for decades. They were producing 18,000 barrels of beer a year and maintained five wagons and twelve head of horses for their local trade. In time they established five refrigerated beer depots in towns in Indiana and Illinois. The brewery was shut down by Indiana prohibitionary laws in 1918 and apparently not reopened in 1934 after Repeal.

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A brewery paperweight.

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Patent No. 440916A: Bottle Filling Machine

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Today in 1890, US Patent 440916 A was issued, an invention of William R. Dannals, for his “Bottle Filling Machine.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes these claims:

My invention relates to that class of bottle filling machines in which a series of bottles are filled at one time, my invention comprising certain details in construction of the machine, as fully described and claimed hereinafter, with a view of simplifying said construction and insuring a rapid and accurate filling of the bottles.

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Historic Beer Birthday: Charles Buxton

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Today is the birthday of Charles Buxton (November 18, 1823-August 10, 1871). He “was an English brewer, philanthropist, writer and member of Parliament. Buxton was born in Cobham, Surrey, the third son of Sir Thomas Buxton, 1st Baronet, a notable brewer, MP and social reformer, and followed in his father’s footsteps, becoming a partner in the brewery of Truman, Hanbury, Buxton, & Co in Brick Lane, Spitalfields, London, and then an MP. He served as Liberal MP for Newport, Isle of Wight (1857–1859), Maidstone (1859–1865) and East Surrey (1865–1871). His son Sydney Buxton was also an MP and governor of South Africa.”

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This is the image that comes up for Charles Buxton when you do a Google search, but I can’t confirm that it’s the same person.

Buxton’s father, Sir Thomas Fowell Buxton, 1st Baronet, usually known as just Fowell Buxton, was a partner in Truman’s Brewery, which had been around since 1666 as the Black Eagle Brewery.

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The brewery on Brick Lane in London.

The original brewery was probably established by the Bucknall family, who leased the site in the seventeenth century. The site’s first associations with brewing can be traced back to 1666 when a Joseph Truman is recorded as joining William Bucknall’s Brewhouse in Brick Lane. Part of the site was located on Black Eagle Street, hence the brewery’s name. Truman appears to have acquired the lease of the brewery in 1679, upon the death of William Bucknell. Through the Truman family’s efforts – not least those of Sir Benjamin Truman (who joined the firm in 1722) – the business expanded rapidly over the following 200 years. By 1748 the Black Eagle Brewery was the third largest brewery in London, and likely the world, with 40,000 barrels produced annually.

In the mid-18th century Huguenot immigrants introduced a new beverage flavoured with hops, which proved very popular. Initially, Truman’s imported hops from Belgium, but Kent farmers were soon encouraged to grow hops to help the brewery meet growing demand.

Sir Benjamin died in March 1780 and, without a son to take on the business, it passed to his grandsons. In 1789, the brewery was taken over by Sampson Hanbury (Hanbury had been a partner since 1780; the Truman family became ‘sleeping partners’). Hanbury’s nephew, Thomas Fowell Buxton, joined the company in 1808, improved the brewing process, converted the works to steam power and, with the rapid expansion and improvement of Britain’s road and rail transport networks, the Black Eagle label soon became famous across Britain (by 1835, when Buxton took over the business upon Hanbury’s death, the brewery was producing some 200,000 barrels (32,000 m3) of porter a year).

The Brick Lane brewery – now known as Truman, Hanbury, Buxton & Co – took on new partners in 1816, the Pryor brothers (the company’s owners were renowned for their good treatment of their workers – providing free schooling – and for their support of abolitionism). By 1853 the brewery was the largest in the world, producing 400,000 barrels of beer each year, with a site covering six acres.

However, the company also faced competition from breweries based outside London – notably in Burton upon Trent, where the water was particularly suitable for brewing – and in 1873 the company acquired a brewery (Phillips) in Burton and began to build a major new brewery, named the Black Eagle after the original London site.

In 1888, Truman, Hanbury, Buxton & Co became a public company with shareholders, but the balance of production was now shifting to Burton. The Brick Lane facility remained active through a take-over by the Grand Metropolitan Group in 1971 and a merger with Watney Mann in 1972, but it was in terminal decline. It eventually closed in 1989.

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Glenn Payne wrote the Truman, Hanbury, Buxton & Co. entry for the Oxford Companion to Beer:

Truman, Hanbury, Buxton & Co. was a venerable British brewery that operated for more than 3 centuries before it closed its doors in 1988. The original brewery was built on Lolsworth Field, Spitalhope, London, by Thomas Bucknall in 1669. He was soon joined by Joseph Truman, who became brewery manager in 1694. Joseph Truman brought Joseph Truman Jr into the company in 1716 and his executor, Sir Benjamin Truman, who took ownership of the business in 1722. Two years later a new brewery, The Black Eagle, was built on nearby Brick Lane, which grew to become Britain’s second largest brewery, employing some 1,000 people. Sir Benjamin died in 1780 without a direct male heir and left the brewery to his grandsons. In the same year, Sampson Hanbury became a partner and took over control in 1789. His nephew, Thomas Fowler Buxton, joined in 1808. He improved the brewing process by adopting innovations in brewing technology brought about by the Industrial Revolution. Outside his activities in the brewery, Buxton was a renowned philanthropist, and he was elected a member of Parliament in 1818. He was associated with William Wilberforce, a leader in the fight to end the British slave trade. By the time of his death in 1845, the brewery produced about 305,000 hl of porter annually. The brewery is even mentioned in Charles Dickens’ David Copperfield (1850). Seizing upon the growing influence of Burton as a brewing center in the 19th century, the company acquired the Phillips brewery there in 1887 and 2 years later became a public company. But its fortunes declined with the shift in popular taste away from porter toward pale ale near the end of the 19th century. In 1971, the brewery was acquired by the Grand Metropolitan Group, which, in turn, was merged into Watney Mann 1 year later. Thomas, Hanbury, and Buxton ceased production in 1988 but its brewery still stands on its site in Brick Lane, London, where it has been redeveloped into a complex of residential housing, offices, restaurants, galleries, and shops.

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They also later built a Black Eagle Brewery in Burton. As you’d expect, Martyn Cornell has an amazingly thorough account of Trumans, which he refers to as When Brick Lane was home to the biggest brewery in the world.

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Benefit For Pete’s Sake At Spartan Stadium In San Jose

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You may not have heard the name of Peter Cogan. He’s not a household name, not a rock star brewer and does not make a point of making sure people know who he is. He just does his job, and makes things happen. Born in England, Peter has been helping promote the beer scene in the South Bay as long as anybody can remember and has been working for Hermitage Brewing and the Tied House in Mountain View since 1990. He also helped launch the beerfest there, one of the biggest and most important early Bay Area beer festivals.

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Peter Cogan in 2009.

So what does that have to do with a beer festival on November 19 called “For Pete’s Sake?” Well, recently Peter was diagnosed with cancer, specifically lymphoma, and is undergoing chemotherapy treatment to beat back his cancer. For Pete’s Sake is a benefit to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS), and also for Peter. Take my word for it, Peter is a great person and if there’s any stranger you help this year, let it be him. But besides a great cause, it should be a great time, too.

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Your ticket includes admission to see the San Jose Spartans play Air Force in college football, plus a beer festival with unlimited samples from at least twenty local breweries. This all takes place on Saturday, November 19, 2016 at Spartan Stadium, located at 1257 South 7th Street, CEFCU Stadium, in San Jose. The brewfest starts and 2:30 PM and lasts for four hours, until 6:30 PM. Then at 7:30 PM, the game kicks off, and you’ll have a seat on the 50 to 30 yard line. Tickets are $40 in advance, and $50 on the day of the event. Tickets are available online. Use the promo code “FORPETESSAKE2016.” Visit the For Pete’s Sake Brewfest webpage for all of the details.

So even if you’ve never met Peter, if you’ve ever enjoyed a craft beer in the Bay Area, you probably owe him at least a small debt of gratitude. And what better way to thank him then to attend a beer festival and drink some more beer and have a great time. Is that too much to ask? Let’s all help Peter beat cancer.

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Peter, with Steve Donohue, now with Santa Clara Valley Brewing, at the 21st Celebrator Anniversary Party.