General Recipe

English IPA Winning Recipe 2017

Malcolm Cruickshanks’ Gold Medal Winning recipe   for English IPA

Boil Size: 27l
Post Boil Vol:24l
Batch Size (Fermenter):23l
Estimated OG: 1.060
Estimated Colour:7.7 SRM
Estimated IBU:57.8 IBU

Boil Time: 60 min

6kg pale
200g crystal (Medium)

Recirculating Mash 1hr at 65 c with 13.9 l
Sparge to 27 l
60 min Boil
70g challenger at start
35g EKG for 15
Tsp Irish moss for 15
35g EKG at flame out 15 min rest
Safale S-04 at 18c for 2 weeks.

Bottle conditioned at around 12/upwards of 18 for 3-4 weeks.

General Recipe

Ordinary Bitter Winning Recipe 2017

Andrew Hannons’ Gold Medal Bitter winning recipe “Unlike the Murphys”

Recipe Specifications

Boil Size: 32.50 l
Post Boil Volume: 29.00 l
Batch Size (fermenter): 27.28 l
Bottling Volume: 24.28 l

Estimated OG: 1.040 SG
Estimated Color: 9.4 SRM
Estimated IBU: 35.4 IBUs

Boil Time: 60 Minutes


32.00 g               PH 5.2 Stabilizer (Mash 60.0 mins)
4.00 kg               Pale Malt (2 Row)
0.65 kg               Munich Malt
0.25 kg               Barley, Flaked
0.18 kg               Crystal, Dark
0.09 kg               Crystal, Extra Dark
30.00 g               Magnum [10.00 %] – Boil 60.0 min
1.00 tsp              Yeast Nutrient (Boil 15.0 mins)
1.50 tsp              Irish Moss (Boil 10.0 mins)
23.00 g               East Kent Goldings (EKG) [5.00 %] – Boil Hop
40.00 g               East Kent Goldings (EKG) [5.00 %] – Boil Hop
1.0 pkg               SafAle English Ale


SCB Competition 2017

Results for the Scottish Craft Brewers Annual Homebrew Competition.

English Bitter

Winner: Andrew Hannon “Unlike the Murphy’s…”
2nd: James Collin “White Hill Bitter”
3rd: James Burnett

English IPA

Winner: Malcolm Cruickshank “EIPA”
2nd: Tom Gardner “Ship’s Monkey”
3rd: Gordon Nicol “Target the Fuggle”

American Pale Ale

Winner: James Collin “APA”
2nd: John Livingstone “American Pale”
3rd: Malcolm Cruickshank “APA”

American IPA

Winner: Russell Harrison “American IPA”
2nd: James Collin “American IPA”
3rd: Patrick Byrne “Frankenbeer”

Scottish Export

Winner: James Collin “80/-”
2nd: Gordon Nicol “Repatriation”
3rd: Malcolm Cruickshank “80/-”


Champion: James Collin “APA” APA

Runner Up: Andrew Hannon “Unlike the Murphy’s…” English Bitter

Third Place: Russell Harrison “American IPA”

Peoples Choice (2017 it’s English Porter)

Winner: Andrew Hannon “Even Sinisterer”

Congratulations to all!


A massive thanks goes to Sean and the staff at the Goth pub and Kentwood  brewing for his assistance and to James Dempsey at Eyeball brewing  for the prizes.


September Meeting

Our September meeting is rapidly approaching! We will meet at Elgin House, Easter Rd, Edinburgh EH7 5RG on Sunday 25th September 10:30 for an 11 a.m. start.

The agenda this month is:

– Gordon (Nicol) will talk about the ERASMUS exchange trip to Franconia.
– Bring your beers for a “Last Days of Summer” beauty contest – win some beer related goodies!
– Bring your problem beers and see if we can work out what’s gone wrong.
– Discuss what you’d like to do for our 20th Anniversary year in 2017.
– We will be handing out yeast trial grain kits for tasting at our November meeting.

Of course, Davie will be cooking for us! There will be a raffle – so bring something along.


SCB visit to Karlstadt


As promised a small blog post on our visit to the Staatiche Brauerschule Main-Spessart.
Our program would include two full days in the school (Tue and Wed) and one day visiting a small brewery and a brewery technology company called GEA(Thurs) with Monday and Friday travelling.




Day 1

Our Welcome
Our Welcome

We arrived in Frankfurt a little late after being delayed in Edinburgh, this was due to the typically Scottish weather they were having in Germany (you know…the horizontal rain type weather!).  After what seemed an age the luggage finally arrived and we went away to find the train.  Frankfurt airport is HUGE it took us about 15 mins to find an information point where we were told that the train we were booked on was running 30 mins late but if we caught a different train and changed at Wurzberg we would get in on time.  Don’t know how but we managed it.  We caught an ICE train from Frankfurt to Wurzburg (The ICE trains are the German equivalent of the Intercity type trains in the UK).  Service and comfort is in a different class on these trains compared to the UK.  Drinks served at your seat in proper glasses (even in cattle class!) and loads of room.  We duly arrived in Karlstadt where we were greeted by two of the students with fantastic English (given we knew very little German we were very thankful) Nico and Tobias.  Once our cases were deposited in Oberes Tor (our B & B) we went out for food and some other German delicacies.  We walked along the HauptstraBe and found a restaurant which was open, some Schiztnel and a couple of beers later we left and went to a bar where the students frequent on a regular basis called Karschter Eck or ‘The corner’.  This was to be our goto bar for the rest of the week!

Reinheitsgebot -(pronounced rhine heights gebot) The law...
Reinheitsgebot -(pronounced rhine heights gebot) The law…

Day 2

Beery paraphernalia
Beery paraphernalia

Up bright and early for the 2nd day in Karlstadt and faced with a typically European breakfast.  Meats, Eggs, Yoghurt and bread rolls etc.  Suitably filled we departed for the school with our guides/hosts/friends Nico and Tobias.  The Brauerschule day starts at 8.35am and finishes at 4.20am with one break in the morning and one in the afternoon and lunch is provided for the brewing students.  The brewing students are actually apprentices on a block release type scheme.  Staying in a couple of hotels in Karlstadt whilst they attend the Brauerschule.  On arrival we met Boris Durr a tutor who takes the students in the actual brewery,  Robert Pawelczak, a classroom lecturer and former professional brewer and Markus Metsger, a classroom lecturer, Master Brewer and Chairman of the Home Brewers association of Germany, an esteemed group of lecturers! After a quick chat we sat in on the students in the brewery where they were making a Marzen.  Pilsner malt and around 10% Caramunich!  In the classroom they have every kind of equipment you could need from heaters to germinate grain and malt it, grain sorting machines, grading machines and a large dry mill for crushing. The kit they use is fully computer controlled, heat is generated by steam.  Following our tour of the equipment in the class it was time for a quick meet and greet from our host Matthias Dietz, lecturer at the school and the Project Yeast co-ordinator.  After that it was lunchtime served in the small canteen in the school only for the brewers.

Collection of glasses
Collection of glasses

In the afternoon it was back in the classroom observing and we had a tour round the Karlstadt campus and a Project Yeast meeting.
In the evening we managed to sit outside for dinner and more German delicacies and then retired to  Karschter Eck for a few drinks and a couple of games of table football (Scotland proving again that beating the Germans at football is beyond us!!)

Whooped again!
Whooped again!


Day 3

Made our own way to the school this morning and straight into class, like the class yesterday they were making a Marzen. Unlike yesterday most of the initial work had taken place with the water heated and grain crushed, seemingly it had something to do with a presentation later that day by some visiting dignitaries!  Every step in the process is logged, how long it takes to heat the water, how long are the acid rests, the saccharification rests, how long does it take to get to the point where the rests can happen.  When we homebrew we measure by gravity whereas in the school they measure by sugar content, this is also recorded at very regular intervals and iodine tests are carried out on a regular basis, again everything is recorded in detail.  We had a Project Yeast meeting where we ticked all the boxes and dotted all the ‘i’s. Scottish Craft Brewers are now an ERASMUS centre!  For lunch we joined the School Principal Fr Beck and Hr Deitz and Hr Pawelczak at the Restaurant Zum Fehmelbauer.  In the afternoon Malcolm delivered the SCB presentation to the students.  Due to the class sizes he presented it twice and spent most of the afternoon answering questions about Edinburgh, the Scottish Brewing scene and the club.  The presentations were received very well and the students seemed genuinely interested in Scotland, I believe there will be a steady stream of students coming over in the next few months!
We were left to our own devices on the Wednesday so we decided it would be good idea if the students were to taste some Scottish beer.  So after dinner at the excellent Greek restaurant Ratskeller we went in search of Scottish beer! Despite venturing for miles, including outside of town we could not even locate an off licence!  Disappointed we returned empty handed to the Karschter Eck and to the Germany vs Poland game! We weren’t the only people disappointed that night!!

Malcy doing his thing
Malcy doing his thing
The Ratskeller


Day 4

We were picked up early to travel to the small village of Krautheim where we would be visiting the Privatbrauerei Friedrich Düll which produces the excellent Krautheimer range of beers.  The brewery is one the a few left which malts its own grain before milling and using it.  We were given a tour by the owner Friedrich Dull.  The brewery has been owned and operated by the Dull family for over 200 years and as with all German beers (those that can be brewed and called beer in Germany) it brews according to the Reinheitsgebot (German purity law).  The brewery itself is classed as a ‘small brewery’ by German standards and the beer itself can be brewed by as little as 3 people such is the automation in the actual plant. The brewery produces somewhere in the region of 120,000 hectolitres per year (look it up, this ain’t no small brewery!).   The brewery get its all its grain from within the region and only ever uses three varieties of hops  Hallertauer, Magnum and Perle. We’ve all had brewery tours so I won’t bore you with much detail but it is huge!  The beer filter must have been at least 7m long (over 20ft in old money) the bottling\kegging room was easily half the area of the Pear Tree beer garden! The mill they use is another huge piece of kit (they mill the grain when it’s wet) which directly feeds the mash tun.
Alcohol free beer is a big thing in Germany (it can contain 0.5% ABV to be called alcohol free in Germany) and in the brewery there is a machine which removes alcohol by creating a vacuum in a chamber where the beer is and it separates the alcohol.  They then put normal beer back into the alcohol free stuff to make it taste better.   You may think why not just put the original alcohol back in? They aren’t allowed to… once it comes out the beer it can’t go back in so it’s sold off to a lens cleaning manufacturer!
The brewery also distils its own whisky but its currently maturing in Red wine barrels and won’t be ready until 2023!

The lauter tun, mash tun, mill and boiler were all supplied as an experimental\test kit from GEA brewery systems.  The automation of the brewery was also supplied by GEA systems.  We visited GEA systems in the afternoon but were not allowed to take any photos due to secrecy. When we thought the scale of Krautheimer was large some of the kit they were making in GEA was jaw dropping.  When we entered there was half a bottom of a mash tun which would hold 1000hl (100,000l)! Yes a big brew!!  It was destined for South Korea.   They were working on a big order for an American brewery based in California so there were a few BIG pieces of kit being created.

On Thursday evening we were invited out by Hr Deitz and Hr Metsger for a traditional Frankonian dinner in the countryside.

Krautheimer Krautheimer German Countryside Krautheimer

Day 5

Return Home.
We made our way back to the school for a final time to thanks everyone for the hospitality and informative time we spent with them.  We also managed to a have a quick tour round the school bottling plant.

Some links

German Homebrewers

Boris’ Brewpub

Restaurant Zum Fehmelbauer



GEA Brewery Systems

some pics of Karlstadt

Panorama of Town Square, Karlstadt
Down by the river
River Main from the bridge
River Main from the bridge

Selfie in 'The corner'

Selfie in ‘The corner’

Events Recipe

American Pale Ale: winning recipe

Tom Gardner has already picked up the Southern’s best in show award with his American Pale Ale and now he has a gold medal from the annual Scottish Craft Brewers competition too.

Hoppity Hip

Beer Style: American Pale Ale
Recipe Type: all-grain BIAB
Yield: 23 litres
Original Gravity: 1.060


  • 5.0 kg English Pale
  • 0.35 kg Crystal 45
  • 0.45 kg British Caramalt (Brupaks)
  • 14.0 g Summit (US) 90 min Boil Pellet 26 IBU
  • 15.0 g Citra (US) 15 min Boil Pellet 9 IBU
  • 15.0 g Simcoe (US) 15 min Boil Pellet 10 IBU
  • 15.0 g Citra (US) 15 min Post-boil (80C) Pellet
  • 15.0 g Simcoe (US) 15 min Post-boil (80C) Pellet
  • 28.0 g Simcoe (US) 5 days Dry Hop Pellet
  • 28.0 g Citra (US) 5 days Dry Hop Pellet

Additional Instructions

Boil: 90 Minutes

Mash: 66c for 90 mins

Ferment: 4 weeks in primary at 18°C
Dry hop pellets suspended in muslin bag for last 5 days



Articles Events General Recipe

Ordinary Bitter: winning recipe

medal winners

Eli Appleby-Donald’s bitter recipe from the 2016 club competition.

Eli has been working on this recipe for the past 3 years using the feedback from the judges at the competition to perfect it. It must be working as this recipe took silver last year and gold this year.

Bespoke Bitter

Beer Style: Ordinary Bitter
Recipe Type: all-grain BIAB
Yield: 10 litres
Original Gravity: 1.034


  • 1.4 kg – United Kingdom – Golden Promise (84.8%)
  • 0.1 kg – United Kingdom – Cara Malt (6.1%)
  • 0.1 kg – United Kingdom – Dark Crystal 77L (6.1%)
  • 0.05 kg – United Kingdom – Munich (3%)
  • 7 g – Challenger 6.5% Boil 60 min
  • 5 g – East Kent Goldings 5% Boil 60 min
  • 8 g – Styrian Goldings 4.2%Boil 20 min
  • 15 g – East Kent Goldings 5% Whirlpool 20 min

Additional Instructions

Boil: 60 Minutes

Mash: 67c for 60 mins then 75c mash out  for 10mins.

Ferment: 2 weeks at 18c


Articles Events Recipe

Best in show recipe: American IPA

best in showSteven Beattie who won best in show for his American IPA has kindly agreed to share his recipe with us. So here you go folks, a chance to recreate that cracking recipe at home.

Crackhouse IPA

Beer Style: American IPA
Recipe Type: all-grain
Yield: 21 litres
Original Gravity: 1.060


  • 90% Pale Malt (Grain)
  • 7% Caragold (Grain)
  • 3% Wheat (Grain)
  • 20g Simcoe 11% Boil 15 min (Hops)
  • 25g Amarillo 9.6% Boil 15 min (Hops)
  • 25g Simcoe 11% Boil 10 min (Hops)
  • 30g Amarillo 9.6% Boil 10 min (Hops)
  • 55g Simcoe Flameout (Hops)
  • 45g Amarillo Flameout (Hops)
  • Dry hop 4g per litre

Additional Instructions

Boil: 60 Minutes

Mash: 66c for 60 mins.
Aimed for a mash ph of 5.2 and a sulphate/chloride ratio of about 2:1.

Ferment at 18c for 2 weeks before cold crashing and kegging.

Events General

Annual Competition 2016 results

80 Shilling

  1. Andy Newall
  2. Malcolm Cruickshank
  3. James Burnett

Ordinary Bitter

  1. Eli Appleby-Donald

English IPA

  1. Eli Appleby-Donald
  2. Malcolm Cruikshank
  3. Eli Appleby-Donald

American Pale

  1. Tom Gardner
  2. Eli Appleby-Donald
  3. Andrew Goulet

American IPA

  1. Steven Beattie
  2. Tom Gardner
  3. Jonathan Fleck

People’s Choice – American Wheat

Andy Newall

Overall Winner – Best in Show

Steven Beattie

Articles Events

Best in show prize


Big announcement: Best in show prize

You’ve heard a lot about the clubs big annual competition recently, but we’ve saved the best till last so buckle your seat belts and get ready for the blast!

As well as 1st, 2nd and 3rd awards for the categories of Ordinary bitter, English IPA, American Pale Ale, American IPA and 80 Shilling… there will be an award for the beer judged to be best in show. A chance to brew your beer with Digger (legendary Brewmaster at Ushers) and have it on sale at Andrew Ushers & Co.

The guys at Ushers have been so impressed with the quality of beer brewed by our club members over the last year that they are offering for our best of the best to get the chance to have their beer on tap in the pub for the punters to enjoy.

Now if that doesn’t get your blood going then you are not as mad obsessed passionate about beer as you should be.

Before you grab that mash paddle and get creating your most elaborate frankenbeers, remember that the beers in these categories have to match the category styles laid out by the BJCP style guide for 2015 (you can see these on the competition page of the website: ).

Also, please remember that Ushers brew on a much bigger scale than your average homebrewer, so costs weight up when you upscale that perfect IPA you’ve been planning with all the crazy ingredients you’ve found on ebay. The guys at Ushers have the right to refuse or ask for you to revise your winning recipe if it proves too expensive or difficult to brew on their set up. So if you’d like a shot at having your beer on tap, brew like a pro.

Go get brewing!


Want to drop off your beers before the competition day?

The guys at Ushers are happy for you to drop your competition beers off at the bar in the week leading up to the competition if you don’t think you’ll make it on the day or if you have too much to carry.

Please just ensure that your bottles are properly labelled with your competition labels and in a bag or a box so they can be stored easily.

However please remember, if you drop your beers off early, they will be in a working pub. Ushers can’t take responsibility for any accidents that may damage bottles. If you drop them off early, you do so at your own risk.

Ok so now the doom and gloom bit is over…. Brew my pretties, brew!