Burton Ale

Burton Ale from 2015

Burton Ale from 2015

I wanted to create a high gravity beer that was special to me. I’d read about a mostly forgotten beer style in a book by Martyn Cornell called a Burton Ale, which seemed like the perfect thing to try. What I came up with is undoubtedly not a traditional Burton Ale, but my take on the style. I targeted the loosely defined style specs and to get to the gravity I wanted I decided to try a concentration boil. This recipe uses a 4 hour boil, intended to concentrate a standard strength wort into a high gravity wort and produce many complex flavours through Maillard reactions. Gravity and volume are tracked over time and hops are added when I determine 60 mins is left in the boil. I mash low to ensure fermentability of the high gravity wort.

You can read my tasting notes for the Burton Ale here.

For a more detailed post about my first time making this, read here.

I submitted the first version of this beer to the 2016 National Homebrew Competition and it won 2nd place and advanced to the final round.

The original 2015 recipe was just Marris Otter and brown malt, but the 2016 and 2017 recipes reduced the brown malt a little and included additions of Golden Naked Oats and Lyle’s Golden Syrup to boost the ABV a little more. Here’s a multi-pack of Lyle’s Golden Syrup if you want to buy it cheaper in bulk like I do. It’s usually about $30 for 6.

Recipe Details

Batch Size Boil Time IBU SRM Est. OG Est. FG ABV
5 gal 240 min 101.8 IBUs 12.6 SRM 1.100 1.024 10.2 %


Name Amount %
Pale Malt, Maris Otter 16 lbs 84.25
Brown Malt 1 lbs 5.27
Oats, Golden Naked (Simpsons) 1 lbs 5.27
Lyle's Golden Syrup 15.87 oz 5.22


Name Amount Time Use Form Alpha %
Phoenix 78 g 60 min Boil Pellet 10.6


Name Lab Attenuation Temperature
Burton Ale (WLP023) White Labs 72% 68°F - 73°F


Step Temperature Time
Mash In 150°F 60 min

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