The Session III - The Heretic
Ancient in-joke there.Â #2 of a series is always Electric Boogaloo, #3, The Heretic.
At any rate … I find myself once again entirely free of the chosen style.Â Sure, there’s a homebrewed ordinary bitter downstairs, but that ain’t mild.Â Checking in over at this month’s host, I noted a comment by Alan that spurred me to thinkin’.
The lesson is this - you are never going to see a flavoured mild or an extreme mild. Mild is only itself. No muss, no fuss. No fanfare, no breakthrough in technology. Just a newly matured light, clean, flavourful and, yes, watery beer. It’s a confident statement of the light hand that it takes to make it.
There actually exists an “extreme”(ish) mild — 3 Floyds Pride and Joy Mild.Â At 5% abv and hopped to the gills with Cascades, it’s about as extreme as session beer gets.Â Except maybe for the rare and lusty Sarah Hughes Dark Ruby Mild, which weighs in at just over 6% abv, and fills the old-school definition of mild as “that which is less hoppy than pale ale” — Sarah’s a full-bodied, sweet lass of a beer, and even more heavenly when served from a lovingly handled cask. Some web searching indicates that this fine brew may no longer be available, which is a shame.Â More testimony to the tough sell involved in marketing something called “mild,” though, in the advertising environment of today. Still, 6% is a tall order for mild.Â It may not seem like much to the craft brew crowd, where 6% hoppy pale ales are the order of the day, but it does come off as a far stronger drink when one considers the pre-WWI origins of the recipe.
At any rate, mild does wind up having some ranges beyond the standard definition, rare though they may be.Â I just wish there was some lurking about right now! (Just watch, I’ll go out tonight and Jasper Murdock’s will have their mild pouring…)