Yorkssex Bitter

From London Amateur Brewers Wiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search

By Steve Smith

Recipe is part of Recipe Index

BJCP 2021 Style 11B Best Bitter

I discovered Harvey’s Sussex in a pub in Kensington, loved it and wanted to brew it right away. I got the main recipe from a thread on Jim’s Beer Kit plus a bit of my own research. I ordered the official Harvey’s yeast from BrewLab, but it got lost in a hot Post Office sorting room for weeks, so I went with West Yorkshire Ale yeast instead.

The mash was a mare. Overshot the mash-in temp to 73C, so let it cool down with an extra 30 mins mash by which time it had dropped to 63C, but at least it now had a chance at being fermentable. Some kind of accidental reverse step mash or something.

And there were also lots of wort fountains during the mash - other Braumeister users might have had to physically dodge a few of these too. Sometimes the pump forces wort up through channels in the malt and jets it out the top. Most likely caused by the malt crushed too fine, apparently. Anyway, I had to weigh the lid down with two massive cast iron cooking pots to prevent hot wort spraying round the kitchen.

The finished beer took a few months to come good after being kegged and stored in the fridge at 2C. It may well have reached its peak earlier at normal cellar temps, but lucky for me its peak coincided with BrewCon in November.

My tasting notes included: smooth, round, malty, toffee, balanced, dry finish, just bitter enough. On the day it was clear as a bell. I had a pint of it the following evening, it was bang on, had great head retention and there were still bubbles in the bottom of the glass the next morning. I tried to rebrew it afterwards with the odd tweak but messed it up every time and never made it this good again. One day…


BrewCon World Series III 2019

1st - Best in Show

1st - Best in Category (British Ales)


  • 23 litre batch
  • IBU 35
  • ABV 3.7%
  • OG 1.040
  • FG 1.012
  • EBC 17
  • 24 litres at end of boil.
  • 23 litres into fermenter.



  • London Water (Brent South)
  • Adjustments all in mash (12ml lactic acid, 3.2g MgSO4, 0.4g salt)
  • 96ppm calcium
  • 14ppm magnesium
  • 37ppm sodium
  • 84ppm sulphate
  • 53ppm chloride
  • 160ppm residual alkalinity


  • Maris Otter, 6 EBC, 3,500g, 87.5%
  • Crystal 200, 200 EBC, 300g, 7.5%
  • Flaked maize, 4 EBC, 200g, 5.0%


  • 26g Progress (6.13%) at 60 minutes
  • 26g Bramling Cross (7.23%) at 30 minutes
  • 15g East Kent Goldings (3.98%) steeped at 75C for 30 minutes
  • 15g Fuggles (4.34%) steeped at 75C for 30 minutes


Wyeast 1469 West Yorkshire Ale



  • Single infusion 67C for 60 minutes
  • Mash out 76C for 10 minutes


  • 60 minutes 27 litres at start, 24 litres at end


  • 18C until finish - took 14 days


  • 1.8 volumes of CO2