News & Updates

Summit Unchained #6

Hmmm. What do we have here? Summit Unchained #6? Damian McConn’s baby?! Read on for details about Summit’s 6th beer in the Unchained series, Gold Sovereign Ale.

Draught Release: March 7

Package Release: March 21

Beer name: Gold Sovereign Ale

Brewer: Damian McConn

Color: Straw Gold

Malts: Organic Westminster Floor Malt

Hops: Boadicea, Sovereign, Pilgrim, First Gold

Yeast: UK Ale Strain

OG: 1.060 SG

Gold Sovereign: Where the past meets the future. Combining a 19th century recipe with 21st century ingredients, Gold Sovereign seeks to emulate the pale ales of the Victorian era using ingredients that have only become available in the last few years. The ultra-modern barley variety Westminster gets the traditional malting approach through organic cultivation and malting by hand on the floor. Highly disease and insect-resistant hedgerow hops were developed from classical varieties using time-honoured breeding techniques. These ingredients are combined with a unique English yeast to produce a refreshingly drinkable beer with a solid malt base and assertive character. Expect this unfiltered ale to have an aroma of pear, apricot and spicy orange, leading to a pronounced hop bitterness and malt flavour reminiscent of freshly baked bread.

In Damian’s words:

I’ve always been extremely interested in beer, specifically ale, produced in the 19th Century. This was a transformative time for brewing in general, with the switch from the largely small scale brewing of the 18th Century to the large industrial operations of the 20th . In the UK by the middle of the 19th Century, brewing styles were becoming more defined, with paler, hoppier beers such as Pale Ale challenging the darker, more established styles of Porter and Brown Ale.

Since it is very difficult to replicate process conditions and ingredients from this period, but recipes do exist, I thought it might be fun to produce a beer based on an old recipe but incorporating some of the most modern varieties of malt and hops available. Our base malt, Westminster, for example, was only approved in the UK for brewing a few years ago. However, I decided to use the organic, floor malted version as a nod to the production methods used in malting during the 19th Century. We also often seem to think that very hoppy/bitter, and/or high alcohol beers were somehow only “invented” in the last twenty years by brewers on the US West Coast. An examination of some European recipes from the past indicate however, that this approach is not a recent fad but has existed for some time!

Hopefully this beer will showcase some of the best modern varieties of malt and hops available in the UK today, while providing some insight into the pale ales of the past.”


  1. Ben says:

    Damian is a great guy. Looking forward to this one.

  2. Champs says:

    As a series of contradictions, I think it should have been an alt. Nevertheless, I’m interested.

  3. Duke says:

    Hey now, is it March yet?

  4. Mattm says:

    Pretty uncommon hops for a US brew, and I’m certain I’ve never had “Organic Westminster Floor Malt.” I’m digging that #6 is going to be a basic style with super-distinct ingredient strains. Great concept.

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