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Bitter Beer Kits

Bitters are beers; the English word bitter is generally the same as saying pale ale. 

Pale ales are brewed from pale malt, and many also include a veriety of hops. 

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Coopers  English Bitter 40pt

In Stock
Geordie Bitter

In Stock
Simply Bitter 40pt

In Stock
Simply Yorkshire Bitter 40pt

In Stock
Brewmaker Premium Victorian Bitter 40 pt

Available to order (online only)
Festival Landlords Finest Bitter

Available to order (online only)

What is an English Bitter?

A bitter is an English or British style pale ale famous for its slightly bitter but mild flavour. Brew Mart will cover the essential information you need to know about a bitter homebrew beer in this article.

Origin of the English Bitter

English brewers were the last Europeans to start to use hops, and until the introduction to using brewing hops, gruit was the option for flavour for herbed and spiced beers. During the 1930s and through the second world war, English bitters became very popular in England as consumers decided they wanted something other than the typical dark bitter available at the time. Post-WWII, Best British bitters was established as a premium product that offered better quality and flavour.

 Bitter is usually gold to copper in colour; most examples are light-bodied and low in carbonation. They have a fruitiness in the aroma and flavour; diacetyl can also be present. These beers are traditionally served cask-conditioned, but many breweries now have bottled versions and homebrew versions too.

They are sessionable, and alcohol content should be low and not perceived on the palate.

What is a session bitter?

Session bitter is a bitter that is relatively light and easy to drink.

They allowed English factory workers to drink on the job during two daily sessions. The workers drank low-ABV beers, so they weren't stumbling back onto the job, hence the terminology "session beer." 

Others say session refers to an extended stay at the bar.

The word "Session" is an adjective used to describe a beer that is lower in alcohol and high in refreshment. 

What is light and bitter?

Light and Bitter—is a half-pint of Ordinary Aromatic Bitters topped up with a bottle of Light Ale—was one of London's favourite tipples. 

Light ale began in the second half of the 19th century when a new type of lighter Pale Ale arrived on the scene. The first Dinner Ales were low gravity for that period.

During the 1900s, bitter was the most popular type of beer sold on tap in pubs in the UK; some consider it "the national drink of England."

It is a popular beer likely because of its somewhat more robust flavour

when compared to a light lager. However, relatively mild bitterness when compared to an IPA. 

English bitters are a good choice when deciding between golden lagers or session ales. English bitters and pale ales are a perfect choice for people who prefer more flavour and a slightly bitter taste from their beer but do not wish for something too strong, overpowering, heavy, or sweet.

The range of flavours for bitter beers can be broad and complex. 

A style that has evolved has both lighter mild versions and a more robust, more potent version of the English bitter. 

However, for a classic English bitter, many return to the roots and opt for the authentic bitters direct from England.

How to serve an English Bitter:

Serve bitter lightly-chilled (11° to 14° Celsius) in a British imperial pint glass.

 Different Types of English Bitter / Pale AlesThere are a few different types of English bitters. 

These are grouped based on the alcohol content of the beer.

  • Light bitter ale – below 3%ABV
  • Ordinary bitter – 3.1-4.1% ABV
  • Special or best bitter – 4.2-4.7%ABV
  • Premium or strong bitter – 4.8-7%+ABV

These grouping can also be applied to pale ales – which means if you've had a perfect home brew bitter for your taste and you've been trying to find a similar beer, trying a pale ale at the same strength might fit the bill.

Some people ask, is an English bitter a lager or ale?

An English bitter is an ale as top-fermenting ale yeasts are used during the brewing process. The bitterness in the flavour is derived from the hops used. The brewing hops used should be less bitter than those used to brew an India Pale Ale.

 What exactly makes a beer an English Bitter?

It is said that an English bitter and pale ale can be used interchangeably. Other people feel that the English bitter deserves to be in a class of its own. While a bitter isn't officially regionally protected, most people consider an English bitter is a pale ale produced in England. 

Otherwise, it's either an American pale ale or a "bitter style beer".

 What foods go well with English Bitter beers? 

Roast chicken, fish & chips, fries, Yorkshire pudding.

What are examples of the best Home Brew English Bitter beers

  • Brewmaker - Premium Victorian Bitter
  • Coopers - English bitter
  • Festival - Landlords Finest Bitter, Father Hooks Best Bitter
  • Geordie - Bitter  
  • Simply - Bitter, Yorkshire Bitter
  • Woodfordes - Nelsons Revenge Strong Bitter, Wherry Best Bitter
  • Youngs - Harvest Bitter

Each homebrew bitter kit will require the addition of water, and some homebrew bitter kits will also require brewing sugar.

Most homebrew bitter kits produce approximately 40 pints of pure nectar.