Post #10 made 4 years ago
That's one feature of the old direct fire-heated copper kettles, still used at the Caledonian Brewery in Edinburgh. The very hot copper caramelised some of the wort to give a deeper colour, as well as the Maillard tasty stuff. UK breweries tended to use a fair amount of invert sugars in various colours and I'd guess doing your own caramelisation in the kettle would save a few shillings or groats as you wouldn't need to buy as much from the sugar merchants. Canny Scots.
On topic my extract days were very short, went onto AG in my first year but found that darker stronger beers such as stouts and even some IPAs can hide behind hops and dark malts and grains such as roasted barley in a way that paler beers and lagers just can't. About four years ago I entered an extract strong stout in competitions and it got as far as the Nationals, where it came about mid field. However it got marked down, understandably, as lacking basic malt character.