Prohibition labels: Old Style Brew

Later in the prohibition years, with the use of the word ‘Beer’ or ‘Ale’ or any of the previously common descriptions, most were just a ‘Brew’. By the late 1920s the production method of ‘stopping’ the fermentation at a half per cent had become very unpopular. You couldn’t just add grain alcohol to the brew, it went cloudy and tasted unpleasant. Brewers went to fermenting the wort out and then de-alcoholising. This produced a alcohol free drink which could be successfully spiked with grain alcohol to produce a palatable substitute. The Government needed to regulate the use of the resulting alcohol, so brewers needed a permit to de-alcoholise their brews . This is the L-permit which appears on later prohibition labels. No prizes for guessing what happened to much of the alcohol produced.  Also worth noting there were still some very attractive labels produced.

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