Brewing Supplies in Prewar Poland. Part III.

Whence Mammut?

In Part I, I discussed mammut, the resin to line beer barrels and for other brewery applications. I stated that as far as I knew, beer historical studies had not uncovered the maker’s name or place of manufacture.

I’ve since found the ad below, which answers the question. It appeared in a 1938 issue of the Polish brewing journal Przegląd Piwowarsko-Słodowniczy.

The ad states that Richard Bosche Chemical Works in Marienfelde, Germany produced mammut, with various applications specified, e.g. to seal concrete.

 

 

A line in the ad suggests Richard Bosche was the only authorized producer. Perhaps the formula was devised by an inventor or firm that licensed it for production.

Hessenmuller is still representing mammut from his base in Bydgoszcz, Poland – part of Prussia before WW I. In older ads, the given name is Karol, not Karl as here. Presumably it was the same person, or a family relation.

The Longevity of Sinamar

Another ad, in the same journal in 1939, touted Sinamar. Many similar ads appeared in the interwar Polish brewing press.

 

 

Due in part to the Weyermann name, known everywhere in brewing today for its specialty malts, I realized I had seen mention of Sinamar earlier.

It is a widely used aid to colour beers. Weyermann’s website explains what Sinamar is, and is not: it is a condensed beer, not a condensed wort like malt extract. An impressive range of modern beers use the product, as explained in the site.

Sinamar therefore is compliant with the current Reinheitsgebot in Germany, familiarly known as the Beer Purity Law, which originated in the 1500s. The law requires bottom-fermented beers brewed in Germany, to be made with malt, hops, yeast, and water.

The 1939 ad notes the product is lawful for production of bottom-fermented beers, an implied reference to this subject.

For a snapshot of the law’s history and current purport, see Jeff Alworth’s recent essay.

Sinamar, according to the historical outline in the website, was invented by Weyermann in 1902 in the historic brewing city of Bamberg, in Bavaria. Weyermann was founded in 1879 by the Johann Baptist mentioned in the ad.

He started as a supplier of coffee substitutes – grain and later malt were ground to emulate coffee. But the business soon pivoted to supplying breweries.

To expand production of Sinamar, in 1902 he set up a colour malt brewery in Potsdam, in the Berlin hinterlands in Prussia. This was to serve German Prussia as then constituted, Poland, and parts further east.

The Potsdam factory was damaged in 1945 and did not revive after the war. The vacuum boilers were moved to the main operation in Bamberg, where the company continues today, still family-owned.

A Weyermann representative explains in a YouTube video how Sinamar works, specifying the formula to achieve different colouring levels in the EBC and Lovibond scales.

Some craft and home brewers have used Sinamar to produce Black India Pale Ale, but it is used for other types of beers as well.

There cannot be many prewar industrial brands still vibrant in the market today; Sinamar is one. It shows, too, that a product designed for a very different beer world, when Hapsburg and Russian monarchs strode their parts of Europe, can still find relevance today.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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