In the early 1840s, George Dodd trolled around all kinds of different British industrial establishments, writing up his adventures for the Penny Magazine.
I bought a copy of Penny Magazine No. 577 today. It includes “A Day at a London Brewery”, the brewery in question being Barclay’s in Southwark.
I was going to scan it, but instead, I’ll link to Google Books, where there’s a perfectly good scan of Days at the Factories, the 1843 anthology containing all of Dodd’s factory memoirs.
Of particular note:
“The distinction between ale and beer is well known by the taste, but it is not easily described in words: ale is of a great specific gravity, lighter coloured, more transparent, and less bitter than porter.”