Product storage - cold or kinda cold?
I live and work in Germany for a large intl. macro and I know of only 1 microbrewery which stores filled/bottled product in a cooler prior to delivery. This is a smaller brewery which fills re-fillable growlers and according to the brewer he does it for "microbiological" reasons. Help me out here folks - is this necessary/expected in the craft segment in the States?? Or is this a difference in brewing and/or filling? Or maybe simply a perceived increase in quality? The "best before" dates (with no cooling, just your standard recommended cool, dry place) here are traditionally 8-12 months, depending on brewery....
Did I miss something along the line ??
Last edited by einhorn; 04-20-2006 at 11:39 PM.
Guten Tag Einhorn!
In our microbrewery, part of our craftsmanship is that we neither filter nor pasteurize. Both processes definitely affect the flavor of the beer. Filtering/centrifuging/pasteurizing are all done to increase the shelf life of beer, especially under adverse conditions that often exist the in the distribution chain. I obviously do not know the specifics of the microbrewery of which you speak, but it may be that the brewer is producing unfiltered/unpasteurized beer as well. At the very least, I am sure the brewer is keeping the beer cold to preserve its flavor/protect its quality. I think almost any brewery, given the choice (and without regard to cost), would prefer to see its beer kept refridgerated from the day it is packaged until it is consumed.
As Beersmith has stated...Most of the craftbrewers in the US prefer their product to be refigerated to guarantee fresh tasting beer. Typical shelf life for majority of micros is 90-120 days although some bottle conditioned beers may extend out to 6 months. Very few micros are pasteurizing beer. Some micros are sterile filtering for microbiological reasons. Many breweries are centrifuging for beer recovery and ease of secondary/polish filtration but there is no shelf life advantage with centrifugation. If anything a brewer can cause more damage by filtering/centrifuging improperly and introducing O2 into the product and damaging the shelf life drastically. Dissolved O2 meters are really great but the fact is many breweries operate without them so they have very little idea about the dissolved O2 they are introducing to the product post fermentation.