Tips on How to Store Beer

store beer in an airtight environment

Once opened, store beer with a stopper to keep the bottle airtight.

When we talk of drinks and storage, we are usually talking about wine, not beer. Although there are exceptions, beer, as a rule, is not brewed to improve with age. Beer can spoil within a few months; one should almost never keep it for more than a year, even if the rare specialty production can age for nearly 30 years.

To keep your brew in the best shape possible, we offer you four tips on how to store beer

Tip 1: Store Beer in your belly.

Finish the bottle or can. Opened beer doesn’t keep. It loses carbonation and goes flat. NO matter how well you rig a stopper of some sort on the bottle or can, it won’t stand up to lengthy refrigeration. Oxygen trapped inside a stoppered container will continue to degrade the drink’s properties.

Tip 2: Keep Your Beer Airtight

If you can’t heed tip one, well, just stopper the best you can. Remember, air is the enemy. Natural wine corks can work fairly well, but the newer plastic corks are usually better. Make sure it is clean, free of mold, and not full of holes. Insert the cork a distance equal to half of its length to ensure a tight seal. Store the bottle upright—you won’t be storing it long enough for the natural cork to dry out, and plastic corks don’t dry out like a wood product.

Tip 3: For Skunk-free Beer, Store it in the Dark

You might enjoy drinking beer in the sun, but you should store beer in the dark, the darker the better. Ultraviolet light kills beer quickly. Any light spoils, or skunks, beer, but ultraviolet frequencies are the worst enemies. Ultraviolet light catalyzes chemical breakdowns and recombination, and the new combinations will taste and smell bad. When ultraviolet light goes to work on beer, it literally creates a chemical compound used in skunk spray.

Tip 4: Keep That Beer Cool, Baby.

Don’t freeze it—keep it cool. Beer, like many things we eat, keeps better at low temperatures. Freezing, however, will kill its carbonation. You will wind up with flat, bland beer.

  • A few very hearty brews, such as Barley Wine or Trippel, will keep well at just under room temperature, or 12.8°C-15.5°C (55°F-60°F).
  • Ales, such as Stout and Dobblebock , prefer it to be cooler, in the range of 10°C-12.8°C (50°F-55°F).
  • Lagers and other lighter beers stay freshest when kept cold, at approximately 7.2°C-10°C (45°F-50°F).

As you can see from the temperature ranges above, your regular refrigerator is not the best place to store beer for any considerable length of time, even if you like to drink it very cold. Most kitchen fridges will drop temperatures a little too low for lagers, let alone stouts and stronger brews. Depending on your climate, a dark space in the cellar is likely your best bet.

If you don’t have either a suitable cellar, or a specialized beverage refrigerator that keeps temperatures in an optimal range for storing beer, then tip one—drink it up—is your best option for beer storage.

Things could be worse.

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  1. Thanks for sharing a wonderful article. I enjoyed reading this one. Cheers!

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