From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia A glass of beer with a large head of foam A glass of beer with the head having receded, leaving behind noticeable lacing Beer head (also head or collar ) is the frothy foam on top of beer and carbonated beverages which is produced by bubbles of gas, predominantly carbon dioxide, rising to the surface.
The elements that produce the head are wort protein, yeast and hop residue. The carbon dioxide that forms the bubbles in the head is produced during fermentation as yeasts break down sugar-rich molecules to produce ethanol and carbon dioxide. The carbonation can occur before or after bottling the beer.
If the beer continues fermenting in the bottle, then it naturally carbonates and the head is formed upon opening and/or pouring the beer. If the beer is pasteurized or filtered then the beer must be force carbonated using pressurized gas. The density and longevity of the head will be determined by the type of malt and adjunct from which the beer was fermented,
Different mash schedules and cereal sources influence head retention. In general, wheat tends to produce larger and longer-lasting heads than barley. Closely related to the beer head is “lacing” or “lace”, a white foamy residue left on the inside of the glass as the head recedes or as the beer is drunk.
Just as the composition of the beer (proteins, hops, yeast residue, filtration) affects a beer’s head, the amount of lacing is also closely controlled by the specific composition of the beer, and beer connoisseurs can tell much by the lacing, though strictly speaking beer quality is not readily apparent by the head or the lacing.
- 1 What is the correct way to pour a beer on tap?
- 2 Why tap a beer before drinking?
- 3 Why tap a beer can before opening?
- 4 Why is my beer foamy when I tap it?
What is the correct way to pour a beer on tap?
How to Pour A Nitro Beer – Pour beer from the nitro tap into a glass at 45 degrees until the glass is two-thirds full. Wait until the foam fully resides and fill the now-level glass to the top. The added period of settling allows the excess foam to dissipate and ensures you get the most beer possible with the silkiest texture.
Guinness claims that the perfect pour for nitro beer takes about 120 seconds, or two full minutes. Every type of drink has a different optimal pour, so it’s important to pay attention when you free pour, Nitro beer is carbonated differently than a regular beer on tap and should be handled as such. In addition to carbon dioxide, nitrogen is added to change the consistency of beer.
The use of nitrogen makes the beer smoother to drink, but also extends pour time as it adds foam more quickly.
Should the tap touch the beer?
To follow the best hygiene practices, keep the glass and the beer from touching the faucet spout.5. Hold the pint glass at a 45-degree angle.
Should you tilt glass when pouring beer?
THE POUR – You’re looking for a 45 degree angle tilt on your glass, that allows the beer to perfectly touch the wall of the glass and fall in. The idea is to avoid your beer from frothing or releasing too much carbonation at the start of the pour. THE TURN Once the glass is three-fourths full, turn it upright to get a decent head, which adds the aroma and mainly the roundness to any beer.
Are you supposed to pour beer hard?
How To Pour Beer > > Pouring beer is an art, and definitely part of the overall tasting experience. We always suggest that you drink a beer out of a glass, and recommend that you read, It’s a great primer to understating why, and a guide guide to pairing a beer to its appropriate glass. The following demonstrates the most common pouring technique which can be applied to most beers and glassware types. You’ll also find that most bartenders pour draught beer as follows too. Steps to a Perfect Pint
Use a clean glass. A dirty glass, containing oils, dirt or residuals from a previous beer, may inhibit head creation and flavours. Hold your glass at a 45° angle. Pour the beer, targeting the middle of the slope of the glass. Don’t be afraid to pour hard or add some air between the bottle and glass. At the half-way point bring the glass at a 90° angle and continue to pour in the middle of the glass. This will induce the perfect foam head. And remember, having a head on a beer is a good thing. It releases the beer’s aromatics and adds to the overall presentation. You may also want to gradually add distance between the bottle and glass as you pour, to also inspire a good head. An ideal head should be 1″ to 1-1/2″.
With bottled conditioned beers, that may have a considerable amount of yeast in the bottle, you may wish to watch closely as you pour, if you don’t like yeast in your poured beer. However, this is the highlight of some beers and actually wanted. Just note that the inclusion of yeast will alter the clearness and taste of your poured beer, and lively yeast is high in vitamins and nutrients! > > : How To Pour Beer
Should you sip or chug beer?
How you drink – Yes, how you drink matters. If you chug back a drink, those big gulps will get more alcohol into your body a lot faster. Sipping, on the other hand, allows the effects to kick in more gradually.
Why tap a beer before drinking?
Bar Etiquette: Why Do People Tap Their Drink on the Bar after Clinking Glasses? With Saint Patrick’s Day right around the corner, we thought it would be interesting We love questions like this one because they’re endlessly debatable. We often wonder if people imagine that a definitive tome of alcohol lore exists, and that in the 5th century, a Saxon peasant named Aldwyn was the first to tap his glass upon a rough-hewn bar to ward off evil spirits.
And so it was written, and thus it became truth. But seriously, if that book does exist, can we borrow it? We’ve got some questions we’d like answered. Still, there are many theories as to why it began, and there are very good reasons as to why people still practice the custom. As to who or why anyone did it first? We have no idea, and honestly, it’s unlikely that anyone knows the actual answer.
The important thing now is that it’s a tradition that has different, equally valid sentiment to the folks who practice the custom. Here are some varying ideas as to the meaning behind this practice—presented in no particular order of likely origin:
Some people tap their glass on the bar as a quiet tribute to absent friends and comrades.In Ireland, it was believed that liquor contained spirits that might be harmful if consumed, and tapping the glass dispelled those spirits.In drinking contests, tapping your beer could cause the foam to settle, making it easier to finish quickly. Likewise, tapping your glass or mug on the bar signified when you started a new glass.Fraternity members frequently claim that it’s an old Greek tradition.-Others say that it’s a mark of respect to the bartender.Some believe that you cheers to the future, but a tap on the bar acknowledges the past.
Nearly everyone agrees that if you’ve worked in the industry, you’re far more likely to tap your glass on the bar. And while no one knows the reason it began, people have certainly been able to find meaning (sometimes profoundly so) in a custom with a forgotten origin. : Bar Etiquette: Why Do People Tap Their Drink on the Bar after Clinking Glasses?
Why tap a beer can before opening?
Among the great questions in science, one stands sadly neglected: Is it possible to stop a shaken beer can from foaming by tapping it before opening? There are good theoretical reasons to think this should work. The tapping should release any bubbles that are stuck to the inside walls of the can.
These should then float to the surface and dissipate, making the beer less likely to foam when it is opened. But is this true? Today, we get an answer thanks to the selfless work of Elizaveta Sopina at the University of Southern Denmark and a few colleagues. This group has tested the theory for the first time using randomized controlled trials involving 1,000 cans of lager.
And luckily for the research team, the result raises at least as many questions as it answers, ensuring a strong future for beer-related research. First some background. Beer is a water-based fermented liquid containing alcohol and proteins from ingredients such as barley and hops.
- It is often carbonated with high-pressure carbon dioxide gas and then stored under pressure.
- Releasing this pressure dramatically reduces the amount of carbon dioxide the liquid can hold, causing bubbles to form.
- When the bubbles rise to the surface of the liquid, proteins stabilize the resulting foam, leading to the formation of a creamy head that is characteristic of many beers.
The head helps to trap flavor molecules that give beers their unique tastes and smells. The problem with foaming arises when beer is shaken before opening. Shaking increases the surface area of the beer inside the can and allows carbon dioxide to desaturate.
- The gas forms tiny bubbles centered on small particles in the liquid, known as nucleation centers.
- When the can is opened, these bubbles grow rapidly in size and rise to the surface, creating foam.
- When this foam occupies a greater volume than there is space at the top of the can, the beer overflows.
- This is inefficient, as fizzing reduces the amount of beer available for consumption and results in waste,” say Sopina and co.
“Beer spray can also stain clothes or surrounding objects, and therefore is also an unpleasant and socially undesirable side-effect.” With more than 170 billion liters of beer consumed every year (much of it by researchers in Denmark, presumably), the scale of the problem is easy to see.
“Preventing, or, at least, minimizing beer fizzing is both socially and economically desirable,” say Sopina and co. That’s where the tapping theory comes in. There is no shortage of anecdotal evidence that this techniques either works wonders or is entirely ineffective. “Given the strong Danish tradition in beer brewing and consumption, we set out to settle this matter with high-quality evidence,” say the team.
They began with the impressive achievement of persuading a local brewery to donate 1,031 cans of Pilsner-style beer for “research purposes.” After “losses” of various kinds, they were able to gather data from 1,000 cans on which to base their results.
The experiment was straightforward. The team cooled the cans in a fridge to drinking temperature and randomly divided them into two groups—those to be shaken and those not to be shaken. They further subdivided each group into cans that would be tapped and those that would be left untapped. They labeled the base of each can appropriately so no researcher involved in the shaking and tapping could easily tell them apart, even subconsciously.
The cans were then shaken using a “Unimax 2010 shaker” for two minutes at 440 rpm. “Pilot testing revealed that this shaking method successfully mimicked carrying beer on a bicycle for 10 minutes—a common way of transporting beer in Denmark,” says Sopina and co.
Unwanted foaming must be at epidemic levels there. The researchers then weighed each can, tapped it by flicking it three times on its side with a finger, and then opened it. Finally, they weighed the can again to determine the amount of beer that had been lost. The results are palate tickling. Sopina and co compared the amount of beer lost for tapped and untapped cans that had been shaken and found no statistical difference—both lost about 3.5 grams of liquid to foaming.
They also found no meaningful difference between the cans that had not been shaken—when opened, they lost about 0.5 grams on average. The obvious conclusion is that can tapping does not reduce foaming, a result that must be a considerable disappointment for bicycle-riding, beer-carrying Danes.
- However, this negative result raises an interesting question of its own: Why doesn’t tapping work? And Sopina and co have some ideas.
- One is that flicking does not provide enough energy to dislodge bubbles, perhaps because the energy is absorbed by the aluminium can and the bulk of the liquid.
- Unfortunately, the team does not appear to have measured the energy imparted in this way, cleverly leaving the way open for more research.
Another possibility is that an assumption behind the tapping theory—that the bubbles associated with foaming must be attached to the wall of the can—is incorrect. “If most bubbles are located in the bulk liquid, the surfacing of the wall-adhered bubbles by flicking would be insignificant compared to the rapid surfacing of the bubbles in the bulk liquid,” say the team.
Finally, it may be that the microbubbles become trapped in the liquid by the same proteins that contribute to a beer’s creaminess. That would prevent them from rising at all. If that’s the case, the tapping method may still work for other fizzy drinks that do not contain these molecules. Indeed, some anecdotal evidence supports this.
If proteins are responsible, Sopina and co suggest that beer could be treated to prevent foaming by denaturing the relevant proteins, perhaps by heating the beer before it is cooled. However, the proteins play an important role in the flavor and mouthfeel of beer.
- The potential negative impact on the sensory experience of the beer consumption and the risk of applying heat to a sealed pressurized metal container are important future research topics to be answered,” say the team.
- And therein lies an entirely new research project for Sopina and her colleagues, or indeed any other specialists.
Beer-related research is a glass that is truly bottomless. Ref: arxiv.org/abs/1912.01999 : To Beer Or Not To Beer: Does Tapping Beer Cans Prevent Beer Loss? A Randomised Controlled Trial.
Does beer taste better when poured?
Taste – When it comes to beer, taste is the number one concern at Sprecher. So does beer taste better from cans or bottles? The answer is, neither. Beer tastes better when poured into a glass. Our perception of flavor relies on a combination of senses–taste, smell, mouthfeel, sight, and possibly even sound (consider the satisfying sound of a can opening).
- When you drink from a can or a bottle, your nose misses the beer completely, and you cannot see the color of the beer, admire the foamy head, or listen to the sound of rising bubbles during a good pour.
- Put a beer in a proper glass, and you are getting the full sensory experience.
- Plus, who doesn’t love drinking beer from a hefty stein or a classy snifter? It just elevates the experience.
Still, you’re not always going to have a glass handy. So how do bottles and cans compare on taste? Some complain that canned beer tastes metallic. However, brewers started lining their beer cans with food-safe plastic to prevent metallic off-taste in the 1930s, and they haven’t stopped since.
- If you are tasting metal, it’s because you’re smelling the can.
- So stop doing that, it’s weird! Bottles have a different taste problem.
- Unlike cans, bottles let a little light in.
- When UV light from the sun hits beer, it can cause chemical changes that result in an unpleasant taste.
- The term for the resulting product is–I kid you not–skunky beer (or ‘lightstruck beer’ if you’re a nerd).
Brown bottles provide pretty good protection, followed by green bottles, with clear bottles obviously being the worst of all (sorry, Zima). Brown bottles are all well and good, but no glass provides better protection from skunkiness than a can. The verdict on taste: as long as you are not a can-sniffer, cans win out on taste. Beer tastes better in a glass–doesn’t that look delicious?
Why is my beer foamy when I tap it?
Foamy Beer Tap: How To Fix It There are many reasons you may be getting a lot of foam coming out your tap. Without being there to see your system setup and what you are doing it’s very difficult for us to give an answer as to why it might be. We’ve tried to cover the main ones below, along with what you can do about them.
Under carbonated – strange but true, if you are getting a lot of foam but it is flat when you taste it your drink may be under carbonated – let it sit for a day or so at the pressures recommended on, Over carbonated – if you are getting a lot of foam and the drink has carbonation when you taste it it may be over carbonated. You can adjust it by releasing some pressure, letting it sit for an hour then releasing some more pressure. Then set the regulator to the level recommended in the table on the to get the correct level. A warm glass or tap – Often the 1st pour will be foamy as the cold liquid with lots of dissolved CO2 loses the CO2 when it hits a warm surface like the inside of a tap or a glass. Keep your glass in the fridge or cool it with water before pouring if it’s warm. Keep your tap in the fridge if possible (like with our mini kegs), ensure any liquid lines outside a fridge are well insulated and ensure a font fan is blowing cold air inside the font to cool it if you have a bar top font. Pouring onto foam causes more foam – You will often see the bar tender at a bar put the glass under the tap after only a bit of beer has come through the tap and gone into the drip tray or they will pour out the bit in the glass if it is foamy before starting again. This is because if you have some foamy beer in the glass it causes the rest to foam as it pours onto it. Better to waste the first 30mls than have a whole glass of froth! Not enough beer line – Beer line is measured depending on it’s internal diameter. We provide minimum 1.5m of 4mm internal beer line with our kegerator packages etc as this is the length needed to slow the liquid enough that it pours well when it reaches the tap, if you cut it short and don’t have a flow control tap it will pour to quickly and cause foaming. Too much pressure – If your pressure is set too high the beer will flow too fast and cause it to be agitated and foamy when it pours. If you have a flow control tap or a kegerator with correct length lines you should set your pressure at the recommended one from the, Too little pressure – If your keg has too little pressure in it it will cause the dissolved CO2 to free itself from the liquid. This causes gas bubbles in the beer lines or tap. If you can see bubbles in your beer line this is a likely cause. Your beer may also be pouring heady but flat as it is becoming under carbonated due to not enough pressure to keep it carbonated. Beer hasn’t settled – If your keg has just been filled from a tap, then driven home, carried inside and plonked on the table it has been shaken, agitated and been through temperature changes. It will pour foamy unless you let it sit for at least 30min. We had someone wonder why their 50L keg was pouring foamy after rolling it from the pub to car, car to a speed boat, boat to party on an island and then tried to tap it 15min later. An interruption in the flow – This is something more equipment based you can look for if you think everything above is correct. A rough edge inside a hose where it was cut, a steel burr inside a tap etc. will interrupt the smooth flow of liquid and can make it pour foamy
: Foamy Beer Tap: How To Fix It
Why is foam in beer good?
What it does – The foam head doesn’t only allow the carbonation to escape from the liquid. It also adds the aroma of the beer and the initial flavor to the first sip. We usually think of wine as the drink that you sniff before drinking, but not beer. Yet serious beer drinkers know to sniff the foam head to begin picking up the beer’s flavor notes and its distinct scent.
- Since aroma has a lot to do with how we perceive taste, that first sniff is important for making sure that you get the full range of flavor from the beer.
- And because the foam head has a flavor as well, you will want to make sure to sip at it slowly when you begin drinking.
- Different brews have thicker or thinner heads, depending on their yeasts and the ratios of ingredients used to brew them.
The head on a hefeweizen will be legendarily creamy and full, whereas a stout’s head will be much thinner overall.
Why does beer on tap hit harder?
Why is it that beer on tap seems to trigger a buzz quicker than opposed to drinking from a can or bottle? The quick answer is that beer on tap is typically poured into a larger glass than a can or bottle of beer contains and it’s easier, and quicker, to drink from a pint glass than it is from a bottle or can.
Why is beer on tap cold?
How Draft Systems Work: Getting Beer From Keg to Glass Anyone who has ever been to a college keg party has seen a draft beer system in action. One chilled keg + one party pump = one red Solo cup filled with beer. It’s a simple set-up, but that kind of beer service is a bit abusive to your beverage.
- So your favorite bars and restaurants don’t keep perma-drunk frat boys in the keg coolers to give the party tap a few pumps every 20 minutes.
- The draft systems used to get beer to you from the keg at these places are more complicated than you might think.
- In any draft system, you’ve got six main components: cooler, keg, coupler, gas, tubing, and faucet—it can get more complex, but that’s the basic setup.
These six pieces all work together in a delicate harmony to ensure that the beer served to you is properly chilled and carbonated, with an appropriate foamy head. Here’s how it all breaks down. Back to that keg party. See how the keg is stuffed into a bucket and packed with ice? Beer needs to be kept cold not just so that it tastes good, but also to prevent spoilage and warm, foamy pours.
- But there aren’t any keg buckets in the backs of your favorite bars and restaurants either.
- Most restaurants have walk-in coolers that can keep a whole slew of kegs cold at once.
- This is where your beer’s journey begins.
- Mmm, Trumer.
- Wes Rowe Your beer resides in kegs: this you already knew.
- Egs come in a wide variety of sizes, shapes, and materials, but beer made in the US is usually packaged in 5 gallon, 7.75 gallon, or 15.5 gallon kegs made of stainless steel.
From the outside, you can see a valve on top. This is the hole where gas flows in and beer flows out. Inside the keg, there’s a long tube of metal extending from the valve to the vessel’s bottom. To get beer out of the keg, gas pressure is applied to the top surface of the liquid, which presses the beer from the bottom of the keg up through that metal tube and out of the valve.
- This photograph and all below: To use the valve, you need another piece of equipment.
- This is called the coupler—the party pump used at that keg party is a gussied up version of one.
- Proper couplers connect to two tubes: one brings gas to the keg and one lets the beer flow out on its way to your glass.
The coupler plugs into the top of the keg and has a little handle that you pull down to open the valve and start the flow of gas into the airspace of the keg. So, I’ve mentioned a few times that we need gas to push the beer out of the kegs. Most bars and restaurants use canisters of pure bottled carbon dioxide and nitrogen for this purpose.
- A regulator (that thing with the gauge) allows the operator to control the amount of pressure leaving the tanks.
- Those keg party taps aren’t as effective because the gas they use to pressurize kegs comes from your hardworking pumping action.
- So instead of using pure bottled gas, you’re pumping the air around you into the keg to build pressure.
Unfortunately, the air around you is packed with oxygen and wild yeast and bacteria that will quickly spoil your beverage. And one more thing: the imprecise, varying pressure applied by that pumping action will allow the bubbles in your beer to be released.
- This is why kegs only last one wild night when they are poured from a party pump—by morning the beer is oxidized, flatter than it should be, and down the road to spoilage.
- Woohoo! The beer is on its way to you! On the trip from keg to faucet, beer travels through vinyl or polyethylene tubing measuring about a quarter inch in diameter.
In systems where the beer has a long distance to travel from keg to tap, this tubing may be chilled to ensure the beer stays cold on its journey to your face. The last piece of equipment standing between you and your beer is the faucet. Here, you run into another valve, which is controlled by pulling the tap handle.
The tap needs be opened completely (by pulling the handle all the way forward), or you’ll create turbulence that will cause foaming in the glass. It doesn’t sound all that complicated.yet. This is where things get tricky. The system detailed above is held in a delicate balance, hinging on the amount of pressure that’s applied to the keg as it relates to the resistance imposed by tubing, gravity, and other hardware like faucets and couplers.
The temperature and amount of carbonation in the beer matter too. So it’s actually super easy to screw up. A system with too much or too little applied carbon dioxide pressure will produce foamy pours and kegs that are overcarbonated or super-flat—all things that cost the bar or restaurant money and leave the customer with a less-than-perfect beer.
If the refrigerator holding the kegs is in the basement, you need more pressure to counteract the force of gravity and the resistance coming from trying to squeeze beer through 15 or more feet of tubing.If the cooler is above the bar, you apply less pressure because gravity is on your side.The warmer the temperature in the cooler, the more pressure you need to apply—because the carbon dioxide in beer is less soluble at warmer temperatures, more pressure is needed to keep the bubbles from escaping. If a beer is very highly carbonated, more pressure needs to be applied as well.Pouring beer at higher elevations in the mountains? More pressure.
All of this wouldn’t be too much of an issue if you could just crank up the bottled carbon dioxide pressure as high as you’d like. If the necessary pressure is pouring beer too fast, you can just lengthen the tubing between keg and faucet to add resistance, right? Unfortunately, that’s not how it works.
- If too much carbon dioxide pressure is applied, it will be absorbed by the beer as excess carbonation (and if not enough carbon dioxide pressure is applied, the beer will go flat).
- To avoid overcarbonation in systems that require higher pressures, bars use a blend of carbon dioxide and nitrogen.
- Nitrogen is less soluble in beer than carbon dioxide, so it will push the beer without being absorbed as carbonation.
If the system is dialed in properly, beer will pour from the taps at about two ounces per second. When proper carbonation has been maintained, it’s easy to form an appropriate head of 1-2 fingers atop your glass and little beer is wasted to foaming. The job isn’t done quite yet.
Draft systems require a whole lot of maintenance to make sure the beer is tasting great. Ideally, bars and restaurants should be cleaning their draft systems every two weeks and replacing components regularly. If they fail to do so, you may end up with funky off-flavors in your beer. Lines left uncleaned are susceptible to build-up of crud which can harbor yeast and bacteria that can make your beer taste musty, buttery, or sour.
Yuck. : How Draft Systems Work: Getting Beer From Keg to Glass
Why is it better to pour beer fast?
This is why tilting a beer glass to avoid foam actually makes you bloated
If you’ve ever tried your hand at bartending only to realise you are unable to pour a without forming a head of – you are in luck.A beer sommelier has revealed to the proper way to pour a beer – and it turns out that a head of foam is actually a good thing when enjoying a nice cold one.According to Max Bakker, the first and only Master Cicerone in – a certification which means he has an exceptional understanding of all things beer related – without that collar of foam, a beer is not a beer at all.And beer is actually the result of pouring a beer incorrectly – or pouring a beer with minimal foam. According to Max, carbon dioxide that has not been released into a glass when pouring a beer, which is what happens when you pour beer into a tilted glass slowly, has a disastrous effect when it settles in your stomach.
Stella, John Smith’s and Newcastle Brown Ale to name a few Tom Wren/SWNS Varieties on Morrisons home brand lager and bitter Tom Wren/SWNS Various cans of Tennent’s Lager and ale, some featuring their “Lager Lovelies” range, which was discontinued in 1991 Tom Wren/SWNS Marks & Spencer beers, Crown Lager and Tesco value lager Tom Wren/SWNS Watneys Pale Ale, Younger’s Tartan Ale and a variety of Holsten Pils cans to name a few Tom Wren/SWNS Tennent’s Caledonian Lager and Sam Smith’s Alpine Lager Tom Wren/SWNS Darwin Lager, Worthington’s E ale and Harp Lager among others Tom Wren/SWNS Carlsberg Special Brew, Ansells Bitter and Younger’s Monk Ale among others Tom Wren/SWNS Nick West has spent 40 years collecting over 9000 beer cans Tom Wren/SWNS West was once voted “Britain’s Dullest Man” in a newspaper pole and is a member of the Dull Men Club, who release a yearly calendar Tom Wren/SWNS This slow-pour means the has nowhere to go – which leads to bloating when the liquid is disturbed in your stomach and the remaining carbon dioxide is released – especially once you add food to the mixture.
- The solution? Pouring a beer down the side of a glass with vigour.
- Business Insider) Pouring a glass of beer incorrectly leads to bloating This method of pouring a beer ensures that the CO2 is broken out into the glass – meaning the bloating that occurs when drinking a beer that was not poured properly doesn’t happen.
So before you try to send back a beer for having too much foam, remember that the foam is actually protecting you from feeling full and uncomfortable. (Business Insider) The correct way to pour beer is by tilting the glass and pouring with vigour The foam always turns into beer anyway, according to Max.
Is pouring beer slowly bad?
Pouring your beer slowly with a tilted glass to avoid foaming is not good for your health (as strange as this sounds when talking about alcohol). It does not allow for the beer to release enough CO2 from the liquid, which in turn, makes you feel bloated.
What does a slow pour do for a beer?
The 5-minute pour will make your pilsner taste better The longest lines at Denver’s annual stretch interminably around the Colorado Convention Center. It’s the country’s largest beer fest, drawing 60,000 attendees last year for the more than 4,000 different beers flowing within its walls.
You can find nearly any style you like, including some of the most highly regarded beers in the country. But behind the pouring booths, the visiting brewers weren’t talking about the juiciest IPAs or most decadent imperial stouts. No, the buzzy place to visit among the brewers themselves was Denver’s own, a year-old brewery dedicated to classic German lager styles.
“Have you had the pilsner?” everyone seemed to have asked me. I wanted to taste what the fuss was about. After an exhausting day at the festival, I made it to Bierstadt. I recognized brewers from the festival lined up two-deep at the bar, waiting. Waiting.
- Waiting. Two bartenders stood facing the taps, hardly even glancing over their shoulders to see the throng gathered at the rail.
- They filled glass after glass with a pale, straw-colored beer capped by a gorgeous white foam, but still they couldn’t keep up with the glasses flying off the bar top.
- This was the pilsner everyone was talking about, but getting to taste it required patience.
That’s not just because it was the sudden darling of taste-making brewers, but because the beer itself takes a long time—around five minutes—to pour. Hence its name: Slow Pour Pilsner. The ritual of the slow pour isn’t intended to frustrate thirsty guests.
It’s a German technique that, brewers say, softens the beer’s carbonation and opens up its delicate flavors. For breweries that make German-style pilsners, it’s a point of pride to pour the beer this way—and if you’re a pilsner purist, you’ll come to appreciate the time-intensive step. “When you go to Germany and ask for a pilsner, that’s just how it’s served,” says Bierstadt’s head brewer and co-owner Ashleigh Carter.
“It’s hard doing it here, because Americans want everything now,” The process goes like this: A bartender begins by aiming the pour for the center of a pilsner glass glass so the foam bubbles up, creating a one-third beer, two-thirds foam ratio. After a few minutes when the foam has dissipated a bit, the bartender would pour a second stream of beer into the glass until the foam reaches above the lip of the glass.
- Ideally, a few more minutes would go by, during which time the foam would settle.
- Finally, the beer is topped off.
- Beer drinkers can replicate the pour with bottled or canned beer: vigorously pour the first splash into the center of the glass until the foam reaches the lip, then follow the same steps.
Whether at a bar or at home, the pour should take three to five minutes total, which can feel like an eternity in beer time, especially for Americans. We don’t drink beer like the Germans do. We want our beer ice-cold, and we want it fast. Remember the Miller Vortex bottle? It was an entire marketing campaign championing a bottle that gets beer into your facehole faster.
- And I’m no historian, but I think it’s unlikely that anyone but us invented shotgunning a can of beer.
- The slow pour, however, is how pilsners were traditionally served in Germany for a few historic reasons.
- Namely, Germans consumed their beers at a warmer temperature than Americans do, around 45 degrees compared to Americans’ preference for near-freezing drafts.
Increased temperature made the beer foam more, and not wanting to pour any of their valuable liquid, bar owners tended to let the foam settle rather than pour or scrape it off the top. When crowds gathered at happy hour, it wasn’t uncommon for German bartenders to line up a stack of half-filled pilsners to create an assembly line of filling, foaming, and topping off.
A side effect of all this slow pouring is that the happens to make good pilsners taste even better. “It’s typically more aromatic when poured that way,” says Ron Barchet, COO and brewmaster at in Downingtown, Pennsylvania, where he preaches the gospel of the slow pour for his Prima Pils. “By slowing down the process, the foam sits for a couple minutes between each of the top offs, and it dries a little bit.
So it becomes more structured and stable. As you hit it with beer again, parts get destroyed but new ones get made. In each of those bubbles, you get what I call a packet of aromas as the CO2 comes out of solution.” Bierstadt’s Ashleigh Carter insists this isn’t just a beer snob fussing; she says a proper pour and proper glassware are crucial to tasting a German pilsner’s bright hops, crisp lager finish, and smooth carbonation.
- Texture is a real thing in beer,” she says.
- A pils is always going to be your most hoppy beer by German standards and your most effervescent.
- When you pour it slowly and allow some of those bubbles to break up, it softens some of that prickly, harsh carbonation and softens the hop bitterness.
- Hops are like salt in that beer, there should be just enough to make you want to take another sip.” As with any ritual, there’s also an aesthetic and cultural piece to the slow pour.
Thorsten Gueur, brewmaster at Missoula, Montana’s, says that in his native Germany, a moussey, rocky head that reaches above the lip of the glass is a sign of a beer’s quality. Serving a beer slowly, in a clean and proper pilsner glass and with the requisite amount of foam is a matter of personal pride.
- You’re not just drinking a beer, an alcohol beverage.
- You get a piece of art served in front of you,” Gueur says.
- The sensation when you get your nose in that foam and your lips on the foam; it becomes a connoisseur’s thing.
- It elevates the whole experience beyond just a refreshing beverage.” Ditto for Ashleigh Carter, who says she’s a stickler for multiple aspects of beer service.
For example, she won’t let bars serve her beers without proper glassware—meaning no standard Shaker pints—because those pint glasses mess with the way the hop and sulfur aromas in her beer are perceived. Taking the five minutes to slowly pour a Bierstadt pilsner, she says, is completely necessary to enjoying it.
Having consumed the Slow Pour Pilsner for myself, I’m on board. Even though I was tired, thirsty, and surrounded by a huge crowd at Bierstadt, once that pilsner slid across the bar, it looked and smelled perfect. I didn’t regret at all the five minutes I spent waiting for it—though I did order a second one once I was halfway done with the first.
Patience is a virtue, I reminded myself, even when it comes to beer. “We have an amazing beer culture in the U.S. as far as a variety of styles; however I think that we really lack when it comes to presentation of beer and actually respecting it,” she says.
How fast should beer come out of tap?
How to Tap a Keg Labor Day weekend is coming up and you or someone you know is throwing a party. So while everyone else is figuring out how to buy the perfect ratio of hot dogs to buns, one-up them and bring the keg. Besides, nothing screams “Back to School” like a keg party.
What You Need: • The keg of beer• A tap system (make sure you have the right one, different kegs may require different taps, so double check )Step 1: Ice Your Brew
• Ice One of the most common causes of excessive foam is warm beer. The exact ideal temperature varies from beer to beer, but your standard American macrobrew will be tastiest around 35˚F. This means you’ll want the beer chilling at least two hours ahead of time, and ideally four to five hours.
Whoever designed the typical keg bucket made it only about half as tall as a standard keg. So in order to ensure that the entire surface area of the keg is cooled (not just the bottom half) place a plastic garbage bag in the bucket, and then put down a thin layer of ice before dropping in the keg itself.
Continue to pack ice inside the garbage bag until you cover the top of the keg. Check periodically and add ice as needed. Tip: Cool down the tap too. The amount of carbonation the beer holds goes down as temperature increases, so letting cold beer hit a warm tube will guarantee an avalanche of foam.
- Fortunately, the solution is pretty easy: Just leave the tap on ice with the keg an hour or so before you decide to tap.
- Step 2: Tap That Sucker Most taps have a handle that pushes down to lock the tap onto the keg, while others have dual-flanges that you twist about a quarter-turn.
- In either case, make sure that the handle or flanges are not in the engaged position.
If they are, beer will spray out as soon as you put the tap on the keg. Seat the party pump on top of the keg, making sure not to push down on the spring-loaded ball valve (another way to spray beer in your face). Lock the pump onto the keg by rotating it clockwise, then engage the tap by pulling the handle out then pushing it down, or by twisting the flanges.
- If you see bubbles or foam forming around the tap, something’s not seated correctly, so disengage the pump, take it off, and try again.
- Step 3: Master Your Pour No matter how carefully you’ve followed these steps, the first glass of beer out of a keg will always be foamy.
- Pour foam into a spare glass until beer starts flowing.
Foam begets foam, so you’ll waste more than you’ll drink if you try to pour beer into a foamy glass. Also, you don’t have to pump before the first pour, since the keg is already under a great deal of pressure. A pour from a keg that’s too fast or slow will create foam.
- You can regulate the speed by how much you pump.
- It should take 10 to 15 seconds to pour a pint with an inch of foam.
- For the first few pints (when the keg is still under pressure), you may want to slow down the flow of the beer.
- You can do this by elevating the tap and glass above your head.
- Then, if you want the flow to speed up, start pumping more.
Some taps also have a small pressure release valve, which you can open by pulling the metal ring attached to it. : How to Tap a Keg