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Why Is My Keg Beer so Foamy?

Beer foam

Keg care basics for your Buffalo- and Rochester-area bar or restaurant

A foamy or stale keg pour is a bartender’s nightmare – and it’s not great for your customers, either. If you want to avoid bad pours and get more life from your kegs, keep in mind the following tips:

  • Let the keg settle after moving it – If you move your keg, give it some time to settle down. If you don’t, you’ll probably experience excessive foaming when you tap it. Just like soda, beer is carbonated – and just like soda, it will foam when you shake it. Try to let your keg sit for at least an hour after you move it.
  • Keep it at the right temperature – Because keg beer is unpasteurized, it should stay refrigerated to between 34 and 40 degrees Fahrenheit at all times.
  • Keep it fresh – A keg of beer will typically retain its full flavor from anywhere from 30 to 45 days after tapping, but that window is very much dependent on storage conditions and the type of beer in the keg. For example, hoppy beers and those containing more alcohol will last longer because hops and alcohol inhibit bacteria growth (see “keep it clean” below).
  • Keep it clean – There are two root causes of spoiled beer in your keg. The first – microorganism growth – is unavoidable; about the only way to prevent it is drink the beer in your keg before the little critters do their damage (see “keep it fresh” above). If you have a more sophisticated set up that includes beer lines, it’s imperative to keep them clean with professional beer line cleaning to keep bacteria, yeast, and mold at bay.

    The other cause of spoilage is oxidation – typically caused by the presence of oxygen leftover by the pumping process. Oxidation will flatten the beer, giving it a sour taste that can make it undrinkable. Again, professional beer line maintenance is your friend here.

Follow these simple tips to get fresher pours for longer from your kegs. Enjoy!

Our 10-point beer line cleaning system uses a time-tested combination of solutions and procedures that virtually eliminate microorganism buildup and mineral deposits that can lead to foamy, skunky pours. To learn more, give the beer line experts at Irish Carbonic a call today!

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