Author Topic: Life span of beer in a keg vs a bottle  (Read 1757 times)

Offline joshthebrewer

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Life span of beer in a keg vs a bottle
« on: April 30, 2015, 12:18:45 PM »
I'm thinking about starting to keg my beer and had heard that beer doesn't last as long in a keg vs in the bottle. I make 5 gallon batches and they ted to last awhile since most of the time I'm the only one drinking it. Anyone know anything that could help me know if this is the right step or not?

Offline brew inspector

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Re: Life span of beer in a keg vs a bottle
« Reply #1 on: April 30, 2015, 02:02:36 PM »
It doesn't last as long in a keg because of ease of access and you never really know how much is left so you just pour another glass

Offline duboman

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Re: Life span of beer in a keg vs a bottle
« Reply #2 on: April 30, 2015, 02:23:15 PM »
I think the OP is asking about preservation and freshness of the beer, not the fact it may be consumed faster:)

I've had kegs kick in less than a week and some that take several months and haven't noticed any degradation of product in the kegs that seem to take forever to kick, they are kept cold and under gas. Bottles I try to store at cellar temperatures and they also last a long time properly stored. Some for years, But I think storing a keg to cellar a beer for months or years is poor use of the vessel.
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Offline Wort-H.O.G.

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Re: Life span of beer in a keg vs a bottle
« Reply #3 on: April 30, 2015, 02:25:57 PM »
depends. i have consumed kegs of beer 6+ months later...no issues...sometime maturation made for better beer.
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Offline kramerog

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Re: Life span of beer in a keg vs a bottle
« Reply #4 on: April 30, 2015, 02:40:19 PM »
Under the same conditions, I think bottle conditioned beer is more stable than kegged beer because the yeast in the bottle scavenge the oxygen.  However, my kegged beer is kept cold while my bottled beer is kept at cellar temps, which fluctuates significantly over the year.

Offline joshthebrewer

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Re: Life span of beer in a keg vs a bottle
« Reply #5 on: May 01, 2015, 10:51:33 AM »
Thanks for the input everyone it really helped. I'm thinking that I may look at some 2 1/2 gal kegs since most parties I have will only drain about that much beer. But I don't know  ;D

Offline corkybstewart

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Re: Life span of beer in a keg vs a bottle
« Reply #6 on: May 01, 2015, 12:00:18 PM »
I've had kegs of high alcohol beer, sours, and other stuff that I don't drink daily be delicious after 3 years.  The key is too keep the temp fairly constant and keep the CO2 turned on. We just finished a keg of sour porter that I made in October 2012. 
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Offline inbituinthebrew

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Re: Life span of beer in a keg vs a bottle
« Reply #7 on: May 01, 2015, 01:17:00 PM »
I am also finally converting to kegs, and based on the research I've done thus far there seems to be very little difference in the stored product for the average homebrewers' storage times. As mentioned previously, most beers benefit from a little conditioning time. I plan on only bottling my belgians and any imperial stouts, etc. One thing I might recommend is going with 5 gal kegs instead of 2.5 gal kegs. You already brew 5 gal batches, and it cuts your cleaning in half.
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Offline Wort-H.O.G.

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Re: Life span of beer in a keg vs a bottle
« Reply #8 on: May 01, 2015, 01:52:45 PM »

Thanks for the input everyone it really helped. I'm thinking that I may look at some 2 1/2 gal kegs since most parties I have will only drain about that much beer. But I don't know  ;D

Considering cost, just mind as well get the 5 gals. You don't have to fill them all the way, just purge O2 after filling.


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Ken- Chagrin Falls, OH
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Offline Joe Sr.

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Re: Life span of beer in a keg vs a bottle
« Reply #9 on: May 01, 2015, 01:59:39 PM »
I've had kegs of high alcohol beer, sours, and other stuff that I don't drink daily be delicious after 3 years.  The key is too keep the temp fairly constant and keep the CO2 turned on. We just finished a keg of sour porter that I made in October 2012.

No real need to keep the CO2 turned on unless you have a leak.

If I'm storing them, I tend to over pressurize a bit, though.  They're stored at cellar temp (+/- 55F).  When they go into the fridge I let them chill and then bleed off the pressure.

I've got some old ales in kegs that are a couple years old.  Of course, a little oxygenation doesn't hurt them.
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Offline GolfBum

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Re: Life span of beer in a keg vs a bottle
« Reply #10 on: May 03, 2015, 10:50:03 AM »
My last IPA that I kegged I noticed that the last few pours weren't as crisp tasting. The hop profile seemed to get muddled compared to earlier pours in the keg. I haven't had many beers last longer than a month or two in the keg so I don't have much experience with long storage in kegs.   

Offline Wort-H.O.G.

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Re: Life span of beer in a keg vs a bottle
« Reply #11 on: May 03, 2015, 12:03:41 PM »

My last IPA that I kegged I noticed that the last few pours weren't as crisp tasting. The hop profile seemed to get muddled compared to earlier pours in the keg. I haven't had many beers last longer than a month or two in the keg so I don't have much experience with long storage in kegs.

IME, you start picking up some sediment at the end and it detracts. Kegs I keep longer get another round of dry hops mid way,
Ken- Chagrin Falls, OH
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Vienna IPA          O'Fest
Dort
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Amber Ale
Next:
Ger Pils
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Offline majorvices

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Re: Life span of beer in a keg vs a bottle
« Reply #12 on: May 04, 2015, 04:16:32 AM »
Kegged beer stays fresher longer than kegged beer. While conditioning in the bottle definitely helps to keep beer fresher longer, the effects of oxidation are still much greater in bottles than in kegs. And, for that matter, you certainly can naturally condition in the keg. I have never had a bottled beer that stayed fresh for longer than 6 months. Oxidation always starts to take its toll. That said, some beers like barley wines benefit from oxidation.

Offline Joe Sr.

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Re: Life span of beer in a keg vs a bottle
« Reply #13 on: May 04, 2015, 10:13:46 AM »
Kegged beer stays fresher longer than kegged beer.

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Offline majorvices

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Re: Life span of beer in a keg vs a bottle
« Reply #14 on: May 04, 2015, 10:57:33 AM »
Kegged beer stays fresher longer than kegged beer.

It's like de ja vu all over again!

Ha! Fresher than bottled beer.