The post preceding this and some comments on Boak and Bailey's blog have mentioned stale keg beers. It got me wondering. Now I know a little about why this should occur, but very little about how often it occurs, or even, if and when it does occur, whether anyone actually notices it.
It must be difficult, even with the best will in the world, to transport kegs of beer from the farthest corners of, say, the USA, without the beer suffering some deterioration in the process. Nor am I sure if such exports are in the main pasteurised or not. Given the number of stale or staling beers I've had in the US, I suspect most are not. There is also I believe, a wide spread belief that keg beer is somewhat immune to deterioration and I wonder whether that, combined with unfamiliarity with the same product drunk fresh, allows or even encourages palates to be fooled.
I drink almost no keg imports here, so am not really qualified to do other than speculate. What do people that do think?
The little diagram is interesting and informative, though hardly conclusive. It should keep some folks (guess who) happy for a bit. Click on it to read properly.
A bit of a CV. Tandleman is a veteran beer lover, local CAMRA Chairman and activist, beer writer, beer reviewer and pursuer of all things good in beer. He lives in the North West of England and London. Despite his CAMRA membership, he does not limit himself to cask conditioned beer, though he believes that cask conditioning, when done correctly and appropriately, brings a quality to beer that is hard to equal by any other kind of presentation. He is a strong supporter of Northern methods of beer dispense and avidly detests poorly presented beer and dislikes pasteurisation. He regularly visits Germany, has conducted corporate British and German beer tastings for CAMRA at the Great British Beer Festival where he has worked for years on Biere Sans Frontieres and was Deputy Organiser at CAMRA's very successful National Winter Ales Festival in 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012 and at the Manchester Beer and Cider Festival from 2013 to date. He admires good brewers wherever they are and has travelled extensively in pursuit of good beer to drink. He also judges beer at both the International Beer Challenge and the World Beer Awards.
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