Nothing beats a cool pint of cask beer when the sun is out. We hope your bars are bursting with customers seeking refreshment.
Cask beer leaves the brewery unfinished, and we rely on you to complete the job. So, just like spraying factor 50 before you spend the day in the beer garden, you need to take a few extra precautions with your beer, when temperatures soar. Here are a few hot weather tips to help you serve it in perfect condition.
Keep things cool
It may sound like we’re stating the obvious, but don’t stay too long in the sun.
- Whatever you do, don’t leave cask beer outside in this heat. Get it into a cool cellar as quickly as possible.
- After delivery, give your casks time to acclimatise. Our Head Brewer, Dan, suggests that ideally, you need two days to properly cool to cellar temperature before tapping and venting. Do keep this in mind when planning stocks and placing orders.
Take things easy
Yeast consumes the residual sugars in the beer, developing its flavour and producing Co2 to give it carbonation. If the beer has been too warm it can cause issues like fobbing, both when first tapped and when in service.
- Get your cask beer set up and venting early. It can be hard pegged for as long as needed after venting.
- If necessary, use a vent with a tap in combination with your usual spiles, so you can control any loss of beer and foam, e.g. Barrel Vent Peg with Tubing | Masons (harrymasons.com)
- If cask beer is ever very lively, you can initially use a hard wooden spile to vent the beer. A hard wooden spile is slightly porous so it will let some condition escape, while controlling the amount of beer and foam being lost. It will get wet and your shive may get blocked, so change the spile frequently until the escaping gas has calmed down.
Be careful not to over vent. The warm temperature means that the yeast has probably fermented most of the sugar, so it won’t condition the beer much more than it already has, so only vent off the excess condition.
Monitor the temperature
Temperature plays an important role in the conditioning of beer, as well as its appeal.
- Make sure your cellar cooling is working, and that the temperature is checked in the areas where your beer is stored and racked. If it gets too warm the yeast can get stressed and the finings will degrade. Both can cause hazy beer.
- We recommend a cellar temperature between 11-13˚C. You may need to adjust things slightly to take account of extreme weather. When the temperature is very hot outside, you may wish to set the cooling a degree lower, however this will increase your energy bills.
- When things are busy, please remember to keep the cellar door closed to try and maintain the temperature. You may need to remind your team if your cellar is accessed regularly.
Plan and order accordingly
You may need to adjust your regular order when the weather is this warm. Demand might be higher than usual, and it is advisable to let your beer acclimatise to cellar temperature, as detailed above.
- Use Adnams Rockpool app to manage your orders. Click here to find out more.