• Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create an account.

emannths

Beer in cans versus bottles

36 posts in this topic

Well IMO, I honestly don't mind whether the beer is in can or in bottles. As long as they taste good and cold, I'll take it. :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

First of all, As Martyn Cornwell points out, beer should never be drunk from the container in which it arrives. You should drink your beer from a glass. Of course, there are exceptions. If you're on the beach at a bar-b-que or if your drinking that pale, yellow stuff that has a low alcohol content that bar have for happy hour specials (I still can't call it beer). That said, I sometimes bottle my home brewed beer and when I do, I store it in a dark closet until I'm ready to cool it to drink. Light will destroy the flavor and aromas of the beer that the brewer has worked so hard to bring to you. For this reason, canned beer, when decanted, is better than bottled beer.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You can probably discount my opinion immediately because my beer of choice is currently Miller 64...simply because of the low calorie count. I can drink my beer and not feel guilty. It comes in bottles only now. Last summer it was available for a while (here, anyway) in cans as well.

I keep a beer glass in my freezer. If I am drinking a can of beer, I'll pour it into my icy glass. Otherwise I drink it from the bottle.

If I'm eating out at lunchtime, I'll order a Corona.

Occasionally I'll pick up a six pack of Pyramid Hefeweizen. Love that.


Edited by lindag (log)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

lindan, actually beer should be served warmer than "ice cold". In fact, a high quality craft brew is best at "cellar temperature" which is around 55 degrees F. The reason for this is that the cold numbs your taste buds and they don't sense anything. The warmer temps allow you to experience all of the subtle flavors that the brewer crafted into his beer. That's also why Bud, Miller and Coors (know as BMC, none of which should be labled as beer) have to be so cold to drink them. If you let them warm, they still wouldn't have any taste and people would quit buying them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have had outstanding quality craft brewed beers served in cans. There are many reasons that canning beer makes sense for the brewer.

Some of the posts here objecting to canned beer are, in my opinion, simply elitist and having nothing at all to do with the quality of the beer.

Only drunks and low lifes drink beer from cans? Puh-leeze.


Edited by lancastermike (log)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

lindan, actually beer should be served warmer than "ice cold". In fact, a high quality craft brew is best at "cellar temperature" which is around 55 degrees F. The reason for this is that the cold numbs your taste buds and they don't sense anything. The warmer temps allow you to experience all of the subtle flavors that the brewer crafted into his beer. That's also why Bud, Miller and Coors (know as BMC, none of which should be labled as beer) have to be so cold to drink them. If you let them warm, they still wouldn't have any taste and people would quit buying them.

Well, it just so happens that I prefer my beer ice cold. Maybe to someone else it tastes better warmer but that doesn't affect me whatsoever.

Also, I keep some Stella Artois in my garage fridge for when my good neighbor drops in. That's his favorite beer and I like to have it on hand. (He occasionally helps me out and plows out my driveway in winter.)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

First of all, As Martyn Cornwell points out, beer should never be drunk from the container in which it arrives. You should drink your beer from a glass. Of course, there are exceptions. If you're on the beach at a bar-b-que or if your drinking that pale, yellow stuff that has a low alcohol content that bar have for happy hour specials (I still can't call it beer). That said, I sometimes bottle my home brewed beer and when I do, I store it in a dark closet until I'm ready to cool it to drink. Light will destroy the flavor and aromas of the beer that the brewer has worked so hard to bring to you. For this reason, canned beer, when decanted, is better than bottled beer.

This is just not true for many of us.

I'm with Michaela on this one: I can taste the can. Be it beer, soda, canned goods, there is always a metallic tang for me that is not pleasant. For this reason bottled beer is always more preferable to me than canned, period.

As for the effects of light, my beer either sits in the carton or in my fridge so it is really a non-issue.


Nick Reynolds, aka "nickrey"

"My doctor told me to stop having intimate dinners for four.
Unless there are three other people." Orson Welles
My eG Foodblog

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think most brewers would do cans if they could. And those that don't would be on grounds of marketing and dogma. It's superior in most every aspect, except public opinion. There's a strong stigma there from decades of cheap swill because cans are more economical and ideal for mass production.

The reasons brewers traditionally go with bottles is a canning line is expensive, complicated, and takes up a lot of valuable space. Space that could be better used for beer brewing. At the minimum a manual commercial bottling station could basically fit in a phone booth. Until just a few years ago craft beer in cans was unheard of, but now they're making that investment.

But... in the end, all that matters is what the drinker's experience, so whatever floats your boat.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 06/02/2013 at 8:45 AM, flaminio said:

The reasons brewers traditionally go with bottles is a canning line is expensive, complicated, and takes up a lot of valuable space. Space that could be better used for beer brewing.

Hey late to this one but also I think a major reason a lot of craft breweries do bottles over cans is because so many of them were home brewers first. Is there anything more "home brew" than washing, disinfecting and drying used brown bottles for your own beer? It's impossible to be a used can home brewer but used bottles works and you get used to doing it that way. It always makes me chuckle when I'm helping my brewing mates bottling a batch because we're washing and sanitising new bottles just as we would used, a whole labour step that cans don't need.


A stirring, shaking, blogging, podcasting, distilling, brewing, sous-vide loving, southern bbq smoking, coffee roasting, latte-pouring writer. 

Take a look at The Booze Baron (my site) and PM if you want to chat or contribute.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 3/16/2016 at 9:46 PM, TheBoozeBaron said:

Hey late to this one but also I think a major reason a lot of craft breweries do bottles over cans is because so many of them were home brewers first. Is there anything more "home brew" than washing, disinfecting and drying used brown bottles for your own beer? It's impossible to be a used can home brewer but used bottles works and you get used to doing it that way. It always makes me chuckle when I'm helping my brewing mates bottling a batch because we're washing and sanitising new bottles just as we would used, a whole labour step that cans don't need.

 

It's all about money.  Canning lines are expensive, and small breweries don't make enough beer to keep one busy.  If you don't run the line all day every day, you're not getting the most you could from the money.  

 

There are some mobile operations that come to the brewery and can, and there are a few companies that specialize in small canning operations (one of which has their corporate offices down the hall from mine, I've been meaning to talk to them if I ever see them...).  And I suspect that there are breweries that are canning other nearby breweries stuff, because keeping the canning line running makes financial sense.

 

 

One other issue is production run size.  minimum order for printed cans is something like 50K to 250K, depending on size and where they come from.  Small runs are done with shrink wrap labels, and their are some ways to print on the can post filling, but both add to the per can cost.

 

 

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Most Brewers know cans are better at preserving their product.  For some it's the public misconception that bottles equal a premium product.  For others it's all about cost of putting in a canning line.  Today there are companies that bring their canning line to you for a price that maybe more ressonable for the smaller Brewers 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.