Kegs have become hugely popular in recent years and demand for home brewing has risen as people have become more aware of the processes of creating one’s beer. A lot of beer enthusiasts find that drinking beer from a keg has a better taste than beer in a can or bottle.
Refilling your own keg has an array of advantages with the main three being the better taste, control and financial savings (see How Much Does It Cost To Fill Up A Keg Of Beer?). Because kegs keep the beer away from any light strike and the amount of carbonation that flows into the draft, there is less exposure to any process that can affect the taste and quality of the beer.
By having a keg at home, you can control how much gas to expose your beer to according to your own personal preference whilst also ensuring that the beer is evenly mixed throughout compared to buying a drink from the pub where it may not have been mixed thoroughly.
Beer in cans and bottles have less consistency and the quality in taste is clear due to this. The financial savings that come with kegs mean that although you are spending more initially, you actually save a lot of money in the long run.
With an average saving of 40% to 60% compared to bottle or can purchases, keeping a keg at home in a kegerator can be extremely friendly on your bank account as well.
But can you fill your own keg? And how do you do it? We’ve gathered everything you need to know so you can have the best beer.
Can you pour bottled beer into a keg?
For those who may have bottled beer to spare when they purchase a keg, they may want to pour what they have into the keg to brew it more thoroughly. Bottled beer has already been conditioned meaning that it has been primed and fermented and contains half a cup of corn sugar to preserve its flavor in the bottle. This is one of the major differences between bottle beer and beer that is kept in the keg.
Technically, you can pour bottled beer into the keg, however, you run the risk of oxidizing all of the beer due to the amount of gas that it has been exposed to. Bottled beer has already been exposed to lots of gas during the bottling process as it has been fermented and pouring it into the keg may expose it to even more.
You may find that the beer has lost its taste and isn’t as consistent throughout due to this. However, if you are dead set on refilling your keg with bottled beer then make sure you consume it within one or two days of doing so. The more the beer sits in the keg, the more oxidized it is going to become.
Make sure that if you do decide to fill a keg with bottled beer that you are not mixing it with beer that may already be in the keg as this will cause an inconsistency in the taste and the gas exposure.
How do you fill a ball lock keg?
Ball lock kegs have increased in popularity thanks to the design that makes it easy to release the pressure from the keg which is ideal when refilling the keg yourself. Compared to other kegs, they are taller and can have either a pin lock lid or a ball lock lid depending on your preference.
To refill the keg, make sure that you are exposing the beer to a suitable amount of carbon dioxide to ensure that the beer will maintain its quality and carbonation. Having an appropriate amount of carbon dioxide is going to make sure your beer is fizzy and has a great taste.
In conclusion, drinking beer from a keg is much better than purchasing bottles or cans. With less waste, financial savings and better taste overall, this is a fantastic solution for those who want to try something new and different. For those who homebrew, drinking beer from the keg will save you the bottling process which can take a long time.
For those who want to refill with a branded beer then you can mix it evenly to suit your tastes and control the amount of gas that the beer is exposed to. Depending on what kind of tap handle you have, you can also control the pressure that the beer is poured ensuring a perfect pour every time.