The author of well-regarded beer book Beer Is Proof God Loves Us (affiliate Link) and all-around beer scholar Professor Charles Bamforth recently spoke with CHOW’s Jordan Mackay about the best ways ensure your’re getting a quality pint when out on the town. The British author prefers to drink real ale served from a cask when he can get it, but he offers some suggestions when you’re out and want to make sure the beer you order is the best it can be.
Bamforth cautions against thinking that draught beer is your best bet for freshness and quality since the integrity of the tap-lines and other system components at bars and pubs are often suspect due to lax upkeep practices. He recommends asking your server what beers they sell the most and ordering a pint of that to ensure the freshest beer. He mentions that he is weary of establishments that have “too many beers on tap” as this could mean the less popular beers are sitting in kegs and tap-lines for long periods of time.
His preference when ordering at a bar with a long tap-list is to order “something out of a bottle” from a local brewery as even bottles shipped across the country can lose much of their fresh flavor, especially if it is a very hop-forward beer like an IPA or anything that’s been dry-hopped, and imported beers are usually off his list entirely as it is too hard to be sure you are getting a good sample.
He offers one last suggestion: “perhaps the best nonkeg vessel for transporting beer is a can.”
We’ve certainly seen a huge surge in craft brewers who are offering their products in cans, and Bamforth is the sort of beer expert whose support and recommendations can help canned craft beer be recognized as more than just marketing.
You can read more of Bamforth’s discussion about getting the most from your beer at the CHOW post.
- Source: Is Beer on Tap Really the Best?