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Old 02-20-2008, 03:32 PM   #1
codyw
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Default Question about pasteurization

Ok, I am new to world of brewing and am just doing some hard research on the details of brewing before I start my first brew. Researching has gotten me thinking...

I know that most macro brew kegs are not pasteurized and therefore need to be refrigerated because room temperature will cause the bacteria to thrive. What I find odd is that microbrewing insists on long term conditioning of beers at room temperatures. We want the beer to be at room temp so the yeast can properly function, but what does this do in terms of bacteria?

Also, with macro brews, it seems they go bad after 120 days, but apparently waiting that long for a micro could be a good thing? Is it that the macros have already been sitting around that long to condition before they are sent out, then given the 120 day life?

I know this question is not very practical because as a micro brewer, one would not worry about the pasteurization, but I am just curious why there is a discrepancy between macro and micro when it comes to keeping non pasteurized beer at room temperatures.

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Old 02-20-2008, 04:43 PM   #2
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Macro has taught the masses that fresher is better therfore they need to consume more, faster.

Micro is created to let the flavors develop. Unlike Macro that prides itself on being flavorless.

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Old 02-20-2008, 05:12 PM   #3
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micros and especially homebrewers are a ton better at sanitation. a keg of micro at a bar might last a couple weeks. the BMC in the same bar lasts one to two days. BMC has their kegs in that bar not much more than a month after brew day, so a little wild yeast/bacteria never has a chance to do any damage. We take our time and work hard to make beer that gets better and better over time. So, frankly, we're better at making complex brews that not only stand the test of time, but get better and better as time goes on.BMC is great at doing things as quickly as possible, but notoriously bad at making complex beer. Have you tried any of michelob's "craft" brews? They're some of the worst beers I've ever tortured my tastebuds with.

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Old 02-20-2008, 09:03 PM   #4
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If you are very sanitary in your practices then bacteria will not be able to get into and live in your beer. I thought all macro brewers pasteurized/filtered their beer at some point in the process just to be safe but if not I haven't heard of that.

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Old 02-20-2008, 10:01 PM   #5
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shafferpilot,

you might have the answer I am looking for. If macro breweries are sloppy with sanitation, then it makes sense why their unpasteurized beer will spoil soon. Here is my only question then: If micro's are really about aging, then why will a kegged micro only last 2 weeks at a bar? It seems like people on this forum talk about leaving their beer kegged for months. Does it have to do with those 2 weeks being at serving temperature? I would think that would help it be unspoiled though?
Thanks guys

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Old 02-20-2008, 10:11 PM   #6
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I just thought about it some more and concluded that it most likely only lasts two weeks after its been tapped and is exposed to oxygen. Thats it isnt it? Ahh the slow process of learning about brewing

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Old 02-20-2008, 10:14 PM   #7
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I never have thought of the BMC as sloppy. They have no need to be sloppy, they have money, employees and equipment. They have QC departments and labs. My assumption is they are very clean.

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Old 02-20-2008, 10:21 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by codyw
I just thought about it some more and concluded that it most likely only lasts two weeks after its been tapped and is exposed to oxygen. Thats it isnt it? Ahh the slow process of learning about brewing
Tapping a keg does not expose it to oxygen. Unless of course you are using a party tap. Most kegs are pressurized with CO2.


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Old 02-20-2008, 10:22 PM   #9
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CodyW,

I think you last point is accurate...there definelty a differnece between how long a beer can be stored in a keg vs. how long it can be stored once it has already been tapped once (I.E. the Oxygen Exposure)

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Old 02-20-2008, 10:24 PM   #10
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I still think some oxygen gets in and that it is not all just CO2 but hell, I could be wrong

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