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How long do you keep a beer in your stock before drinking?

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by Bradystraps, Jan 27, 2013.

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  1. Bradystraps

    Bradystraps Initiate (0) Jan 24, 2013 Connecticut
    Beer Trader

    I kow it sounds like a simple, stupid question but... what I mean is how long will you keep a beer in your collection before drinking? I do not mean the beers you are cellaring or aging.

    I seem to be buying a lot lately and I do not want any of it to "go bad" if I do not drink in a certain period of time. Is it okay to store a beer at 55-62 degrees for a month or so before drinking?

    Thank you for helping out a rookie! :sunglasses:
  2. FunkyMacGroovin

    FunkyMacGroovin Initiate (0) Sep 22, 2009 California

    Exactly as long as "whenever I get around to drinking it" is.
    dachshunddude86 likes this.
  3. draheim

    draheim Poo-Bah (2,408) Sep 18, 2010 Washington
    Beer Trader

    Anywhere from 3 minutes to several years, depending on multiple factors. And yes, it's OK to store most beers @ 55-62 for a month. Most beers are OK for longer than that.
    oldedog likes this.
  4. Bradystraps

    Bradystraps Initiate (0) Jan 24, 2013 Connecticut
    Beer Trader

    Thank you. I assume nuch colder or warmer temps will take time off the beer's freshness? My garage is usually 25-35 degrees during the winter so I have been keeping my stock inside keeping it at around 62 degrees.
  5. 1424IpA

    1424IpA Initiate (0) Nov 2, 2012 California
    Beer Trader

    Until I get in my truck and put my seat belt on for safety?
    SammyJaxxxx likes this.
  6. jesskidden

    jesskidden Meyvn (1,288) Aug 10, 2005 New Jersey

    No, the colder the better (above freezing, obviously) - refrigeration preserves beer's freshness.

    Every brewer in the country would be overjoyed if their beer was kept at refrigeration temperature once it left the brewery throughout the entire distributor/retailer/customer span, rather than prematurely going stale at room temps.

    Note that serving temperature, cellaring temperature and ideal storage temperature are not the same for most beers.
  7. MinnesotaMoon

    MinnesotaMoon Initiate (0) Jan 15, 2013 Minnesota

    not a rookie bradystraps, just a newer member to the beer loving family. I have the same issue...too much beer and too little time...check the alcohol level of what you have...the general rule is higher alcohol the longer it can sit safely....but the flavor infused stuff...ie. coffee and fruity may lose those qualities over time.
    19etz55 and Andygirl like this.
  8. draheim

    draheim Poo-Bah (2,408) Sep 18, 2010 Washington
    Beer Trader

    I do much the same thing. At our old house I had a dedicated beer fridge in the garage. The garage also served as my beer cellar, although it never got below about 50 degrees even in the middle of winter, and never above about 62 in the summer. I'd regularly rotate stock into the beer fridge as space became available.

    Here in our new house, the garage so far has stayed even cooler, which I assume means it will also get warmer in the summer (less insulation and/or more surface area exposed to outside temps). I just got a new (used) fridge for the garage, but haven't plugged it in yet. By spring if not earlier I'll start moving much of my cellar into that fridge.

    Warmer temps are definitely more harmful to beer than cooler, but I think equally harmful are repeat fluctuations between warm and cool. Stability and continuity are essential for long-term storage, by which I generally mean 6 months or more for most beers (hoppy IPAs of course being the most obvious exception).
  9. CityofBals

    CityofBals Initiate (0) Sep 12, 2012 Illinois

    I've heard that consistent temperature is much more important than the actual temperature (as long as it's not 75* or something nuts). I'd rather have a bottle of Iris from '96 when it remained at 65* it's entire life, compared to a bottle that sat in a garage that fluctuated from 45*-60* for a decade and a half.
  10. Bradystraps

    Bradystraps Initiate (0) Jan 24, 2013 Connecticut
    Beer Trader

    Gents... thank you for all of the input. A LOT of help! :slight_smile:

    I will keep my beers inside for now as the area they are in is about 60-62 degrees. Once the garage gets above 35, I will store out there and then find a fridge for the garage in the Spring.
  11. MaxOhle

    MaxOhle Devotee (415) Nov 10, 2012 Illinois

    I usually do not store beer for a very long time, however I really want to get around to doing that...
  12. devlishdamsel

    devlishdamsel Initiate (0) Aug 1, 2009 Washington

    It depends on the style. White beers and ipas, i try and drink within a week or two as white beer being the modern day descendant of a a gruit was not meant for aging and ipa's have essential oils which deteriorate. With the more sour or belgian style strong bottle conditioned ales, i dont really give it a time limit and have sucessfully kept some of those for over a year ( although they typically don't last near that long).
  13. JohnQVD

    JohnQVD Initiate (0) Jan 23, 2011 New York

    It depends on how much I have at the time I bought it, what it is and if I got it to share with someone I may not see for a bit. If I have a quantity of something I know won't last then I try to get to it fairly quickly, where the last Breakfast Stout may sit for several months. Most everything gets drunk within 6 months unless it's something I know can take longer storage, even if I'm not aging it. Then it will tend to sit so I can drink the stuff that needs to be drunk fresh.
  14. Hamburgers

    Hamburgers Initiate (0) Jan 3, 2013 California

    Buy two, drink one and cellar one. Let your palate decide on when you want to open the second.
    CreightonSM likes this.
  15. CreightonSM

    CreightonSM Devotee (423) Dec 23, 2010 New York

    Hamburgers nailed it.
  16. ilikebeer03

    ilikebeer03 Champion (804) Oct 17, 2012 Texas

    It depends on the style. For example, IPAs are best when they are freshest (the hops tend to fade with time) and stouts tend to get better with time.
  17. leedorham

    leedorham Crusader (701) Apr 27, 2006 Washington

    My method is as follows:
    1. Go to store with no budget or clear idea what I'm looking for
    2. Buy a bunch of beer
    3. Stick some of it in my fridge (usually the IPAs) and some in the cellar depending on how much room in the fridge
    4. Drink whatever I feel like drinking whenever I feel like drinking it
    5. Repeat
  18. ilikebeer03

    ilikebeer03 Champion (804) Oct 17, 2012 Texas

    This is sound science.
    leedorham and SammyJaxxxx like this.
  19. Zhiguli

    Zhiguli Aspirant (245) Jul 12, 2012 California

    I go around buying the best beer I can find and then store it in different temperature wine cooler fridges. My ipas are never off the warm shelf at the store, on ice in a cooler in the car, go right into the fridge at home. Then my beers are ordered by style and abv content to decide which temperature would be best for storing and placed in one of my 4 refrigerators with marginally higher temp. Then I cellar away the ones that should be left out of fridges completely.

    the fuck i do!
  20. UCLABrewN84

    UCLABrewN84 Poo-Bah (12,199) Mar 18, 2010 California

    I only buy a handful of bottles for home consumption at a time, so I would say they sit in my fridge for less than a week or so.
    19etz55 likes this.
  21. otispdriftwood

    otispdriftwood Defender (637) Dec 9, 2011 Colorado
    Beer Trader

    Depends on how much I like what I have and whether I buy something I like better but sooner or later, it moves.
  22. ThirstyBehr

    ThirstyBehr Initiate (0) Jan 19, 2012 Maryland

    longest i lasted was 3 months with a bottle of SA infinium. drank a 4 pack of g'knight wayyyy too fast ran out of beer and popped the cork lol drank the whole thing and at 11% it was surely a bad decision lol
  23. cleeze

    cleeze Initiate (0) Nov 24, 2008 Maine

    I play eeny meeny miny mo when I pick out a beer. Some survive longer than others
  24. diesel59

    diesel59 Initiate (0) Jan 3, 2012 New York

    with all the hype about freshness and bottling dates............ I drink them all as fast as possible........... hell, we could all be gone tomorrow......................
  25. reverseapachemaster

    reverseapachemaster Aspirant (244) Sep 21, 2012 Texas
    Beer Trader

    I buy very few beers with the intent of aging them for a long time. I have a collection of beers that I plan on drinking on special occasions that can support aging. Some beers I've bought and after hearing reviews I decided aging would improve the beer so I've tagged them for purposeful aging. Most of the other beers at home are unintentionally getting aged because I'm not drinking them fast enough. I know which ones need to be drank first while the rest will stay stable or improve with age. I have a very small collection of stuff in the fridge that's daily drinker kind of stuff that I drink whenever I decide I want it. I have a lot of homebrew around the house to drink as well.
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