Thursday, December 18, 2008

Clean your pipes

The old brewmaster said:

  • Know your water.
  • Keep good notes.
  • Clean your pipes.
Brewing is 5% inspiration and 95% perspiration. Clean, clean, clean! And then clean again.

Then, when the beer has departed the brewery, and is gone from the brewer's control ...

A good draught beer is only as good as a clean draught line. A chef changes the fryer oil; a car owner changes the engine oil; a bartender must clean the draught pipes (lines), and often.

Two months is too long to wait: a dirty line can easily develop an anaerobic infection. It's harmless, medically, but foul, organoleptically. Translation: it tastes terrible.

Gunk, like yeast and beer stone (calcium deposits), accumulates. Clean the pipes at least once every two weeks, if not every time you change a keg.

Cleaning the tap

A series of photos demonstrating line-cleaning technique: here.


  1. You might be a beer geek if you've ever uttered any of the following phrases:

    "Is that by weight or by volume?"
    "Aw, cr@p, twist-offs!"
    "Probably dirty hoses......."
    Any opportunity to insert the word "sparge" into the discussion......

  2. No photos of you taking apart the faucet. Come on Tom!!! :)


Comment here ...