As the hospitality industry begins to reopen, eager customers are chomping at the bit to get back to the bar in the hope they’ll get to experience the taste of a refreshing pint of lager or ale served right in front of their eyes.
The thing is, no matter how good your bar team is at pulling a pint, you can’t guarantee you’ll always serve the perfect pint if your cellar room isn’t in order.
Andrew Pinder, founder of Pinder Cooling and Heating shares some of his top tips on maintaining your equipment and cellar room and reveals just how much poor maintenance affects the taste of a pint.
Control the air.
The air inside your cellar room impacts your beer more than you know. For every pint of ale served, a pint of air from the cellar gets drawn into the cask, so if you are housing a dirty or poorly managed cellar, contaminated air is going to find its way in and begin its contamination process. That’s why correct ventilation is so important.
Traditionally, most older cellar rooms don’t have natural ventilation, therefore man-made systems are required to ensure the air is always clean and fresh. Most of these systems work by removing the heat in a cellar through a fan outside the cellar – these are usually located on the outside of the cellar wall itself – but again, installing these and never touching them again isn’t advised. You’ll need to take care of cleaning the grills, ensuring dust and dirt doesn’t get a chance to build up.
Know your temperatures.
Did you know that your cellar itself should always be kept at a temperature of between 11°C and 13°C? That’s because in order to preserve quality – particularly that of cask ale – the product temperature should remain at 12°C.
If your beer becomes a temperature of anything higher than around 12°C, then bacteria begin to multiply, issues with fobbing occur and you’ll find it rather difficult to even pour it properly. You might want to use a thermometer to regularly check temperatures are maintained. And try your best to instal cooling system temperature sensors at barrel height and away from the evaporator.
It’s also worth noting there are a number of things which can affect the temperature of your cellar room, so it’s worth noting where exactly to place certain equipment. All heat-producing equipment such as line python coolers for beer and soft drinks, cooling cabinets and icemakers for example should be kept outside the cellar in a well-ventilated area.
Clean, clean, and clean again
You might find it hard to believe if you’re new to the trade, but poor cleaning and maintenance of your cellar room will actually impact the taste. And it’s not just the taste. The appearance and aroma of your product is negatively impacted too – if you don’t want to serve a sour, vinegary pint, then take note.
Whilst maintenance and repairs should be carried out by a professional, there are small things you can do to enhance the life span and efficiency of your equipment, thus making it more likely you’ll always serve that perfect pint:
- At least once a week inspect the Cellar Cooler and take notice if there’s an excess of ice building up around the unit.
- Twice per month, use a soft brush to wipe away any dust and debris from the metal safety bars on the front of the unit and the cooling fins on the back.
- Mop up any spillages immediately- beer is regarded by standards industry as a food and should be treated as one.
- Clean the lines regularly – you wouldn’t serve a pint in a dirt glass, so don’t let it run through a dirty line.
There are tonnes of other tips and tricks to help you on your way to serving the perfect pint. Contact one of our team for expert advice https://pindercooling.com/contact/.