Beer is one of mankind’s greatest creations, so not enjoying it properly is a shame. First off, you always want to pour beer into a glass before drinking it because the aromas in the head allow you to taste the beer the way it’s meant to be tasted. You can’t get a proper head if you’re drinking from a bottle or a beer can, so you won’t be enjoying the beer to its fullest potential. In this video, we show the best technique to get the perfect pour out of a tap, a bottle, and a can. It also provides tips to prevent excess foam and keep everything sanitary.
The head of the beer comes from the formation of CO2 bubbles, which happen when liquid CO2 comes out of solution in the beer and is converted to gas. This process is called nucleation. Controlling the rate of nucleation is what gives you the perfect amount of head in your glass. Start with a fresh glass without any dust or scratches. Many people think it’s a good idea to use a frosty mug, but that only speeds up nucleation, causing the beer to flatten faster and the aromas to deaden more quickly. Instead, start with a glass rinsed with cold water. Never use a hot glass straight from the dishwasher. Warmer beer will cause foam issues not to mention taste terrible.
No matter what you’re pouring from, start with the glass at a 45º angle and pour into the side of the glass. Nucleation is determined by a few factors – how aggressively you pour and the temperature of the beer, but most importantly, the angle at which you are pouring. For the perfect pour, you’ll want to finish with 1″-1.5″ of head on your beer.
Pouring From A Tap
- Open the faucet fully. A partially opened faucet will contribute to foamy beer.
- Tilt the glass 45º and fill it about 3 quarters of the way, making sure to keep the head small.
- For the last fourth of the pour, start tilting the glass straight up to form the head. This will give you the proper aroma and make your beer taste delicious.
- Don’t swirl the glass while pouring. The pour may look right and give a decent looking head to the beer but it will quickly disappear and go flat.
- Don’t over pour the beer. It costs more money and ends up aerating it incorrectly.
- Lastly, don’t let the faucet touch the glass. Beer residue, as well as outside bacteria on the faucet, can contaminate the beer.
Pouring From A Bottle
Pouring from a bottle uses the same technique as pouring out of the tap. You want to make sure that your beer is down to the desired serving temperature before pouring, so giving it time to cool down in the refrigerator is recommended. Again, start with a glass freshly rinsed with cold water and try to keep the bottle from touching the side of the glass as the outside of the bottle may contain bacteria, but try to keep it as close to the glass as possible. Tilt the glass 45º and fill it in the same way as done from a tap, finishing with an inch to an inch and a half of head. Voilà, Perfect pour.
Pouring From A Can
This next trick prevents beer from glugging out of a can when you pour. As always, start with your rinsed glass. Open the can and flip the tab back. Then rotate the can in your hand so that when you begin to pour the spout will be at a 90º angle, away from the ground. Use the same technique as before – Tilt your glass 45º then straight up – and you’ll notice the beer doesn’t glug out of the can but pours very smoothly.
The Perfect Pour
Using one of the perfect pour techniques will have you enjoying your beer the way the brewer intended, experiencing all the aromas and flavors that make each beer unique.