Bottled Lager: Staying cool

Related tags Homelessness Beer

A LANCASHIRE pub that has set out its stall to pour 'the perfect pint' is applying the same levels of perfectionism to bottled lager.The Oak Tree Inn...

A LANCASHIRE pub that has set out its stall to pour 'the perfect pint' is applying the same levels of perfectionism to bottled lager.The Oak Tree Inn in Newton-le-Willows has been run since January by technical services company City Dispense as a test bed for experimental technology and an attempt to achieve excellent quality lager through precise practical procedures.

When bottled beers are delivered to the pub, the boxes that hold them are 'honeycombed' - perforated to allow air to circulate while they are stored in a cellar. The cardboard boxes commonly used by breweries and drinks companies for distributing bottled beers are a bugbear for City Dispense business development director Vic Nicholls.

He explains: "All the bottled beers nowadays are delivered in cardboard boxes. What do homeless people wrap themselves up in to keep warm? Cardboard boxes. So we are urging brewers to use to honeycomb boxes. They allow air to circulate around the bottles so they pre-cool in a cold cellar before they chill in the fridges."

With the beers well on their way to reaching drinking temperature, they are then placed in the Oak Tree's chiller cabinets on a strict rotation scheme. Newly-introduced bottles are always placed in the back of the fridge, pushing the chilled bottles forward, ready to be served at the perfect temperature.Eco system technology

City Dispense has also used the Oak Tree Inn to help develop a comprehensive glycol cooling system that not only chills the draught beer lines, but runs the chiller cabinets and performs a host of other functions.

The glycol 'eco system' technology means the cabinets do not require the bulky compressors that usually drop the temperatures in refrigeration units. This frees up a lot of space to allow barstaff to fit more bottles in the cabinets.

The eco system, which City Dispense is installing in a "pub run by a major retailer", can be adapted to run essentially any functions to do with temperature in a pub, according to Vic, from cellar cooling to ice makers.

It also siphons off the heat produced by the Glycol unit to warm up water that can be used, for example, for hand basins in the kitchen or the washrooms.

"What glycol is doing is making everything far more user-friendly and energy efficient," says Vic.

Related topics Beer

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