Beer Bottles and Growlers

Beer Bottles and Growlers

What is the difference between beer bottles and growlers? Most beer bottles are made from dark coloured glass or PET; they are used for storing beer and are considered single serving. The majority of homebrew growlers are made from stainless steel (although glass is growing in popularity) and are for transporting, sharing or serving your beer.

Why use dark coloured beer bottles for preserving beer? Studies have shown that when you expose beer to sunlight, it [light] breaks the alpha acids found in hops that, in turn, react to the sulphur found in beer, thus resulting in a skunky smell. This particular smell resembles the stench of being sprayed by a skunk.

Coloured beer bottles and growlers filter out the UV and visible lights that cause the chemical reaction. Even if you say that you handle your beer properly and store it in a dark place, you cannot tell how much exposure the bottle will get in its lifespan. Occasionally green coloured bottles are used, but they are not as effective in filtering light compared with the brown bottles.

While coloured bottles (and growlers) keep beer fresh and good-tasting, there are some disadvantages too. One of the obstacles of using dark-coloured bottles is that it can be difficult to inspect the beer for any defects or even foreign matter floating in it.

**It should also be noted that light does affect the brewing process. Once you have started your fermenting, you should expose your brew to as little light as possible, that is until it is being poured from a bottle or dispensed from a keg.

Homebrew Bottling