Creating the Perfect Craft Beer
When you say the word “nitro” people normally associate it with the chemical in the Fast and Furious series that increases the speed of cars in an instant or liquid nitrogen that has made its appearance in various feature films as a substance that makes things freeze then shatter (ex: Terminator 2). However, when you start associating the word “nitro” with “beer”, the first thing that people think is beer being cooled by liquid nitrogen. While this does exist, and it’s incredibly delicious, there are alternatives to using nitrogen in the form of a Nitro Beer System.
The Nitrogen Secret
Have you ever gone to a bar that serves craft beer, ordered a pint, took a sip and just fell in love with the taste? A lot of craft beer lovers have, and they always swear by the brand that they are being served. What few people realize though is that the beer is just half the story. There is a subtle addition that is added which enhances the flavor and makes it that much better. The secret is nitrogen, a gas that is found in abundance in the air, which now finds itself in the glasses of happy beer drinkers the world over.
Tasting the Difference
Regular beer is normally combined with CO2 (carbon dioxide) in order to give it that lively and prickly feeling as it enters into your mouth. It’s the same concept that occurs whenever you drink a can of soda. If you open a fresh cold can, you get this nice prickly sensation in your mouth when you drink it. However, leave it out for 20 to 30 minutes and you wind up with flat soda that doesn’t taste as good since all the C02 is gone. In the case of modern day craft beers, the secret behind their delicious success is by replacing most of the CO2 with nitrogen. The end result is a beer that feels creamy in the mouth and tastes thick and delicious. To accomplish this, a nitro beer system is used which infuses the beer with a combination of 70 percent nitrogen and roughly 30 percent CO2 (though the exact ratio sometimes differs depending on the brewer).
If you’re a craft brewer that is just starting out or a bar looking to enhance the beers that they already have, you should give you nitro a try. You’ll be surprised just how good it looks and tastes.