Oh… the myths that revolve around beer cans.  When most of us were growing up there was a stigma around beer sold in cans.  Only cheap beer was available in cans.  But with the rise of craft breweries has come some advancements in cans as well, one of which… you can find craft beer in cans.  But why?  Why would a brewery fight such a stigma only to have their beer in a can versus having it in a bottle?

The short of it is that cans are a far better transport solution for a beverage that is as sensitive as beer is.  Lets look at it a little deeper, shall we?

Our beer is a sensitive beverage… sensitive to things such as:

  • Light – have you ever had a skunky beer before?  This is a result of too much UV light getting to hop compounds in the beer, they react and create that skunky aroma.  Ew.
  • Oxygen – Too much oxygen exposure to your beer and you’ll start to taste some cardboardy (old, stale) flavors… not what you want in most beers.

This is why kegs are so fantastic, and why draft beer is usually the best option to try something.  The beer is protected from these two factors so well when it’s tucked away in a safe, secure beer keg.  As soon as people get involved and start moving the beer around to package it, the opportunity for light and oxygen to get inside that beer rises exponentially (obviously).

Beer cans almost mimic the environment of a beer keg, closed off to the outside world…protected from the light and oxygen that’s trying to destroy the beer inside.  These containers are designed for portability.  They can safely transport a beer using lighter, safer, easier stacked container… it makes all the sense in the world.

You will still hear people that swear that drinking beer out of a can, the beer will taste different out of a bottle…and in some cases it can.  If you are drinking straight out of the container…yeah, it’s going to taste differently… don’t do that though.  We. as craft beer fans know that we should be drinking out of a proper beer glass, right?  There are also lots of environmental factors or storage factors that will make one beer taste differently than another, though I feel that two beers stored and treated the same will always taste the same, if not lean heavily toward the can tasting better.  Try the experiment for yourself.  Pick up a beer in both a canned and bottle variety… give them a blind taste test and see if you can taste  difference!

Cans>bottles.  End of story.


Leave a Comment.