How to Pour Beer

How to Pour Draft BeerAs a bartender you’ll be mixing and creating more cocktails and drink concoctions than you’ll ever be able to keep track of, yet one of the most important drinks you’ll be serving is ice cold draft beer. It’s easily the most popular drink in any bar and is also a staple in almost every country around the world. Beer is served in cans, bottles, or draft and has a specific method for pouring without disrupting the taste and quality. The entire drinking experience can be changed if it is served flat or foamy. And it is the bartender who serves up this experience in each and every glass. If you don’t want to lose tips or customers then take this bartender’s guide on pouring beer into consideration before serving the next pint.

1. It’s in the glass

When it comes to the beer glass, you always need to make sure it’s spotless. The worst thing that could happen when someone is about to enjoy their beer is to see residue, smudges, or even worse, food particles (it does happen). Residue can also affect the carbonation of the brew. Leftover water or cleaning solution can do the same thing so you definitely don’t want to use a wet glass. Take a quick peek at the glass and if it’s clear and free of residue then continue with the pour.

2. Holding the glass at an angle prevents excess foam

When pouring from a tap or from a bottle, holding the serving glass at an angle and close to the spout prevents an excess of foam and carbonation. Grasp the glass about two-thirds of the way down and tilt it at a 45 degree angle under the spout. Pull the tap all the way out to allow the beer to flow free of any blockage in the line. A half or partial pull can cause the beer to foam and carbonate more than it was intended. As the beer hits the glass it will flow to bottom. When the glass is about two-thirds full begin to tilt the glass straight up to allow it to fill completely.

3. The right amount of foam makes the perfect glass of beer

As the beer is about to fill the glass, move it slightly down so there is only about a half inch or less of foam. The presence of foam allows the customer to appreciate the aroma of the beer, yet too much foam will leave them feeling you did not do your job of providing maximum product.

4. Serve and Enjoy!

Place the full glass on the bar or serving mat. Set out a coaster and place the full glass on the coaster for the customer to enjoy. Remember to take your time and go slow. Thicker beers and lagers require more time to pour. When the beer fills two-thirds of the way, set it on the bar for at least 10 seconds to allow the beer to settle. Then finish the pour as normal. Don’t forget to practice just as you would with other drinks. Perfecting your method will take time but is worth the extra effort.


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