If you’re a person who gets out and about, particularly to parks and areas where bringing glass is verboten, then look to cans.
Canned beer is miles ahead of where it used to be and more and more craft beer is being carefully canned for every one’s enjoyment. There are a number of reasons canning beer is smart for the beer, for the brewery, for the distributor and for the consumer.
1. Aluminum cans are eco friendly. They’re lighter weight (reducing carbon footprint in shipping), and are almost infinitely recyclable into new cans and require way less raw material into recycled vs. new. I’ve heard up to 95% less bauxite, here’s another vantage point.
2. You can bring canned goods into parks and recreation areas. While you most likely wouldn’t slip a bottle of beer into each ski pants pocket, cans would be good. If you wipe out with cans you’ll still not (likely) gashing your leg wide open and you’re respecting the rules of no glass. Still pack everything out, of course.
3. Cans eliminate light. UV and fluorescent light is the enemy of beer. Canned beer totally gets rid of light as an element of danger (keep it cool though too!).
4. Cans have less head space inside than bottles. And less gas, air or otherwise, is better for beer. Oxygen in particular is bad for beer.
5. Cans are lined now where as they used to not be – hence the strong (if not accurate theses days) taste memory of a metallic taste. Regardless, it’s best for the beer and your flavor experience to pour a beer out of whatever vessel it comes in and into a glass. Can, bottle, or keg.
Having been at the inaugural CANFEST in 2009, it was heartening to see that the attendees clearly didn’t give a rip what kind of container the beer came in. They were simply there to enjoy it.
So enjoy your beer and think about cans, or re- think it if you have a bias. Dozens of US brewers are now canning…it’s a great choice for the beer, the drinker and the earth.