At Ludlow Brewing Company we mostly brew cask ale (also known as cask-conditioned or real ale). This is living beer conditioned in casks that we supply wholesale to pubs with the right equipment to store and serve it correctly.
Cask beer differs from filtered keg beer because it contains live yeast; this creates a natural carbonation or secondary fermentation within the drink. The result is a much smoother (and arguably, more drinkable!) taste over the fizzier mouthfeel from a carbonated keg version.
Due to the live yeast, cask beer needs to settle before serving. As most people do not have the necessary stillage equipment at home, we prepare “bright beer” at the brewery.
Bright beer is well, bright; hence the name! The ale has been separated from the cloudy living yeast – so all you’re left with is crystal clear beer. Bright has been decanted into a fresh cask, requiring no further settling. The upside is the beer is ready to drink; the downside is it needs to consumed faster than beer bottles or cans. We recommend that bright beer is used within 7-8 days of delivery (opened within 3-5 days and drunk within 2-3).
You can buy our beer bright in a mini-keg size of 9 pint (5L), or in a polypin (beer in a box): 18 pint (10L) & 36 pints (20L). For bigger occasions we will prepare one of our firkin casks (72 pints) but will require a deposit for the barrel and tap.
We condition our ales at between 10º-12ºC and believe this temperature suits our ales. But we appreciated that many enjoy pale ales at cooler temperatures. If you do store our ale cold in a refrigerator this will improve its shelf life, however it will develop a ‘chill haze’. This is nothing to worry about – only the appearance will be affected, not the taste or quality.
A great way to keep your beer cool on a hot day is to slide an ice block every couple of hours into the top of the box, between the bag and the box wall. If we are in the autumn/winter months storing beer in an outside shed or utility room is ideal.
This depends on how you store it. Unopened in cool and dark conditions it will easily keep for one week. Like most food and drink it won’t last long if warm and exposed, plus the warmer it gets the flatter the product will be, but this is nothing to worry about as the beer will still taste great. Don’t forget though that this is a perishable product and will still go off in time.
We don’t have the empties back sorry! But all our take-out containers can be recycled with other household waste.