Cask beer from a keg.

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I have been playing around with the new King Kegs, while it is a commercial throw-away keg it has an excellent use for home brewers who don't want to go to the expense of purchasing a beer engine, best of all for the home brewer there is no need to ditch the keg.
How it works, if needed the keg can accommodate a bag insert, the bag insert is for the beer, and the beer is forced out by air. Either from an air pump or picnic tap, therefore pouring a low-carbonated cask ale through the keg tap.
The bags are replaceable at a low cost so saves on any cleaning as well. I initially tried it with an Extra Stout so after a couple of weeks of conditioning was very pleased with the first pour. Now this was without any priming at 2C I figured there would be enough carbonation from the dissolved CO2.
Filling the keg from the Apollo.
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The first pour after 27 days in the keg conditioning. The final pour just short of 3 months in the King Keg
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The bag. Also a cheap low low-profile coupler is available

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The keg and pump. Tried an English Bitter to see how that would pour and for clarity, the bag comes with a spear.
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The Bitter was a little cloudy but not too bad, with nice lacing to the end.
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For anyone with corny kegs I believe the bags are going to be available in the not-too-distant future.
 
Looks a nice pint.

Although isn’t less cask ish the even a corni/LPG reg and beer engine arrangement though isn’t it?
 
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Looks a nice pint.

Although it’s less cask ish the even a corni/LPG reg and beer engine atrangement though isn’t it?
No, exactly the same as a cask no gas is required. Adding gas doesn't make a keg ale into a cask ale for that reason, it is still a keg ale when gas is used to force the ale out.
 
No, exactly the same as a cask no gas is required. Adding gas doesn't make a keg ale into a cask ale for that reason, it is still a keg ale when gas is used to force the ale out.

Sure, I fully understand the cask/keg process. But I always presumed if it was served on a party tap/standard faucet and not an engine CAMRA would be crying into their pints.
 
I'm interested in this method as it won't use up CO2. I currently use the cor y and lpg reg set up, but have a few of these kegs from a local pub. How easy is it to replace the bags? Is the plastic coupler just an alternative to the metal one?
 
Looks a nice pint.

Although isn’t less cask ish the even a corni/LPG reg and beer engine arrangement though isn’t it?
Agreed. Misses the nuance of flavour change from air contact, similar to serving red wine from a box and decanting a bottle. If you understand the subtly then you see how Sparklers become devisive.

It's just a keykeg. There's loads of UK craft breweries that package the same beer in keykeg and cask. They end up different in the glass. It's the next best option, but it ain't cask.
 
Looks a nice pint.

Although isn’t less cask ish the even a corni/LPG reg and beer engine arrangement though isn’t it?
It's why I'm following this topic! While I'm a proponent of the "corni/LPG reg" arrangement (hence my "treatise"), I'm also well aware of its limitations: Chiefly: the need to have it attached to a CO2 cylinder (and the lack of beer when it runs out - although the two cylinders I have are still over a third full each after 2-1/2 years of use, despite using them for the odd keg dispense too).

The hint of bags for Corni-kegs hasn't gone un-noticed either! :groupdancing:


Although something @foxy might of missed: The bags are fairly impervious to gases (hopefully?) so there will be no issue pumping a scrape of air pressure (1-2psi) about them to retain a bit of CO2 condition (good) or pump a crazy amount of pressure about the bags to serve keg beer (in the bag) through a hand-pump like often seen in "craft beer" Pubs (aarrrg! 🤬). So, free of the CO2 cylinder for those with a bit of discipline, but not free of the continued abuse of hand-pumps for those that feel they need to do such things.

Hopefully there will be some sort of "gas-in" arrangement? Contradictory? But for "gas-out", or "venting". I think we know some "Real" beers won't remain quiet for long!


It'll still be "cask-ish". Like Pubs using "Breathers". The beer will remain saturated with CO2 (at atmospheric pressure ... at best). But that'll do.
 
Nice write up. I did wonder if your idea had stalled. Is the pump a build or a purchase?
Picnic pumps are readily available but many will adapt a bicycle pump.

Sure, I fully understand the cask/keg process. But I always presumed if it was served on a party tap/standard faucet and not an engine CAMRA would be crying into their pints.
Well as CAMRA endorses the cask breather allowing CO2 to replace the beer there surely can't be any problem with the King Keg setup I would have thought it to be a more favorable option.

I'm interested in this method as it won't use up CO2. I currently use the cor y and lpg reg set up, but have a few of these kegs from a local pub. How easy is it to replace the bags? Is the plastic coupler just an alternative to the metal one?
Yes, the plastic coupler is about $10 Australian so around 5 GBP.

Agreed. Misses the nuance of flavour change from air contact, similar to serving red wine from a box and decanting a bottle. If you understand the subtly then you see how Sparklers become devisive.

It's just a keykeg. There's loads of UK craft breweries that package the same beer in keykeg and cask. They end up different in the glass. It's the next best option, but it ain't cask.
Well, it's all part of the evolution of brewing, with fewer people drinking in pubs the pubs opt for the breather this will eliminate any gas inclusion in the kegged beer.
If anyone is looking for air inclusion and is prepared to knock off a keg in 5 days there are 10-litre kegs available, don't use a bag just the pump on the keg is a simple solution.

It's why I'm following this topic! While I'm a proponent of the "corni/LPG reg" arrangement (hence my "treatise"), I'm also well aware of its limitations: Chiefly: the need to have it attached to a CO2 cylinder (and the lack of beer when it runs out - although the two cylinders I have are still over a third full each after 2-1/2 years of use, despite using them for the odd keg dispense too).

The hint of bags for Corni-kegs hasn't gone un-noticed either! :groupdancing:


Although something @foxy might of missed: The bags are fairly impervious to gases (hopefully?) so there will be no issue pumping a scrape of air pressure (1-2psi) about them to retain a bit of CO2 condition (good) or pump a crazy amount of pressure about the bags to serve keg beer (in the bag) through a hand-pump like often seen in "craft beer" Pubs (aarrrg! 🤬). So, free of the CO2 cylinder for those with a bit of discipline, but not free of the continued abuse of hand-pumps for those that feel they need to do such things.

Hopefully there will be some sort of "gas-in" arrangement? Contradictory? But for "gas-out", or "venting". I think we know some "Real" beers won't remain quiet for long!


It'll still be "cask-ish". Like Pubs using "Breathers". The beer will remain saturated with CO2 (at atmospheric pressure ... at best). But that'll do.
This was my biggest concern if I primed the keg how could I vent the excess CO2? As the beers were at 2C I was fairly confident that the carbonation wouldn't be too far off the mark.
What I did find was I couldn't remove the bag from the keg due to a small amount of CO2 build-up in the bag. The remedy was to drill through the cap of the bag to release the CO2.

Not quite sure I get this. Is air being pumped into the space around the bag to push the beer out ?
Correct, the air is what pressurises the bag forcing the beer out.
 
Well as CAMRA endorses the cask breather allowing CO2 to replace the beer
No they don't, they voted to adopt a neutral stance to them. Again, subtleties.
this will eliminate any gas inclusion in the kegged beer.
Yes, kegged beer. What you are doing is widespread in the UK, a good alternative to cask beer for slow through put, but it's never called cask beer. Sure brewing evolves, but it's a keg not a cask, and possibly the sort of misunderstanding that is leading the push for UNESCO's Intangible Cultural Heritage status for cask beer, and why camra and caskmarque exist.
 
No they don't, they voted to adopt a neutral stance to them. Again, subtleties.

Yes, kegged beer. What you are doing is widespread in the UK, a good alternative to cask beer for slow through put, but it's never called cask beer. Sure brewing evolves, but it's a keg not a cask, and possibly the sort of misunderstanding that is leading the push for UNESCO's Intangible Cultural Heritage status for cask beer, and why camra and caskmarque exist.
Well, it is debatable whether it is as CAMRA claims, 'a neutral stance' A few years ago they were delisting pubs that used a breather on a cask now they are saying it is up to the pub! But that is a debate for another thread. Not this one.

Cask, is for real ale as is a Key Keg and King Keg. The King Keg is a product surpassing the Key Keg for both home brewers and commercial brewers as the keg can be used many times over, only the bag gets discarded. I have a beer engine and I can say there is no difference between a beer poured from a cask through a beer engine or from the King Keg through an Ultra Twist tap.
So anyone wanting to brew and 'experience' a cask-conditioned ale but through a keg without the expense of a beer engine and with less faff, can do so using a Key or King Keg.
KeyKeg - what is it? - Reading & Mid Berks CAMRA
 
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I have a beer engine and I can say there is no difference between a beer poured from a cask through a beer engine or from the King Keg through an Ultra Twist tap.
Well, I'd say you missed the nuanced, subtle difference. 'Of course, some air space improves cask ale as its flavour develops over time'. As your link alludes to it. Expected as it is from CAMRA, who's whole remit is to preserve and protect cask from this sort of thing. If it actually didnt make a difference, no one would care.

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Well, I'd say you missed the nuanced, subtle difference. Even your link alludes to it.

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No different from conditioning in a keg, as I said before if you are confident you can finish a keg off before the beer oxidises just use a pump without a bag. When looking for comparisons it's always advisable to have the experience of both methods not just one.
 
It's just a keykeg. There's loads of UK craft breweries that package the same beer in keykeg and cask. They end up different in the glass. It's the next best option, but it ain't cask.
You keep missing it, don't you. Cask, a process as a whole, from brewery to glass.
 
At which point are you peg and venting?
I don't know what is so hard for you to understand, there is no need for any pegs or venting. Technology has overcome the methods of the past. We can now safely keep a conditioned ale from overexposure to air. As you said yourself the keyKegs are widespread why do you think that is?
 
I don't know what is so hard for you to understand, there is no need for any pegs or venting. Technology has overcome the methods of the past. We can now safely keep a conditioned ale from overexposure to air. As you said yourself the keyKegs are widespread why do you think that is?
Technology overcame the methods of the past 50 years ago, it's why camra formed. If you aren't following the methods of the past, then it's something different. Cellarmanship, venting, tapping, the ingress of air, the change in flavour, are all intrinsic to cask beer. If you aren't following the methods then it isn't and can not be cask beer, it's just beer. It's not hard to understand. Saying cask from keg, is like claiming Spotify is vinyl records from the Internet, sure it was the same recording in the studio, but the outcome and user is experience is totally different.
 
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