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Glass vs Plastic Bottles Question

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1) Does glass better for bottling than plastic, if so, why?

2) Can I use say the standard Bud Light, Coors Light 12 oz bottles and just buy the MB Caps and Capper?

3) I used plastic the first two times, but am looking for anything that may help me have a better tasting beer...

Thanks!

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1) The main 'complaint' with plastic is that you don't get quite the head on your beer as with glass. Not sure if this is always true, as I've seen some pretty good-looking pour pics here from plastic bottles.

2) I believe that the standard BL/CL 12 oz bottles are twist-offs. In order to re-use glass bottles, they must have pry-off lids. Do not try to re-use twist-offs! Buy yourself a case of Sam Adams or Sierra Nevada; you get re-useable bottles and they come with free beer in them!

3) As for taste, I doubt that the bottles were the culprit. What recipes have you tried? If just the WCPA that came with the kit, I wasn't too impressed with that one, myself. Try some new recipes, experiment a little, read this forum for ideas!

Good luck, and brew on!

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Appreciate the knowledge. I have only brewed twice and that was a couple years ago (then i gave up). I tried whatever came with the kit (maybe WCPA) and I think I bought the Cowboy refill the second time...

I will look for another lightier/blond-y type to trye this time.

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I would recommend that the first few brews by a newcomer be in plastic. That way you can give the bottles a squeeze test when carbing. Nothing eases the fear of over or undercarbed beer as the feel of a tight bottle. Once I have priming down and are SURE, then I will go with all glass.

I drink a lot of beer straight out of the bottle and plastic just does not feel right. :gulp:

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BeerConnoisseur wrote:

I would recommend that the first few brews by a newcomer be in plastic. That way you can give the bottles a squeeze test when carbing. Nothing eases the fear of over or undercarbed beer as the feel of a tight bottle. Once I have priming down and are SURE, then I will go with all glass.

I drink a lot of beer straight out of the bottle and plastic just does not feel right. :gulp:


Just can't see drinking homebrew out of the bottle. You gotta pour it into a glass so you can admire it.

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Let it breathe, enjoy the aroma, not too cold, pour it, enjoy the appearence, experience the whole thing. I put extra into brewing it, I don't mind a little extra to enjoy it. Or ice and chug. It's your brew, you choose. :P

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gophers6 wrote:

BeerConnoisseur wrote:

I would recommend that the first few brews by a newcomer be in plastic. That way you can give the bottles a squeeze test when carbing. Nothing eases the fear of over or undercarbed beer as the feel of a tight bottle. Once I have priming down and are SURE, then I will go with all glass.

I drink a lot of beer straight out of the bottle and plastic just does not feel right. :gulp:


Just can't see drinking homebrew out of the bottle. You gotta pour it into a glass so you can admire it.

You really don't want to drink home brew straight from the bottle because it's naturally carbonated. Pour it into a glass. I used to say that if they didn't need a glass to get it into the bottle, I didn't need one to get it out, but I've repented.

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I did my first two batches in plastic but switched to glass after that, there is just something distinctively not cool about bottling in 1 liter plastic bottles. However, if you opt to go with plastic I would highly recommend getting them from amazon as they are part of their 4-3 sale, buy 4 for the price of 3! Also if you decide to go glass, I would check with your local beer store (if you have one close by) because you can sometimes get used bottles very, very cheap. I got 12, 22's for something like $1.50!

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I use both Grolsch flip tops and 1 litre green pop bottles and can tell no difference once beer is poured in glass.

Since most home brewers drink from a beer glass I would suggest collecting a nice assortment of drinking glasses , mugs, nucleated glasses (for better head retention) etc...

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My beer store/craft bar has "keep the glass" nights once a week. They will have glasses for a certain beer which you buy a draft and keep the glass. It's awesome cuz sometimes you get a great beer for $4-$5 and get a SWEET glass to take home.

I like pint glasses and tulip glasses myself. Pints are good for any beer and tulips are nice for those high quality beers like a good Belgian or world class IPA.

I couldn't drink my homebrew out the bottle. Too much sediment from natural carbonation. I also drink my beer at around 45-50 degrees so I can taste all the flavor and have it lightly chilled.

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I don't mind the 1 liter PET bottles, though the 12 oz bottles are more versatile. For sitting at home, my wife and I can share a 1 liter if we want to just enjoy a couple of drinks together. It suits that purpose well.

The 12 oz bottles are handier for some purposes, though, in my opinion. You can drink more, or less, depending on your mood without committing to opening a whole other liter. You can swap bottles with friends, or drink a variety in one session...again, without committing to an entire liter. As for taste, I don't imagine there's a big difference once you pour it into a glass.

I'm actually considering using 1/2 gallon growlers at some point. I have almost enough from local breweries/brewpubs to bottle a Mr. Beer sized batch. That may seem like an even more inconvenient size than the 1 liters, but for batches that I know will be consumed pretty much at once I think it will be more convenient. For instance, in the summer on the boat, we'll easily knock out a case of honey wheat beer over a weekend. Putting it in 1/2 gallon jugs seems like an easier route than lugging a bunch of invididual bottles that need to be rinsed and then stored/kept up with.

I guess it all depends on your own needs and preferences. As they say, different strokes for different folks.

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Can you carbonate beer in growlers though? The caps on them aren't really air tight. When I buy a growler fill you can hear the growler "growl" when the CO2 builds up when it moves around (like when driving home with it sitting in the car). Thus the name lol.

I'm guessing there are different caps to have a seal to carbonate in them?

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bigd wrote:

Can you carbonate beer in growlers though? The caps on them aren't really air tight. When I buy a growler fill you can hear the growler "growl" when the CO2 builds up when it moves around (like when driving home with it sitting in the car). Thus the name lol.

I'm guessing there are different caps to have a seal to carbonate in them?

That's a good question and, frankly, I'm not sure. I have growlers with two different type lids - plastic and metal. The metal caps seem more airtight than the plastic, but I'm not positive either will really work. The caps on the plastic PET bottles are screw on and they work. The 1/2 gallon jugs with the metal caps, in my opinion, can be closed comparably well. The plastic lid growlers....well, maybe not.

If not, I wonder about using some sort of plastic milk jug type containers?

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I have 7 cases of the 1 liter PET's and 3 cases of the 15.2 oz grolsch bottles. I have not had an issues with either. The PET's are a little more rugged and take abuse a little better than the glass. Other than that I like both.

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This cone plastic cap for growlers worked for me. Got it at my LHBS. The pressure as it bulds on the cone shape helps it seal. I still prefer 2L flippies though. 111155.jpg

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aussiebear wrote:

This cone plastic cap for growlers worked for me. Got it at my LHBS. The pressure as it bulds on the cone shape helps it seal. I still prefer 2L flippies though. 111155.jpg

Those are types of caps on my growlers. So, you're saying that you fermented your beer in those growlers, right? If so, then that's my plan. I already have the growlers, so it doesn't require any extra effort.

This won't be my normal route, but I can see it coming in handy at times over the summer. We have big crowds and lots of activity out on the water. It's only a matter of time until people start throwing away my homebrew bottles, not to mention the logistical problems with trying to rinse and store the individuals 12 ouncers when you're boating.

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I usually bottle 1/2 in glass and 1/2 in plastic. That way I can drink and share or drink and not share. As for growlers, yes you can carb in them, and condition in them, just remember have friends over or plan to drink it all within a few days.

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RiverRatRandy wrote:

btomlin75 wrote:

... or plan to drink it all within a few days.

That rarely seems to require a plan. :lol:

LOL. I actually have a growler that has a swing top lid/cap like the 16 oz bottles do. I may decide to bottle in that at some point just for the cool factor.

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YES to growlers. I'm doing that myself too, actually. I just double checked it with the LHBS today, and he said yes. I guess that's why he has a stock of them on his shelf to sell too, hehe.

I've got the growler for "card-night" (or whatever excuses we have to culminate our friendships), 1 Liter PET and Glass for ME (yea, I enjoy my craft, what can i say), and 12oz to share. (some folks just don't like real beer, how weird - plus I'm a mieser)

A Keg is in the budget for very soon though. Then its all-access all-the-time! Any glass you can bring to fill! (ok, so I'm not a mieser to other's that DO like real beer)

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