Applied Craft Brewing – The First Day

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Applied Craft Brewing

April 24th, the first day at The Brew On Broadway (BoB):

On this auspicious Sunday, I went in for the first day of my Applied Craft Brewing Internship. The original plan was to assist with a small batch brew. Things being what they are, this did not occur. Due to a series of somewhat unfortunate events, we went for Plan B.  What I learned was proper keg cleaning. I know most of you think, “oh boy.” But the important thing about this is having clean and sanitized vessels ready to receive delicious beer for the customers to enjoy. No one wants his or her favorite beer being poured with a funky taste or floaters from the previous fermentation.  Yuck.

The process:

So as you can see in the pictures, we can clean two kegs at a time. Each pair goes through a process to ensure that they are ready for beer.

Step 1

First, connect the keg handles to the kegs. There are two valves on the keg handles; you open the one to release the pressure off the keg so you can clean them.

Applied Craft Brewing - The keg cleaning machine

The keg cleaning machine

Step 2

Once the pressure is released, we run hot water through the kegs for 5 minutes. Once this is done we put carbon dioxide into the keg to force the water out.

Step 3

Once the keg is initially rinsed, we pump a caustic into the keg for cleaning. In this case The BoB utilizes PBW. This is done for 5 minutes. Then we force the solution out with carbon dioxide.

Step 4

A hot water rinse is utilized again to get the PBW out, and then the kegs are purged with carbon dioxide – only 3 minutes is required.

Step 5

Kegs lined up ready to be washed.

The line of kegs to be cleaned

A no-rinse sanitizer is used to sanitize the kegs. The BoB uses Star-San. This solution is run through the kegs for 3 minutes. Carbon dioxide is once more used to push out the solution. Once this is done, we close the solution side of the keg handle and count to 30 – putting carbon dioxide into the keg to maintain the sanitization.

Once these steps are completed we have kegs that are ready for beer.

Thus completed Day 1 of my internship for Applied Craft Brewing at the BoB.  Not what I expected, but exactly what I needed.  I’m thrilled and thankful for this experience!



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