If you have been brewing your own craft beer for a while, and you are having some success with your recipes, the next step is the most exciting. Presenting your beer to the world. Well, not the whole world, but your friends and family. Like most things in this world that are subjective, a lot of the appeal of your beer is going to depend upon presentation and consumer experience. This is not the time to fill up a plastic cup and say, “hey, try some of this.” You want to present your beer in the best possible manner. With nice glasses, and the ultimate would be with your own bar mounted tap, on a kegerator. This way you can provide the whole pub experience. But what do you need to know about kegerators?
Where are You Going to Put it: A kegerator is not usually meant to be portable or temporary. It is much better to build one into your bar. And with this in mind, how much room do you have. It is a good idea to have a look at kegerator packages before you build your bar, or before you start to modify what you already have.
DIY Kegerators: It is possible of course to build a kegerator of your own. If you do, be advised that it is more than just building a cabinet for your keg. There are some tricky aspects to setting up a refrigeration system, that will run efficiently. By the time you have it all worked out, it is unlikely that there will be much of a saving. You will also have to figure out how to get the right balance from your carbonation.
Maintenance: a kegerator is not the type of appliance that you can just use on the weekend and then forget it. They require regular maintenance, especially of you are trying to show your beer in its best possible light. How unfortunate it would be if your friends first taste experience included the aftertaste of dirty pipes. You will have to use a caustic cleaner at least every two weeks to keep everything tasting right.
If you do everything correctly, having your own kegerator will provide you years of pleasure, and your friends will all be sufficiently jealous as well. That might not be the reason that you got into home brewing but enjoy it. You worked hard to get there. It is a great honour to be the provider of beer.