When is beer too old to drink?

In this brief article, we are going to answer the question “when is beer too old to drink?”. We will also discuss how to store beer for a long time. In the end, we will discuss whether the beer is good for your health or not.

When is beer too old to drink?

Beer is too old to drink after six to nine months of the labeled expiration date. The best-before date on beer is an accurate guide as to when it will start to lose its taste. But if the beer is refrigerated, it can be stored for up to two years past its expiration date.

If the beer is not stored properly, the time it will remain good past the best-by date decreases.

As the beer gets old, the components change their flavor. Oxygen combines with malt, yeast, and hops molecules to intensify specific flavors. Other flavor components diminish as time passes. Old beer will become bitter in the aftertaste.

A beer becomes skunky when subjected to UV radiation and colored glass that does not shield the rays.

Before being opened, the beer should not be exposed to oxygen. Early exposure to oxygen leads to oxidation, and it results in a cardboard-like flavor.

The shelf life of stronger beers, such as imperial stouts and barley wines, is longer. Many of these beers get more robust flavors as they age. 

In addition, sour and wild beers develop intriguing new flavors with age. Beers change as yeast and bacteria combine.

Typically, malted barley is fermented with water and yeast to generate beer. This combination is fermented to produce the natural carbonation that imparts beer with its characteristic bubbles.

How long is beer good for in the fridge?

If properly refrigerated, beer in bottles can last for six to eight months. But when kept in a warm place, it will go bad in two months. Shorter shelf lives apply to other types of containers including crowlers and stainless steel bottles.

Light and heat can quickly expedite a beer’s best-by date, so refrigeration is always preferable to room temperature storage.

The darkness protects the beer from UV radiation and heat. Even fluorescent lighting can diminish the quality of beer when stored outside the refrigerator.

The best way to preserve the original flavor of the beer is to keep it in the refrigerator, not the freezer. 

Six to eight months of peak flavor are available for unopened, refrigerated beers before the quality begins to gradually decline. 

How to store beer for a long time?

To store beer for a long time, place the beer at a temperature between 50 and 55 degrees Fahrenheit. If you are storing it in a bottle, then make sure that it is placed upright. 

It is best to store beer cans and bottles at a temperature that is not only above room temperature but also less than the freezing temperature. 

The beer’s freshness also depends on the material of the container in which it is stored. It is suggested to store Kegs in a cool, dry area. 

To ensure optimal flavor, keep it away from other foods. It is imperative not to freeze them because freezing the beer would likely alter its flavor. 

The best way to handle corked bottles is to keep them upright and in a cool, dark place. The airtight lid will keep the beer fresh for several days, and even longer if carbon dioxide is added. 

The beer will remain fresh for up to 35 hours after being opened.

Beer that is brewed at home will have a shorter shelf life. Also, open beer is likely to go bad in a short time as it comes in contact with air, light, and possibly some bacteria.

If the beer is placed outside the fridge, it will last for four to six months on average if left unopened. After this, the taste will start to turn off.

It is crucial to maintain the temperature at which the beer was purchased. If you purchased a six-pack directly from a refrigerated case, you should place it in your refrigerator on arrival at home.

To enjoy the richness of beer, it is suggested to use glasses designed exclusively for them.  Do not use these for anything else.

Is beer good for health?

As beer is brewed from cereal grains and yeast, it contains numerous vitamins and minerals. Light to moderate beer consumption helps to reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases.

Moderate consumption may help in minimizing insulin resistance, a diabetes risk factor, and also prevents developing type 2 diabetes.

It may also improve bone density if consumed one to two drinks per day. It makes bones stronger in men and women. Light quantity also lessens the risk of dementia.

While mild to moderate beer consumption offers possible health prospects, excessive beer intake and heavy drinking can be detrimental.

Heavy and regular drinkers will have a shorter lifespan than light drinkers. Frequent alcohol intake can lead to dependency and a greater risk of depression. 

High beer intake can increase the risk of liver illnesses such as cirrhosis, a condition marked by scarring and weight gain.


In this brief article, we answered the question “when is beer too old to drink?”. We also discussed how to store beer for a long time. In the end, we discussed whether the beer is good for health or not.