Correctly pouring draft beer is one of the truest art forms. You get an overwhelming sense of pride when you pour the perfect pint, and with it come richer, bolder flavors and the best beer head. The perfect pour is an important part of the beer tasting experience, so you should remember these things when serving a cold, fresh draft beer:
Make sure you use a clean glass. Dirty glasses contain numerous amounts of oils, dirt, residue from dish detergents and soaps, or even previous beers. This can not only be harmful to your health, but it can also taint the flavor of the beer, as well as affect the overall pour and head formation.
Keep the pint glass at a 45° angle. When you pour the beer, be sure to target the middle of the glass. This ensures that you pour more of the actual beer than the beer head. While it is okay to go slow, you shouldn't be afraid to pour hard or to keep some distance between the bottle (or tap) and the glass.
At the halfway point, tilt the glass back to 90° and continue pouring. This creates the perfect head, making it foamy and frothy. While some people may not like a head on their beer, it is always good to have because it releases the aromas of the beer and adds to the presentation. If your pour is creating little to no head, create more space between the tap or bottle and the glass while you pour. For the ideal beer, the head should be between 1" and 1-1/2" thick.
Bottle-conditioned beers sometimes contain a considerable amount of yeast in the bottle, giving the beer a more robust taste when poured. While this may be a highlight that many experienced beer enthusiasts crave, not everyone will enjoy the taste. If you are one of those who prefer to keep the yeast out of your beer when serving, make sure you watch closely while pouring. Doing this will help you to exclude the yeast sediment and particles at the bottom of the bottle.
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