How Long Does Home Brew Beer Last in A Bottle

How long does home brew beer last in a bottle?

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You made a great brew from a home beer brewing kit or cider kit that everyone enjoys and now you want to know how long your home brew will last in a bottle – how long you can keep your home brew for. 

This article answers that question exactly. We’ve focused on home brew beer, but the same answer will apply to home brew cider.

The simple answer is your home brew will be good up until 10-12 months, after which point the flavour and aroma characteristics will start to fade and your brew might be described as stale.

To test how long home brew beer lasts in a bottle we saved bottled of beer from around 20 brews for up to 18-months and then gave them a go.

How long home brew lasts in a bottle - explained.

How long does homebrew beer last in the bottle

1-3 Months

The flavour and aroma characteristics of your brew will improve up until around three-months when the quality will reach it’s optimal point.

You may also find that any slight ‘off-flavours’ diminish or fall away as well.

Most kits will advise that brews require a minimum of 10-days once bottled before drinking. We advise a minimum of four weeks and often find beers, especially beers that have been dry hopped start to reach their best around 8-10 weeks, although they can be enjoyable before this point. 

How Long will homebrew beer last

4-10 Months

The quality of your beer with regard to the flavour and aroma characteristics will relatively remain stable between four and ten months.

Our observation is that a good brew will still have the similar characteristics or quality to what it would have around the 3-month mark through this extended period. 

There are some caveats here. You will want to make sure you are storing your brew in a location that is cool and dry.

We would also suggest you bottle using glass bottles to ensure you retain optimal carbonation.

How long is homebrew beer good for

11-12 Months

The quality of your brew particularly in terms of flavour and armoa will begin to fade. 

This could be describe as ‘stale’ or you may even describe the quality as slightly ‘off’. 

When we tried brews over 12-months old and up to 18-months old we found that they were drinkable, but not particularly enjoyable. 

What you can do to help how long home brew beer will last in a bottle

What you store your brew in makes a difference

If you are bottling your brews, and especially if you anticipate keeping them for longer we would recommend you use glass crown top bottles with crown top seals.

Glass bottles and crown top seals will be the most effective way to bottle your brew if you want to protect quality. 

Plastic PET bottles are fine for short term use but do not effectively hold carbonation relative to the glass bottles. 

How Long does home brew beer last in a bottle

Where you store your brew makes a difference

Aim to store your brew out of direct sunlight preferable in a cool dry place where the temperature is stable. 

Remember you have made a fresh beer. There is some live yeast in your brew; and the same way temperature matters during fermentation it matters during the maturing process.

The quality of your brew will be more effective and last longer if you are storing it in effective conditions. For me this is a basement garage.

How Long Does Home Brew Beer Last In A Bottle

There are other variable that can affect how long home brew beer lasts in a bottle, for example the ABV of a brew. 

Please use this content as a guideline and feel free to experiment and find what works best with your style of brewing and your preferred brews.