Oxidized Beer Alert

The Shannon Brewery found some oxidized beer during a random QA/QC check. The beer affected is primarily Mor IPA and the Cool-Hop Series 3 and 4, exclusively in cans. Kegged beer is not affected. We have corrected the problem for future packaging but some beer may have been distributed to stores. This beer is not up to our standards and we want everyone to have a chance to trade it in or exchange it for the SBC beer of their choice. As always, we will happily exchange any beer that is not to your satisfaction for the beer of your choice in our taproom. Please send us an email at info@shannonbrewing.com if stopping by the taproom is not convenient. All we ask is a chance to make it right.

How do you know if your beer is oxidized? Most IPAs should be either relatively clear or a healthy orange “juice” color. An oxidized beer will turn brown, lose its hop character, and have a diminished flavor. There are no health concerns with oxidized beer. They just don’t taste very good. If you’re interested in the details of what happened and what we did about it, read on.

CO2 is used to purge a beer container of oxygen before filling. When oxygen is present in the container, the beer may become oxidized — beer is affected by oxygen, similar to when iron oxidizes to form rust. Oxidized beer will not hurt you if you consume it but it may not look, smell or taste like the brewer intended. IPAs are especially prone to oxidation because of the increased hop content. An oxidized IPA may turn brownish in color, lose its hop aroma, and take on wet paper flavor. In rare cases, the oxidation may lead to refermentation should any yeast be present in the container. In this case, the beer will be over-carbonated or may even extrude the bottom of the can.

So, what happened at SBC? One of the heads on our canning line had a cracked co2 line on it. The crack would sometimes hold pressure and purge the oxygen from the can. Other times it would partially purge the can and in some cases, it would fail to purge the can at all. It took some time to track the problem down and it may have been happening slowly over time. We believe the cracked line may have oxidized some Mor IPA, some Cool-Hop II, and we KNOW it affected about 8% of COOL-HOP 3 and 4.

The bottom line is this, we want every single one of our beers to be the best possible experience it can be. This mechanical malfunction caused some beer to become oxidized and enter the market. We will ALWAYS replace any of our beer that is unsatisfactory — no questions asked. Simply reach out to us at info@shannonbrewing.com and allow us to make it right.