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23 June 2010

Is beer that's been in my fridge for over a year still good? I've had some beer in my fridge since last Memorial Day weekend. If it's been kept consistently cold during that time, will it still taste good to beer drinkers? I don't drink beer so there's no way for me to tell if it still tastes good.
What sort is it? You know, like, Budweiser or microbrew?

I'd drink it, but I'm seriously nonfussy about my alcohol.
posted by JanetLand 23 June | 20:08
It's Amstel Light.
posted by amro 23 June | 20:11
It should be fine as long as it was out of the light.
posted by octothorpe 23 June | 20:54
It's fine.
posted by desjardins 23 June | 21:02
A lot of beer in the liquor store is at least that old. No problems as long as it never got warm.
posted by Miko 23 June | 21:48
I'm pretty sure that even fresh from the tap Amstel Light wouldn't taste good to beer drinkers.
posted by kodama 23 June | 22:08
Beer can't harbor any pathogenic microbe, so it is definitely safe to drink.

As for taste, it's an American Light Lager. If it isn't badly skunked (smell it and check if it smells like wet cat, keep in mind every macrobrew lager is somewhat skunked by design), it's probably as good as a light lager can be. Just serve it very cold, like, close to freezing (but don't let it freeze, something around 36F). That should mask any vestigial taste, and that's how people like to drink those kinds of beer anyway.
posted by qvantamon 24 June | 00:44
oops, not American Light Lager, just Light Lager. Which makes it even more resilient - some skunkiness is even in style for mass-produced Dutch lagers.
posted by qvantamon 24 June | 00:51
I drank a PBR that had been in my fridge for a year. It was as good as new.
posted by DarkForest 24 June | 06:32
I'm pretty sure that even fresh from the tap Amstel Light wouldn't taste good to beer drinkers.

Gee, that's helpful. I wasn't seeking commentary on the choice of beer.

Thanks to the rest of you.
posted by amro 24 June | 08:22
I am admittedly somewhat of a beer snob, in that I really like to drink craft beer over mass-market beer, but on the other hand, I think Amstel Light is a pretty good choice for a "keep-it-around-for-company" beer. It's definitely what I choose to drink when faced with the typical beach-bar beer menu of Bud, Coors, Miller, etc. It's light enough to please the regular lager drinkers, but complex enough to be fine for more microbrew drinkers. I think it's an excellent one-beer-fits-all selection. even if it wouldn't be the first thing I'd look for on a menu, it would be a very acceptable thing to receive as part of hospitality.
posted by Miko 24 June | 09:26
Will year-old Amstel Light be the only choice? If so, then I do think you should consider kodama's answer more. We don't know the particulars of your event, but generally I would not feel like a great host to (the broad group known as) "beer drinkers" (note: plural) if all I had to offer was some light beer from the back of my fridge. It should be fine to stick in a cooler with another choice or two though.
posted by danostuporstar 24 June | 09:30
Thanks, Miko. Seriously, I'm not looking for help with what to serve to guests here, dano. I just wanted to know if the beer in my fridge will taste the same now as it would have a year ago.
posted by amro 24 June | 09:34
If I find a bottle of beer in the depths of my fridge, which I had forgotten about, I refer to it as a "miracle beer."
posted by danf 24 June | 09:41
I'm going to go against the grain and say no. I've had year old beer from a garage fridge before and it was nasty as hell. I would be wary of serving it; at the very least, I'd warn people.
posted by mygothlaundry 24 June | 10:33
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