After fermentation, I put priming sugar and put them to bottles and wait for 7-10 days in bottle. I open somt They look OK, good foam and carbonation. No fancy smell or off-taste.

Then I put them in fridge for 1-2-3 days (unopened bottles), no matter what after fridging I lose the foam.

Before putting fridge I have foam, and if i put some sugar just testing, the bottle fills with more foam. But after fridging, if I put sugar nothing changes.

Ale, Lager does not matter, always same thing. Why I get stale beers out of the fridge? The temperature of fridge is 4 Celcius, and has a fluroescent lamp that lights up when the door is open. Should I fridge? If so how long?

  • 2
    About the light and "stale" taste. May want to test your switch in the fridge, make sure it actually turns off when closed. Light struck beer gets skunky but may be described as stale to some I guess. Nov 23, 2017 at 15:01
  • I just tested by taking a video inside, the light goes off as soon as I close the door. It is a very bright fluorescent lamp, does that matter? I use German made glass brown bottles designed for homebrewing.
    – Emmet B
    Nov 23, 2017 at 15:40
  • well there is a reason manufacturers put beer in dark bottles, sealed boxes, high wall six pack cases, and neck labels. Light is bad. But if your light turns off then it's probably not an issue. Nov 23, 2017 at 15:43
  • The use of the word stale might be more to do with not being familiar with English rather than implying a wet cardboard taste in the beer Nov 25, 2017 at 8:12
  • 1
    IMHO beer being "light-struck" in a fridge - or in a shut drawer - is next to impossible. I would suggest adding more priming sugar if the beer is to be served cool. Dec 4, 2017 at 10:11

3 Answers 3


I doubt this is a case of "stale beer" - I suppose it is just not very carbonated for service at a cold temperature.

The metal cap of a beer bottle tends to shrink faster than the glass so the cap becomes more firmly attached as the temp drops. It is possible that the cap is badly fitted and that may affect gas tightness, but this is rare. Crown corks are used because they tend to work. ! or 2 failures maybe, but the lot?

More probable is the fact that CO2 dissolves more in cold liquids and so the head pressure and the foam may reduce in cold beer. Also the gas stays in solution in cold beer when poured. On the plus side the beer usually remains "fizzy" to the taste for longer. If you want more foam add a foaming addition (dextrine malt or even malto-dextrine for example) to the brew and/or add slightly more priming sugar when bottling.


If your beer really is stale, that would mean that you have a problem with the caps on your bottles because of the low temperature, and that somehow your CO2 escapes and oxygen enters.

However, at lower temperatures, more CO2 dissolves in your beer. If you keep your beer really at 4° C, that is very low. My experience is that keeping a beer for a couple of days at a low temperature does not give a good head, because not much CO2 is available. However, putting it a couple of hours at a temperature of 8-12° C improves this.

  • 1
    I would agree, something is wrong with the bottle seals. If the head change is as drastic as disribed. Less head / foam is normal for colder beer though. "Stale" descriptor does sound like O2 exposure. Will have a taste of wet paper/cardboard. Nov 22, 2017 at 15:40
  • I tasted a wet paper, well, I dont think it taste like that.
    – Emmet B
    Nov 25, 2017 at 9:10

I am with barking.pete and chthon on this but would go even further in assuming that something with the carbonation process itself is off. In my (for obvious reasons limited) experience of opening warm beer bottles, there should be much more than just foam and some carbonation if you open a well carbonated homebrew at room temperature. So I assume that the CO2 content of your beer is already too low before it goes into the fridge. As barking.pete and chthon have both pointed out, lower temperatures mean much higher CO2 in solution, if you look at the numbers for a fairly standard carbonation of 4.5g/l, the overpressure in the bottle is 1.74bar at 20°C, whereas after a period of time at 7°C this goes down to only 0.8bar. If you are unsure about the carbonation of your beers, I suggest you invest in a bottle pressure gauge. I use one on any beer I bottle carbonate to check carbonation progress and as an early warning system against bottle bombs. To entertain my curiosity, how much sugar do you add to your bottles and what temperature do you ferment your beer at prior to bottling?

//late edit: Another source of issues could be the amount of headspace. If there is too little space above the beer, not enough CO2 volume is present to be dissolved into the beer at lower temperatures.

  • Fermentation was at 21 Celcius. I put 4 grams per 500 ml bottle. The last two bottles, where I was able to fill till half the bottle, they carbonated very well, and had good foam. Here is the picture of a bottle ibb.co/j7bF3R to give you an idea about fill level.
    – Emmet B
    Nov 24, 2017 at 17:30
  • 1
    That fill level as well as the 4g/0.5dl seems just about perfect to me, so it cannot be either of my two suggestions. Since you mentioned, that the bottles which were filled only half-way filled came out carbonated, I would go with the suspicions of the others: Something with your caps or the way they fit might be wrong and CO2 might just be escaping during bottle conditioning. After a while, you end up with the headspace full of CO2 at ambient pressures instead of at 1.8bar (give or take). You could try to put a balloon over a freshly capped bottle and check if it inflates from leaking CO2.
    – ritterasdf
    Nov 25, 2017 at 21:01

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