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Kegged Ginger Beer- Sediment? Agitation?

Hey everyone, I’m a long time follower of this forum but I just joined because I want all of your expert thoughts. I’m in the process of opening a bar in downtown Miami (if anyone is every in the neighborhood stop by for a drink on me!) and we want to keg our own house sodas and run them like draft beers through taps. Everything is going great, the one issue I am having is with the ginger beer!

We have a fantastic ginger beer recipe, essentially:
1 part fresh ginger juice
2 parts lemon juice
3 parts sugar
10 parts water

It comes out fantastic, the one problem is since it isn’t based on an extract the real ginger sinks to the bottom after about an hour. It separates so fast that even if I had an employee agitate the keg it would have to be done so frequently it wouldn’t make sense. This leads to 2 problems, 1- the sediment carries a strong ginger flavor so the product would be inconsistent (and probably waaay too weak/overpowering depending on how much of the keg had been tapped) and also I’m afraid if we ran that sediment through a draft line it would gunk it up and ruin it (we have a 50+ foot run)

At first I figured I didn’t filter it enough, so I literally filtered this for a day through a 1 micron filter- no dice. So I’m asking for your help for a solution!

The problem with simply siphoning off the “clear” liquid that sits on top of the sediment is that it doesn’t have the full ginger flavor that is included when it is mixed. Also, I could pull some “clear” ginger beer with a pipet, but if I used a siphon I think it would agitate the sediment and it would come out with the “clear” ginger beer, defeating the entire purpose.

I’m wondering if there is an emulsifier that would work or some type of chemical that could be added to bind the sediment. Maybe someone has another solution. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

I don’t know if it’s similar, but going on the vinegar/oil emulsifiers. Lecithin or Xanathan gum?

what if you fined with gelatin? A day or two before serving and right after you keg, rehydrate and pitch some clear gelatin. A day later, after cold storage and carbing, pull the first pint to clear the dip tube and away you go. The ginger sediment would still be in the keg releasing it’s flavor, but not be mixed in and cloudy in your bev. worth a try?

I was at a craft cocktail bar this weekend that made their own ginger beer and the bartender explained to use that before he got the beer to run clearout of the tap, he had to pick up the keg and give it a little shake, but once it ran clear, it would run fine through the tap. He had to do it a couple times.

I’m very curious how this one turned out. I have the exact same problem with my ginger beer (I keep that in my Keezer all the time) and it’s just not as good as what I get when I bottle and tip the bottle over once before drinking.

Perhaps this isn’t what you’re looking for, but could you eliminate the water from the recipe and just dispense carbonated water over a measured amount of the remainder of the recipe at serving? That might make for a “Custom” presentation for the customers too.

That’s actually what I’ve decided to try next. I’m going to just have one of my kegs setup for soda-water and mix it one glass at a time. Like a soda-stream on steroids. Should allow for a wider variety of drinks as well. I just hope it doesn’t loose too much of the awesome that my bottled ginger beer has.

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