Despite what one of the most popular light beers in America may have told you, you actually do not want to serve your beer as cold as the Rockies. At least, that is, if you want to actually taste the beer.
When a beverage is served too cold, the frigid temperature shuts down the aromas and flavors of the drink, making it difficult to discern anything other than the fact that it’s cold, wet, and probably refreshing, depending on where and when you’re consuming said beverage.
If your beer is already pretty close to water, serving it at such a cold temperature helps hide some of the faults of the liquid. (This is true for cheap white wine, too.) That’s why that cold-activated beer can gimmick works — no one wants that beer warm and flat. But, if you’re drinking a beer you actually want to taste, then serving it too cold will mute the experience, and no one wants that, either.
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Just like wine, there is an ideal serving temperature for every type of beer, and, lucky for you, we have a handy guide.