Does Beer Bottle Size Affect Flavor?

Question:

About 8 weeks ago I made a batch of a Belgian farmhouse style ale. From day 10-12 gravity stabilized so it was ripe for bottling. I racked off, added priming and bottled – into a 3L, a couple of 1L and the rest into 16 & 12 oz bottles.

After 5 weeks I opened the 3L for a party, it was good – well OK, but the 16oz-ers were much better. Large and small both both have the the same carbonation – that part came out just right.

My question is, should larger bottles be left to mature & develop longer than smaller ones?

Answer:

Great question!

It’s pretty common for breweries to have differing recipes for keg vs bottle product and volume is certainly the reason for it.

Larger volumes age more slowly than smaller ones. Some of this has to do with temperature stability, some has to do with light exposure, some has to do with how the chemistry of the beer works.

This tends to have a greater effect with higher gravity beers, rather than light lagers and ales.

So you’ll want to keep this in mind when you’re bottling future batches.