Because not all of us have a wine cellar. 

Hector Sanchez

If you’ve ever tried to look up information about beer styles, beer best practices, or really anything related to craft beer, you’ve likely clicked on some articles with 5 point font that stretch on into infinite scroll forever filled with technical jargon and advanced-level instructions. While passion is one of our most favorite features in the craft beer community, it can often leave people who might want to partake more casually or are just getting started feeling confused.

We’re here to demystify the guidelines behind storing dark beers. If you are currently saying to yourself that you didn’t know dark beers needed to be stored in another way than your pale ales, we’ll break it down for you.

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Beers that are more hop-centric like IPAs, lagers and pale ales age very quickly, which means you want to drink them sooner than later lest they develop a skunky flavor. Many dark beers over 8 percent alcohol by volume have a much longer lifespan, and some varieties like lambics or strong ales can even taste better the longer they’re left to age.

With darker or beers with an ABV of more than 8 percent, find a cool, dark place to store them like a shelf in your basement or an air-conditioned closet. Avoid keeping them in the kitchen since the temperature fluctuates daily in there. Make sure they’re not exposed to light, which will hasten their expiration date. Another tip to keep in mind: store them upright so that the air inside the bottle does touch more of the liquid inside than need be. That too will speed up the oxidation, or aging process.