I was at a friend’s house and he mention that his keg was putting out a bit too much foam. We both agreed that part of the reason was that it was a new keg. However, I am a big believer in lower PSI so with the micro-brewed (15-gallons), a PSI of 8-10 is good. However, if you have the proper set up you can go to the recommended 14, which does allow optimal taste in a pour. Yes, taste does change with pressure... most pubs you go to have about a 14 or higher setting.
There are ways for the amateur to start fixing the problem of foam, and here are some of the best tips for making your kegerator the best in the neighborhood. One of the most common causes of foam is the tower. As you or your guests go about drinking there brew the beer in the tower is warming up to room temperature. When someone goes to pour from the tap the beer in the tower is warm and that is typically the foamy part. That is one of the easiest ways to combat foam, but it takes a little cha-ching.
These cold taps cooled tower dispensers can be found at any of the sites I am going to recommend, they range in price and get pretty expensive. You know your finances better than I so shop with caution. Another item to add to your kegerator if you have the money to spend is this little device:
(Click on photog to read about it)
This device is good for kegerators as well as the “back yard diddy.” Here is a demonstration:
The device is not terribly expensive ($62), and for the person with the kegerator you would want to mount it inside the refrigerated section of the kegerator as to keep the beer in it cold.
Again, some of these Q&A can get very technical, for homor sake I will post a response over at MicroMatic that made me laugh... keep in mind though that these folks take beer seriously!
Obviously this is more business oriented, but one can see why not paying attention to your math teacher actually hurts you later in life. Of course the easiest way one is going to keep foam issues down is to CLEAN YOUR LINES! It may be troublesome, but this is the price one pays for perfection. Here is a short Q&A from BeverageFactory.com that explains the issues:
Clean, clean, clean! This is the best possible recipe for a healthy poor. One last item, one of the reacurring problems during my time at a place that sold kegs was the proper hookups for the proper beer (e.g., domestic, European, and the like). So some of the guys and I put together a helpful list of proper couplers to pair with the right beer. Whether you are having a “dirt-party” or have a nice kegerator tucked away in a corner of your home, this list is most helpful. Just click on the thumbnail to enlarge to a helpful size:
I hope this helps all you beer lovers out there -- Cheers, Papa Giorgio.