What is a Crowler Beer

With the craft beer industry booming, new ways to enjoy and share your favorite brews continue to emerge. One such innovation is the crowler beer, a popular choice for beer enthusiasts looking to take home their favorite draft beer from breweries and taprooms. But what exactly is a crowler beer? Let’s probe into the details of this convenient and portable packaging option for fresh craft beer.

beer crowler

Key Takeaways:

  • A crowler beer is a type of packaging used to store and transport craft beer.
  • It is a large aluminum can that can hold up to 32 ounces of beer, making it perfect for sharing or enjoying a few drinks at home.
  • Crowlers are typically filled and sealed at the brewery, ensuring the beer stays fresh and carbonated for longer periods compared to traditional growlers.
  • They are a popular choice for beer enthusiasts looking to take their favorite brews on the go or bring home limited-release or seasonal offerings.
  • Crowlers provide convenience as they are more portable and easier to recycle compared to glass growlers.

The Evolution of Beer Packaging

From Kegs to Bottles and Cans

Some of the earliest forms of beer packaging involved storing and serving beer from kegs. Eventually, the introduction of bottles and cans revolutionized the way beer was distributed and consumed. Bottles offered the convenience of individual servings, while cans provided portability and protection from light and oxygen.

The Rise of the Crowler

Some craft beer enthusiasts may be familiar with the crowler, a marriage of the convenience of cans and the freshness of draft beer. Evolution in beer packaging led to the development of the crowler, a 32-ounce can that is filled and sealed on-demand with beer straight from the tap at a brewery or taproom.

Cans have become a popular choice for packaging craft beer due to their portability, protection from light and oxygen, and recyclability. The rise of crowlers has further expanded the options for enjoying fresh, draft beer at home or on the go.

Understanding Crowlers

Definition and Features

It is crucial to understand what a crowler is before delving into its features. A crowler is a large aluminum can used for packaging draft beer directly from the tap at breweries and taprooms. It is a combination of the words “can” and “growler,” as it serves a similar purpose to a traditional glass growler but offers better preservation and portability.

How Crowlers Preserve Beer Freshness

Freshness is key when it comes to enjoying a quality beer. Crowlers excel in preserving beer freshness due to their airtight seal and opaque aluminum material. These features help to prevent light and oxygen from negatively impacting the beer, keeping it tasting as intended by the brewer for a longer period.

Crowlers are a popular choice among breweries and beer enthusiasts for their ability to maintain the integrity of the beer for a more extended period compared to other packaging options. Additionally, the 32-ounce size of a crowler makes it perfect for sharing or enjoying a fresh pour at home.

The Crowler Filling Process

Equipment and Technology

All crowler filling processes start with specialized equipment and technology designed to fill and seal aluminum cans on demand. These machines are equipped with CO2 purging systems to remove oxygen from the can, ensuring the beer stays fresh for longer periods of time.

The Steps to Sealing the Perfect Crowler

With precise calibration and timing, the crowler filling process involves purging the can with CO2, filling it with the desired beer, and then sealing it using a specialized machine. The top lid is sealed onto the can, creating an airtight and pressurized environment to preserve the beer’s flavors and carbonation.

The crowler filling process requires attention to detail and expertise to ensure each can is sealed perfectly. From the initial purging of oxygen to the final sealing of the lid, every step must be executed with precision to maintain the quality of the beer inside.

Crowlers in the Craft Beer Community

Consumer Preferences and Trends

Not just a passing fad, crowlers have become a popular choice among craft beer enthusiasts. Consumers appreciate the convenience and freshness of crowlers, allowing them to enjoy their favorite brews from the comfort of their homes or at social gatherings. The customizable nature of crowlers also appeals to beer connoisseurs who enjoy trying different styles and flavors.

Impacts on Breweries and Retailers

Any brewery or retailer looking to stay competitive in the craft beer market should consider the advantages of offering crowlers. These large-format cans are not only cost-effective for packaging and marketing, but they also help establishments reach a broader audience. By providing customers with the option to take their favorite beers to go, breweries and retailers can increase sales and brand loyalty.

One of the key impacts on breweries and retailers is the ability to promote smaller batch releases or limited edition brews through crowlers. This not only creates hype and excitement among consumers but also drives foot traffic and sales both in-store and through online orders. Additionally, the visibility of branded crowlers in social settings or on social media platforms can serve as free advertising, further enhancing the brewery or retailer’s reputation within the craft beer community.

Beer enthusiasts and industry experts alike continue to praise the versatile and practical nature of crowlers, recognizing the significant role they play in shaping the craft beer landscape. As the demand for unique and high-quality craft beers grows, the adoption of crowlers as a packaging option is expected to increase, further solidifying their place in the craft beer community.

Final Words

Drawing together the portability of a can and the freshness of a draft beer, a crowler is a sealed, 32-ounce aluminum can filled with your favorite brew directly from the tap. Providing a convenient way to take your preferred craft beer home or on-the-go, crowlers have become popular among breweries and beer enthusiasts alike. With its ability to preserve the flavor profile of the beer for a longer period compared to traditional growlers, crowlers offer a unique and practical solution for enjoying draft beer outside of the brewery. So, next time you’re looking to bring home a fresh pour from your local brewery or share a limited release with friends, consider opting for a crowler to ensure that your favorite brew stays at its best.


Q: What is a crowler beer?

A: A crowler is a 32-ounce or 946-milliliter can that is filled and sealed with beer directly from a tap at a brewery or bar. It is a popular way to take draft beer home in a convenient and portable container.

Q: How is a crowler different from a growler?

A: While a growler is a reusable glass or ceramic container typically holding 64 ounces of beer, a crowler is a one-time use aluminum can that is sealed at the place of purchase. Crowlers are more compact, easier to transport, and provide better protection against light and oxygen than growlers.

Q: Can I get any beer in a crowler?

A: Not all breweries or bars offer crowlers, and some may have restrictions on which beers can be filled into a crowler. It’s best to check with the establishment to see if they offer crowler fills and which beers are available for crowler purchase.

Q: How long does beer stay fresh in a crowler?

A: Beer stored in a crowler can stay fresh for several weeks if kept refrigerated and away from light. However, like any packaged beer, the flavor and quality can degrade over time, so it’s best to consume the beer as soon as possible for the best taste.

Q: Are crowlers recyclable?

A: Yes, crowlers are recyclable aluminum cans. After enjoying your beer, you can rinse out the can and place it in your recycling bin. Recycling helps reduce waste and supports sustainability in the brewing industry.