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A ‘discerning drinkers’ free-house pub in East London, which is part of a group of pubs with 20 sites, had been experiencing flat beer and problems with fobbing which was affecting the taste and appearance of the beer and led to a significant loss of custom. The traditional establishment in Hackney is known for its selection of craft beers with 11 out of its 15 taps pouring beer from London based brewers, with 2 taps dedicated to really quirky, harder to find beers – ‘Beers of Intrigue’.

One of the supplier breweries made an initial investigation of a variety of possible causes of the problems at the pub which included trialling new and old glasses, changing the gases and checking the equipment in the cellar, but was unable to pin-point the source of the issue and so they called in glasswashing expert Derek Maher from Crystaltech.
Derek Maher, founder of Crystaltech, is a glasswashing specialist with over 39 years’ hands on experience of achieving flawless wash results with all makes and models of warewashing machine. As an expert within this industry, Derek and his team are passionate about achieving perfect results and carry out consultancy work with Cask Marque as well as ensuring leading pub groups, Fullers and McMullen’s, achieve award winning clean glass results across their entire estates

The Issue – Flat Beer and ‘Fobbing’
As the only specialist warewashing service company, Crystaltech is the market leader when it comes to solving warewashing results problems – even the most obscure, like this particular one. Initial tests on the glasswasher revealed there were some operational issues with the equipment and the pub had been using an inferior wash chemical, but this was not the cause of the fobbing.
Fobbing (when beer is dispensed with too much foam) is usually a sign that either the lines are not clean or there is some kind of contaminant which acts as a nucleus for bubbles to form around the impurity.
The cleanliness of the pub’s cellar was of a high standard and so the Crystaltech engineer used ATP Bioluminescence Rapid Hygiene testing equipment to test for levels of bacteria and were able to zero the problem down to airborne bacterial contamination of the hose and line to fill the container.

The Solution
Crystaltech replaced all the lines and hose with food quality ones and recommended that both the lines and hose were kept outside the cellar to reduce the chance of contamination in the future.
The glasswashing machine was correctly set up with a glass renovating system and the pub was advised to use higher quality detergent and rinse aid chemicals to for optimum glasswashing results.
The effect was an immediate resolution to the problem of flat beer and fobbing and the new chemicals have enabled the lowering of wash temperatures, and the cleanliness of the glasses and beer dispense is now, near perfect.
Crystaltech has the technical resource to detect even the most obscure glass and dishwashing issues to ensure minimal downtime of machines and provides optimum wash results for sparkling clean glassware.

I have worked with Derek from Crystaltech for many years and knew that, with his wealth of experience and determination, he would establish the cause of the problem and find the best solution. It has been six weeks since the problems have been resolved and we now have a happy customer and their trade has picked up again,” commented a representative from the supplier brewery.