Kegerators were invented for beer, but they are also useful for a variety of other beverages - Cider, Root Beer, Mead - almost anything that you can drink. Children as well as adults can enjoy the benefits of a home beverage draft system by simply introducing a non-alcoholic beverage into one of your kegerator's taps. You will need to make a few adjustments to your kegerator in order to dispense sodas such as root beer, cola, ginger ale, and others, but nothing serious.
Kegerators can also be used to dispense soda and such specialty brews as mead (a honey-based fermentation), and hard cider (an apple-based fermentation) with little modification.
When using your kegerator to dispense other alcoholic drinks or sodas, you should be careful to thoroughly cleanse your o-rings and beer lines. You can also keep some extra O-rings on hand to ensure that your non-beer drinks do not have a beer-y taste and vice-versa. Usually, sweet sodas such as root beer and ginger ale are carbonated at a much higher CO2 pressure, about 30 PSI, or otherwise they taste too sweet. The high level of carbonation in such drinks distracts from the sweetness, pleasantly disguising the 40.5 grams of sugar in a 12 oz. can of soda - the equivalent of roughly ten sugar cubes.
By providing the occasional soft beverage for service from your kegerator, you can also score some points with the family. There is no modification that you HAVE to do to serve drinks like root beer - but, as stated earlier, the high volume of sugar in soft drinks can affect the taste of beverages that are served afterward. Using beer line cleaning kits can help a lot - and the beer or soft drink lines are less likely to absorb such flavors than the rubber O-rings built into various parts of your kegerator.
One problem you might have when serving soft drinks is the tendency of these drinks to start to ferment! Keeping the beverages at a cold temperature at all times will help with this, but also you should take care to use your CO2 to purge any outside air in your purchased or home made keg of root beer, etc after kegging. By purging air with CO2, you can eliminate some of the possible risks of yeast contamination that might be present in your keg.
How to Purge a Keg
To do this, you want to hook up your CO2 gas canister to the keg and then pull your safety valve for ten seconds or so to purge the air. This will leave only CO2 in the open space in your beverage. If your beer lines and keg are not adequately cleaned, though, there may be living yeast residue there.
Kegerators can also be used to dispense such specialty brews as mead (a honey-based fermentation), and hard cider (an apple-based fermentation) with little modification. As these beverages contain alcohol, the taste is not so much different as with sugar-based beverages. Some people like to carbonate these beverages more thoroughly, but it is not recommend serving either mead or cider at more than 12 PSI, or you might run into problems with over foaming, although they are not as prone to foaming as beer.
Kids birthday party? Prepare a special treat for the kids that can be served for everyone. Or try a different kind of drink - mead and cider go over great with many people for whom beer is too heavy, or who have a gluten or hop allergy.
If you already own your own kegerator, or if you are thinking of building a kegerator or buying one, keep in mind that kegerators can be used for more than just beer. If you make your own beer, you may also want to experiment with other beverages, which can delight and entertain your guests to no end.
Related Kegerator Articles :
Cleaning Your Kegerator -- Learn Why Cleaning Your Kegerator Is Vital to Keeping Beer Tasting Fresh and Efficiently Flowing.
Beer Kegging Tutorial -- A Tutorial About Kegging Your Own Beer and How It Is An Effective Way to Store and Serve Home Brew.
Kegged Cider: A Refreshing Deviation from Hop and Barley -- Making Kegged Cider Is Fun and Easy To Make At Home With This Kegged Cider Recipe From Kegerators.com.