Thursday, January 17, 2008

Beer/Gear: Krups-Heineken BeerTender

Commenter Indy Steve forwarded me a link to this device last week and I have to say, I love the concept! Krups and Heineken have joined forces to create a mini-kegerator called BeerTender. First released in Europe, the news is that they're now bringing the device over to the US.

I like the concept because few people have the space for a full-on kegerator and even fewer people probably have the inclination to drink an entire keg of beer at home (I think I'd hate even my favorite beer after working through a whole keg of it!). Not to mention you've got to have a significant other willing to allow such a thing into their home. BeerTender, on the other hand, is cool, small and sleek looking. A much easier sell. And using mini kegs, you could change out the beer style much more frequently.

Steve wondered if this would work with the new Two Hearted Ale mini-kegs from Bell's. Unfortunately, it looks like the answer is no. The BeerTender is only compatible with DraughtKeg mini-kegs, and even then, it's designed to use the 4L version common in Europe. A tube attachment will allow it to work with 5L DraughtKegs common in the US, but how many beers are produced in those pressurized DraughtKegs?

Of course, there's another BIG downside: the price on this thing is outrageous. News reports indicate that it will be available at Williams-Sonoma for $400 on March 1 and rumor is that other retailers will have it for approximately $299 on April 1. Who's going to pay $400 for this?! That's approaching the price of a full-sized kegerator.

At $200, I bet they'd do solid business. Bring it down to $100 and it would fly off the shelves. I just don't see this product taking off at $400 or even $300. Think of all the different bottled beer you could enjoy for $300!

9 comments:

IndyIndie said...

Not having a spouse, but only other roommates that like beer, I do have a keggarator at home. We got a cheap old fridge from the star classifieds and a conversion kit and it all only cost around $100. $400 is outrageous.

Indy Steve said...

Thanks for the info on whether it'll work with Bell's. I would only be interested in this device if it worked with a number of different beers. Heineken is fine, but do I want to buy something that expensive just for one beer? I don't think so.

Jason266 said...

Oh, I think I could find a *few* beers that I could handle a keg's worth! Cool product, would definitely be better if it would work with other mini kegs. Maybe other breweries could adapt to this particular format?

CorrND said...

It would be pretty awesome if a standard formed around this kind of mini-keg.

As Steve said, even if the price for the mini-kegerator was more reasonable, who wants something like this for just Heineken (and I think a handful of other European pilsners)?

Jason266 said...

I talked to a couple of guys at World Class Beverage. They say there are refrigerators for the mini kegs that work with Bell's and all the different German beers that sell in mini kegs. The big difference being that the Heineken version is pressurized where the other is not. The challenge, they said, is that mini kegs are terribly difficult to get a hold of as they are all made in Germany.

Jason266 said...

Here we go:
Avanti MBD5L Mini Pub Mini Beer Keg Dispenser

CorrND said...

Nice! Thanks for the info Jason. Looks like that Avanti mini-kegerator is $250 from Amazon. Still a tad high in my book, but at least it's a hell of a lot more versatile.

Anonymous said...

I have a friend who works for W.S. and they will be dropping the price to 200 something. Also dont forget its Krups! If thery can supply weapons to the nazi's they can supply good beer

Anonymous said...

the arms manufacturer is KRUPP, not Krups. different company.