Cocktail Batching - KeyKegs

Here's how you can batch your own custom cocktails into KeyKegs.

Before you begin

Please make sure you have the following ready:

  • Clean, empty kegs to fill (KeyKegs)
  • One or more Brew Kettles for mixing
  • Sanitizer to clean Brew Kettles, mixed to the correct ratio and in spray bottles
  • Cheese cloth to strain cocktail mixture
  • Large colander
  • Spatula or large spoon
  • All cocktail ingredients
  • Cocktail recipe converted to bulk proportions
Cocktail Selection: Not all cocktails take well to on-tap dispensing. For example, kegged cocktails should have as little sediment or pulp as possible. Consult with your Sestra rep when choosing a cocktail recipe.

Batching Amounts: Each Brew Kettle will hold ~5 gallons of mixture, enough to fill a single keg. Consider this when planning your menu and recipes.

Preparing to fill

  1. Sanitize empty Brew Kettle(s) and filling tubes. 
  2. Check that the tubing is securely attached to the fitting at the bottom of the kettle.
  3. Close the blue in-line drain valve on the line between the Brew Kettle and the keg coupler by turning it perpendicular with the tube. 
  4. Mix together ingredients for cocktail, straining as you mix, filling the Brew Kettle with 5 gallons (660 ounces).
    1. Your final mixture must not contain pulp. Strain it well using cheesecloth and large colander.  
    2. Place colander over top of Brew Kettle and fix cheese cloth in colander. Pour mixture through to strain. 
  5. Stir well with spatula or large spoon.

Filling KeyKegs: For more information and best practices for filling KeyKegs, please refer to their video, How to manually fill a KeyKeg

    Keg Filling:

    • Use only approved KeyKeg coupler heads. Contact your Sestra rep with any questions.
    • Remove the blue plastic dust cap on your empty KeyKeg.
    • Sanitize all connection points, both KeyKeg head and coupler.
    • Connect KeyKeg filling coupler to keg.
      • Place the coupler on the new keg and slowly turn/adjust until it falls into place. There are notches on the coupler that match up with notches on the keg head.
      • Gently turn the coupler CLOCKWISE to engage it with the keg head - about ¼ turn.
      • Squeeze the top and bottom of the coupler lever together to release.
      • Push down on ONLY the top of the lever until you feel it click into place.
      • This will release air pressure -- allow all air to fully escape from the keg and depressurize.
    • Invert the keg and place into filling position on the batching station.
    • Open the blue in-line valve on the line between the Brew Kettle and the keg coupler by turning it to be parallel with the line. Allow the cocktail to gravity fill the line between Brew Kettle and coupler.
    • Turn on batching pump.
      • The pump will shut off automatically after 10 minutes. If keg needs to be filled more after 10 minutes turn on the batching pump again. 
    • Once keg is filled and kettle is empty, turn off the batching pump.
    • Close the blue in-line drain valve. 
    • Be careful when removing keg from batching station -- it is now full and much heavier.
    • Turn the keg upright and place on the ground.
    • Disconnect coupler, wipe any excess liquid left in keg head, and add a plastic snap cap to the top of the keg to protect from dust. 

    Preparing to Clean

    Please make sure you have the following ready:

    • Bucket or container large enough to hold 5 gallons
    • Towel or absorbent cloth
    • Food safe sanitizer solution
    • Warm water - at least 10 gallons

    Brew Kettle Cleaning:

    • Close the blue in-line drain valve.
    • Fill Brew Kettle with warm water and sanitizer.
    • Place coupler into a bucket filled with warm water.
    • Open the blue in-line drain valve to allow the water warm and sanitizer solution to flow through tubing and coupler into the bucket. Brew Kettle can be emptied using gravity fill or pump.
      • Pump: Once the blue in-line valve is open and solution has flowed through, turn on pump. Pump will automatically shut off once Brew Kettle is empty.
      • Gravity Fill: Place bucket with coupler in it lower than the Brew Kettle, Sestra recommends placing bucket on the floor with a cloth or towel underneath. 
    • Once the Brew Kettle is empty,  close the in-line blue drain valve.
    • Open and close coupler 5 times to sanitize coupler. 
    • Rinse the Brew Kettle and fill with warm water only.
    • Open the blue in-line drain valve and let the warm water flow through the tubing into bucket until empty.