Ask Eno: Is it Skunked?

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Dear Eno,

Will my beer get skunked if I buy it cold, let it warm up, and then re-refrigerate it later?


Dear Dan,

Nope.  It’s a beer myth that beer goes “bad” if it warms to room temperature.  Beer gets “skunked” if it is left in direct sunlight for awhile due to a chemical reaction between the sun’s UV rays and the hops in beer.  This is more likely to happen to beer that is in a clear or green colored bottle – just one more benefit to beer that comes in cans!  

You should, however, avoid leaving beer in a hot car (or somewhere where the temperature may get very very hot).  This won’t make it taste skunked but it will harm the flavor of the beer, making it dull and taste muted.  

Aubrie Talarico is part of Eno’s team that answers your toughest questions or curiosities about wine, beer, spirits, sake, and cider. Email questions to and read the answers in Eno’s E-newsletter!

To sign up for Eno’s newsletter visit and enter your email OR text “ENOFINEWINES” to 22828.  


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