Back when I was a kid, my dad converted an old fridge in our garage into a kegerator that served both beer and soft drinks from small minikegs he’d buy from a local distributor. While I was too young to consume the beer, I downed frosty mugs of cold Coca-Cola and root beer and became convinced a fridge that served up draught beverages was maybe the coolest invention ever conceived.
As an adult, I still think a home draught serve system is a very good idea. Unfortunately for me, I don’t have an extra fridge laying around. But the good news is we live in a golden age of beverage serving innovation that continues to bring us new ways to take simple cans or bottles of our favorite beverage and serve it up pro-style.
The latest take on the modern home serving machines is the U-Bruu, an interesting new spin on home draught machines that can not only serve up most any beverage on tap, but can also infuse the drink with nitrogen or CO2 and any number of ‘flavor enhancers.’
The U-Bruu has an inner chamber that allows the user to connect store-bought bottles or growlers of their favorite beverage and inverts them, ready to dispense. The system can fit up to twelve 12 ounce bottles of beer, eight sparkling wine bottles or four growlers.
Perhaps the most interesting feature of the U-Bruu is the flavor infusion system. The system allows the user to use “flavor enhancers” to add flavors such as bacon, peach or peanut butter to the drinks. The U-Bruu will include a recipe book for special drink mixes such as coconut infused coffee or bacon flavored beer.
I’m also intrigued by the nitro/CO2 infuser capability of the U-Bruu. Being a fan of nitro coffee, I like the idea of doing it at home without weird contraption and also avoiding paying my local Starbucks $5 a glass.
The U-Bruu is the latest in a wave of interesting new home drink dispensing systems that have come to us via crowdfunded startups over the past few years. One of the earliest was the Synek system, which launched in June 2014. Then came Fizzics, which allowed users to turn any single can or bottle and promised draught-like foam. Last year we saw the Growler Chill, a system to create a tap-serve system for growlers.
While we’ve seen strong interest in home beer making startups like PicoBrew and MiniBrew the last few years, the reality is more people would prefer to skip the hard work of making a fermented beverage and get to the drinking part. Luckily for us, nowadays we don’t have to convert our fridge to a kegerator to get a pro-style serve at home.
The U-Bruu, which is available for pre-order via Kickstarter, is expected to ship in October to backers and has already surpassed its funding goal of $39,000.