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Having draft beer on tap is an excellent way to serve your guests at any party or outdoor gathering. But for those who don’t have a kegerator on hand or have access to electricity, jockey boxes are the perfect alternative to serve your friend and family ice cold draft beer on tap.
So, if you’re looking for the best jockey box reviews, then you’ve come to the right place. On this page you’ll find a host of excellent jockey boxes that should fit all your draft beer needs.
Take a read below, find the one that is right for you, and you’ll be partying in style soon. As it is with most beer jockey boxes on the market, including all the ones listed below, they will not come with the keg, dispensing system, or the CO2 tank.
If you are in a rush and need something fast, here are a variety of Jockey Box styles that we recommend you have a look at, and six choices that will keep your beer ice cold for hours.
Table of Contents
How Does A Beer Jockey Box Work?
Cold beer on a warm summer’s day when you don’t have a fridge nearby? That used to be the stuff of dreams. And then the jockey box came along. So how does it work?
First, let’s take a look at the name. They’re called jockey boxes because they’re, well, a boxed shape and because they’re highly portable (the word comes from the expression ‘jockey around’).
So what’s going on inside the jockey box that helps to deliver cold beer? It’s all about the stainless steel coils which you’ll find inside the box. These function as a “flash chiller,” which is just another way of saying that they can make the beer cold instantly.
When you’re going into the outdoors, you’ll simply be able to fill your jockey box with ice, hook up your keg of beer, and then enjoy ice cold draft beer all day long without the need for electricity. The beer is pumped from the keg to the tap (where you’ll fill up your glass, or Solo Cup) using CO2 gas.
Coldbreak 48-Quart Dual-Tap Marine Cooler
This Coldbreak 48-quart, dual-tap marine cooler jockey box is specifically designed for the craft beer industry, and made to take the wear and tear during the summer or beer festival season.
So what does marine grade mean? It means that this beer cooler is built to withstand wet and harsh environments while keeping your beer flowing nice and ice cold.
It has two 50′ stainless steel coils that will hold 17 ounces of beer in each coil, so you know your next pour will always be cold. The two faucets are stainless steel with black handles, and the stainless steel shanks won’t pit, tarnish, or effect the flavor of your beer.
- Available in 2-taps or 4-taps
- Front or Rear Input Line Connections
- Holds ice for a long time
- Sturdy Construction
- A bit more expensive than other similar dual-tap models
NY Brew Supply 48-Quart Triple Faucet Jockey Box
If you’re looking to make a splash at your party, then take a look at this triple faucet jockey box from NY Brew Supply . NY Brew Supply has gained a solid reputation for many reasons, including the quality of the build and the all-around robustness of all their brewing products, including jockey boxes.
Perhaps the best thing about this model is that it comes with three taps. That triple faucet system means that you can have a range of beers at your event; if someone doesn’t like Coors Light that I’ve provided, then no problem, they can drink the Coors Heavy or my homebrew recipe that I’ve also set up.
There’s also a professional look and feel since the handles look like they’re straight out of a bar. If you’re looking for a larger jockey box that still doesn’t weigh all that much, then the NY Brew Supply 48 quart beer cooler might just be the one for you.
- Three taps equals three beer options.
- Easy to handle and transport.
- Faucet wrench included, so you can keep things tight.
- Three taps doesn’t allow much room for keeping other bottles and cans cold.
Coldbreak 30-Quart SingleTap Jockey Box
If you’ve got portability on your mind, then you’ll want to take a look at the Coldbreak 30 quart – single tap jockey box. This is another high-quality jockey box that comes from ColdBreak, who have plenty of experience when it comes to manufacturing jockey boxes of all shapes and sizes.
This option is best suited for people who will be taking their box into the outdoors, rather than keeping it at home (though it can, of course, also be used there just fine). This box is known affectionately as “the tailgater,” because in simple terms, it’s an excellent option for when you’re tailgating with your friends.
Coldbreak has made this box as easy as possible to set up and clean, which means it’s perfect for jockey box beginners. It’s on the smaller side, and has one 50 ft stainless steel coil and stainless steel tap handle.
But if you’re just looking for a jockey box that’ll be used by yourself and a couple of friends while you are camping or tailgating at the big game, then that’s unlikely to bother you.
- Easy to set up, which makes it good for beginners.
- Designed by industry experts and manufactured in Michigan
- Made of high-quality materials that can withstand adverse weather.
- Not enough space to add an extra tap later.
Coldbreak 54-Quart Stainless Steel 2-Tap
Another option from Coldbreak, but the Coldbreak 54 quart – dual tap stainless steel beer jockey box looks and functions much different from the Coldbreak 30 quart – 1 tap.
To begin, let’s just think about how big this jockey box is. It’s 54 quarts which gives plenty of room for the coils and ice to ensure you always have cold beer. And it comes with two taps, which means you can offer a couple of different beer selections.
The design of the product is also among the best that’s out there. Unlike the 30 quart, which is best suited for casual outdoor gatherings, the Coldbreak 54-quart – 2 tap tainless steel jockey box can be used at glamorous events without looking out of place.
The stainless steel design gives it a sharp and professional look, and also means that it’ll look good year after year. It features two 50 ft stainless steel coils that are connected directly to the shank assemblies, which means no extra tubing or beer lines.
If you’re looking for a way to put a unique spin on your wedding, for example, then this could be it.
- Two different taps allow for different beers
- Solid stainless steel design means that it looks great.
- Backed by the Coldbreak warranty for peace of mind.
- Larger than other options, making it less suitable for trips into the outdoors.
NY Brew Supply 12-Quart Mini-Jockey Box
Sometimes, you’re not looking for a jockey box to make a statement. You don’t need it to be fancy or have multiple taps. All you want is that it does the job well.
There are times when I’ve been camping, just wishing for a cold beer that doesn’t come — because I didn’t have enough space in the truck to bring a larger jockey box.
This annoying problem has helpfully been taken care of by NY Brew Supply, who have come up with a mini jockey box that’s perfect for those short trip to the lake, camping, or for when you want a steady flow of cold beer while you’re relaxing in your man cave.
Smaller than other options on the market, this box is made with a 50 ft stainless steel coil that’ll help to keep your beer cold for many hours. This box is especially aimed at beginners who just want to keep their beer cool, without all the frills associated with larger and more complicated jockey boxes. You’ll find that it does just what it says it’ll do. Especially recommended for small parties.
- Easy to set up, use, and clean
- Small and highly transportable; you can take it anywhere.
- Will keep your beer cold for many hours.
- The small size may not be suitable for people who want to use it for larger parties.
- Will need to add ice more often
Kegco Stainless Steel 1-Tap
One thing about parties is that, well, you never know what’s going to happen. Things get damaged all the time. But if you’ve got the Kegco stainless steel single tap in your home, then you won’t need to worry about your jockey box getting damaged. This box was designed with durability in mind, so you can expect it to stay in excellent condition for many years to come.
Not that the Kegco offering is all about durability. It also works outstandingly well. The medium size means it’s suitable for just about every event: BBQs, tailgating, trips into the outdoors, and even more formal outdoor events.
Even though it has only 1 dispensing tap, the stainless steel coil is 120 ft, compared to the 50 ft coils that are usually found in other models. The longer coil, means your beer will have a longer contact time with the coil to ensure the coldest beer possible.
The company has included a few features that help to ensure your beer stays cool all day. For example, the base is elevated away from the ground so that the warm ground doesn’t warm up the keg. There are handles for easy transportation, a single tap for dispensation, and even a bottle opener attached to the side just in case it’s needed.
- Durable design
- Looks stylish
- Bottom of cooler is elevated off the ground.
- Only one dispensing tap.
Why Do You Need a Jockey Box?
You may not have heard of a key jockey box before, but that doesn’t matter: you’ll likely realize that this is the contraption you’ve been looking for once you know what they’re used for.
Put simply, they’re portable boxes that allow you to enjoy cool beer no matter where you are. Once you’ve got yours set up, you’ll be able to take yours with you when you go camping, have days at the beach, or simply want to enjoy a day of fun in your yard with your friends and family.
They don’t only help to keep beer cool; they also look professional. Perfect for the warm days of summer, a keg jockey box will ensure that you’re always able to get the party started, without having to battle with warm bottles of beer.
They’re a step above normal kegs, too, which, though they hold a lot of beer, just won’t stay cool all that long — by the time you’ve reached the end of the keg, it’s usually pretty warm. But you don’t have this problem with a jockey box.
How To Choose The Best Beer Jockey Box For Your Needs
As with all products, there is a range of beer jockeys on the market. So how do you find the one that’s going to be suitable for your needs in 2020?
There are a few ways. First, you can read reviews, like the ones from above. You should also think about your lifestyle, how often you’ll be using the jockey, how much beer you’ll need it to store, and the presentation. There are some relatively basic (but still high-performing) options available, whereas others are more professional.
You can also think about the types of gatherings that you usually host. If you like to host lavish parties at your home, then a stainless steel jockey box that has two or more taps (which means two or more beer options) will help to add to the glamour of your party. Professional brewers who are using jockey boxes to sell their products to the public should get a high-quality option.
Conversely, if you’re planning to take your box on camping trips, then the appearance probably won’t be as important, and neither will the presence of more than one tap. Indeed, it’ll be the lightness of the box that matters the most: even if you’re taking your vehicle right to the campsite, every experienced camper knows that it’s best to keep things as light as possible, weight-wise.
How To Get The Most From Your Jockey Box
When you first get your jockey box, you’ll be pretty eager to use it. After all, jockey boxes can be pretty fun! It’s important, however, that you’re taking the time to familiarize yourself with all the parts so that your box works efficiently. To figure out how your specific box works, be sure to read through the instruction manual carefully.
There are a few general tips that’ll apply to all boxes, however. For example, it’s important that all of your connections are secure. If you’ve been transporting the box, double-check before you begin pumping your beer — things can come loose during transit.
You’ll also want to ensure that you’re putting enough ice in the box. If you don’t have as much as you need, the beer won’t be as cold as it could be.
Final Thoughts On The Best Jockey Box
So now that we’ve taken a look at what you should look for a jockey box, as well as a few of the different options available, let’s think about which of the products we’ve reviewed is the best overall option?
While they’ve all got their qualities, we think the clear winner is the Coldbreak dual-tap 48-quart jockey box.
As we said earlier, it was built with the craft beer industry in mind. Yes there are less expensive models to choose from, but Coldbreak just makes a quality product. Although you might only need one tap, have the additional faucet gives you the flexibility to have multiple beers on tap if you wish.
All of the components that are used on this model; faucets, coils, and shanks are made from high quality stainless steel and build to last. In fact, all the components that Coldbreak uses, are interchangeable with every jockey box they manufacture.
There’s something pretty special about hosting a party and offering not one, but two different beers served at the optimal temperature. It’s also light enough to take wherever you want to go.
All in all, it’s a great jockey box.