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General Category => General Homebrew Discussion => Topic started by: jhwk on May 06, 2011, 01:53:43 PM

Title: The NHC for the future
Post by: jhwk on May 06, 2011, 01:53:43 PM
I think the days of entering 75-100 entries all over the country to "beat judging inconsistencies and flaws" is nearly over.  How about a new thread on how to take the Comp forward and make it better/fair for the future?

1. two bottles per entry. gets rid of the problem of bottle age waiting for later reevaluation.

2. limit of ten entries per brewer (Primary or Assistant).  stops brewers from flooding the system to 'get through' and allows more brewers to enter... imagine that! Puts the onus on the judges for fair, consistent, and competent judging.

3. Can only enter one region. points 2 and 3 would require the use of a national entry database, which we are close to now.

Others?
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: centpa on May 06, 2011, 01:58:06 PM
Forgive the naïveté - but really, 75-100 across regions at $9 a pop? I could make 150 gallons more beer with that money. Or just buy the medals.
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: Hokerer on May 06, 2011, 02:11:16 PM
1.storing/tracking/handling 750 bottles is already a large chore, 1500 might be unmanageable

2. be interesting to see actual numbers, but I'd expect that very few submit more than 10 entries

3. you already could only enter one region (at least this year) I'm pretty sure

Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: johnf on May 06, 2011, 02:12:05 PM
I think the days of entering 75-100 entries all over the country to "beat judging inconsistencies and flaws" is nearly over.  How about a new thread on how to take the Comp forward and make it better/fair for the future?

1. two bottles per entry. gets rid of the problem of bottle age waiting for later reevaluation.

2. limit of ten entries per brewer (Primary or Assistant).  stops brewers from flooding the system to 'get through' and allows more brewers to enter... imagine that! Puts the onus on the judges for fair, consistent, and competent judging.

3. Can only enter one region. points 2 and 3 would require the use of a national entry database, which we are close to now.

Others?

The days of entering all over the country never started. Rule #3 is already in place. As I have said before, the idea that that entries are rising due to people entering large numbers of beers (not that there aren't several such people but nothing like 75-100, at least not in the last two years) is pure fantasy. Using the basic data published by the AHA you can see that the average number of entries per entrant have decreased in the last three years, and I suspect that trend continues this year. It is the number of people that is increasing.

I do support 2 bottle entries and I think it will have the positive ancillary effect of suppressing entry numbers.

I also support someone publishing the number of entries that would have been eliminated if there were a 10 entry limit this year. I am guessing less than people think. Maybe a few hundred (out of 6,750).

ETA: I think Club of the Year drives up entries way more than Ninkasi. Focusing on individual prolific brewers with a cap will do very little since there aren't a ton of those. Capping club entries (only those that count for the club, not shutting off individuals because their club hit the cap) would do much more because people wouldn't throw a few in just to help the club out if they were going to reach the cap anyway. That would also alleviate the concern that The Brewing Network or another "virtual" club would get to big to beat. That said, I don't support changing the nature of high profile award without very good reason, but if you have to cap something and you want it to have a real effect, cap clubs.
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: SpanishCastleAle on May 06, 2011, 02:23:39 PM
This thread (http://www.homebrewersassociation.org/forum/index.php?topic=7149.0) has a lot of discussion about it.  I originally thought the really heavy hitters were what drive the numbers up but it appears that it's actually more from increasing numbers of people entering 2-3 beers. 

If it is a problem, then another possible method would be to have a deadline (before the 'real' deadline) to get your minimum number of entries in.  After that deadline, if there are still spots open, they would be open to anyone with no limits.  IOW, you snooze, you lose.

Per that linked thread, the '2 beers per entry in the first round' increases already existing storage/manpower problems.  I've heard some horror stories about unpacking all the entries and the massive amount of packaging that must be disposed of.  Then you must store all the beers cool.

The folks that run this have probably already considered many/most of the things suggested here and in that thread. It's a huge undertaking and imo actually runs pretty well but there has just been a spike in growth.  Just needs minor tweeks to handle the numbers.
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: hamiltont on May 06, 2011, 02:28:22 PM
..... but if you have to cap something and you want it to have a real effect, cap clubs.
Or just eliminate the club competition completely if that truly is driving up the entries. Clubs vary so much  in size & participation that it really is not competing on an equal playing field. IMO it's really about the individual brewers and their abilities.  Cheers!!!
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: johnf on May 06, 2011, 02:33:55 PM
Per that linked thread, the '2 beers per entry in the first round' increases already existing storage/manpower problems.  I've heard some horror stories about unpacking all the entries and the massive amount of packaging that must be disposed of.  Then you must store all the beers cool.

There is a third way. Make a second bottle optional. It requires a little bit of effort in terms of flagging those that have a second bottle and indicating that on the pull sheet. I imagine a lot of people wouldn't take advantage of it. I might send 2 bottles of IPA and one of Imperial Stout, for example. So maybe now we are talking about 1000 bottles instead of 750 or 1500.

I know most competitions use one bottle for judging and mini-bos but:

1. The length of a judging round at an NHC first round tends to be on the long side.
2. This is the premier competition and begs for premier judging conditions, not just what everyone else does.

At a minimum I think more education around how to handle the single bottle in the best way would be helpful. At the first round I judged this year I was given about 2 of the plastic corks meaning the expectation was that the bottle sit (with the original cap back on it as well as it will go) until I am sure it is a mini-bos beer. But how do you know which two (or three) are mini-bos beers until you are done with all of them? I tried to get more corks and cork everything that wasn't clearly off, but that annoyed the other judges and stewards at the table (which I got over). Northern Brewer will sell you 100 of those plastic corks for a few bucks. Send 20 bags to every first round and clear instructions to immediately cork and cold store every entry and then go back and get the mini-bos beers when they have been selected and I will feel more warm and fuzzy about a single bottle.
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: gordonstrong on May 06, 2011, 03:00:29 PM
At the first round I judged this year I was given about 2 of the plastic corks meaning the expectation was that the bottle sit (with the original cap back on it as well as it will go) until I am sure it is a mini-bos beer. But how do you know which two (or three) are mini-bos beers until you are done with all of them?

Here's what I do:
1. Open bottle (me, not the steward).
2. Pour n beers. Maybe two fingers tall.
3. Immediately recap.
4. Judge beer.
5a. If beer scores in top 3, put the bottle away (cold).
5b. If the beer isn't in the top 3, pull and reuse the cap.
5c. If the beer bumps something else out of the top 3, pull that cap and toss the beer.
6. At the end of the flight, take your top 3 out of storage and see if you want them.

If you wait until after you judge the beer to decide if you want to recap, then you've blown it.  A second bottle is better, but this is how to make the best of it with one bottle.
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: denny on May 06, 2011, 03:02:09 PM
1.storing/tracking/handling 750 bottles is already a large chore, 1500 might be unmanageable

THIS! ^^^^^

I can assure you all that this is a prime topic for the AHA and the GC.  Kinda makes me glad I'm not on the comp. subcommittee!
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: bluesman on May 06, 2011, 03:18:50 PM
I like the idea of two bottles from a conceptual point of view but logistically it would be more difficult to manage and I think it would further strain the system.

Instituting limits is one way of mitigating the stress on the system but to what degree and it's significance is an unknown. I'm sure there are statisics on entries per entrant but again I'm not privy to that info. so I can't weigh in on that one.

As to your third question, it's already in effect as was indicated in prior posts.
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: johnf on May 06, 2011, 03:32:57 PM
I like the idea of two bottles from a conceptual point of view but logistically it would be more difficult to manage and I think it would further strain the system.

Instituting limits is one way of mitigating the stress on the system but to what degree and it's significance is an unknown. I'm sure there are statisics on entries per entrant but again I'm not privy to that info. so I can't weigh in on that one.

As to your third question, it's already in effect as was indicated in prior posts.

If you mean entries per entrant on the broadest scale, that is on the website currently for 2008-2010, it decreased each year while the number of entrants increased. To me this suggests that the growth is due to new entrants who are entering less than the average (around 3.9 for those years).

 If you limit entries to 10 and there were 50 people over that who entered an average of 25 (say), that would decrease total entries by 650 out of 6,750. Those 650 spots would have been easily taken by other people so nothing would be different other than exactly who about 10% of the entries came from.

I can understand the AHA not wanting to publish a lot of detailed info but I think if someone could just say, if we limited individuals to 10, 20 or 30 we would have in 2011 decreased total entries by x, y and z. I think those numbers will be a lot smaller than some people think and will take individual limits off the table as a viable solution to managing the competition size.

Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: thomasbarnes on May 08, 2011, 10:23:31 AM
Here's what I do:
1. Open bottle (me, not the steward).
2. Pour n beers. Maybe two fingers tall.
3. Immediately recap.
4. Judge beer.
5a. If beer scores in top 3, put the bottle away (cold).
5b. If the beer isn't in the top 3, pull and reuse the cap.
5c. If the beer bumps something else out of the top 3, pull that cap and toss the beer.
6. At the end of the flight, take your top 3 out of storage and see if you want them.

I'm with you until step 4. I like to recap all my beers immediately and put them them all away for later reference. This allows me to revisit beers which weren't in the top 3 if I have some reason to do so. Also, it allows others to sample beers in the flight which didn't win, but are still good.
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: brandon on May 08, 2011, 12:06:39 PM
I would say 2 bottles is a bad idea. This year was a record year. Nobody thought every single site would max and that there would be a good number of people after the fact begging to be let in. I see the 2 bottle thing making the comp harder to put on. I see it doing little to keep the total number of entries down. You may keep that one guy from entering 40 beers and entering 30 instead but there will be the next guy to fill that void.

I would offer to add another judging location and drop the cap to 650-700
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: punatic on May 08, 2011, 01:49:16 PM

3. you already could only enter one region (at least this year) I'm pretty sure



A quick check of the first round winners list shows that there are winners who sent entries to regions other than their designated home region.  So, either there is no rule for which region you must enter, or if there is a rule, it is not enforced.
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: hamiltont on May 08, 2011, 02:11:27 PM

3. you already could only enter one region (at least this year) I'm pretty sure



A quick check of the first round winners list shows that there are winners who sent entries to regions other than their designated home region.  So, either there is no rule for which region you must enter, or if there is a rule, it is not enforced.

That was a rule change for this year so if your region was filled your could enter another region, but all of your entries had to go to the region you chose.  Cheers!!!
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: wingnut on May 08, 2011, 02:27:14 PM
I have been thinking of this a bit the past few weeks...especially as I prepare to join the ranks of certified BJCP judges...

What are the thoughts of having a few more regions (perhaps double) with smaller caps?  Now that we have gone the way of "enter any region you want" why not double the regions and cap the entries at 375?  Also, instead of sending the top three, send the top two from each of these smaller regions so that the second round does not get too large?

My thinking is that when I become certified, I am still unlikely to judge in the National competition as the nearest site is 5 hours away.  It is one thing to blow a weekend judging and eating the hotel/meal costs... but the travel on top of all that makes it a deal breaker for me.  If there was a site closer to me, say two or three hours....then I would be there in a heart beat.  The other benefits would be:

- Smaller number of entries to work with at each site
- less burden...so more clubs could help with less burnout
- more total judges could be involved (at least one more  ;D)
- easier future growth/flexibility (if there is a geographical concentration of judges and clubs...put more competitions near there or bump up the 375 limit to 450)

Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: jeffy on May 08, 2011, 02:46:02 PM
I have been thinking of this a bit the past few weeks...especially as I prepare to join the ranks of certified BJCP judges...

What are the thoughts of having a few more regions (perhaps double) with smaller caps?  Now that we have gone the way of "enter any region you want" why not double the regions and cap the entries at 375?  Also, instead of sending the top three, send the top two from each of these smaller regions so that the second round does not get too large?

My thinking is that when I become certified, I am still unlikely to judge in the National competition as the nearest site is 5 hours away.  It is one thing to blow a weekend judging and eating the hotel/meal costs... but the travel on top of all that makes it a deal breaker for me.  If there was a site closer to me, say two or three hours....then I would be there in a heart beat.  The other benefits would be:

- Smaller number of entries to work with at each site
- less burden...so more clubs could help with less burnout
- more total judges could be involved (at least one more  ;D)
- easier future growth/flexibility (if there is a geographical concentration of judges and clubs...put more competitions near there or bump up the 375 limit to 450)

This seems like a good idea, but wouldn't it increase the costs to nearly double what they are now?
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: SiameseMoose on May 08, 2011, 03:28:19 PM
What are the thoughts of having a few more regions (perhaps double) with smaller caps?  Now that we have gone the way of "enter any region you want" why not double the regions and cap the entries at 375?  Also, instead of sending the top three, send the top two from each of these smaller regions so that the second round does not get too large?

The second round of judging used to take two days. Because that takes time away from the people who volunteer to judge, time that they can't use to participate in other conference activities, it was becoming quite difficult to get enough judges for the second round. A number of changes have been made to the second round process, including the simpler scoresheet, queued judging, and even table arrangements (Note: much credit goes to Gordon Strong and Frank Barickmann for these innovations), the second round has been reduced to one day, and everybody involved is much happier. However, it's still on the ragged edge of getting done in one day. Any increase in the number of entries in the second round, and it won't get done. As a judge who pays to go to the NHC every year, I will not sacrifice again to judge on a second day.

In terms of reducing the first round qualifiers down to two, I have several objections. First, every competition awards three places. It's traditional, and I believe a very good tradition. Second, the line between second and third at a competition of this level is very fine, and it is an extremely common occurrence that beers that placed third in a region win in the second round. Different day, different judges (and, on average, higher ranked judges), different results.

I am inclined to let this year finish out, and let the competition committee have a thorough debriefing after.
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: gordonstrong on May 08, 2011, 05:13:14 PM

3. you already could only enter one region (at least this year) I'm pretty sure



A quick check of the first round winners list shows that there are winners who sent entries to regions other than their designated home region.  So, either there is no rule for which region you must enter, or if there is a rule, it is not enforced.

That was a rule change for this year so if your region was filled your could enter another region, but all of your entries had to go to the region you chose.  Cheers!!!

That's not exactly correct.  There is no longer a notion of "your" region or "home" region.  There are judging centers.  Pick one, any one.  That's pretty much it.
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: udubdawg on May 08, 2011, 08:23:02 PM
I'm going to assume based on Texas' turnout and the size of Bluebonnet that there were plenty of judges that entered but didn't judge.  Along that line, could we have a sizable price break on the entry fee for those that have signed up to judge?  There would be kinks to work out in terms of those promising to judge not showing up, but if the competition doesn't have enough volunteers then who better to encourage to volunteer than the participants?

More, smaller regions sounds good; we could have had 10+ judges from my town instead of just me if it wasn't several hours away.  On the other hand the more regions there are the more it seems like the mead/cider&perry judges would be stretched pretty thin.  Wasn't a lack of perry judges part of the reason for Nashville's delay?  (my apologies if I'm incorrect)  I know some of the mead categories were the last judged in DFW as well.

I keep thinking it should be run like a club-only competition in terms of clubs signing up to judge a certain categories and everyone ships those categories to them, but I can't find a way to avoid insane shipping costs for those that enter many categories.  With something like 600 stouts you'd still need several sites that judged this category, but perhaps only 1 or 2 that did fruit beer.  I guess if people limit their entries to their "best" beers and multiple club members ship together it would solve SOME of the problem but not all.  Like I said, I keep trying to figure out how it'd work but I can't see it yet.

I guess the best I can come up with at the moment is 20 locations each allowing 500 beers in Category 1-23, with a few separate locations signing up for mead/cider& perry, and increased entry fee but reduced entry fee for those that judge, and going back to two days of final round judging (but schedule so they're not missing so much of the conference. - I'm sure this is easier said than done!)   Finally, start the 1st round earlier so people have a reasonable chance to incorporate feedback into re-brew efforts.

I get that no one wants two days of judging in the final round, but at the current size it looks like the competition is stretched to get done in two rounds, and I see no reason to expect anything but continued growth in interest in this hobby (addiction?)   Add another round, add an extra judging-only day to the final round, add extra locations, limit 1st round advances, limit entries, two-year competition with half the categories judged each year, limit entries to anything that's already won an award in a sanctioned competition, whatever...
I don't have the answers, and the NHC is great as it is right now.  With a little effort it'll stay that way while allowing even more growth.  I don't envy the competition committee in terms of figuring this stuff out!

it's an interesting problem to have...too many people are brewing!   8)

cheers--
--Michael
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: johnf on May 09, 2011, 01:57:03 PM
While space may be an issue, depending on where you set your bar for final round judges, judging isn't. A lot of certified judges were turned away last year, for example.

Given that you don't get a filled out scoresheet for the second round anyway, I would like a count of how many certified or higher judges are turned away this year before we say we can't judge more than 750.


Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: MDixon on May 09, 2011, 02:36:10 PM
Maybe I missed something in the thread. There are 10 regions each advancing a max of 3 beers/ciders/meads for category. So each category has 30 entries so a maximum of 30 x 28 categories = 840 in the final round (last year was 837)

Each category traditionally uses 9 judges at the Final Round and there are generally two judging sessions which equates to 135 judges if each session has what they need. If someone has been turned away, it is probably because volunteers with higher ranking or more experience have came forward to help judge.

--

As far as the first round, that is where I feel we really need to focus. When I was JD for our region it took 5 judging sessions to finish, two full days, one half day and two additional small sessions. We just did not have enough judges in any particular area to pull it off. Had it been a two bottle comp it would have been worse due to having to manage all the extra bottles. I just cannot wrap my brain around why the second bottle is required. If all the entries in the category are judged at the same time using queued judging and are capped and put back in the cooler the mini-BOS should be a piece of cake and all the tables will finish within 5 min of one another. If the entire category cannot be judged at the same time, the Organizer and JD need to figure out how that can happen.

I think we sat 4 judge groups (or maybe 5) of two at the same time on some of our flights and figured it out back in the day and unfortunately didn't have a clue about queued judging. In the end we barely pulled it off with 600+ entries and 750 would have not been possible without more judges...if a move to local happens then IMO the numbers should be restrained...300 or less is manageable by a group with experience, but would still take 30 judges two rounds to complete.

Ignoring the festivals, NHC rounds, fairs, etc. How many comps are setup to routinely handle above 500 entries? (Hint, it's a very small number.) http://www.bjcp.org/apps/reports/bigcomps.php
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: gordonstrong on May 09, 2011, 03:51:36 PM
Last year, there were 3 panels of 2 judges for the 2nd round.  The year before, there were 4 panels of 3 judges.  The year before, there were 3 panels of 3 judges.  If you go back even further, it used to be 2 panels of 2-3 judges.  I think 2004 was the first year 3 panels were used.

The 2nd round organizer has flexibility in deciding how to run the competition.  Different ideas have been tried.  The best ones have been retained.  Not all new ideas work in practice, but that's how we learn.

My personal opinion is that high-ranked judges should be used in the 2nd round.  If you have enough high-ranked judges to seat more people, then they should be accomodated. However, I think the 2nd round isn't the right place to go if you are a new judge or an apprentice. You can volunteer as a steward and help that way, but it isn't the right place to train new people.

Why do you think the rank National is called that way?
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: MDixon on May 09, 2011, 04:05:44 PM
You're right, it was three 2 judge panels per category last year. I'm getting old, my memory is slipping... ;)
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: jhwk on May 09, 2011, 06:08:53 PM
Why do you think the rank National is called that way?
Then why is the National Homebrew Competition of the American Homebrewers Association including competitors from other countries???  :D
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: gordonstrong on May 09, 2011, 07:18:23 PM
Probably because their money still spends here.

The rank is a BJCP thing and the organization is the AHA; two different groups.
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: thomasbarnes on May 11, 2011, 07:54:10 PM
My personal opinion is that high-ranked judges should be used in the 2nd round.

I'm currently a Certified judge, so, in theory that means I'm out of luck if I want to judge at the NHC second round. Despite that, I agree with you. It's my experience that an average judge can do a decent job detecting flawed beer, but has a harder time understanding what makes a good beer great. That is, above about a score of 35, lots of judges don't always fully understand the style they're judging and struggle when they attempt to give useful feedback .

At the NHC 2nd round, the proper place for rank and file BJCP judges is as stewards or as observers. That way, the National + judges are guaranteed to get a well-trained steward, while the Apprentice-Certified judges get a sort of master class by sitting in on the session.
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: dtblank on May 11, 2011, 08:41:28 PM
I agree for the need of experienced judges for this comp.  I was a bit disappointed that when I got my scoresheets that I didn't have a single certified judge.  I know that there are plenty of good experienced judges that aren't certified, but have never been in a comp where not a single judge for one of my beers were certified, so was a surprised that my first time to have this occur was in the NHC.
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: jeffy on May 12, 2011, 12:08:30 AM
I agree for the need of experienced judges for this comp.  I was a bit disappointed that when I got my scoresheets that I didn't have a single certified judge.  I know that there are plenty of good experienced judges that aren't certified, but have never been in a comp where not a single judge for one of my beers were certified, so was a surprised that my first time to have this occur was in the NHC.

What region was that (if you don't mind my asking)?
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: jhwk on May 12, 2011, 03:47:25 AM
I agree for the need of experienced judges for this comp.  I was a bit disappointed that when I got my scoresheets that I didn't have a single certified judge.  I know that there are plenty of good experienced judges that aren't certified, but have never been in a comp where not a single judge for one of my beers were certified, so was a surprised that my first time to have this occur was in the NHC.

What region was that (if you don't mind my asking)?
Happened to me at the Nashville region - must have bee why two of my entries went to mini BOS and one slipped through to the 2nd round...  And why the Berliner Weiss that took 2nd BOS the same week got a 21...

go figure.  :D
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: dtblank on May 12, 2011, 09:27:04 PM
Nashville region for me too.  Mine was a Berliner as well that got mid 20's score there, where it was getting mid 30's in all of the other comps, I've entered it in.  All three scoresheets were very inconsistent, which I know occurs (different judges, different opinions), but from the remarks I was getting on mine, I don't think they knew the style guidelines very well.  Just expect to have better quality scoresheets from the NHC compared to smaller comps. My whole reason for entering this comp was for quality judging feedback, which in the past I have always got quality scoresheets that help me improve on my beers. Really debating if I want to enter my beers in the NHC again, if I do I won't be sending them to the same region again.  I was very happy with this beer and so were all of my friends that tried it and in the end thats all that matters.
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: johnf on May 12, 2011, 09:34:44 PM
That's my impression, the NHC is not the competition to enter for feedback. The first rounds have decent judging but you can find regional comps with better judging and lower entry fees. The second round uses the checklist scoresheet which I am not a fan of. One of my beers last year scored a 38, not a word written on the sheet, none of the boxes checked were negative. Not upset about the score, I'm happy to score 38 in what was probably a very strong group of beers, but the scoresheet isn't helpful.

My two other beers scored a bit higher and made mini-bos, those scoresheets both had some writing and the feedback was pretty good. So you can write a good checklist scoresheet, I just don't think it always happens.
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: dtblank on May 12, 2011, 09:56:54 PM
Yeah your right about it probably not being the best comp for feedback, but do think that in a National comp, one would think that your would at least get one certified judge to score your beer.  I've entered this comp many of times with multiple beers and have always had at least 1 certified judge score my beers.  I know it could have been just the luck of the draw or just not enough certified judges in that region, but would think that they would spread out the certified judges so that everyones entries has at least one certified judge.  I always take my scoresheets that I get back from a certified judge more serious than I do from non-certified judges just because you know that they have taken the bjcp class/ test, whereas with a non-certified judge you have no idea what their experience level is.  I know some non-certified judges that know more about judging than some certified judges, so I'm in no way trying to bash non-certified judges.  Just think that some regions were not quite as prepared this year as they have been in the past.
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: tygo on May 13, 2011, 12:28:55 AM
I realize that the quality/level of the first round judging varies from region to region and maybe I just got lucky.  But I entered my three beers in Indianapolis and each of them was judged by one National judge and one Certified/Recognized judge.  I was pretty happy with the feedback I received.  Just wanted to relate a positive experience. 
Title: Re: The NHC for the future
Post by: johnf on May 13, 2011, 08:51:28 AM
I realize that the quality/level of the first round judging varies from region to region and maybe I just got lucky.  But I entered my three beers in Indianapolis and each of them was judged by one National judge and one Certified/Recognized judge.  I was pretty happy with the feedback I received.  Just wanted to relate a positive experience. 

Sure, but you can get the same quality of judging, or better, at UMMO, for example. The NHC first round doesn't have the highest quality of judging, at best it is comparable to a very good regional competition. The second round uses checkbox scoresheets so you don't get anything close to the full descriptive power of the high ranked judges used there.