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after seeing some pictures, I'm torn on attending this.We had the AHA beer, an Oaked Rye IPA, that was a recipe that was brewed by our friend Jeff Carlson with Founders. A little heavy on the oah for me, but good. It is one of the commemorative bottles. The other was a Barleywine from Bells that Jeff says he helped brew the next day.
mead exam in 11 hours; time to start studyin'
well, maybe after another trip to Founders. The AHA collaboration beer is great...
looks like the meetup is the same place as all the cider seminars. And after the seminars, there should be some great ciders in the Social Club. I *heart* Cider Friday.
I don't mind all the sub categories of IPA because it helps me understand what to expect.
However, these beer styles have as much in common with IPA as golden retrievers have in common with wheaten terriers. American IPA is an adaptation of English IPA that uses domestic ingredients. It is not so far away from the original style as to be unrecognizable. Most people who have been away from the craft brewing scene for a while would think hoppy porter, not black IPA upon seeing and drinking a black IPA for the first time.
But we don't get to decide what an IPA is, the market does. IPA has changed over time into something different from its "original style." A brewery can slap the term IPA onto anything they want - the one constant that I can see is that an IPA is always hoppy. Although I would like to hear of an example that wasn't.
Radlers definitely tend to be sweeter rather than sour. By most generally accepted definitions a radler is half lager/half lemonade. Cascade Brewing in Portland on SE Belmont makes some of the best sour beers available. If you like sours you owe it to yourself to hit up their barrel house. They always have between 8-10 sours on tap.Where I lived in Germany (Hesse) citronade was what we call lemonade. Lemonade wad a citrusy carbonated soft drink along the lines of 7-Up or Sprite. The Radler I tried tasted like Helles and Sprite.
I love these trips. My wife works as a consultant / trainer during the day, while I go check out breweries. Motel, car, and the food is paid for. I just have to pay for my flight - which half the time it's on frequent flier miles.
Four days in in the Phoenix area, then 3 days in the Denver area.
Tuning your own perceptions with other judges is the most valuable aspect of judging results. Sit down with your beer and read the notes and sip. See if you can pick up any of those perceptions expressed by the judges.
Tuning your perceptions to be able to pick up those nuances and then figuring out how to alter your brewing to make the beer better is a huge skill to have. Gordon Strong is an incredible judge and has amazing ability to put great beer in a bottle. Although he won his Ninkasis with his Meads, he still earned points with a few beers and put himself above the rest. Having the ability to spot deficiencies and have the ability to blend them into the background is a huge asset. I feel this is a very important skill for a sucessful brewer.