Author Topic: becoming a beer judge  (Read 2606 times)

Offline csu007

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becoming a beer judge
« on: February 12, 2012, 11:19:28 PM »
So seeing as I'm newbie to the home brew scene, i was wondering if there were any classes programs to become a judge or at least a class to become a better beer taster? I know about the BJCP, but i was wondering if anybody know of cheaper or free classes (either online or in-person). I'm not necessarily looking to become an official judge but I'm not totally against it either.

“Sometimes when I reflect back on all the beer I drank, I feel ashamed. Then I look into the glass and think about the workers in the brewery and all of their hopes and dreams. If I didn’t drink this beer, they might be out of work and their dreams would be shattered. Then I say to myself, “It is better that I drink this beer and let their dreams come true than be selfish and worry about my liver.

Offline tschmidlin

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Re: becoming a beer judge
« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2012, 01:28:14 AM »
We do in-person classes regularly, but that's not helpful since we're a couple of states away.  I would look for some local judging classes, and I personally think they should be free with the exception of the beer.  Plenty of people around here take the classes and then never take the exam.

There are several CO exams scheduled, I would get in touch with the organizer and see if they are running any classes.  Even if the classes are too far to travel to, you should be able to get their schedule and maybe pick up some of the beers and study on your own.

Most of all, if you want to become a better beer taster you need to practice.  Read through the study guide, sit down and formally judge some beers, on your own if you have to.  Join a club, meet some judges and sit down and taste a beer with them.

There's just no substitute for practice.
Tom Schmidlin

Offline MDixon

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Re: becoming a beer judge
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2012, 06:16:50 AM »
The exam will be online in April, but you may still want to prepare with a class. Here is a pretty good summary of the coming changes to the exam for both prospective and current judges:
http://mashbang.wordpress.com/2012/02/13/bjcp-exam-changes-in-april/
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Offline richardt

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Re: becoming a beer judge
« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2012, 07:14:51 AM »
..Plenty of people around here take the classes and then never take the exam...

I agree, the initial interest is high, but the old (essay) format emphasizing "beer literacy" over practical judging issues like accurate sensory perception and description on judging forms was a huge impediment to recruiting more judges.  Without question, BJCP judges should have a good knowledge-base, but that is better assessed via multiple-choice questions, not fill-in-the-blank or essay questions.  The old format is too much of an effort (for examinees and graders) given that it is an all-volunteer organization.

I am happy to see that the format has significantly changed for the better. 
Thanks to everyone in the BJCP organization who listened to the membership and contributed to the change.  I appreciate it. 

Offline tom

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Re: becoming a beer judge
« Reply #4 on: February 13, 2012, 09:28:17 AM »
There are several homebrew clubs around Denver that often host a class.

Foam On The Range in Denver
KROC in Broomfield
the Rockhoppers in Castle Rock
and Hop, Barley and the Alers in Boulder

and there's an online course taught out of Denver, http://www.beerjudgeeducation.com/
Brew on

Offline tschmidlin

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Re: becoming a beer judge
« Reply #5 on: February 13, 2012, 11:32:07 AM »
..Plenty of people around here take the classes and then never take the exam...

I agree, the initial interest is high, but the old (essay) format emphasizing "beer literacy" over practical judging issues like accurate sensory perception and description on judging forms was a huge impediment to recruiting more judges.  Without question, BJCP judges should have a good knowledge-base, but that is better assessed via multiple-choice questions, not fill-in-the-blank or essay questions.  The old format is too much of an effort (for examinees and graders) given that it is an all-volunteer organization.

I am happy to see that the format has significantly changed for the better. 
I don't disagree with what you're saying, but I never said these people wimp out and don't take the exam.  We have plenty of people sign up who never intend to take the exam, they just want to take a beer tasting class.

Thanks to everyone in the BJCP organization who listened to the membership and contributed to the change.  I appreciate it. 
You're welcome :)
Tom Schmidlin

Offline richardt

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Re: becoming a beer judge
« Reply #6 on: February 13, 2012, 11:46:54 AM »
Thanks for clarifying.  We have no shortage of people who enjoy tasting beer, either.  Could always use more certified-, or higher, ranking judges, though.

It is hard, though, to get people to seriously consider becoming certified judges when they see the work involved. 
I think the format change will help a lot, even though I'm already "certified", I won't benefit from the MC test; I've got to take the new version of the written and sensory exams to get any higher than "certified."

Offline csu007

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Re: becoming a beer judge
« Reply #7 on: February 13, 2012, 01:19:58 PM »
There are several homebrew clubs around Denver that often host a class.

Foam On The Range in Denver
KROC in Broomfield
the Rockhoppers in Castle Rock
and Hop, Barley and the Alers in Boulder

and there's an online course taught out of Denver, http://www.beerjudgeeducation.com/

Thanks for the link. I will have look into the some of the local clubs as well.
“Sometimes when I reflect back on all the beer I drank, I feel ashamed. Then I look into the glass and think about the workers in the brewery and all of their hopes and dreams. If I didn’t drink this beer, they might be out of work and their dreams would be shattered. Then I say to myself, “It is better that I drink this beer and let their dreams come true than be selfish and worry about my liver.

Offline tomsawyer

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Re: becoming a beer judge
« Reply #8 on: February 13, 2012, 01:33:24 PM »
Does anyone know the number of people who can take a tasting exam under the new format?  Just wondering how tough it might be to get in one of those after passing the online test, given that you only have a year.  Not sure why that time limit exists.

Those who are active judges now, will need to help the new batch of provisional judges get their feet wet.  I look forward to the time when we have 6-beer flights instead of 12 and three judges per flight instead of two.
Lennie
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Offline tomsawyer

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Re: becoming a beer judge
« Reply #9 on: February 13, 2012, 01:44:52 PM »
One question, is something missing on this statement from the blog post? Should the "either" be struck from the sentence?  Or do they mean either of the tasting exams (old or new)?

"To qualify to sit for the Proficiency Exam, potential examinees must have scored at least 80% on either the tasting exam and have a minimum of 10 judging experience points."

Its not grammatically correct as it stands.
Lennie
Hannibal, MO

Offline udubdawg

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Re: becoming a beer judge
« Reply #10 on: February 13, 2012, 02:19:33 PM »
One question, is something missing on this statement from the blog post? Should the "either" be struck from the sentence?  Or do they mean either of the tasting exams (old or new)?
"To qualify to sit for the Proficiency Exam, potential examinees must have scored at least 80% on either the tasting exam and have a minimum of 10 judging experience points."

Its not grammatically correct as it stands.

yeah they definitely meant either tasting exam.

as for the one-year limit, it would certainly seem to be a detriment to taking the online exam since the current wait to get an exam is more than a year.  Hopefully that will improve when the backlog of old exams is graded, and when the bulk of grading being done is the faster tasting exam, thus more exams can be scheduled.  *that last part is just my guess*
« Last Edit: February 13, 2012, 02:24:45 PM by udubdawg »

Offline morticaixavier

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Re: becoming a beer judge
« Reply #11 on: February 13, 2012, 02:25:24 PM »
One question, is something missing on this statement from the blog post? Should the "either" be struck from the sentence?  Or do they mean either of the tasting exams (old or new)?

"To qualify to sit for the Proficiency Exam, potential examinees must have scored at least 80% on either the tasting exam and have a minimum of 10 judging experience points."

Its not grammatically correct as it stands.

I don't know but I would guess it should read;
"To qualify to sit for the Proficiency Exam, potential examinees must have EITHER scored at least 80% on the tasting exam or have a minimum of 10 judging experience points."
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Jonathan I Fuller

Offline MDixon

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Re: becoming a beer judge
« Reply #12 on: February 13, 2012, 02:35:56 PM »
It should have (and now does) read:
Quote
To qualify to sit for the Proficiency Exam, potential examinees must have scored at least 80% on the tasting exam and have a minimum of 10 judging experience points.
It's not a popularity contest, it's beer!

Offline hokerer

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Re: becoming a beer judge
« Reply #13 on: February 13, 2012, 02:37:14 PM »
I don't know but I would guess it should read;
"To qualify to sit for the Proficiency Exam, potential examinees must have EITHER scored at least 80% on the tasting exam or have a minimum of 10 judging experience points."

No, I suspect udubdawg has it right in that it means EITHER tasting exam (old style essay OR new multiple choice) AND have the points.
Joe

Offline MDixon

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Re: becoming a beer judge
« Reply #14 on: February 13, 2012, 03:10:05 PM »
Maybe I should have given a little background. The original note discussed the 4 beer taste exam AND the 6 beer taste exam. In reality the rule will be 80% or better on the taste AND 10 judging experience points.

I have it correctly stated in my previously posted quotation.

- -

EDIT: Any current National judge can retake the exam regardless of taste or essay score.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2012, 03:11:47 PM by MDixon »
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