Author Topic: Style Guidelines and Judging  (Read 7664 times)

Offline gsandel

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Re: Style Guidelines and Judging
« Reply #60 on: August 31, 2012, 03:54:14 PM »
this is a good discussion as I work towards the BJCP exam.  I think that the range of gravity is useful from a brewer's perspective when forumulating recipes, or deciding where to place a beer that is in the ballpark of two (or more) different style catagories.

IMO, the extra information is never a bad thing for reference, unless that information is wrong.
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Offline nateo

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Re: Style Guidelines and Judging
« Reply #61 on: August 31, 2012, 04:03:26 PM »
I don't know if it's as common as it seems, but I've heard (and read) about winning beers being "caricatures" of the style, bigger, bolder, more over-the-top than a "good" example of the style would be. Sometimes that means they're over the IBUs or gravity specified for the style. My impression is that's super common and that it's hard to make a winning beer by following the BJCP style specs. Is that true?
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Offline kgs

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Re: Style Guidelines and Judging
« Reply #62 on: August 31, 2012, 06:50:09 PM »
this is a good discussion as I work towards the BJCP exam.  I think that the range of gravity is useful from a brewer's perspective when forumulating recipes, or deciding where to place a beer that is in the ballpark of two (or more) different style catagories.

IMO, the extra information is never a bad thing for reference, unless that information is wrong.

Well, I'm in the info biz, and information IS wrong if it's not applicable or consistently used. This is the zymurgical version of "do as I say, not as I do." It's fine to say most beers in X style have the Y-Z gravity range. But for competitive purposes, it's wrong to describe the style as a guideline when (to borrow nateo's point) what tends to win is the teased-hair, blue-eyeshadow, big-shoulder-pad version of the style. I don't mind that competitions give an advantage to over-the-top beers. Innovation rarely comes from the middle of the road. I mind the reality distortion field that says a winning beer is X style when it isn't.

There's an interesting study in here for someone on the average gravity range for winning beers... but anecdotally I believe it to be true. And I tend to brew on the high end of the styles I like, so it's not as if I'm... so to speak... anti-gravity.
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Offline mihalybaci

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Re: Style Guidelines and Judging
« Reply #63 on: August 31, 2012, 07:38:00 PM »
I don't know if it's as common as it seems, but I've heard (and read) about winning beers being "caricatures" of the style, bigger, bolder, more over-the-top than a "good" example of the style would be. Sometimes that means they're over the IBUs or gravity specified for the style. My impression is that's super common and that it's hard to make a winning beer by following the BJCP style specs. Is that true?

I would say there is some truth to that when I've judged, though I don't think its intentional. Bigger beers obviously have more flavor, but I think its also easier to hide flaws. If two APAs have unwanted phenols, you're more likely to taste/smell them in a beer with 2 oz of finishing hops than one with 5 oz of finishing hops. So even though bigger beers may have the same flaws, weaker ones may be preferentially tossed aside since they're less obvious.

Offline morticaixavier

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Re: Style Guidelines and Judging
« Reply #64 on: September 01, 2012, 03:10:19 PM »
this is a good discussion as I work towards the BJCP exam.  I think that the range of gravity is useful from a brewer's perspective when forumulating recipes, or deciding where to place a beer that is in the ballpark of two (or more) different style catagories.

IMO, the extra information is never a bad thing for reference, unless that information is wrong.

Well, I'm in the info biz, and information IS wrong if it's not applicable or consistently used. This is the zymurgical version of "do as I say, not as I do." It's fine to say most beers in X style have the Y-Z gravity range. But for competitive purposes, it's wrong to describe the style as a guideline when (to borrow nateo's point) what tends to win is the teased-hair, blue-eyeshadow, big-shoulder-pad version of the style. I don't mind that competitions give an advantage to over-the-top beers. Innovation rarely comes from the middle of the road. I mind the reality distortion field that says a winning beer is X style when it isn't.

There's an interesting study in here for someone on the average gravity range for winning beers... but anecdotally I believe it to be true. And I tend to brew on the high end of the styles I like, so it's not as if I'm... so to speak... anti-gravity.

HA! ;D have I mentioned that I think librarians rock? well I do.
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Offline kgs

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Re: Style Guidelines and Judging
« Reply #65 on: September 01, 2012, 04:54:40 PM »

HA! ;D have I mentioned that I think librarians rock? well I do.

Thanks  :D and I apologize if I'm being too heated on this topic. I don't compete, because after brewing for over three years I still feel neurotically inadequate, so I don't have a *big* dog in this fight. There's just something about this that makes the librarian in me nutty -- it's like some cosmic misfiling.
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