Author Topic: When is it cheating?  (Read 2921 times)

Online Kaiser

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Re: When is it cheating?
« Reply #15 on: March 22, 2010, 12:47:13 PM »
An example....we have a lot of great brewers on our club, but there's one guy who consistently blows everybody else away.  When we had a club comp for lagers, he entered a lager that had just come out of primary.  It was incredible and easily won the comp.  People started shouting foul because it hadn't been lagered.  From my point of view, if he achieved the desired results, who cares?

I have a Maibock that has been sitting in a corny at 54-58 F for about a month now. First I was hoping the gravity would drop a bit more and now I have just been waiting to grow up a more attenuative yeast to add. The beer has not been “lagered” yet but aside from being a bit sweeter than I’d like it to be it tastes good. There is not secret to brewing a good lager w/o lagering it: the better you brew it the less time it needs for aging out flaws or smoothen out the flavors. Many big lager breweries can brew a lager in as little as 21 days. For some the cold conditioning, which we tend to call lagering, might be as short as 2 days.

Keith, I added the cheating part since I was not all that serious about adding lactic acid instead of souring the beer with a more natural approach.

Kai

Offline glitterbug

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Re: When is it cheating?
« Reply #16 on: March 22, 2010, 01:17:12 PM »
Beyond the Reinheitsgebot: Where is the line and who decides what's ok and what not.

Kai

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Offline BrewArk

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Re: When is it cheating?
« Reply #17 on: March 22, 2010, 10:34:36 PM »
If I brew my own beer.  Drink my own beer.  Don't enter competitions.  Am I still cheating?   ;)  Heck, this is 'merica,  we don't even have a Reinheitsgibberish.  If you take a short cut & use lactic acid is that different than using malt syrup instead of grain?

If someone is misrepresenting what they've done, they're cheating.  If they want to buy a commercial beer and put their own cap & label on it, and win a competition - enjoy the ribbon.  Hey, it's their eternal soul that'll pay the price not mine.
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Offline sienabrewer

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Re: When is it cheating?
« Reply #18 on: March 23, 2010, 12:20:49 PM »
I think that the idea of cheating should only come into issue in brewing when there is something to be gained from it, i.e a competition medal, cash or gift prize, etc.  He is an example to demonstrate my point.  Two people enter an identical style beer into a competition.  Part of the judging process is on the appearance and lasting effect of a good head.  Person A adds nothing and person B adds a heading agent (that actually works).  Naturally he should disclose that added ingredient because he is entering something artificial to intentionally make his product superior.  If he does not disclose it, that would be cheating. 

If someone is brewing for their own consumption and has nothing to gain, in my opinion there can be no such thing as cheating.  For me cheating comes in to play when you try to gain something of value and do not disclose whatever it is you have done so you can be judged on the same playing field as everyone else. 

Offline bluesman

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Re: When is it cheating?
« Reply #19 on: March 23, 2010, 01:24:13 PM »
Beyond the Reinheitsgebot: Where is the line and who decides what's ok and what not.

Kai

The "judge" decides what is cheating or not

+1

Cheating is an act of lying, deception, fraud, trickery, imposture, or imposition. Cheating characteristically is employed to create an unfair advantage, usually in one's own interest, and often at the expense of others, Cheating implies the breaking of rules.

and as far as adding lactic acid goes...if it's not against the rules... it's not cheating. Adding lactic acid will definitely save time and may not meet one's own standards but again if it doesn't break any comp rules, it's simply not cheating.

Ron Price

Offline denny

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Re: When is it cheating?
« Reply #20 on: March 23, 2010, 01:27:38 PM »
I don't think that even adding a heading agent would be cheating.  If that's cheating, where do we stop banning ingredients?  Is carapils cheating?  Is Irish moss cheating?  Who's to say what ingredients are allowable and which aren't?  It's what's in the glass that counts to the judges, as long as it's produced by the brewer who entered it.  Not to open a can of worms, but this kinda is related to the controversy about Gordon Strong blending beers when he won the Ninkasi.  A lot of people saw that as cheating.  AFAIAC, he brewed all the beers and he had the skill to put them together to make winning beers.  No cheating.
« Last Edit: March 23, 2010, 01:30:17 PM by denny »
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Offline dbeechum

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Re: When is it cheating?
« Reply #21 on: March 23, 2010, 01:32:46 PM »
I blame the Germans for a lot of this attitude. :)

Seriously, it's only cheating if you're trying to sell people on the idea that you did everything the old timey way with no futzing.

Having said that, yes I have an affinity for things done the old timey way. I tend to admire the extra skill needed to pull some of those things off.
 

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Offline bluesman

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Re: When is it cheating?
« Reply #22 on: March 23, 2010, 02:10:32 PM »

Having said that, yes I have an affinity for things done the old timey way. I tend to admire the extra skill needed to pull some of those things off.
 

+1

A general rule of thumb is .....Work in = Work out 

I would wager to say by and large that the person who takes the time without shortcuts to get the job done will win in the end. Not in every case but more often than not, in my experience an all-grain Pilsner will be better than an extract Pilsner beer (assuming equally skilled brewers).

Are shortcuts cheating...IMO not necessarily but typically they're a tradeoff for quality.  ;)



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Offline drawks

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Re: When is it cheating?
« Reply #23 on: March 23, 2010, 04:54:37 PM »
Two people enter an identical style beer into a competition.  Part of the judging process is on the appearance and lasting effect of a good head.  Person A adds nothing and person B adds a heading agent (that actually works).  Naturally he should disclose that added ingredient because he is entering something artificial to intentionally make his product superior.  If he does not disclose it, that would be cheating. 

I don't know if you personally enter comps, but having just entered the NHC I'd like to point out that you are specifically instructed to not include your recipe with your entry. Some BJCP categories specifically state that you should include for instance whether you used rye or wheat as it affects the judging criteria. You do however have to agree to release the recipe if you win and you have to also give permission to potentially have your recipe published. But both of those disclosures happen AFTER judging. It seems like there is no such thing as a lie of omission as far as ingredients when competing in NHC...

Each comp has its own rules, but as long as you play by the word of the rules it isn't cheating. If you do something which violates the "spirit" of the rules then it is on the comp organizers to adjust the rules to reflect that. You see this in professional sorts all the time; the NFL usually implements a dozen or more rule adjustments at the beginning of each season for this exact reason.

Offline bonjour

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Re: When is it cheating?
« Reply #24 on: March 23, 2010, 07:19:18 PM »
I missed that about Gordon, but awesome that he has the ability to use the traditional art of blending to assist in making beer.  If that is cheating than so are many belgian beers, new castle, and Guiness.

I would be cheating to enter a beer made with modern techniques when the contest specifies that only historical methods are to be used to brew the beer.   

Any method the brewer uses to meet his intended profile for the beer is legit. 

Fred

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Offline 1vertical

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Re: When is it cheating?
« Reply #25 on: March 23, 2010, 10:19:19 PM »
OMG, when I was learning what a Belgian beer was, I actually put a half teaspoon of
balsamic vinegar in a glass of Shiner Bock....I  cheated....please don't tell anyone.  ::)
« Last Edit: March 23, 2010, 10:20:53 PM by 1vertical »
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Offline redbeerman

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Re: When is it cheating?
« Reply #26 on: March 24, 2010, 07:25:56 AM »
Not to go on about blending or anything, but in my opinion, if you are willing to put in the time and effort to make all the beers and experiment with blending and the results, you are putting in way more work than someone who brews in a single pass.  I have blended one beer in the past.  It was a special bitter, that seemed to be missing something. I added a little bit of wee heavy to it and it improved it (to my tastes anyway) quite a bit.  The addition of lactic acid is similar in my book, YMMV.
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Online Kaiser

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Re: When is it cheating?
« Reply #27 on: March 24, 2010, 08:11:05 AM »
I remember that I too blended beers for a competition once. I took my Maibock and blended it with a Helles to make an Oktoberfest beer (the more contemporary kind). By doing this I got 3 entries out of 2 batches. The judges didn’t like the Oktoberfest too much. I guess they expected the more traditional Maerzen style.

Kai


Offline nicneufeld

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Re: When is it cheating?
« Reply #28 on: March 24, 2010, 01:38:16 PM »
I remember that I too blended beers for a competition once. I took my Maibock and blended it with a Helles to make an Oktoberfest beer (the more contemporary kind).

I have to say the idea of a maibock blended with helles sounds like a wonderful beer for cool spring weather.  If I had enough space in a lagering fridge I'd want to try this! 

The first books I read on brewing were Charlie Papazians main two books, so from the get go I've been of the wild experimentation model of homebrewer myself.  Blending of beers is an interesting thing for me...I'd even be interested in blending cider with beer, cider with mead, mead with beer, etc.

Offline bluesman

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Re: When is it cheating?
« Reply #29 on: March 24, 2010, 02:17:28 PM »
I remember that I too blended beers for a competition once. I took my Maibock and blended it with a Helles to make an Oktoberfest beer (the more contemporary kind).

I have to say the idea of a maibock blended with helles sounds like a wonderful beer for cool spring weather.  If I had enough space in a lagering fridge I'd want to try this! 

The first books I read on brewing were Charlie Papazians main two books, so from the get go I've been of the wild experimentation model of homebrewer myself.  Blending of beers is an interesting thing for me...I'd even be interested in blending cider with beer, cider with mead, mead with beer, etc.


+1

While we're on the topic of blending. I like to blend my Pilsner and my Bock. What a great combo! I should just blend the recipes to make a great beer. What do you think Kai ?
Ron Price