Author Topic: advice on style ID for 2019 Nat'l Homebrew Comp.  (Read 368 times)

Offline Jeffrey

  • 1st Kit
  • *
  • Posts: 11
    • View Profile
advice on style ID for 2019 Nat'l Homebrew Comp.
« on: January 27, 2019, 01:34:16 PM »
1st time post!!!  I've been brewing for a while now, any over the years my recipes have become increasingly experimental.  I have one that I'm going to submit for the 2019 National Homebrew Competition, for as much as anything else, to see what "real" judges have to say about it.

I'm having trouble sorting out what style this one fits into according to the 2015 Style Guidelines.  I'd say it starts off pointing toward being a Belgian Dark Strong Ale.  It has a moderate amount of Special B and is fermented with Yeast 3787, and ABV is 9.6%.  Alcohol lis barely perceptible in the finish, if at all, depending on the individual.  However, it has a big hit of malted rye (4# to a 10 gallon batch) as well as a healthy dose of an herb that grows wild on my property (northern bugleweed) which adds some terpene/tannin/bittering flavor (and depending on the individual, can make one very sleepy).  These flavors balance the inherent sweetness.  It's lightly hopped with Williamette at 20 IBU, although the bungleweed carries the rest of the load in that regard.  The thick, lathery head is a sort of dirty-cream color.  Color of the ale itself is certainly dark; I'd say in the 25-30 range.

Overall, none of these flavors seem to totally de-classify it as a BDSA, but the carbonation is intentionally lower.  I just don't like the feeling of all that bubble activity getting in the way of flavor and mouthfeel.  I'm thinking that for this reason, it would not fit into the BDSA style and get scored low.

Based on this, should I submit it in the Experimental or some other category?  Or just as a BDSA?

Thanks in advance for any comments or advise.   Cheers!!!

Offline denny

  • Administrator
  • Retired with too much time on my hands
  • *****
  • Posts: 20240
  • Noti OR [1991.4, 287.6deg] AR
    • View Profile
    • Dennybrew
Re: advice on style ID for 2019 Nat'l Homebrew Comp.
« Reply #1 on: January 27, 2019, 03:10:05 PM »
1st time post!!!  I've been brewing for a while now, any over the years my recipes have become increasingly experimental.  I have one that I'm going to submit for the 2019 National Homebrew Competition, for as much as anything else, to see what "real" judges have to say about it.

I'm having trouble sorting out what style this one fits into according to the 2015 Style Guidelines.  I'd say it starts off pointing toward being a Belgian Dark Strong Ale.  It has a moderate amount of Special B and is fermented with Yeast 3787, and ABV is 9.6%.  Alcohol lis barely perceptible in the finish, if at all, depending on the individual.  However, it has a big hit of malted rye (4# to a 10 gallon batch) as well as a healthy dose of an herb that grows wild on my property (northern bugleweed) which adds some terpene/tannin/bittering flavor (and depending on the individual, can make one very sleepy).  These flavors balance the inherent sweetness.  It's lightly hopped with Williamette at 20 IBU, although the bungleweed carries the rest of the load in that regard.  The thick, lathery head is a sort of dirty-cream color.  Color of the ale itself is certainly dark; I'd say in the 25-30 range.

Overall, none of these flavors seem to totally de-classify it as a BDSA, but the carbonation is intentionally lower.  I just don't like the feeling of all that bubble activity getting in the way of flavor and mouthfeel.  I'm thinking that for this reason, it would not fit into the BDSA style and get scored low.

Based on this, should I submit it in the Experimental or some other category?  Or just as a BDSA?

Thanks in advance for any comments or advise.   Cheers!!!

If it doesn't taste like descriptionn of a BDSA, which is soounds like it doesn't,  don't enter it as one.
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

www.dennybrew.com

The best, sharpest, funniest, weirdest and most knowledgable minds in home brewing contribute on the AHA forum. - Alewyfe

"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts." - Bertrand Russell

Offline Jeffrey

  • 1st Kit
  • *
  • Posts: 11
    • View Profile
Re: advice on style ID for 2019 Nat'l Homebrew Comp.
« Reply #2 on: January 27, 2019, 06:42:32 PM »
Many thanks. I’ve been agonizing over the description, and was thinking maybe that’s where it belonged. However, I had a Rochefort 8 the other night, which made me second guess it. Mine has all the things going on as the Rochefort, but additional things, too. Sounds like enough to push it out of the style. Thanks again!!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Offline denny

  • Administrator
  • Retired with too much time on my hands
  • *****
  • Posts: 20240
  • Noti OR [1991.4, 287.6deg] AR
    • View Profile
    • Dennybrew
Re: advice on style ID for 2019 Nat'l Homebrew Comp.
« Reply #3 on: January 27, 2019, 07:47:27 PM »
Many thanks. I’ve been agonizing over the description, and was thinking maybe that’s where it belonged. However, I had a Rochefort 8 the other night, which made me second guess it. Mine has all the things going on as the Rochefort, but additional things, too. Sounds like enough to push it out of the style. Thanks again!!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Every time I entered a beer into a comp, I'd sit down with a glass of it while I read the guidelines of possible categories.  Really helped me decide.
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

www.dennybrew.com

The best, sharpest, funniest, weirdest and most knowledgable minds in home brewing contribute on the AHA forum. - Alewyfe

"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts." - Bertrand Russell

Offline narcout

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1909
  • Los Angeles, CA
    • View Profile
Re: advice on style ID for 2019 Nat'l Homebrew Comp.
« Reply #4 on: January 27, 2019, 08:55:35 PM »
Have you considered entering it in multiple categories: 26D (Belgian Dark Strong Ale) and also 30A (spice, herb or vegetable beer) and/or 34C (experimental beer)?

Might be fun to see how/if the scores differ among them
One of many zeros
Kicked around, bored

Online ynotbrusum

  • Official Poobah of No Life.
  • *
  • Posts: 3067
    • View Profile
Re: advice on style ID for 2019 Nat'l Homebrew Comp.
« Reply #5 on: January 29, 2019, 07:12:13 PM »
I agree with Narcout - hit all of those categories.  The BDSA may be the weakest fit to style but who knows?Certainly that botanical (bugleweed) pushes it into the SHV category and why not try experimental, also?  Give the judges a good explanation, so they hear what you were trying for and make sure that the intended or referenced ingredient is perceptible.  The best SHV beers I have judged retain the basebeer character and are simply nuanced by the unique or respective additions.  It would be wild for the same beer to sweep all three!

 Cheers and Welcome to the forum!
Hodge Garage Brewing: "Brew with a glad heart!"

Offline ethinson

  • Brewmaster
  • *****
  • Posts: 544
  • Why is the beer always gone?
    • View Profile
    • River Pirate Brewing Co.
Re: advice on style ID for 2019 Nat'l Homebrew Comp.
« Reply #6 on: January 30, 2019, 12:52:17 PM »
I agree with Narcout - hit all of those categories.  The BDSA may be the weakest fit to style but who knows?Certainly that botanical (bugleweed) pushes it into the SHV category and why not try experimental, also?  Give the judges a good explanation, so they hear what you were trying for and make sure that the intended or referenced ingredient is perceptible.  The best SHV beers I have judged retain the basebeer character and are simply nuanced by the unique or respective additions.  It would be wild for the same beer to sweep all three!

 Cheers and Welcome to the forum!

Hitting all three categories will probably not be possible at NHC considering how expensive it is, if you only registered for 1 entry or if you got four but then use 3 of your 4 on one beer?

I would suggest spice herb veg, especially with the herb being pronounced.  Have you considered American Strong Ale for a base? The Rye and willamette hops would push it in that direction unless the yeast character is very plainly Belgian.
SE Portland - AKA Beervana
Captain and Chief Deck Swabber - River Pirate Brewing Co.
Certified BJCP Beer Judge
2015 Oregon Brew Crew Member of the Year

Offline Jeffrey

  • 1st Kit
  • *
  • Posts: 11
    • View Profile
Re: advice on style ID for 2019 Nat'l Homebrew Comp.
« Reply #7 on: February 03, 2019, 11:31:21 PM »
I agree with Narcout - hit all of those categories.  The BDSA may be the weakest fit to style but who knows?Certainly that botanical (bugleweed) pushes it into the SHV category and why not try experimental, also?  Give the judges a good explanation, so they hear what you were trying for and make sure that the intended or referenced ingredient is perceptible.  The best SHV beers I have judged retain the basebeer character and are simply nuanced by the unique or respective additions.  It would be wild for the same beer to sweep all three!

 Cheers and Welcome to the forum!

Hitting all three categories will probably not be possible at NHC considering how expensive it is, if you only registered for 1 entry or if you got four but then use 3 of your 4 on one beer?

I would suggest spice herb veg, especially with the herb being pronounced.  Have you considered American Strong Ale for a base? The Rye and willamette hops would push it in that direction unless the yeast character is very plainly Belgian.

This was an excellent idea!!!  I planned to do it, and had one of those “life comes at you fast” days on the last day to add entries and missed the deadline. C’est la vie.

I really appreciate the input. It’s will definitely help me to make a more educated rifle-shot, since I’m working with one entry.

I’m not necessarily going for a win, but rather some good feedback on my submission.

Thanks again / Cheers



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Offline ingy

  • 1st Kit
  • *
  • Posts: 2
    • View Profile
Re: advice on style ID for 2019 Nat'l Homebrew Comp.
« Reply #8 on: February 09, 2019, 03:42:37 AM »

[/quote]

I’m not necessarily going for a win, but rather some good feedback on my submission.
[/quote]

This might not be the right competition if you are looking for feedback. My understanding is you get basically a checkbox form, without much detail.
This is my first year entering as well, so I don't know for sure.
You may be better off entering it a different comp if you are looking for useful feedback.

Offline Jeffrey

  • 1st Kit
  • *
  • Posts: 11
    • View Profile
Re: advice on style ID for 2019 Nat'l Homebrew Comp.
« Reply #9 on: February 09, 2019, 01:46:05 PM »


I’m not necessarily going for a win, but rather some good feedback on my submission.
[/quote]

This might not be the right competition if you are looking for feedback. My understanding is you get basically a checkbox form, without much detail.

[/quote]

That’s cool.

Once I got a bottle of a Peated Stout and a Rosemary Barleywine to a friend in the UK. The “reviews” I got back included where he was sitting while he tasted them, the weather, what he was snacking on at the time. I was right there with him!

I know when 28 gazillion beers are being sampled, things must happen according to a process. I’m a way, that forces the kind of feedback I’m interested in in this case.

Maybe some day I’ll find my way into other competitions. As long as I come up with the time and my kids don’t keep wiping out my inventory.

Cheers!!!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Offline goose

  • Assistant Brewer
  • ***
  • Posts: 223
    • View Profile
Re: advice on style ID for 2019 Nat'l Homebrew Comp.
« Reply #10 on: February 09, 2019, 01:59:06 PM »
I agree with Narcout - hit all of those categories.  The BDSA may be the weakest fit to style but who knows?Certainly that botanical (bugleweed) pushes it into the SHV category and why not try experimental, also?  Give the judges a good explanation, so they hear what you were trying for and make sure that the intended or referenced ingredient is perceptible.  The best SHV beers I have judged retain the basebeer character and are simply nuanced by the unique or respective additions.  It would be wild for the same beer to sweep all three!

 Cheers and Welcome to the forum!

Hitting all three categories will probably not be possible at NHC considering how expensive it is, if you only registered for 1 entry or if you got four but then use 3 of your 4 on one beer?

I would suggest spice herb veg, especially with the herb being pronounced.  Have you considered American Strong Ale for a base? The Rye and willamette hops would push it in that direction unless the yeast character is very plainly Belgian.

This was an excellent idea!!!  I planned to do it, and had one of those “life comes at you fast” days on the last day to add entries and missed the deadline. C’est la vie.

I really appreciate the input. It’s will definitely help me to make a more educated rifle-shot, since I’m working with one entry.

I’m not necessarily going for a win, but rather some good feedback on my submission.

Thanks again / Cheers



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

I agree it would probably fit best in the SHV (spice, herb, vegetable) category.  By tasting the beer and reading the BJCP style guidelines while tasting it, you should be able to determine the best fit for the base beer although American Strong Ale might be a good possibility here.  Remember, if you would enter it inn this category, you will have to provide extra information on what's in it to the judges so that they can evaluate it properly.

Also since this is your first competition, I would enter a smaller competition to get appropriate written feedback.  As has been mentioned, the NHC uses a checkbox format rather than written comments.  The written comments give you a lot more feedback on the beer and you can use them to tweak your recipe for the next NHC competition.
Goose Steingass
Wooster, OH
Society of Akron Area Zymurgists (SAAZ)
Wayne County Brew Club
Mansfield Brew Club
BJCP Certified
AHA Governing Committee Member

Offline jeffy

  • Official Poobah of No Life.
  • *
  • Posts: 3528
  • Tampa, Fl
    • View Profile
Re: advice on style ID for 2019 Nat'l Homebrew Comp.
« Reply #11 on: February 09, 2019, 03:06:35 PM »
I agree with Narcout - hit all of those categories.  The BDSA may be the weakest fit to style but who knows?Certainly that botanical (bugleweed) pushes it into the SHV category and why not try experimental, also?  Give the judges a good explanation, so they hear what you were trying for and make sure that the intended or referenced ingredient is perceptible.  The best SHV beers I have judged retain the basebeer character and are simply nuanced by the unique or respective additions.  It would be wild for the same beer to sweep all three!

 Cheers and Welcome to the forum!

Hitting all three categories will probably not be possible at NHC considering how expensive it is, if you only registered for 1 entry or if you got four but then use 3 of your 4 on one beer?

I would suggest spice herb veg, especially with the herb being pronounced.  Have you considered American Strong Ale for a base? The Rye and willamette hops would push it in that direction unless the yeast character is very plainly Belgian.

This was an excellent idea!!!  I planned to do it, and had one of those “life comes at you fast” days on the last day to add entries and missed the deadline. C’est la vie.

I really appreciate the input. It’s will definitely help me to make a more educated rifle-shot, since I’m working with one entry.

I’m not necessarily going for a win, but rather some good feedback on my submission.

Thanks again / Cheers



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

I agree it would probably fit best in the SHV (spice, herb, vegetable) category.  By tasting the beer and reading the BJCP style guidelines while tasting it, you should be able to determine the best fit for the base beer although American Strong Ale might be a good possibility here.  Remember, if you would enter it inn this category, you will have to provide extra information on what's in it to the judges so that they can evaluate it properly.

Also since this is your first competition, I would enter a smaller competition to get appropriate written feedback.  As has been mentioned, the NHC uses a checkbox format rather than written comments.  The written comments give you a lot more feedback on the beer and you can use them to tweak your recipe for the next NHC competition.
I also agree with the above.  NHC over the years has been geared more toward winners than toward feedback, with the score sheets giving less of the latter in both rounds of the competition.  If you are looking for feedback, another competition may be a better idea.
Jeff Gladish, Tampa (989.3, 175.1 Apparent Rennarian)
Homebrewing since 1990
AHA member since 1991, now a lifetime member
BJCP judge since 1995

Offline Jeffrey

  • 1st Kit
  • *
  • Posts: 11
    • View Profile
Re: advice on style ID for 2019 Nat'l Homebrew Comp.
« Reply #12 on: February 09, 2019, 04:41:44 PM »
I really appreciate all of the feedback!!!

Thanks


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk