I want to post some of the BJCP (Grand Master III) comments/scores for my recent APA, and then ask a few questions. I should also state up front that I'm pretty unfamiliar with what would be considered a "good score", relatively speaking.
AROMA- 8/12...low pale malt toastiness...citrus/herbal hop aroma, similar to Centennial...low peach ester...No DMS/diacetyl
Question: Based on the score and comments, should I take this to mean there is not enough hop aroma to warrant a higher score? What else?
FLAVOR- 14/20...Slightly sweet pale malt...No obvious caramel...Moderately aggressive citrussy hop flavor...orange, grapefruit...light white grape ester in finish...Bitterness is firm, coming in aftertaste and lingering long into fade...No sanitation or handling issues.
Question: Is 14/20 a typical flavor score for an average APA, a good APA, what? Are there ever 18-19-20/20scores?
OVERALL IMPRESSION- 7/10...Clean, well made beer...Excellent, balanced example of the style...I would like the bitterness to fade more quickly, but that's a quibble. Complexity through a bit of biscuit, vienna, or aromatic malts would be welcome.
Question: Scanning the BJCP guidelines, I see that biscuity, bready notes are optional. Looking at some gold medal recipes, I don't see these specialty grains used for an APA. So, should I take this judges final remarks to be his own personal preference? In other words, a different judge might not like biscuity notes in an APA, and therefore, would not make the same suggestion.