Author Topic: Please Help - Specialty Style Data Collection Project  (Read 3092 times)

Offline dbeechum

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Re: Please Help - Specialty Style Data Collection Project
« Reply #15 on: February 14, 2012, 08:54:03 AM »
It's the BJCP's guidelines vs. the BA's GABF guidelines. So 3 different organizations. I don't know anyone using the GABF guidelines in the homebrewing world mostly because they'd be crazy impractical and they are very tuned to the needs of that competition and audience. (e.g. they need to respond quickly to trends in the commercial market to allow brewers to enter and be rewarded)

That's one of the dirty little secrets of the whole guidelines business, they're not just an exercise in taxonomical purity. Ultimately, whatever guidelines you use need to be balanced for the entry patterns you see to ease judging overload.

One of the more obnoxious trends in the Falcons is that we've always maintained our own guidelines. i haven't put the newest revision online yet, but here is the last one - 2010 Falcons Style Guidelines One of the things I was happy to see is that we already cover a number of Thomas's findings in the guidelines. (Ok, I needed to do it - so here are the 2012 Guidelines with its one change)

Belgian Brut
Belgian Blonde Ale
Belgian IPA
Belgian Quadruple
Black IPA
Belgian-Style "Wild Ales" (this is our catch-all for things like Temptation, etc)
Imperial Pilsner
Two Saison categories
Wheatwine

And like Thomas, we discovered most of these via watching our entry patterns. Years ago, we had to slide our categories around to make things make more sense competition wise - e.g. APA became it's own category since we had a huge overload of APA's. We moved DIPA into the Barleywine / Old Ale category to put it on even footing instead of in position to blow away regular IPAs.

We still have to split up our specialty categories better to reduce burden and to also allow for more entry configurations for the Doug King Memorial Competition, but small changes are good.
« Last Edit: February 14, 2012, 09:09:04 AM by dbeechum »
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Offline thomasbarnes

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Re: Please Help - Specialty Style Data Collection Project
« Reply #16 on: February 21, 2012, 02:51:50 AM »
That's one of the dirty little secrets of the whole guidelines business, they're not just an exercise in taxonomical purity.

This can't be said often enough. Much of the reason that many people hate the BJCP is because they hate the BJCP guidelines, without realizing that those guidelines are designed to provide clear categories for homebrew competitions. In some ways, they're as artificial as breed standards for dog shows.


Belgian Brut
Belgian Blonde Ale
Belgian IPA
Belgian Quadruple
Black IPA
Belgian-Style "Wild Ales" (this is our catch-all for things like Temptation, etc)
Imperial Pilsner
Two Saison categories
Wheatwine

Do your competitions really get a sufficient density of these styles that they merit their own categories?

Some of them seem very obscure (e.g., Belgian Brut beer, Wheatwine).

Offline richardt

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Re: Please Help - Specialty Style Data Collection Project
« Reply #17 on: February 21, 2012, 04:03:43 AM »
I do like the idea of separating beers by their SG ranges/ABV.
You're right about the big beers always seem to blow away the smaller beers within the same category.
A good APA or XPA never stands a chance against an AIPA that's brewed to the high end of it's range (or even higher, like a DIPA).   

Plus, beers that emphasize hop flavors and aromas, e.g. APA or XPA, practically deserve their own class separate from beers that emphasize hop bitterness, e.g. IPA's.

Offline dbeechum

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Re: Please Help - Specialty Style Data Collection Project
« Reply #18 on: February 21, 2012, 12:12:37 PM »
Do your competitions really get a sufficient density of these styles that they merit their own categories?

Some of them seem very obscure (e.g., Belgian Brut beer, Wheatwine).

Some of them are very obscure! The Brut one is a sop to the guys in the club (aka me and Fletch) who brew champagne beers. We've had a few Wheatwines over the years, but here's where I think I break off from a lot of folks in terms of philosophy:

- subclasses, particularly small ones, are free. The only cost associated with a new subclass is a little more paper for printing the guidelines. Eventually as subclasses get bigger, then you may have to add a judge flight

The place where the rubber meets the road in terms of making more work is when you create whole classes. Then you have additional judge overhead, medals, etc.. Classes cost money. :)


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Offline thomasbarnes

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Re: Please Help - Specialty Style Data Collection Project
« Reply #19 on: February 22, 2012, 09:50:09 PM »
I do like the idea of separating beers by their SG ranges/ABV.

Bigger beers have an inherent advantage against smaller beers in that they can have more of what you want in a beer - malt, alcohol, hops - and they also hold up better over time (mostly).

A number of guidelines have small beers and big beers (i.e., 7%+) broken out into their own categories for this reason.

Offline thomasbarnes

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Re: Please Help - Specialty Style Data Collection Project
« Reply #20 on: February 22, 2012, 09:56:54 PM »
Some of them are very obscure! The Brut one is a sop to the guys in the club (aka me and Fletch) who brew champagne beers.

That's a b**** of a style to brew and one of my favorites. You should write an article on how you make it!

It's just as well for my liver that I haven't figured out how to homebrew a decent Deus clone.

- subclasses, particularly small ones, are free. The only cost associated with a new subclass is a little more paper for printing the guidelines.

You make a good point, although for the BJCP defining new sub-styles also carries other hassles, such as reworking the written test questions.

If I was Grand Master 23+ and ran the BJCP, I'd be very careful in introducing new categories, but I'd be very aggressive in introducing new subcategories - especially in categories 20-23. I'd also get Belgian Specialty out of Category 16 and put it in Category 23 where it belongs.

Offline nateo

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Re: Please Help - Specialty Style Data Collection Project
« Reply #21 on: February 23, 2012, 07:31:13 AM »
That's a b**** of a style to brew and one of my favorites. You should write an article on how you make it!

Drew is way ahead of you: http://www.maltosefalcons.com/tech/methode-champenoise-beer
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Offline erockrph

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Re: Please Help - Specialty Style Data Collection Project
« Reply #22 on: February 23, 2012, 08:21:25 AM »
That's a b**** of a style to brew and one of my favorites. You should write an article on how you make it!

Drew is way ahead of you: http://www.maltosefalcons.com/tech/methode-champenoise-beer

Thank you and thank you again. This is now bookmarked at the top of my "need to try this one day" list. The Malheur Brut Michael Jackson Reserve is possibly the best beer I've ever tasted, I'd love to try to recreate this one day.
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Offline dbeechum

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Re: Please Help - Specialty Style Data Collection Project
« Reply #23 on: February 23, 2012, 09:00:05 AM »
Drew is way ahead of you: http://www.maltosefalcons.com/tech/methode-champenoise-beer

And here - 2009 AHA Conference Presentation - Brutal Brewing

And here - May/June 2006 Zymurgy - sadly out of print until the e-Zymurgy issue goes up.

I wish there was a video of the conference talk, because people are way too scared and intimidated by the mention of Champenoise. I think every single person at my talk walked away knowing it wasn't that much work because Fletch and I demonstrated the process in front of them. Besides - dry ice,  bottles under pressure, potential explosions! What's not to love?

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As for the re-arrangement, yeah, there are definitely some changes I would make if I were dictator for a day, but hey.. it's probably just as well I'm not.
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