Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

Getting Started

How do I apply?

  • You must be an AHA member before the application period ends on February 5, 2017.
  • Update your AHA account and subscribe to our emails. You can do this by signing up for our Newsletter.
  • Fill out the Application Form for the competition between January 30 and February 5.
  • Wait to hear from the AHA if you’ve been entered into the competition by February 8.
  • Please reference the Rules & Regulations for more information.

How do I find my AHA Membership information?

Log into your AHA account on HomebrewersAssociation.org and click "My Account" on the top left. If you forget your AHA login username or password, click on "Forgot username or password" on the login box or contact Member Services.

How do I subscribe to NHC emails?

Scroll down to the bottom of the page. Type in your email in the "Stay Updated" box.

How do I become an AHA member?

Easy! Head to our Join page and follow the steps to become a member!

What is the entry cost?

Entry fees for 2017 are $14 per entry. Failure to pay within 72 hours of notification will result in dismissal from the 2017 competition and grounds for disqualification from the 2018 competition.

What is the competition website?

Forgot password for the competition?

Visit the Reset Password page and follow the prompts. Make sure to COPY AND SAVE your randomly generated password so you may reset it to something more memorable.

Can multiple members register together for the competition?

Yes. An entrant may list co-brewers under each entry they enter. However, an entrant listed as a co-brewer in another entrant's entry will not count be combined and counted together (i.e. if Person A lists Person B as a co-brewer, that will be counted separately from Person B listing Person A as a co-brewer).

Can professional brewers enter NHC?

Yes, but you cannot use professional equipment or ingredients.

Why is the information in my brewing profile incorrect?

You did not update your AHA account before the application period, January 30. You can log into your brewing profile using your username and password on BrewingCompetition.com and update it to the correct information.

How do you advance to Final Round?

Your entry must place 1st, 2nd or 3rd in the First Round with a score of 30 points or greater. Those who have placed will be notified with further instructions on how to compete in the Final Round of the National Homebrew Competition after April 23. For more information on the Final Round, please see the Rules & Regulations.

Entry Information

How many bottles should I ship to the First Round competition?

Two bottles. Please see Rules & Regulations for more information on bottle requirements.

What bottles are acceptable?

The bottle must be the following:
  • Unlabeled
  • Hold at least 10 ounces
  • Fit into a standard 12 ounce case box (22 oz. bottles and flip tops are not acceptable)
  • Attached competition bottle labels via rubber band
Please see the Rules & Regulations for more information on bottle acceptance.

Why were my entries removed from the competition?

You failed to pay within the 72 hour window. If you did not receive an email, did you re-subscribe to our emails before January 29? If you did re-subscribe before then, please contact info@brewersassociation.org.

Can I receive a refund if I no longer can participate?

We do not provide refunds except for extreme and insurmountable circumstances. Please reference the Rules & Regulations for more information.

Do I need to provide a recipe?

Not in the First Round. We will ask for a recipe if one or more of your entries advances to the Final Round. Please see Rules & Regulations for more information on entry recipes.

When can I edit my entries?

Reference the Dates & Deadlines. Once you’ve received an acceptance email into the competition you can log in and edit your entries. Do not forget to pay for each entry! You will have 72 hours to do so from the time of notification.

Can I delete entries?

You can change the amount of entries during the application period (January 30 - February 5). After that, you are stuck with your requested entries and must pay for all entries admitted into the competition regardless of whether you ship all of them.

Can I give my entries to someone else?

Absolutely not.

Have I paid for my entries?

You should have received a confirmation of payment for your entries. If you have not, please contact info@brewersassociation.org or call Member Services at 1-888-822-6273.

I’m having problems printing my bottle labels. What should I do?

Clear your history and cache, and restart your browser. Print the bottle label in "Actual Size" and no "Fit to Page." Do not use Internet Explorer to print your bottle labels. If you are still experiencing trouble, contact nhc@brewersassociation.org.

What style do I enter my beer under?

Your choice! It is your responsibility to enter each entry in the appropriate category and subcategory. Staff of the National Homebrew Competition and of the Brewers Association cannot aid homebrewers in this decision. Detailed descriptions of each of the beer styles and subcategories are available via the 2015 BJCP Style Guidelines.

Shipping/drop-off Information

When is the shipping window for the competition?

February 27 to March 8, 2017.

Can I drop-off my entries at the shipping location?

Yes you may, unless specifically stated that there are separate shipping and drop-off locations in your region.

What carrier is best for shipping entries?

It is illegal to ship/mail beer entries using the U.S. Postal Service. It is legal to ship using a commercial shipping company. Please see the NHC Rules & Regulations for more information about shipping entries to competitions.

What’s the best way to ship entries?

  • Wrap bottles using a material that can be torn away (padded paper or foam sheets)
  • Use dividers to keep the bottles apart. Cushion and immobilize them in the divider
  • Leave at least 2 inches around the perimeter of the box for cushioning material
  • Bag Styrofoam chips or popcorn
  • Indicate contents are "samples for evaluation" if asked
  • Indicate how many “items” are contained inside
  • Indicate which end is “up” and contents are “fragile”
  • Request a tracking number
  • For more information, reference the Rules & Regulations.

Where is the shipping location?

You can find this information in your brewer profile on BrewingCompetition.com, along with store hours and contact information. They are also listed in the NHC Rules & Regulations.

Have my entries arrived?

Ask for a tracking number when you ship! If you do not have a tracking number, please email your site organizer. Do not contact the business of the shipping/drop-off location!

How to ship entries internationally?

You can find this information in the Rules & Regulations. If you have further questions, please email nhc@brewersassociation.org.

Volunteering Information

What is stewarding?

You can find a detailed description of stewarding in the Volunteer Handbook.

What is judging?

You can find a detailed description of judging in the Volunteer Handbook.

When is volunteer sign up?

February 8, 2017.

Where is the judge/steward sign up? (No entries in competition)

  • Visit BrewingCompetition.com and click on “Register Here” link in the blue box. Fill out the form. Click Save & Finish. You will NOT receive a confirmation email.
  • Log into your account with your username and password at BrewingCompetition.com, click “Edit My Info,” and verify your profile by choosing the judge sessions and preferred/not preferred information. Click “Submit.”

Where is the judge/steward sign up? (Entries in competition)

Log into your profile on BrewingCompetition.com, click “Edit My Info,” and select “Judging” or “Steward.” Choose your session for each competition, and click “Submit.”

When is judging/stewarding?

Judging/Stewarding is dependent on the dates of the first round site. Please reference the Dates & Deadlines for more specific dates.

Who do I contact about judging/stewarding at a particular region?

Your site organizer and judge coordinator is listed in your BrewingCompetition.com profile under the “Contacts” heading.

Can I judge at multiple locations?

Yes, you can do this in your profile under the “Edit My Info” section and selecting as many judge centers as you’d like!

Results, Certificates, Awards

What does the certificate mean?

Certificates are given to those entries that fall within a particle score range. Certificates DO NOT indicate you have placed in the competition and are moving on to the Final Round. That is identified by a 1st, 2nd, or 3rd marker next to your entry.
  • Gold Certificate – Earned by entries scoring 38-50 points in the First Round
  • Silver Certificate – Earned by entries scoring 30-37 points in the First Round
  • Bronze Certificate – Earned by entries scoring 25-29 points in the First Round

Are there First Round ribbons?

Yes, brewers whose entries place 1st, 2nd, or 3rd in the First Round with a score of 30 points or greater are awarded ribbons for their achievement. They will be mailed out by April 27.

What does mini-BoS mean?

Mini-BoS stands for mini-Best of Show, and is a technique for reconciling the placement of entries within a multi-flight category. For more information, please reference the BJCP Mini-BOS Guidelines.

Where are the links to certificates and letters in the First Round?

You can find the links to your certificates and letters on your brewer profile at BrewingCompetition.com

Did I get the wrong scoresheets?

Probably not. We renumber the entries once they arrive at the competition with a judging number that is different than your entry number which is the number that printed out on your bottle labels and the number you’ll find next to each entry in your brewer profile. If you feel you received the incorrect scoresheets, please email nhc@brewersassociation.org with your judging number from the scoresheets you received found on the coversheet.

When will First Round results be posted?

Results are verified and winners are posted to HomebrewersAssociation.org as competitions finish. All results will be posted by no later than April 27. Please visit First Round Competition Statuses for current status.

What are the tiebreakers for NHC Homebrew Club Award?

The NHC Homebrew Club Award is awarded to the club that accumulates the most total points in all categories of beer, mead and cider in the Final Round. In the Final Round, six points are awarded for a first place, four points for a second place and two points for a third place. The NHC Homebrew Club Award will only be awarded to one winning club. In the event of a tie for the most points in the Final Round, the following tie-breaker criteria will apply.
  • The number of medals earned in the Final round will be tallied, and the club with the most medals will be declared the winning club. If a tie still exists,
  • Points will be calculated for the tying clubs’ entries that placed in the First Round of the NHC based on the same scale as used in the Final Round. In the First Round, a club may only receive points for a maximum of three awards per category, the highest three awards shall be counted, not to exceed a 12-point maximum. The club with the most points in the First Round will be declared the winner.

What are the tiebreakers for the Gambrinus Club Award

The Gambrinus Club Award will be awarded to the club garnering the most Final Round points per total club entries (Final Round points / # of NHC entries from club). To be eligible, clubs must have a minimum of 5 club members entering the First Round, and a minimum of 2 club members advancing to and at least one entry placing in the Final Round of the competition. Six points are awarded for a first place, four points for a second place and two points for a third place. There will be only one Gambrinus Club Award winner. In the event of a tie, the tying club’s points/entry will be calculated using the points from both the First and Final Rounds of the NHC ([First Round points + Final Round points] / # of NHC entries from club). Points for the First Round of the NHC are based on the same scale as used in the Final Round. The tying club with the higher points/entry value over both the First and Final Round will then be determined the winner.

How is the Ninkasi Award determined?

The Ninkasi Award will be given to the entrant who accumulates the most points in the Final Round of this competition. To be eligible for the award, entrants must have at least one entry place in the 26 beer categories. Six points are awarded for a first place, four points for a second place and two points for a third place. Individual members of a group of brewers earn points as a group and do not earn points on an individual basis. There will only be one Ninkasi Award winner. In the event of a tie for the most points in the Final Round, the following tie-breaker criteria will apply.
  • The number of medals earned in the Final Round will be tallied, and the brewer with the most medals will be declared the winner. If a tie still exists,
  • Points will be calculated for tying brewers’ entries that placed in the First Round of the NHC based on the same scale as used in the Final Round. The brewer with the most points in the First Round will be declared the winner. If a tie still exists,
  • The number of entries qualifying for the Final Round will be tallied for each tying brewer, and the brewer with the most entries placing in the First Round will be declared the winner. In case a tie still exists,
  • The total number of entries registered for the First Round of the competition will be tallied for each tying brewer, and the brewer with the fewest registered entries will be declared the winner. If a tie still exists,
  • The winner will be selected using a random selection method. A random method such as rock-paper-scissors, steel cage death match, or a coin flip will be applied at the discretion of the competition organizers to determine the winner.

Final Round

What is the Final Round competition website?

Final.BrewingCompetition.com/. Use your same username and password from the First Round.

How many bottles are needed for the Final Round?

Three (3). Please see the Rules & Regulations for more information on bottle requirements.

Can I edit my entries in the Final Round?

You must provide a recipe. You cannot edit your entry information, only input your recipe.

When is the shipping window for the Final Round?

May 17 to May 31, 2017.

What is the shipping address for the Final Round?

TBD

Where is the Final Round judge/steward sign up?

When is the Final Round judge/steward sign up?

April 27

When is the Final Round Judging?

June 15

When is the Award Ceremony

June 17

When will Final Round scoresheets be shipped?

By June 28

When will Final Round medals/awards be shipped?

By June 28

Who do I contact about judging in the Final Round?

Bruce Buerger, Judge Coordinator

Who do I contact about stewarding in the Final Round?

Luann Fitzpatrick, Steward Coordinator

Where can I find more information on judging/stewarding?

Read the Volunteer Handbook and visit the Beer Judge Certification Program website, www.bjcp.org.