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Old 05-23-2012, 12:54 AM   #1
steelersrbrun
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Default Note/comment to judges

I have two IPA's that I am entering into a local IPA Competition. Both have a VERY smooth bitterness due to late hopping. What notes should I put under comments so the judges know what to expect. I'm afraid even though its a tasty beverage I will get killed on points because they won't have a sharp crazy bitterness.

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Old 05-23-2012, 02:55 AM   #2
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Explain late hoping as part of the recipe and set proper expectations on the flavor.

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Old 05-23-2012, 04:38 PM   #3
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Every comp I have judged in I have never seen the sheet filled out by the brewer.
I would not even worry about it. An IPA does not have to be sharp in the bitterness just needs to have a malt/hop balance leaning to the bitter side.

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Old 05-23-2012, 04:51 PM   #4
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You declaring that the bitterness is smooth, doesn't change the fact that IPAs have a certain range of bitterness. If anything, I'd say that a comment would just bring more attention to any lack of bitterness.

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Old 05-23-2012, 06:51 PM   #5
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You might want to consider entering it as a Pale ale if you don't feel it will do well in the IPA category. I don't think seeing this as an explanation on an entry sheet would change my scoring if I was judging and IPA that did not have an adequate bitterness level. Flavor and aroma of hops in an IPA is a big portion of scoring, from what I am hearing from you is that this beer has this, but you feel it lacks bitterness. If you feel this than may be consider entering it as an APA.

But, when IBUs start to reach and surpass the human taste threshold, the hop flavors and aromas will take on a more prevalent role and the bitterness will fade or almost disappear. If you feel this is the case, enter it as an IPA, and try and comunicate the high levels of IBU's in the beer, and your hopping schedule. this might help guide the judges in their perception of the beer.

I would not recommend trying to explane to them what they are perceiving.

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Old 05-23-2012, 08:25 PM   #6
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You might want to consider entering it as a Pale ale if you don't feel it will do well in the IPA category.
Or enter it in both categories.

It's highly unlikely that the judges will ever see your comments.

In most categories it doesn't really matter what you were trying to do, only how your beer compares to the style guidelines and the other entries.
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Old 05-23-2012, 09:09 PM   #7
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I always thought the comments were for just for listing any special ingredient or brewing methods.

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Old 05-28-2012, 01:32 AM   #8
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Well, they have been sent to the comp as IPA's and we shall see. I had no idea the judges didn't see the comments. I put in a note that it was a late hop beer. I will enter it in the next comp as a APA and see what happens. Thanks for all the feedback!

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