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Old 04-01-2013, 10:49 PM   #1
ModernDayNord
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Default How many of you brew "to style?"

Almost every beer I've brewed can fit neatly into one of the BJCP categories, but I'm beginning to feel shackled by it. If everyone were to always brew to style no new ones will ever exist.

I think Sam Adams Boston Lager is a good example. American 2-row, caramel 60, German noble hops and lager yeast does not fit into any BJCP category and IMO is a great beer.

I was thinking, what about a "German Pale Ale," German malt base (pilsner with a bit of munich or wheat) with substantial hop bittering (Magnum/Northern Brewer?), lots of noble flavor/aroma additions, and fermentation with a German Ale yeast (or Kolsch yeast). Basically an APA using all German ingredients.

Or perhaps re-define the American Pilsener. Why should ALL American lager styles be flavorless and full of adjunct? Use American 2-row, NO corn/rice, with American (Cascade?) hopping and lager yeast. Brew as a German Pils with all American ingredients.

Penny for your thoughts?
Cheers.

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Old 04-01-2013, 10:54 PM   #2
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Or perhaps re-define the American Pilsener. Why should ALL American lager styles be flavorless and full of adjunct? Use American 2-row, NO corn/rice, with American (Cascade?) hopping and lager yeast. Brew as a German Pils with all American ingredients.

Penny for your thoughts?
Cheers.
Well, what about "premium American lager" which is frequently all malt. That is a great beer, and I like it every bit as much as a German pilsner.

I brew to style often, but I have several recipes that fit in no known style- a too-hoppy American amber, a Fat Tire-ish beer with German malt, etc.

I brew what I like. I love IPAs, but with less harsh and strong bitterness than some commercial IPAs (but with more flavor and aroma hops), so I brew that about every third beer in some way or another!
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Old 04-01-2013, 10:58 PM   #3
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Never even looked at the guidelines for beer and never will. I do not enter competitions and never will.

I brew what I like and I like what I brew so why mess with it

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Old 04-01-2013, 11:03 PM   #4
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it depends on what I want to brew. sometimes I want to brew an APA, sometimes I want to brew a Belgian Strong with Horehound candy, and I think next brew will be a Saison with rose hips.

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Old 04-01-2013, 11:03 PM   #5
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I brew what I like as well but I have several beers that are to style and more than a few that are not.

I enjoy them all. Sometimes it's fun to try and nail a style and since i do the occasional comp it's a challenge to nail it and place well!

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Old 04-01-2013, 11:09 PM   #6
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It's not like it is a binary choice. You can brew whatever you want. If I am doing a brew as part of a demonstration for new brewers, I typically brew to style so that people can more easily understand what I'm making. Sometimes I will just get in the mood for a particular style and brew it. Other times, I get an idea for a beer and create a recipe for it. Sometimes that fits into the style guidelines, but usually it does not unless you count the various "specialty" categories.

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Old 04-01-2013, 11:09 PM   #7
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I think next brew will be a Saison with rose hips.
Things like this also kind of spurred my curiosity. A lot of breweries are beginning to add unconventional ingredients to beer (fruits, spices, etc) and while not normally a fan, someone enticed me with a cherry Saison.

I guess the existence of styles is necessary for competition so that beers are compared "apples to apples" and also for marketing (so we know what kind of beer we're buying). I just feel like I've restricted myself for the last 6 years, call it stifled creativity...
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Old 04-01-2013, 11:14 PM   #8
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Things like this also kind of spurred my curiosity. A lot of breweries are beginning to add unconventional ingredients to beer (fruits, spices, etc) and while not normally a fan, someone enticed me with a cherry Saison.

I guess the existence of styles is necessary for competition so that beers are compared "apples to apples" and also for marketing (so we know what kind of beer we're buying). I just feel like I've restricted myself for the last 6 years, call it stifled creativity...
I was exactly the opposite. I jumped the gate trying all sorts of stuff before I really tried to nail a style.
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Old 04-01-2013, 11:40 PM   #9
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I brew to the style that I like and enjoy drinking. Can I brew to style yes have I yes but I really like playing and drinking great beer.
Besides at one time the only thing to style was sour's thank god for open fermentation. Was able to go to a tasting and Skype with the brew master of New Belgian he said 200 years ago a signal yeast strain beer was unheard of.

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Old 04-01-2013, 11:48 PM   #10
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I use some of the style guidelines as a rough guide when formulating my recipe. Its a starting point for me, not something that I let limit what I want to ultimately end up with.

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