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Old 03-27-2012, 11:05 PM   #1
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Default Winning Beer Competitions

Other than real attention to BJCP style guidelines, any thoughts?

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Old 03-27-2012, 11:09 PM   #2
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Competition is truly to style so you need to be sure your beer meets this parameters, other than that it's got to be great beer!

There is a lot of subjectivity in the judging so don't be discouraged if your beer doesn't do as well as you think.

Try entering the same beer in several competitions and then summarize your brew sheet results in ways to improve.

I've entered several and find its kind of a crap shoot. One beer didn't place in one comp but then it scored bronze in the next, go figure

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Old 03-27-2012, 11:25 PM   #3
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1. enter a bunch of beers. if you enter 10 or 20 beers your bound to place in one of them, unless you are not a decent brewer. there are alot of people that do this.

2. choose your category wisely. Pale ales, IPAs and stouts seem to be popular categories. enter a category that doesnt get alot of entries. better chance of winning if you enter a category that has 5 entries vs a category that has 30 entries.

follow these guidelines and you should get a ribbon. OR you could just brew 1 beer that is to style and better than everyone elses. doing 1 and 2 above is probably easier.

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Old 03-28-2012, 12:05 AM   #4
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Maybe focus less on winning and more on improving. Succeeding in the latter usually leads to succeeding in the former.
My $0.02

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Old 03-28-2012, 12:30 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by naiek
Maybe focus less on winning and more on improving. Succeeding in the latter usually leads to succeeding in the former.
My $0.02
Agreed
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Old 03-28-2012, 12:41 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by naiek View Post
Maybe focus less on winning and more on improving. Succeeding in the latter usually leads to succeeding in the former.
My $0.02
Hence why a lot of people enter competitions, to also get feed back to improve their beer!
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Old 03-28-2012, 01:07 AM   #7
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In my (limited) experience the beers that tend to win fall on the higher end (higher OG, more IBUs, etc) of the BJCP guidelines. This is especially true of categories were palate fatigue comes into play.

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Old 03-28-2012, 05:33 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IffyG View Post
In my (limited) experience the beers that tend to win fall on the higher end (higher OG, more IBUs, etc) of the BJCP guidelines. This is especially true of categories were palate fatigue comes into play.
Yes I agree. In our local competition this year there were 13 completely different styles. I won with a an American Barleywine with a 44. Big hoppy beautiful beer.

Now obviously I am a bit biased but honestly that's about what I expected to score (hoped to score you never know).

Another guy entered what I considered to be a nice cider. Not the equal to my barleywine of course but you can imagine going from one to the other.

Out here people love their hops too so hoppy beers tend to rule at the competition not by default but given a choice.

What I hope to achieve is to improve and get feedback at the competitions. And to win of course. The other thing I like is trying to meet the style. It's an additional challenge, one that I used to hate but now embrace. Fun to try to brew to a description I find.
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Old 03-28-2012, 05:48 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by duboman View Post
Competition is truly to style so you need to be sure your beer meets this parameters, other than that it's got to be great beer!
Actually, the judges have no way of knowing if your beer really meets the parameters, especially in OG. I've seen many beers out of category actually win.

My favorite is many years ago when one of the judges commented on the winning beer in the NHC "This is really malty for a 1.038 beer!" The beer was actually 1.060 and entered in category that had an upper limit of 1.038 or so.

If you read Jamil's book, many of his beers are not brewed to style, they're brewed to win competitions. He learned what the judges expected and adjusted accordingly.
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Old 03-28-2012, 06:12 PM   #10
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Actually, the judges have no way of knowing if your beer really meets the parameters, especially in OG. I've seen many beers out of category actually win.

My favorite is many years ago when one of the judges commented on the winning beer "This is really malty for a 1.038 beer!" The beer was actually 1.060 and entered in category that had an upper limit of 1.038 or so.

If you read Jamil's book, many of his beers are not brewed to style, they're brewed to win competitions. He learned what the judges expected and adjusted accordingly.
They like those "really malty" beers LOL
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