My take on it is that pitching enough yeast from a starter (for liquid yeast) + leaving the beer on the yeast for a week or two, after fermentation has stopped, has resulted in beer with fewer
unwanted flavour elements.
What I mean is that the malt, hop and yeast components of the recipe are far more present in the flavour than those flavours that you say to yourself "there's something there that I don't like". I have found that now I can play around with a recipe much more and get a better idea of what the changes do to the beer. I guess that my beers are getting more consistent.
Mind you, I have been really focusing on my fermentation for the past four-five months - healthy yeast, starters with a stir bar, cold-crashing/decanting before pitching, working on managing fermentation temps and leaving in primary much longer (if not exclusively before I keg). This has worked for me; but, in the best of HBT tradition, you'll fine a number of differing, yet equally valid, opinions on what I have said.
I'm nowhere near brewing, what to me is, the "perfect beer". Yet, I'm having a hellva great time working towards it.