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Determining style from gain bill

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sunadmn

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Afternoon all,

I have a couple of recipes I have found and tweaked that I would like to enter into some competitions, but I am at a lose as to how I would determine the true base style for BJCP. My questions is how would one go about figuring this our from the recipe?

Thanks all,
-Stephen
 

psubrewer

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There's more to the equation to determine style.

You need to factor in yeast strain, ferm temps, pitching rates.

Hop schedule as well.

Maybe think about these things and it will be more clear what style you've created.
 
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sunadmn

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So I guess where I get stuck is in the recipe itself. I know there are a lot of factors as pointed out but if you strip things down you should be able to have a lose grip on what base style you are close to or represent.

Here are three example beers I have:

Blueberry Hefe - this one is easy since it is based of a specific classic style that I added an adjunct to change.

Honey Basil Ale - this one gets interesting since it is an ale but as I understand when entering this into a comp BJCP would be looking for a specific style; example Irish red with honey and basil.

Imperial Pumpkin - this is the same as the above.

From these examples I would hope that one could look at the ingredients and get kinda close to what the base style would/should be. Maybe I am missing something, but I am not sure where to go from here.

Cheers,
-Stephen
 

Yooper

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Yep, you're right. The blueberry hefe would be 21A. Fruit beer, with the hefeweizen as a base.

The honey basil would be vegetable/spice if the basil was noticeable, as is the pumpkin.

For the base beer, you could determine the base by looking on the hops and malt and yeast. If it's US ingredients, vs UK ingredients, for example.
 
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sunadmn

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So lets take the Basil and see if we can break it down:

Grain bill - Bel 2 row Pale Malt, Munich, Crystal 40
Yeast - WLP001 White Labs California Ale
Hops - Mt. Hood
 
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sunadmn

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So I found this handy page of the BYO site and it's helping a bit, but I am still stuck.
http://byo.com/resources/grains

Here is what I can get a breakdown of:

Belgian Pale Ale Malt 2.7°-3.8° 1.038 Use as a base malt for any Belgian style beer with full body.
Munich Malt 10° 1.034 Sweet, toasted flavor and aroma. For Oktoberfests and malty styles.
Crystal Malt 40° 1.033-1.035 Sweet, mild caramel flavor and a golden color. Use in light lagers and light ales.

Mt. Hood 3-8% Crystal, French Strisslespalt, Hersbrucker Mild, pleasant, and clean, somewhat pungent and resiny.

California Ale WLP001 L White Labs Medium 67-74% 65-70° Clean flavors accentuate hops; very versatile.

From this here is what I think it could be either Doppelbock or an American Amber Ale. I came to this conclusion from the SRM really since there is a kinda hodge podge of ingredients here from several styles. The SRM is between 19-21 so this fits with the two styles and their classic recipes.

Do I sound like I am in the right ballpark?

Cheers,
-Stephen
 

Yooper

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So I found this handy page of the BYO site and it's helping a bit, but I am still stuck.
http://byo.com/resources/grains

Here is what I can get a breakdown of:

Belgian Pale Ale Malt 2.7°-3.8° 1.038 Use as a base malt for any Belgian style beer with full body.
Munich Malt 10° 1.034 Sweet, toasted flavor and aroma. For Oktoberfests and malty styles.
Crystal Malt 40° 1.033-1.035 Sweet, mild caramel flavor and a golden color. Use in light lagers and light ales.

Mt. Hood 3-8% Crystal, French Strisslespalt, Hersbrucker Mild, pleasant, and clean, somewhat pungent and resiny.

California Ale WLP001 L White Labs Medium 67-74% 65-70° Clean flavors accentuate hops; very versatile.

From this here is what I think it could be either Doppelbock or an American Amber Ale. I came to this conclusion from the SRM really since there is a kinda hodge podge of ingredients here from several styles. The SRM is between 19-21 so this fits with the two styles and their classic recipes.

Do I sound like I am in the right ballpark?

Cheers,
-Stephen
You're WAY overthinking this! First, this is certainly not a dopplebock, which is a dark rich sweet lager.

American amber will work.
 

GuldTuborg

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I think what you're quickly finding out is that you need a full recipe, not just a list of ingredients that happen to be grains, to get a feel for what style a beer might best fall into. And yes, by "recipe," I mean the processes used in its creation, and not just the ingredients by weight.
 

C-Rider

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People usually start out w/a style and then develop a recipe and then buy the ingredients. Why are you starting w/some ingredients and looking for a style?
 

QuercusMax

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If you have a beer you've already brewed, and you're looking to enter it in a competition, you should really read the style guidelines, and based on that try to determine if what you made fits into a particular style.

If not, you can always just enter it as a Specialty beer. That category is specifically intended for this case.
 

Darwin18

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So I found this handy page of the BYO site and it's helping a bit, but I am still stuck.
http://byo.com/resources/grains

Here is what I can get a breakdown of:

Belgian Pale Ale Malt 2.7°-3.8° 1.038 Use as a base malt for any Belgian style beer with full body.
Munich Malt 10° 1.034 Sweet, toasted flavor and aroma. For Oktoberfests and malty styles.
Crystal Malt 40° 1.033-1.035 Sweet, mild caramel flavor and a golden color. Use in light lagers and light ales.

Mt. Hood 3-8% Crystal, French Strisslespalt, Hersbrucker Mild, pleasant, and clean, somewhat pungent and resiny.

California Ale WLP001 L White Labs Medium 67-74% 65-70° Clean flavors accentuate hops; very versatile.

From this here is what I think it could be either Doppelbock or an American Amber Ale. I came to this conclusion from the SRM really since there is a kinda hodge podge of ingredients here from several styles. The SRM is between 19-21 so this fits with the two styles and their classic recipes.

Do I sound like I am in the right ballpark?

Cheers,
-Stephen
I wouldn't focus so much on the SRM for a potential as much as the actual ingredients that you've listed. The pionts that you're assigned for appearance is only 3 out of 50 overall points. Most people get at least 2 of the 3.

If you're brewing for a competition then you need to really focus on the style of beer that you're entering. This is where you need to start:

http://www.bjcp.org/2008styles/catdex.php

BJCP competitions are not so much about the individual recipe as it is the brewer's execution. I'm not saying that there isn't room within the style guidelines to create a good recipe and experiment but that isn't so much that you're being judged on.

Your posted recipe is most certainly not a dopplebock. Not even close. To start your grain bill is way off. The majority of the grain bill should be munich malt, followed by german pilsner malt, and maybe a small amount of vienna or caramel malts. Your yeast is not going to work either - try a german lager yeast.

It might fall within the American amber category, but your base malt (Belgian Pale) is not really right for the style either. Who knows you might get lucky on it.

If you're looking to get into competitions, you need to focus on brewing beers that are designed to fit the style guidelines. The best place to start, IMO, is with a copy of Brewing Classic Styles. I have brewed many of the beers in this book and won many ribbons with these recipes. The only "loser" I've made so far was the Berliner Weisse, and that was my fault not the recipes.

Decide what category you want to brew for and enter. Then buy a couple of the commercial examples listed in the style guidelines. Does your beer taste similar? That's going to have a major influence on how you score.
 

chickypad

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Belgian Pale Ale Malt 2.7°-3.8° 1.038 Use as a base malt for any Belgian style beer with full body.
Munich Malt 10° 1.034 Sweet, toasted flavor and aroma. For Oktoberfests and malty styles.
Crystal Malt 40° 1.033-1.035 Sweet, mild caramel flavor and a golden color. Use in light lagers and light ales.

Mt. Hood 3-8% Crystal, French Strisslespalt, Hersbrucker Mild, pleasant, and clean, somewhat pungent and resiny.

California Ale WLP001 L White Labs Medium 67-74% 65-70° Clean flavors accentuate hops; very versatile.
You don't give the percentages of the malts but I'd be surprised if that beer came out 19-21 SRM - that's going into brown range. This looks most like an American pale ale to me, with an odd choice of base grain. Like Darwin said though, one of the last things to focus on is color. I'd always start with the yeast and go from there. You're never going to get a Belgian style right without a Belgian yeast. Some folks use clean ale yeast to make pseudo-lagers, but it won't ever be quite the same as using the proper yeast.

At any rate, sounds like your full recipe belongs in the spice/herb category as Yooper said.
 
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