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Recipes and Competition question?

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Aleforge

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If someone gives you a recipe, and you use it then enter a competition is it legal? Does it step on the creator of the recipe, or is this just how its done in the world of home brewing and competitions?

I have a competition coming up and I am brewing a few brews now to enter. I have a recipe from a fellow brewer and I am going to use it for one of the categories. I did however change up a few things, but that’s besides the point. My wife is arguing that its illegal, and I tried to explain to her that there are so many variables in brewing up a batch from technique to fermentation temps that if you gave two home brewers the same recipe and ingredients they would come out differently.

It’s easy enough to design your own and stick within style guidelines, but I am trying to figure out what kind of unspoken rules are in the arena of home brewing?

Would you guys use a fellow home brewers recipe for a comp?

Thanks for the input!
 

ShortSnoutBrewing

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Sounds to me like you're right on track. Plus, you even said you tweaked the recipe a little. When it comes down to it, it's you the brewer that is being "judged". All the things you mentioned will have impact on the final product.

I've entered comps with both "borrowed" recipes and "original" recipes.
 

Bokonon

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There is no problem using someone elses recipe. The recipe is a big factor in the beer but it's not the only factor.

I've tasted 3 Pliny the Elder clones brewed by 3 different people and all were different enough that you could put them in order of best to worst, all of them used the exact same recipe.
 

carnevoodoo

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People have won ribbons by brewing kits. It'll be fine. It is all about the process and your competency as a brewer.
 

Bob

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Look - there are only so many variables in brewing based on recipe alone. If it were a moral/ethical imperative to credit every brewer who ever brewed something like the recipe below, the list would consist of thousands of names.

Plus, each brewery is different, as you've noted. Your water is different than his, your fermentation temperature is probably different, your ambient environment is different, on down the line. I'll bet money that your example of the recipe tastes different than his!

I mean, take a look at Bitter:

80-90% pale malt
10-20% 55L Crystal Malt

Fuggles or East Kent Goldings

English Ale yeast

I mean, that's Fuller's London Pride, fer Crissakes, as well as my standard house Bitter. Does that mean I have to credit the bloke what developed London Pride if I choose to enter Pride of Raubsville in a competition? Hell, I even nicked the name, after a fashion!

There are teeming hordes of homebrewers and less than a thousand ingredients. Moreover, there are far fewer styles. There are relatively few ways you can combine a selection of those ingredients to make a given style (even if you're a Belgian brewer!).

If that doesn't work, tell her that competitions exist where each entrant brews the same recipe!

Enjoy,

Bob
 
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Aleforge

Aleforge

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One of the awards for the local competition is having "your" recipe brewed by the pros which you get to participate in. She said if I use a recipe of a friend, that it would be plagiarism. If the same recipe was posted and brewed by the pros.

Now like I said a few of the ingredients such as the hops and some of the specialty grains I changed. But in this case could she be right?
 

ShortSnoutBrewing

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I'm sorry dude...but MAN UP...this is one time where SWMBO is just wrong! As stated above there are competitions out there that is everyone brewing the same thing. They won't all be the same.

Even the collaboration comps are OK...I may be mistaken, but isn't the IPA in the Sam Adam's homebrew comp six pack a clone recipe????

Edit:
Just found one thread talking about it:
https://www.homebrewtalk.com/f5/sam-adams-long-shot-43046/

If that isn't proof enough that it's OK....
 
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Aleforge

Aleforge

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Wait, is it possible to ever win an argument with a women? Looking back I don't think I ever have... This was kind of a waste of time, but I at least know I was right.

:ban:
 

TeleTwanger

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Even the slightest change will make them your own. I almost never follow a recipe to the letter. If it calls for 2.3lbs of 2row I'll get creative and use 2.25lbs.
 
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