Saturday, January 20, 2007

Beer for Breakfast

We went to our BJCP class this morning, our first Saturday morning session. I don't think I've mentioned it before, but the boy and I are taking a Beer Judge Certification Program (BJCP) in order to become certified homebrew judges. We are learning more than any "normal" person want to learn about beer and its' characteristics. The class is usually on Monday evening's except for two Saturday sessions. These sessions are taught at Iron Hill, a local brewpub, but start at 9am (basically so us beer folks don't interfere with lunch crowd). The class is co-taught by the headbrewer at the North Wales, Iron Hill, which is why we are allowed in the place. This morning, after our discussion about malt, we tasted beers in the Pale Ale categories. Mmmm, quite tasty. We also tasted "doctored" beers, or beers that have been altered to purposely taste bad, so that when judging in a competition we would know what common brewing mistakes taste like. Those beer's were not so good. When training to be a beer judge, you are supposed to grade/rate each beer based on aroma, appearance, flavor, mouthfeel and overall impression and grading based on style. One common theme I found between all of these beers was the honey aroma, however I was the only one who found this similarity between the three beers. Note to self, do not use Milk and Honey lotion before beer tasting. Every beer you hold will smell like honey. Not a very effective way to judge beers. Lesson Learned.

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