All About Beer Magazine - Volume 35, Issue 5
October 1, 2014 By

bjcp style guidelines update

A draft of the updated 2014 Beer Judge Certification Program (BJCP) Style Guidelines, the beer style guidelines used for beer judging exams and certification, competitions and education, has been released for public comment.

The revisions are a reflection of new and evolving styles, a renewed interest in historical styles, changing ingredients and expanded international use of the guidelines, said BJCP President Gordon Strong, who presented the guidelines at the 2014 National Homebrewers Conference in Grand Rapids, MI.

The new style category additions are especially a reflection of the evolving beer trends, including the resurgence of historical, more obscure styles, sour and wild beers and the ever-growing list of IPA sub-styles. The Historical Category includes the salty German Gose, a popular commercial release this past summer, and Grodziskie, a Polish style brewed with smoked wheat. An American Wild Ale Category consists of Brett Beer, Mixed-Fermentation Sour Beer and Soured Fruit Beer. The Specialty IPA section now includes Black, Brown, Red, White, Belgian and Rye IPA, as well as Session, Standard and Double strength IPAs and any combination of the above. 

Other styles have been deleted or renamed for clarity. For instance, Strong Scotch Ale is now Scottish Wee Heavy, Brown Porter and Robust Porter are now English and American Porter, respectively, and Imperial IPA is now Double IPA. 

The BJCP will be accepting comments and suggestions from members and the public for one to two months before a final set of the guidelines will be published this fall. Full adoption of the guidelines for exams and judging is targeted for the end of the year. The last update to the guidelines was in 2008, and the last major revision was in 2004.