Thursday, March 14, 2013

Wizard of SAAZ Homebrew Competition


In the past couple of weeks I was able to enter a new beer that I designed into competition, two competitions in fact. I'll talk aboot one competition with this entry, and do a separate entry for the other beer. The beer that I entered was a stout that I aged over French-oak chips that was soaked in a Port wine. I came up with the idea because I wanted to add some sweetness from a wine on a oatmeal stout beer. It was a fairly young beer, and I knew this when I entered the competitions, but strangely enough only on of the competitions stated that it needed further aging (the Society of Akron Area Zymurgist, or SAAZ, homebrew competition). Though I still scored very good (31/50), I most likely have found ways that I will improve this beer, aging being one of them.
In the Wizard ofSAAZ Homebrew Competition, I only entered one beer. The stout aged over French-oak chips soaked in Port was entered under category 22C, wood aged beer with the base beer being an oatmeal stout. I had an overall score of 31/50 (Very Good) and did not place.

Judge 1: BJCP Apprentice Judge
No Descriptor Definitions
Aroma (7/12): Interesting aroma, difficult to place. No malt roastiness or chocolate. No hops, maybe some Brett (Brettamomyces).
Appearance (3/3): Clear dark brown to black color, off white dense head that lingers.
Flavor (10/20): Harsh oaky flavor at onset. Some Port fruitiness, but overpowered by oak. Some bitterness in finish, possibly astringency. Cannot really taste underlying base beer.
Mouthfeel (3/5): Medium mouthfeel, medium carbonation, high astringency that carries to finish.
Overall Impression (6/10): A very good idea, needs to work on execution. Harsh astringency and clavor overpowers everything. Consider more aging to allow flavors to mellow.
Total (29/50)

Judge 2: BJCP Certified Judge
No Descriptor Definitions
Aroma (6/12): Slight Brett (Brettamomyces) adds to complexity, but does not fit style. Chocolate and herbal hop aroma fits style. Slight orange/tangerine hops as well. Light dark fruit from yeast and wine. Light nutty malt with some caramel as well. All fit base style.
Appearance (3/3): Deep brown black with lasting tan head, fits base style.
Flavor (12/20): Roast and orange/tangerine hops flavors balances with each other. Roast, light toasted malt, and woody flavor all adds to complexity. Bitter chocolate finish is appropriate to style.
Mouthfeel (5/5): Fuller medium body and medium-low carbonation both fit style. Smooth body fits style.
Overall Impression (7/10): Very well made base beer. Barrel aging could be slightly more evident, but it adds to complexity. Hops could be slightly more present in base style to add to style points, but well made.
Total (33/50)

It is interesting the different scoring between the two judges and between this competition and the next competition, with the same beer, that I will write on. One thing that I thought that there was a conservation between the judges on the beer. Things that I will change with this recipe is, less oak in aging for 1 day less in time. Add some more aroma hops, but unsure what kind I would use. Also, I would bottle condition this beer for longer than 1 month before competition.

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