Beer Review Series

I realize that rating something you primarily taste is subjective, and one man’s outstanding is another woman’s cough syrup. However, you dear reader can put faith in the fact that when I rate beer, I try to do it as scientifically as possible, based on my own palate.

I know some people don’t like the taste of oranges, or raisins, or figs, but it seems like we can all agree on whether what we are tasting is either good or bad oranges, raisins, or figs.

To rate beer, I have devised a rating sheet and a point scale. When I publish a review, a scan of the rating sheet will be included. The sheet contains four categories, each with subcategories of their own. These categories, in order of appearance, follow below with the amount of points they can be awarded:

Appearance (up to 15 points)
Aroma (up to 15 points)
Flavor and Palate (up to 35 points)
Drinkability and Overall Experience (up to 35 points)

Once the notes are taken, the points are added and the beer is rated on the following scale:

Classic: 95 to 100
Outstanding: 90 to 94
Very good to excellent: 80 to 89
Average to good commercial quality: 70-79
Below average quality: 69 points or below

Here is what the review sheet I use looks like, blank:


When it comes to actually doing the tasting, I have two ironclad rules that I will always follow:

1. Each beer I review will be either purchased by myself or someone I know.
2. Every beer will be poured into a glass, obviously because if it isn’t, I can’t critique its appearance. I will not be using the appropriate glassware, either. With special exception, I will use the same style of glass for every review.

Point scale for my reviews is based on the scale Cigar Aficionado uses to rate cigars.