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Beer profile and style baselines?

Ok… my question is this… when homebrewing Apa and Ipa style beers what is the baseline for each… what differiantes between the 2 styles. Becides IBU counts how do you start with each style?

Here’s the “official” word:
http://www.bjcp.org/2008styles/catdex.php

IPAs tend to be slightly higher in alcohol. Beyond that, I know it sounds stupid but I’ll just warn you that if you don’t make your APA according to the IPA guidelines, it might not score well. I hate to admit this, but I feel like it is true. These statements come from a Recognized BJCP judge (me).

So then what will make it an APA?

Judges will still expect huge hop aroma and flavor in an APA. I guess that’s what I was trying to say. APA is basically an IPA with slightly lower IBUs and alcohol than standard. If you try to brew an IPA and it turns out weak in any singular aspect, then it’s an APA. But if you purposely try to brew an APA anything close to Sierra Nevada Pale Ale (supposedly the best possible example of the style), judges will complain that there’s not enough hop character.

Okay, now I’ll put a slightly different angle on it. If you brew a really good IPA and enter it into the APA category, you stand a chance of winning or getting a good score because many judges expect and want hugeness even though it is not warranted per the style guidelines. In other words, you can “cheat” by making an IPA and entering it as APA, even though in reality it’s way too big for the style.

Gosh, I sure sound pessimistic. But, often times pessimism is realism.

[quote=“dmtaylo2”] But, often times pessimism is realism.[/quote]In this case, for sure - often the only way to win APA is to enter IPA, and the only way to win IPA is to enter a IIPA. The exception is when you have two good judges at the table who both know what to look for in the category.

So true. It’s rare, but it does happen on occasion that you’ll get 2 dmtaylo2’s at your table. One is rarely so lucky. :mrgreen:

Thanks so much Shade & Dave, for your input. I think new brewers need to read about these experiences, and to investigate the BJCP about styles and guidelines. This stuff is where a person develops there own ideas about what they’re doing, and more important, what they are making.

Thanks guys for clearing he water a tad for me…lol… seriously… this does help while my pallet loves the IPA and APA brews i will be working on a wide array of styles of both… The one im brewing now is an APA with a IBU of about 43 and ABV of 5… so we will see how this throws down in the ring)… lolll
I posted my recipe on and earlier post but ill post it again)…
This recipe is my own design…

+1 this has been my experience with most comps as well.

Blackstone,

If you only steep your crystal malt for 5 minutes, you’ll save 25 minutes on brew day. Just sayin’. There’s really no benefit to steeping any longer than that if you’re not doing a mini-mash with base malt.

[quote=“dmtaylo2”]Blackstone,

If you only steep your crystal malt for 5 minutes, you’ll save 25 minutes on brew day. Just sayin’. There’s really no benefit to steeping any longer than that if you’re not doing a mini-mash with base malt.[/quote]

If i only steep for 5 minn i get all the same stuff out of my grains?.. Really…

So it sounds like if I have an IPA recipe I really like, I’m best off either dropping the OG and bittering hops and entering it as an APA, or pushing up the OG to borderline DIPA levels, if I want to enter it in a competition?

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