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Help me describe Beer

oldsakoldsak Registered User regular
I'm working on a project for which I need a list of potential descriptors or tasting notes that could apply to beer. Stuff like bitter, full bodied, clean finish etc. I am by no means an expert and do not have the vocabulary to come up with a sufficiently robust list of adjectives on my own.

So I ask you, how do you describe beer? You can speak generally or describe a specific beer. Give me a list of adjectives or a block of text and I'll parse it. Even if you can only add one word to the discussion, it helps.

Thanks.

Posts

  • schussschuss Registered User regular
    Malty
    Hoppy
    Floral
    Gritty
    Smoky
    Citrus
    Fruit - note that specific fruits are valid (IE, I taste pears)
    Creamy
    Thin
    Grassy
    Wheaty
    Thick
    Chocolate
    Woody - specific woods
    Coffee
    Sweet
    Bitter
    Strong
    Weak
    Clean
    Lingering
    Dark
    Light
    Pungent

    Note that you should have tasting stages. An example - Smokestack Lightning (Imperial Stout)from Magnolia - "You're hit by a cloud of smoke, then suddenly a train of floral hop punches through, leaving a clean dark finish and a hint of oak"

    Beer tastes are actually incredibly complex, and not counting the order of operations is missing the point.

  • WildEEPWildEEP Registered User regular
    Good:

    Hoppy
    Bright
    Fruity
    Oaky
    Thick
    Light

    Bad:

    Panther Piss
    Sweaty Llama balls
    Stuff you'd serve a mother-in-law
    Once my dog threw up and then ate his own throw up - and I assume it tasted something like this

  • DjeetDjeet Registered User regular
    You can find a lot of beer reviews/tasting notes at BeerAdvocate.com

  • DarkewolfeDarkewolfe Registered User regular
    Chewy is one I see used often.

    What is this I don't even.
  • DjeetDjeet Registered User regular
    Like wine, also included in beer tasting notes are things that are not necessarily taste descriptors like: descriptions of the color and cloudiness/clearness, descriptions of the head (foaminess, height, how long it persists), descriptions of the carbonation level, "warming" which indicates alcohol content as does "boozy".

  • Mad JazzMad Jazz Registered User regular
    Mouth feel is another important area to describe, some beers are very light feeling, while some coat your mouth like you're drinking motor oil, and some feel heavy like drinking maple syrup (dogfish head 120 leaps to mind for that)

    camo_sig2.png
  • zepherinzepherin Registered User regular
    edited November 2012
    WildEEP wrote: »
    Good:
    Once my dog threw up and then ate his own throw up - and I assume it tasted something like this
    I think I drank that beer. I then put it in my roomates fridge who proceeded to ask why someone took one drink and asked why someone shit in his beer and put the other beers into the fridge of his sister who described it as someone throwing up in her mouth. It was the most vile thing I ever put in my mouth.


    That being said some ones not mentioned.

    well balanced
    medium body
    light body
    full body
    Bold
    Smooth
    Complex
    refreshing
    Crisp

    zepherin on
  • MentalExerciseMentalExercise Indefenestrable Registered User regular
    India Pale Ale:
    Hoppy
    Citrusy
    Grapefruity (very common)
    Toasty
    Round/full bodied, which is opposite of;
    Crisp

    Brown ale:
    Malty/sweet
    Nutty
    Smooth
    Toasty

    Lager:
    Crisp
    Light
    Nutty
    Smooth
    Skunky
    Gym socks

    Amber ale:
    Malty
    Crisp
    Round
    Sharp
    Smooth
    Bitter
    Yeasty

    Hefeweisen:
    Citrusy
    Yeasty
    Smooth
    Sweet
    Bitter
    Round
    Bready
    Creamy
    Heavy

    Stout/Porter:
    Coffee
    Chocolate
    Yeasty
    Round
    Bitter
    Sweet
    Burnt
    Smokey
    Creamy
    Heavy
    Caramel

    There's a ton more obviously, that's just me coming up with random adjectives for beers I like. A lot are obviously contradictory even in the same category, but beer is nothing if not varied, sometimes even in the same glass (see above about stages).

    "More fish for Kunta!"

    --LeVar Burton
  • TIFunkaliciousTIFunkalicious Kicking back in NebraskaRegistered User regular
    do say something about the finish because it is important and sometimes surprisingly good/terrible compared to what you're getting while actually imbibing

    another descriptor: tastes like drinking burnt food

  • zepherinzepherin Registered User regular
    do say something about the finish because it is important and sometimes surprisingly good/terrible compared to what you're getting while actually imbibing

    another descriptor: tastes like drinking burnt food
    Another might say it has a smokey finish.

    And I happen to like that type of finish, especially from a Hefeweisen.

    And that is one of the things to think about too, beer is very personal and so giving something that is descriptive is a good way to go. I personally dislike IPAs, I find them to be bitter and sour tasteing, but I know many people who are all for it. So even though you may or may not dislike an IPA it isn't very useful to say I disliked it and it was bitter. A more useful descriptor would be it was hoppy with citrus undertones, or whatever else your pallete can pick up.

  • TPSouTPSou Registered User regular
    To my mind (coming from a country where we have such an available mix of lagers, bitters, stouts and ales) the actual texture of the drink is really important in terms of how fizzy it is, or how heavy. With cheaper lagers like Fosters and Carling it has a kind of cheap lemonade harsh fizz to it, where some of the Portugese lagers like Superbock seem much softer.

  • kuhlmeyekuhlmeye Registered User regular
    People also use things called "Beer Wheels" or Flavor wheels to describe different flavors in beer.

    I've seen pretty basic ones like this:
    flavor-wheel.png

    Down to ones like this that have tons of different flavor descriptions.
    beer-flavor-wheel.jpg

    PSN: the-K-flash
  • oldsakoldsak Registered User regular
    holy shit... thanks guys.

    This is going to take a minute to process

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