What's New in 2023

Celebrating 30 years in 2023, the Melbourne Royal Australian International Beer Awards welcomes a number of refinements to the program –

Every US Brewers Association Beer Style to have a Class
To ensure consistency between the US Brewers Association Beer Style Guidelines and the Entry Booklet, the 2023 Melbourne Royal Australian International Beer Awards sees the addition of all US BA beer styles as individual classes, thus removing the need for “other” classes. For a complete list of Classes, please refer to ‘Sections and Classes of Entry’ in the Entry Booklet (published Tuesday 14 February).

Updates to the 2022 US Brewers Association Edition Beer Style Guidelines
The US Brewers Association 2022 Edition Beer Style Guidelines sees no new style additions, but many revisions, clarifications and corrections in the following categories and areas:
• Experimental India Pale Ale
• Session Beer
• Session India Pale Ale
• Standardized verbiage in Juicy or Hazy Styles
• Traditional Belgian-Style Gueuze
• Bohemian-Style Pilsener
• American Lager categories
• American-Style India Pale Lager
• Specialty Beer
• Chili Beer

“A few examples of significant updates include adding several hybrid India Pale Ale styles to the Experimental IPA category; modernizing Session Beer and Session IPA to adjust the lower end of ABV downward to 0.5%, as brewer interest in lower ABV beers has increased rapidly over the past two years; and standardizing language on Juicy or Hazy Styles based on brewer and judge feedback and adding verbiage about “hop burn.” Acknowledgement: US Brewers Association Press Release, 24 February 2022. To read the full Press Release, click here.

Removal of Upper Limit +0.3% alcohol tolerance on stated ABV
The upper limit of ABV for all styles with exception of Non-Alcohol (Class 15) will now mirror those found in the 2022 Edition US Brewers Association Beer Style Guidelines.
In the instance where a beer sits above the upper ABV limit, Exhibitors are directed to consult the 2022 Edition of the US BA Beer Style Guidelines to see if the beer is eligible for another class. Higher alcohol beers can be entered in Class 20ZF – ‘Other Strong Ale or Lager’.
If entries during the audit process require lab analysis of ABV, the upper limit of +0.3% tolerance on the ABV on the label still applies.

Clarification of Brewer’s Notes
Brewer’s Notes are used to inform Competition Management and the Chief Steward to ensure the beer is entered in the correct class and provide judges with essential information for assessing the beer. It is imperative that the information supplied on the entry form includes the specific attributes required for the class, is unique to the entry and is clear and concise. Entrants are not to provide information that mentions the brewery or product name or contains a marketing description of the beer.
Melbourne Royal reserves the right to review and modify brewer’s notes for judging purposes where it is necessary to preserve the integrity of the competition.
In the 'Sections' and 'Classes of Entry' section of the entry booklet and the entry portal, each Class that requires entrants to provide brewer’s notes unique to the entry will have a description of what information is required under each class. For example: Class 19B – Wood / Barrel-Aged Sour Beer, Description: “Exhibitors must provide the underlying beer style, and brewers notes unique to the entry such as length of time aged, type of wood or barrel, age, char level or previous liquids held by the wood, micro flora present if known, other ingredients or other processing which influence perceived sensory outcomes.”

Enhanced entry portal functionality
This year, Melbourne Royal has implemented a number of refinements and enhancements to the online entry portal. These changes have been made to deliver a more seamless, user-friendly experience, ensuring your entry process runs as smoothly as possible.

Welcome back international Judges
With restrictions on international travel having eased, the 2023 Australian International Beer Awards will see the return of an international judging contingent. Details of the judging panel will be announced closer to judging.

New Logistics Provider
This year, the Melbourne Royal Australian International Beer Awards have partnered with freight-forwarding experts, Scan Global Logistics, who together with domestic cold storage partner Pak Fresh Handling offer a range of international door-to-door freight forwarding services from your country of origin to the Awards in Melbourne. You can find more information about Scan Global Logistics in the Submitting Your Entries section of the Entry Booklet.