Wood- and Barrel-Aged Beer Style
- Color: Varies with underlying style and can be influenced by the color of added fruit(s) if any
- Clarity: Varies with underlying style
- Perceived Malt Aroma & Flavor: Varies with underlying style
- Perceived Hop Aroma & Flavor: Varies with underlying style
- Perceived Bitterness: Varies with underlying style
- Fermentation Characteristics: Typical of underlying style of beer being aged
- Body: Varies with underlying style
- Additional notes: These are any traditional or experimental style of lager, ale or hybrid beer aged in either a wooden barrel or in contact with wood. These beers are aged with the intention of developing unique attributes imparted by the wood and/or liquids that had previously been stored in contact with the wood. Wood aging does not necessarily impart wood ﬂavors, but does result in distinctive sensory outcomes. Used sherry, rum, whiskey, tequila, port, wine and other barrels are often used, imparting complexity and uniqueness to a beer. A balance of ﬂavor, aroma and mouthfeel results from the marriage of new beer with attributes imparted by the wood or barrel. Wood-Aged Beers may or may not have Brettanomyces character.
When using these guidelines as the basis for evaluating entries at competitions, brewers may be asked to provide supplemental information about entries in this category to allow for accurate evaluation of diverse entries. Such information might include the underlying beer style upon which the entry is based, or other information 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, ingredients or other processing which influence perceived sensory outcomes. Competition organizers may create subcategories which reflect groups of entries based on color, alcoholic strength, underlying beer style, fruit, etc.
Wood- and Barrel-Aged Beer Vital Statistics
- Original Gravity (°Plato) Varies with style
- Apparent Extract/Final Gravity (°Plato) Varies with style
- Alcohol by Weight (Volume) Varies with style
- Bitterness (IBU) Varies with style
- Color SRM (EBC) Varies with style
2020 Brewers Association Beer Style Guidelines used with permission of Brewers Association.
Credit: 2020 Brewers Association Beer Style Guidelines – Hybrid/Mixed Lagers or Ale – Wood- and Barrel-Aged Beer