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Beer Tasting Descriptors (1 - 10)


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Acidity
Generally accompanies sourness in beer, but the term implies a sharp, tangy character without necessarily having the flavor connotations of 'sourness.'
Banana
German wheat beers commonly feature a strong banana-like flavor without any actual fruit added to the beer. This is a result of the particular yeast strains used, which produce a yeasty banana character.
Bitter
Hops impart bitterness, and hops are one of the main ingredients of beer, therefore bitterness is one of the main flavor components of beer. Bitterness can be either harsh or smooth, depending on the hop varieties used.
Bread/Biscuit/Cracker
Since beer is generally made out of the same ingredients as bread — with the exception / addition of hops — many beers can taste bready, depending on the grain bill (different grains contribute different flavors).
Brett
A kind of "wild" yeast, and therefore a fermentation agent rather than a flavor component.
Caramel
A common flavor derived from certain malts. These malts tend to impart a richer, sticky sort of sweetness.
Cider / Apple
Many Belgian beers offer hints of cider or apple due to a simple, light malt base and the tart fruity flavors created by Belgian yeast. Many sour beers will have a tart apple flavor, enhanced by their inherently dry, acidic character.
Citrus
Perhaps the most common description of many American hop varieties, particularly West Coast hops. Pale Ales and IPAs will be commonly described as citrusy.
Chocolate
A common characteristic for stouts and porters. Suggestions of chocolate can be produced by dark malts alone, but beers with chocolate in the name (i.e. Rogue Chocolate Stout, Young's Dou
Clean
Falls into a group of terms used to describe both how sweet and how rich a beer is. Implies that a beer is not rich or sticky; that it finishes clean. However, a beer can be both malty and clean - having clear, sweet, malt flavors without being sticky or cloying.
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