BABBs mini-competitions are run six times a year at our regular meetings, and they are great fun!

We judge entrants at communal tables together with the guidance of more experienced judges. The mini-comps are more about getting unbiased feedback on your brew, and learning about beer evaluation than winning.

Each mini-comp has a limited theme or style category such as IPA, Belgian, or Wheat Beers. Members find that this is great for pushing them out of their comfort zone, and encouraging them to brew new styles. Mini-comp style guidelines are set by the committee each year, and published with our calendar of events in the November newsletter for the following year.

Scroll down to see this year’s Mini-comp style guide.

Information for Entrants

Members and non-members alike may participate in the mini-comps, non-members cannot win places and prizes but receive unbiased feedback about their beer. Simply bring your beer along, and fill out an entry form on the night.

Mini-comp entries must be entered according to the designated mini-comp style guidelines – see below. Those entered out of style will be judged accordingly.

Members can ender more than one beer, but must nominate only ONE beer to contribute towards scoring – additional beers can be entered for be feedback only.

The Ernie Melville Trophy

Named after our founder, this award is for the Most Consistent Brewer of the year. Club members can win prizes for placing in each mini-comp, and go in to the running to win the coveted Ernie Melville Trophy for overall performance throughout the year.

The Most Consistent Brewer award is now calculated as follows: The top six places in each mini-comp get points toward the award. Six points for first place, five points for second, and so on till one point for sixth place. The brewer with the highest points at the end of the year wins.

The mini-competitions are run by our chief steward, assisted by the committee. Their decision on competitions matters is final.

Mini Comp Style Guide 2020

BABBS JANUARY: Lager Mini Comp

Categories being judged:

  • 3B Czech Premium Pale Lager
  • 3D Czech Dark lager
  • 4A Munich Helles
  • 5D German Pils
  • 6A Marzen
  • 6B Rauchbier
  • 7A Vienna Lager
  • 8A Munich Dunkel
  • 8B Schwarzbier
  • X5 New Zealand Pilsner


Categories being judged:

  • 1D American Wheat
  • 10A Weissbier
  • 10B Dunkles Weissbier
  • 10C Weizenbock
  • 23A Berliner Weisse
  • 24A Witbier
  • 27 Piwo Grodziskie (historical)
  • 27 Gose (historical)

BABBS APRIL: Pale and Bitter Ales Mini Comp

Categories being judged:

  • 5B Kolsch
  • 11A Ordinary Bitter
  • 11B Best Bitter
  • 11C Strong Bitter
  • 12A British Golden Ale
  • 12B Australian Sparkling Ale
  • 18B American Pale Ale
  • 19A American Amber Ale
  • 19B California Common

BABBS JUNE: Porters and Stout Mini Comp

Categories being judged:

  • 9C Baltic Porter
  • 13C English Porter
  • 15B Irish Stout
  • 15C Irish Extra Stout
  • 16A Sweet Stout
  • 16B Oatmeal Stout
  • 16D Foreign Extra Stout
  • 20A American Porter
  • 20C Imperial Stout

BABBS AUGUST: Belgian Mini Comp

Categories being judged:

  • 23B Flanders Red Ale
  •  24B Belgian Pale Ale
  • 25A Belgian Blonde
  • 25B Saison
  • 26A Trappist Single
  • 26B Belgian Dubbel
  • 26C Belgian Tripel
  • 26D Belgian Dark Strong


Categories being judged:

  • 12C English IPA
  • 21A American IPA
  • 21B Black IPA
  • 21B Red IPA
  • 21B Rye IPA
  • 21B White IPA
  • 21B NEIPA
  • 22A Double IPA
  • 29C Specialty Fruit IPA

Refer to the BJCP 2015 guidelines for further details for each style:

Style Guide Archives