BJCP Style Guidelines

2021 Beer Style Guidelines Release

The 2021 version of the Beer Style Guidelines, released in December 2021, is the current version. Errata will be incorporated into future updates.

The grace period for using the new guidelines for the three beer exams (online, judging, and written) will be until 1 August 2022. Exams before this date should use the 2015 guidelines. Exams after this date should use the 2021 guidelines. Contact the exam directors with questions.

BJCP-sanctioned competitions may use either set of guidelines. Check with individual competition organizers for specific rules. The BJCP expects that by the end of 2022, all competitions will use the 2021 guidelines. Contact the Competition Director with any competition-related questions. 

The 2015 version of the BJCP Style Guidelines for Mead and Cider remains the current version.

The BJCP Style Guidelines are maintained by the BJCP Style Guidelines Committee, currently chaired by BJCP President Emeritus Gordon Strong. This page provides links to download or access our style guidelines in various formats. You can also view the guidelines on the web via the links in the navigation menu (these pages still reference the 2015 beer guidelines and will be updated soon). 

Style Guidelines Primary Source Documents

These are the official guidelines and documents maintained by the BJCP. They are suitable for double-sided printing. If you have questions about permission to use our guidelines for purposes other than BJCP-sanctioned competitions or educational judge training, please contact the Communications Director.  

  • 2021 Beer Style Guidelines (PDF, DOCX
  • 2015 Beer Style Guidelines – see past style guidelines
  • 2015 Mead Style Guidelines (PDF, DOCX)
  • 2015 Cider Style Guidelines (PDF, DOCX)
  • Ingredient Reference Guide (PDF)
  • The Complete 2015 Beer, Mead, and Cider Guidelines + Ingredient Reference Guide (PDF)
    • This document is also available for purchase as a print-on-demand spiral-bound book from The Book Patch. (Note: we are currently working to update this file with the vendor to include the 2021 beer guidelines.) 

Alternative Versions

These are special-use versions, translations, or conversions of the guidelines into other formats for specific uses. All have been supplied by external contributors but have not been checked by the BJCP for accuracy. Report any errors to the original contributors.

  • Mobile Applications
    • Search for `BJCP` in your favorite app store and pick your favorite! The BJCP currently does not publish our own app, but we have allowed others to publish as long as the app remains free to judges. 
  • XML Versions of Style Guidelines
    • Single File (XML). Submitted by Phil Murray and maintained externally on github.
    • Separate Files. Submitted by Matthew Smedberg and maintained externally on github.
  • Spreadsheet of Style Guidelines
    • Submitted by Lucas Zacharias (XLSX)
    • Submitted by Bob Alvord (XLSX)
  • Spreadsheet of Commercial Examples  
    • Submitted by Conrad B. (XLS)
  • Spreadsheet of Classic Styles (XLS)
    • Submitted by Al Boyce

International Versions and Documents

Various non-English translations will be posted on our International Resources page as they are completed.

Past Style Guidelines 

We maintain a listing of prior style guidelines dating back to 1997.