The BJCP released the 2021 version of the Beer Style Guidelines in December 2021. At that time, the principle author and BJCP President Emeritus Gordon Strong provided an overview of the changes from 2015 to the 2021 version. We also announced that the beer exams would cut over to the 2021 version in August 2022, and that by the end of 2022, we expected competitions to utilize the 2021 version.
This post is to confirm that those cutovers have occurred. All three beer exams (online, judging, and written) now reflect the 2021 guidelines, including all different languages in which the online beer exam is available (languages other than English were updated on 20 January 2023). We will post when that transition is complete, but know that the 2021 guidelines update impacts less than 2% of the questions in the online exam question pool. A large number of the updates to the online question pool were related to slight changes to SRM and color ranges in the 2021 version.
Our online listing of the beer styles guidelines was updated last year to reflect the 2021 version as well as our offering of printed versions of the guidelines through an external vendor. In addition, we have recently published a 2021 Beer Style Guidelines Change Log (PDF) to assist those who were familiar with the 2015 guidelines in better understanding the changes in the 2021 version. The 2015 versions of the mead and cider guidelines remain the current versions.
The BJCP does not produce our own app for the guidelines, but we have identified two free applications (one each for iOS and Android) that have been updated with the 2021 version. You can find those links, as well as any other alternative formats we receive, on the main Style Guidelines page.
Exam-related questions should be directed to the Exam Directors. Competition-related questions should be directed to the Competition Director. Style-related questions or errata can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Note: this post was updated on 20 January 2023 to reflect that the online beer exams in non-English languages were also updated to the 2021 guidelines.