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Classes & Criteria

Entry Eligibility

  • Entries must be commercially available in the precise composition and in the same packaging, including the labels, in which it is sent for judging.  Beers packaged especially for the competition that are not ordinarily available in packaged form will not be accepted.
  • An Exhibitor can enter a maximum of five (5) Exhibits into a class as long as they can demonstrate a technical difference between the Exhibits.
  • A beer can only be entered once, either in draught or packaged formats or both, so long as the different formats are entered into the same class and beer style.
  • Exhibits must be entered in their correct class according to style.
  • Exhibitors are directed to consult the US Brewers Association (BA) 2015 Style Guidelines, as well as the Australian and New World styles outlined herein, when determining which class to submit their beer:
  • The packaging type (draught or packaged) must be stated on the Entry Form by the Exhibitor where asked to define this attribute.  As draught and packaged beers are judged together there is no need to separate classes by packaging type.
  • Exhibits that are commercially sold as the same beer but brewed at different locations by the same Exhibitor must be entered under the brewery name and location.  The exhibits can then be entered in the same class as the same style provided the locations of the breweries are stated (e.g. My Brewery, Victoria, and My Other Brewery, Western Australia).

Beer Style Guidelines

The AIBA judging panel will reference the US Brewers Association (BA) 2015 Style Guidelines which can be found at:  AIBA acknowledges and thanks the US BA for their permission to use these guidelines.  Exhibitors are directed to consult the US BA guidelines, as well as the Australian and New World styles outlined in the Entry Booklet.


Judging Criteria and Conditions

Judging of the 2016 Australian International Beer Awards will take place at Melbourne Showgrounds, Ascot Vale, Victoria, Australia Thursday 12 May through Saturday 14 May.

Entries will be allocated a Tasting Order Number, separate from the Catalogue (Exhibit) Number, to ensure the anonymity of the Exhibit and to retain the integrity of the judging process.  Additionally, Exhibits will be judged ‘blind’.  Exhibits are judged according to class (style) and are critically and quantitatively evaluated for their commercial excellence, quality attributes and trueness to type.  Exhibits are not judged or ranked against each other but are assessed on their own merits.

Attribute scores for each Exhibit will be awarded, checked, and entered by the judging panel.  Classes will be judged to Bronze, Silver and Gold medal.  The process for determining the trophy winner of each category requires an additional level of scrutiny.  The gold medal beers from each category will be individually and independently reassessed and ranked using the Borda Count method – only Gold Medal awarded Exhibits are eligible for trophies.  To illustrate the ranking, if there are four (4) Gold Medal Pilsner Exhibits, those four Exhibits will be reassessed and ranked from highest (best) to lowest with three (3) being the highest, two (2), one (1), and zero (0), with the highest scoring Exhibit (in this example, the Exhibit ranked three [3]) winning the Best Pilsner Trophy.  If there are five (5) Gold Medal Pilsner Entries, the rank is from four (4) to zero (0), and so on.

Exhibits entered into Trophy Classes 1 to 19 will be scored out of twenty (20) points and will be assessed against the following criteria:

• Colour
• Carbonation
• Foam characteristics
Maximum 3 points
• Positive characteristics
• Aroma faults
Maximum 5 points
• General characteristics
• Bitterness
• Fermentation products
• Flavour faults
Maximum 6 points
• Appropriate for class
Maximum 3 points
Technical Quality
• Absence of major faults
• Balance
• Drinkability
Maximum 3 points
Maximum 20 points

Medal Criteria

aiba gold medal 
Gold Medal: 17.0 points and over
A gold medal is an outstanding Exhibit that displays the correct balance of taste, aroma and appearance appropriate for the style, and excellent technical merit.
aiba gold medal 
Silver Medal: 15.5 to 16.9 points
A silver medal is an excellent Exhibit that displays the correct balance of taste, aroma and appearance appropriate for the style, and a high level of technical merit.
aiba gold medal
Bronze Medal: 14.0 to 15.4 points
A bronze medal is a quality Exhibit with the correct balance of taste, aroma and appearance appropriate for the style, and the absence of major faults.