Beer Style Guidelines Hierarchy

Part of the Homebrewing For Dummies Cheat Sheet

The following list has been compiled by the Beer Judge Certification Program and is used by the American Homebrewers Association for competitive purposes. This hierarchical list presents an overview of all the world's beer styles (along with Cider and Mead). All beers are categorized as Ale, Lager or Mixed Style; under each of these headings are listed all of the major beer styles (in capital letters) and their sub-styles.

ALE

ENGLISH PALE ALE

  • Standard Ordinary Bitter

  • Special / Best Bitter

  • Extra Special / Strong Bitter

SCOTTISH AND IRISH ALE

  • Scottish Light 60

  • Scottish Heavy 70

  • Scottish Export 80

  • Irish Red Ale

  • Scotch Strong Ale

AMERICAN ALE

  • American Pale Ale

  • American Amber Ale

  • American Brown Ale

ENGLISH BROWN ALE

  • Mild

  • Southern English Brown Ale

  • Northern English Brown Ale

PORTER

  • Brown Porter

  • English Porter

  • Baltic Porter

STOUT

  • Dry Stout

  • Sweet Stout

  • Oatmeal Stout

  • Foreign Extra Stout

  • American Stout

  • Russian Imperial Stout

INDIA PALE ALE

  • English IPA

  • American IPA

  • Imperial IPA

BELGIAN AND FRENCH ALE

  • Witbier

  • Belgian Pale Ale

  • Saison

  • Biere de Garde

SOUR ALE

  • Berliner Weisse

  • Flanders Red Ale

  • Straight (unblended) Lambic

  • Gueuze

  • Fruit Lambic

BELGIAN STRONG ALE

  • Belgian Blonde Ale

  • Belgian Dubbel

  • Belgian Tripel

  • Belgian Golden Strong Ale

  • Belgian Dark Strong Ale

STRONG ALE

  • Old Ale

  • English Barley Wine

  • American Barley Wine

LAGER

LIGHT LAGER

  • Lite American Lager

  • Standard American Lager

  • Premium American Lager

  • Munich Helles

  • Dortmunder Export

PILSENER

  • German Pilsener (Pils)

  • Bohemian Pilsener

  • Classic American Pilsener

EUROPEAN AMBER LAGER

  • Vienna Lager

  • Oktoberfest / Märzen

DARK LAGER

  • Dark American Lager

  • Munich Dunkel

  • Schwarzbier (black beer)

BOCK

  • Maibock / Helles Bock

  • Traditional Bock

  • Doppelbock

  • Eisbock

MIXED STYLE

LIGHT HYBRID BEER

  • Cream Ale

  • Blonde Ale

  • Kölsch

  • American Wheat or Rye

AMBER HYBRID BEER

  • Northern German Altbier

  • California Common Beer

  • Dusseldorf Altbier

GERMAN WHEAT AND RYE BEER

  • Weizen / Weiss bier

  • Dunkelweizen

  • Weizenbock

  • Roggenbier (Rye beer)

FRUIT BEER

SPICE / HERB / SPECIALTY BEER

  • Spice / Herb / Vegetable beer

  • Christmas / Winter / Specialty Spiced Beer

SMOKE FLAVORED and WOOD AGED BEER

  • Classic Rauchbier

  • Other Smoked Beer

  • Wood Aged Beer

SPECIALTY BEER

MEAD AND CIDER

TRADITIONAL MEAD

  • Dry Mead

  • Semi-sweet Mead

  • Sweet Mead

MELOMEL (FRUIT MEAD)

  • Cyser (apple Melomel)

  • Pyment (grape Melomel)

  • Other Fruit Melomel

OTHER MEAD

  • Metheglin (spiced Mead)

  • Braggot (barley Mead)

  • Open Category Mead

STANDARD CIDER and PERRY

  • Common Cider

  • English Cider

  • French Cider

  • Common Perry

  • Traditional Perry

SPECIALTY CIDER and PERRY

  • New England Cider

  • Fruit Cider

  • Apple Wine

  • Other Specialty Cider and Perry

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