I’m happy to introduce a new way of exploring data on the What to Brew site- style tags. This allows you to see how similar styles of beers work with specific additions.
In the BJCP 2015 Style Guidelines, the authors added a list of helpful tags to each style. In contrast to the rigid categories like “German Wheat Beer” or “IPA”, each style has multiple tags, allowing alternate groupings of styles that share certain characteristics.
These style tags are organized into general categories, including strength, color, region of origin, and dominant flavor. This allows you to quickly categorize each style and draw connections in a variety of ways.
Using this additional layer of data, I’m able to calculate what additions work and don’t work with different tags. Some are common sense (beers tagged as smoke have smoke as a very good addition), and some are a bit more interesting- I think amber-ale-family might be the only group that goes well with both orange peel and bourbon.
Overall, there aren’t many surprises here. It’s a good validation that the data collection process is working, and allows us to find some interesting connections.
How to use the data
I’d encourage you to spend a little bit of time looking through the tags, and seeing what additions tend to go with each tag. It may help you think a bit more outside the box on what might go well together, and might also give you a bit more understanding on how different styles relate.
What interesting connections have you found?