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Award Criteria & Judging

Awards Philosophy & Criteria

KIBAs judges choose the three best beers that meet the award criteria for each category: Gold, Silver and Bronze. However, awards are not guaranteed, and if there is no beer that meets the award criteria, there may be no winner for respective gold, silver, and bronze awards. For example, only silver and bronze might get awarded, but not gold.

  • GOLD

    A world-class beer that accurately exemplifies the specified style, displaying the proper balance of taste, aroma, and appearance.

    An excellent beer that may vary slightly from style parameters while maintaining close adherence to the style and displaying excellent taste, aroma, and appearance.

    A fine example of the style that may vary slightly from style parameters and/or have minor defects in taste, aroma, or appearance.

All Korea International Beer Award entries must be commercially available, fermented malt beverages conforming to the trade understanding of “beer” (see "Beer Eligibility" section below) brewed by a permitted commercial brewery. “Commercially available” means available for sale at retail at the time of registration.

All entry beers and breweries must follows the eligibility rules below.

Brewery Eligibility
  • 1. Your brewery is fully licensed for the manufacture and commercial sale of beer in your home country.
  • 2. Your brewery is fully open and operating with all required permits.
  • 3. Your brewery currently has at least one beer that is commercially available for sale at retail at the time of application.
  • 4. Only breweries that meet the Brewery Eligibility requirements are eligible to enter beers in Korea International Beer Award.

* Breweries in planning, homebrewers, and other breweries not meeting these criteria are not eligible to enter.

Beer Eligibility
  • 1. All beers entered in Korea International Beer Award must be commercially available for sale.
  • 2. All beer entries must possess the characteristics generally attributed to and conforming to the consumer understanding of “beer.”
    • At least 10% of the fermentable carbohydrates must be derived from malted grains. Beverages made with malt substitutes, honey, fruit or fruit juices, or anything other than malted grains as the majority of fermentable sugars are not eligible to participate.
    • Competition beer entries must contain hops. Exceptions to this include gruit or other historical beer styles that traditionally use other herbs or spices.

Not eligible: Mead, cider, spirits, hard soda, hard water, and flavored malt beverages including kombucha and most shandies and radlers are not eligible to be entered in Korea International Beer Award.

Judge Selection
The KIBA Organizing Committee selects judges from internationally recognized brewers, industry experts and other competent judges of international competitions. They are very good at sensory evaluation of beer and can provide appropriate feedback on the faults inherent in beer. KIBA uses English as the common language for smooth communication among the global judges, so all judges must be fluent in English.
Judge Procedures

The KIBA judging session will be held for two days, just before the Korea International Beer Expo and Conference. Judges are not allowed to evaluate their own product or any product they are involved with. All beer will be judged by about 50 internationally / domestically experienced judges appointed by the KIBA organizer and each beer will be blind tasted by at least 5 judges. Through a comprehensive discussion within a judging group, the winner will be decided for each category. All judges will use the scoresheets provided by KIBA. Participants can receive the scoresheets filled with judging comments after the competition. Judges play several important roles in KIBA. Judges will not only determine the winning beers that accurately meet the award criteria, but also provide participants with useful feedback to improve their beer quality.