Wednesday, January 04, 2006
Color affects the appreciation and evaluation of beer in subtle but definite ways. The "halo effect" refer to a situation where a positive (or negative) response to one attribute leads to an over evaluation (or under evaluation) of other attributes. The color of beer can be a powerful but often subconscious generator of the "halo effect."
An example is the low marks given to otherwise satisfactory beers in competitions where the entry's color is inappropriate for the category. In professional tasting, the "halo effect" is generally regarded as an unacceptable bias. However, in less formal settings it reflects the natural influence that physical appearance of a food or beverage has over sensory anticipation. For this, and other reasons, color control in brewing is important, and the goal of this chapter is to review the basic issues. Before describing the test we first review the units in which beer and wort color are measured, and then review the factors that affect color in malting and brewing.