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In this Collab Hour, Brewers Association (BA) competition director Chris Williams and DraughtLab sensory expert Lindsay Barr will bring you on the journey of a competition beer. By following a beer throughout the process, you’ll gain a deeper understanding for how the Great American Beer Festival and World Beer Cup competitions operate. Participants will get a rare look behind the curtain to see what happens when your beer arrives at the BA warehouse, travels through the hands of dedicated volunteers, and ultimately reaches the judging tables. Chris and Lindsay will review common questions, shed light on the philosophy and culture of judging, and provide some fun “baseball statistics” from two of the world’s most prestigious beer competitions.
About the Speakers
Lindsay Barr, Founding Partner & CSO
Lindsay Barr is the CSO and Founding Partner of DraughtLab Sensory Software where she works with food and beverage companies to apply tasting data to inform Product Development and Quality Control. Lindsay got her start at New Belgium Brewing Company as the Sensory and Consumer Research Specialist. For five years she served as the chair of the American Society of Brewing Chemists Sensory Committee where she co-authored seven new globally adopted sensory evaluation techniques. She holds a B.S. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from the University of New Mexico, and a Masters in Food Science and Technology from the University of California, Davis. With DraughtLab, she's published numerous industry-standard lexicons, including the Beer Flavor Map™, and is continuing to develop tools that make the world a more delicious place.
Chris Williams, Competition Director
Competition Director Chris Williams joined the Brewers Association as a sales and marketing intern in fall 2008, after graduating with a degree in psychology from the University of Colorado. After a brief stint in the membership department, he joined the events team as the Events & Competition Registrar in 2010. After moving through the ranks of the event department, managing competition registration, planning, and operations, he took on the competition director role in May 2022. He was ranked as a Beer Judge Certification Program (BJCP) Beer Judge in 2011 and gained the title of Advanced Cicerone in 2018.