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Practical Beer Taster Training Course – USA – Chicago – June 2023

September 25 @ 9:00 am - September 29 @ 4:30 pm

A practical training course for those who want to sharpen their tasting skills, train others, and better manage the quality of their beer.

Join us for a comprehensive five-day practical course designed for brewery taste panel leaders and beer quality specialists. This training will equip you with the skills to taste beer at a professional level and effectively teach others to do the same.

Course Objectives:

During this hands-on practical training course, you will learn how to:

  • Distinguish between different beers reliably.
  • Articulate the differences between beers using industry-standard flavor terminology.
  • Evaluate beer flavor quality and assign quality ratings using a comprehensive evaluation form applicable to all beer styles.
  • Enhance your practical taste panel management skills, enabling you to impart your knowledge and skills to colleagues in your brewery.

Is This Course Suitable for You?

This course is ideal for:

  • Brewery Taste Panel Leaders seeking to enhance their beer tasting and taste panel management skills.
  • Brewery Quality Managers interested in improving their beer tasting abilities and leveraging sensory analysis for quality improvements within their brewery.
  • No prior beer tasting experience is necessary. However, some basic experience in general training and coaching is desirable if you plan to use this course as a foundation for teaching others.

Program Outline:

The course consists of two complementary sections:

  1. Beer Quality Assessment Taster Training (3 days): Through 15 training sessions, you will taste nearly 150 beer samples. This section focuses on developing specific tasting techniques to reliably identify a wide range of positive flavors, off-flavors, and taints. You will gain knowledge about the origins of each flavor, their significance, and steps to control them in routine beer production. By the end, you will confidently assess the quality of various commercial beer samples and identify areas for personal improvement
  2. Taster Training Skills (2 days): This section covers the principles of professional beer taster training. You will learn how to deliver a 15-session taster training course in your own brewery and evaluate the outcomes. Training topics include sample evaluation, flavor identification, beer quality assessment, facilitating successful training sessions, and providing constructive feedback to trainees. Following this training, you will be equipped to teach others how to evaluate the flavor quality of commercial beer samples and identify areas for personal growth.

Course Deliverables:

All attendees will receive:

  • A copy of the “Brief Guide to Beer Flavor” covering 46 flavors associated with various craft beer styles.
  • A personalized report detailing your skills and areas for improvement in evaluating at least 30 beer flavor characteristics
  • A copy of the “Beer Flavor Quality Evaluation Form” for evaluating routine beer production samples during taste sessions in your brewery.
  • Access to the taster training module of our innovative SensCheckTM Sensory Management Software, allowing you to manage taster training in your brewery and share training results with your colleagues.
  • Those who achieve an overall score of 75% or above in blind taste tests will receive our “Certificate of Competence in Beer Flavor Quality Assessment.”

Course Logistics:

No prior preparation is required. Simply arrive ready to dedicate your time, energy, and commitment over five days. The course begins each day at 08:45 hrs and concludes at 17:15 hrs. Each taster training session lasts approximately one hour, with a goal of fitting in five sessions per day. Considering the alcohol consumption during this training, we strongly advise against driving at the end of each day.


We consistently gather anonymous feedback from our course participants. Over the past year, attendees have given us an average score of 4.9 out of 5.0 for “Overall Course Evaluation.” Furthermore, 100% of attendees have expressed their willingness to recommend this course to others. Here are some selected comments from previous attendees:

  • “Brilliant! Never done beer sensory evaluation before, but this has been hugely beneficial.”
  • “Course was ace.”
  • “Awesome experience.”
  • “I really enjoyed the course and feel 100% more confident in my ability to participate in taste sessions now.”
  • “I really enjoyed this training. It was intense but well worth attending. Here’s to beer!”
  • “Fantastic experience – fun and informative.”
  • “Dr. Simpson is a fantastic instructor – I felt like I took away a ton of new skills from his course and was tremendously entertained as well.”

Course Facilitator:

Your course will be led by Dr. Bill Simpson, one of the brewing industry’s most experienced beer flavor trainers. With his extensive expertise, Dr. Simpson has developed numerous tools and techniques for training high-impact taste panels. He has advised numerous brewing companies on their sensory evaluation programs and has trained close to 3,000 tasters in breweries across Europe, Africa, Asia, and North and South America. Dr. Simpson has published over 120 papers, book chapters, and patents in the field of brewing technology.


September 25 @ 9:00 am
September 29 @ 4:30 pm


Cara Technology Ltd


Goose Island Barrel Warehouse
603 North Sacramento Boulevard
Chicago, IL 60612 United States