How do I enter the competition?
We’ve made it easy to register online. You can read the list of competition rules and regulations here.

What key dates should I be aware of?

  • Registration Open
    • Early Bird Registration Dates (and Cost) – November 1 – December 15, 2022 (Cost $65)
    • Standard Registration Dates (and Cost) – December 16, 2022 – January 31, 2023 (Cost: $75)
  • Online Entry & Fee Deadline – January 31, 2023
  • Entry Delivery Deadline to Sacramento for Judging – TBD
  • Judging: March 2-5, 2023 in Sacramento
  • Kegs Available for Pickup TBD
  • Ceremony – March 2023 in Sacramento

How much does it cost to register?
Early bird pricing is $65. After 12/15 the price increases.

Where do I drop off my entries?
There will be regional drop off locations across the state. Location where entries can be shipped is TBD.

Can I still participate if I’m not a member of my local Brewers Guild?
Yes, though this competition is organized by and supports the state’s brewers guilds.

How many categories are there?
We have changed to using Brewers Association styles. You can view the full list of categories here. The head judge reserves the right to combine classes when the number of entries warrants or otherwise necessary.

How will beers be judged?
The Brewers Cup of California will use the American system of judging. This competition will follow the BJCP Competition Standards and is BJCP sanctioned.

All judging will be double-blind. Entries will be cold stored until judging time. Judging will be overseen by a Lead Judge whose decisions will stand.

Brewery of the Year shall be determined by the following medal point totals:

Gold = 8 pts. Silver = 4 pts. Bronze = 2 pts.

Hard seltzer and kombucha will not count toward Brewery of the Year and are not eligible for Best of Show.

In case of a tie, Brewery of the Year will be determined by the strength (number of entries) of the category the beer was entered.

What type of awards will be given?
The Brewers Cup of California medals for excellence in 65 categories and does not necessarily award medals to the top three finishers in a particular category. When judges decide that a category contains three excellent examples of the style, they award gold, silver, and bronze medals for the first, second, and third place beers, respectively. If judges believe that no beer in the category meets the quality and style accuracy criteria, they may elect not to award a medal. Judges may award a silver or a bronze medal and yet not award a gold medal in a category. The award criteria are as follows:

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

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

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

Other awards include:

  • Brewers Cup of California Best of Show: Awarded to the brewery with the highest-rated beer, overall.

  • Brewery of The Year: Awarded to the brewery that received the most awards, overall.

  • Guild of The Year: Awarded to the Brewers Guild whose members garnered the most awards.

  • Pioneer Award: Awarded to an individual who has made significant contributions to California’s craft beer industry.


How do I register as a judge or steward?
Visit the registration site at, click the register menu item, and choose judge or steward in the drop down menu.

When and where will judging take place?
Judging will take place in Sacramento from March 2-5, 2023.

How are you addressing COVID-19 concerns during the judging process?
We will follow all federal, state and county COVID-19 precautions.

When and where will the awards ceremony be held?

The awards ceremony will be held in March 2023 in Sacramento. More details coming soon!