Mad Alchemist: Beer Style Balance Ranks

The table below shows the average balance of all beer styles according to the 2008 BJCP Style Guidelines. The left column shows Bitterness Ratio (BU:GU), which is commonly used to determine the balance of a beer when homebrewing. The right column shows balance corrected to reflect a beer style's attenuation, because the more attenuated a beer is, the fewer fermentable sugars (and therefore sweetness) remain.

While most styles remain somewhat consistent in balance relative to others, a few outliers exist (often if their average attenuation is either very high or very low). One example is Saison. Its average real attenuation is 71.27%. While it slots in at #40 in the standard Bitterness Ratio column, it goes all the way up to #48 in the Relative Bitterness Ratio column (as its balance tilts toward bitter due to attenuation).

# Bitterness Ratio (BU:GU) Relative Bitterness Ratio (RBR)
1 Gueuze Fruit Lambic
2 Fruit Lambic Gueuze
3 Straight (Unblended) Lambic Straight (Unblended) Lambic
4 Berliner Weisse Berliner Weisse
5 Doppelbock Strong Scotch Ale
6 Weizen/Weissbier Doppelbock
7 Standard American Lager Weizen/Weissbier
8 Strong Scotch Ale Standard American Lager
9 Dark American Lager Dunkelweizen
10 Dunkelweizen Eisbock
11 Belgian Dubbel Weizenbock
12 Weizenbock Dark American Lager
13 Roggenbier (German Rye Beer) Roggenbier (German Rye Beer)
14 Lite American Lager Belgian Dubbel
15 Belgian Dark Strong Ale Belgian Dark Strong Ale
16 Eisbock Witbier
17 Witbier Lite American Lager
18 Belgian Blond Ale Belgian Blond Ale
19 Bière de Garde Traditional Bock
20 Flanders Red Ale Bière de Garde
21 Belgian Golden Strong Ale Flanders Red Ale
22 Traditional Bock Cream Ale
23 Cream Ale Belgian Golden Strong Ale
24 Belgian Tripel Southern English Brown Ale
25 Premium American Lager Baltic Porter
26 Flanders Brown Ale/Oud Bruin Scottish Light 60/-
27 Munich Helles Munich Helles
28 Baltic Porter Premium American Lager
29 Maibock/Helles Bock Belgian Tripel
30 Southern English Brown Ale Flanders Brown Ale/Oud Bruin
31 Irish Red Ale Scottish Heavy 70/-
32 Munich Dunkel Irish Red Ale
33 Oktoberfest/Märzen Maibock/Helles Bock
34 Scottish Light 60/- Munich Dunkel
35 Scottish Heavy 70/- Oktoberfest/Märzen
36 Classic Rauchbier Classic Rauchbier
37 Blonde Ale Scottish Export 80/-
38 American Wheat or Rye Beer Blonde Ale
39 Scottish Export 80/- Mild
40 Saison American Wheat or Rye Beer
41 Vienna Lager Vienna Lager
42 Belgian Pale Ale Belgian Pale Ale
43 Average Beer Average Beer
44 Dortmunder Export Dortmunder Export
45 Mild Sweet Stout
46 English Barleywine English Barleywine
47 Kölsch Schwarzbier (Black Beer)
48 Northern English Brown Ale Saison
49 Schwarzbier (Black Beer) Northern English Brown Ale
50 American Brown Ale Kölsch
51 Oatmeal Stout American Brown Ale
52 Brown Porter Oatmeal Stout
53 Sweet Stout Brown Porter
54 Old Ale Old Ale
55 American Amber Ale American Amber Ale
56 Classic American Pilsner Classic American Pilsner
57 Northern German Altbier Northern German Altbier
58 Robust Porter Robust Porter
59 American Pale Ale American Pale Ale
60 California Common Beer Imperial Stout
61 Imperial Stout California Common Beer
62 Special/Best/Premium Bitter Extra Special/Strong Bitter
63 Extra Special/Strong Bitter Special/Best/Premium Bitter
64 German Pilsner (Pils) Bohemian Pilsener
65 Foreign Extra Stout German Pilsner (Pils)
66 Bohemian Pilsener Foreign Extra Stout
67 English IPA English IPA
68 Standard/Ordinary Bitter Standard/Ordinary Bitter
69 American IPA Düsseldorf Altbier
70 Düsseldorf Altbier American Barleywine
71 American Barleywine American IPA
72 Dry Stout American Stout
73 American Stout Dry Stout
74 Imperial IPA Imperial IPA