Craig Thomas (1), Amaey Mundkur; (1) Cara Technology Limited, Leatherhead, U.K.
Mixtures of beer and carbonated soft drinks are popular in many parts
of Europe. They possess flavor attributes derived both from beer and
soft drinks. Both alcoholic and non-alcoholic versions of such products
are available, as well as clear and cloudy products. While these
beverages are made exclusively in breweries, the capability of brewery
tasters to evaluate such products is often limited. Primarily this is
because taster training programs and training materials focus on beer
and do not facilitate skills development for products other than beer.
To help improve this situation, we have identified the key flavor
attributes in a wide range of beer mix products and developed stabilized
reference flavor standards to represent them. These materials include
18 positive flavor characteristics found in beer mix products, and 8
off-flavors and taints. We have successfully used these materials to
train professional tasters in breweries that manufacture such products.
Craig Thomas works for U.K.-based Cara Technology Limited,
supporting professional tasters and professional taste panels all over
the world in developing their beer evaluation skills. Raised in
Colorado, Craig studied history at the University of Edinburgh in
Scotland before graduating with an M.S. degree in brewing and distilling
from Heriot-Watt University in the same city. Craig is a former
recipient of the Morgan Stanley Award for Academic Excellence and a