What is beer scoring
Through Whatpub you can submit your beer scores and indeed, this is the most convenient way. Beer scores (under the national beer scoring system or NBSS) is the way that CAMRA members rate a pub on its ability to serve cask-conditioned real ale. CAMRA members rate their experience on the appearance, form or condition, freshness, temperature and other elements to do with the cellermanship and presentation of each real ale.
The system is not based on personal taste or personal opinion of the pub which can cause difficulty, so do your best. Bottled ales and ciders are excluded so please before scoring, review CAMRA’s definitions for ‘cask conditioned’ and ‘real ale’ if necessary. For example ale served directly from the secondary conditioning tanks can be accepted according to CAMRA rules.
To rate each beer, the scoring system is as follows:
0. No cask conditioned real ale available.
1. Poor. The beer is barely drinkable
2. Average. The beer is well kept but perhaps it does not inspire anything. You drink your beer without noticing.
3. Good. Good beer in good form. For example you may specifically want to stay for another pint.
4. Very good. One to note down.
5. Perfect. This score will be awarded very rarely. For example in 2014, there were only two ‘5’ scores for the entire area of Swansea out of over 400 scores.
Half scores are possible so for example 0.5 could be for a beer that had to be taken back. Even if the beer is subsequently taken off by staff as per your advice and you are given a replacement beer at no extra cost, you should still consider rating the poor beer. Comments can be left on your score to indicate the actions of staff.
How to record scores
There are three ways to record your scores, via Whatpub, via the old NBSS website or in writing to your Whatpub officer at a branch meeting. There are various detailed YouTube videos on using Whatpub here and here
These forms allow you to input the brewery, beer name, score and price. Also custom entries can be placed. For example if a new beer from a brewery is just released, it may not appear on the list. Simply select ‘other’ for the beer and name the beer in the comments section. The lists get updated periodically.
As always further advice can be obtained at the branch meetings.
Further reading for your information only
Link to a useful overview of how the West Kent branch uses whatpub in relation to beer scores.
Link to a useful overview of how the North Herts branch uses whatpub in relation to beer scores.