"Overrated" Beers

Discussion in 'BeerAdvocate Talk' started by rozzom, Aug 14, 2014.


Is this a good idea?

  1. Yes - after 5000 reviews

    9 vote(s)
  2. Yes - after 2000 reviews

    8 vote(s)
  3. Yes - after 1000 reviews

    3 vote(s)
  4. No

    37 vote(s)
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  1. rozzom

    rozzom Champion (878) Jan 22, 2011 New York

    With a "KBS/Pliny/[Insert beer with long-standing reputation and a high rating] is overrated" thread popping up every week, or even day, it got me thinking (which can have disastrous consequences).

    While I strongly dislike the way "overrated" gets bandied about on here, for some of these beers that have been brewed for a while and have thousands of reviews, perhaps they shouldn't get to dine out on older reviews/ratings that quite possibly don't reflect current-day sentiments.

    A few years ago Pliny was essentially seen as a peerless DIPA to many beer geeks. Cut to the present day, and with so many other excellent options out there, it may not even be on someone's top 20 favourite DIPA list. Same goes for KBS when it comes to BA stouts.

    On the flip side, I would say something like Rochefort 10 is probably viewed in a very similar light as it was a few years ago, because nobody has yet to make a serious challenge to the big name Belgian quads (yes I'm sure someone has a local brewery where the head brewer was a feral child that was brought up by Belgian monks before moving to the USA, that puts out a killer 200 bottle-count quad - you get my point though).

    So what if, once a beer hits a certain number of reviews/ratings (e.g. 5,000), from that point on, only the 5,000 most recent reviews/ratings contribute towards it's overall score? I think that way people could feel comfortable knowing that the score is fairly indicative of what the BA population as a whole currently think, and perhaps this will move people's mindset away from "this beer is overrated" to "interesting, I don't like this beer nearly as much as most BAs" (I'm sure this is wishful thinking).

    Anyway.... discuss

    I also added some voting buttons with a few different review limits, or an option to show you think this is basically a s**t idea.
  2. miketd

    miketd Zealot (541) Mar 2, 2006 Ohio

    I like the idea.
  3. Rekrule

    Rekrule Defender (604) Nov 11, 2011 Massachusetts

    Both beers mentioned are still riding high from current ratings too. When beers get to more people there are more people to not like the beer. They sometimes become the vocal minority. That doesn't make the beers overrated. I don't care for one of them but I wouldn't call it overrated it's just not for me.

    There are also a couple beers that sucked at the beginning and now they are very good. That history should not be erased.
    Phigg1102 likes this.
  4. Phigg1102

    Phigg1102 Crusader (783) Sep 29, 2013 New York

    I think this is a good idea, although its implementation would probably be a bit of a
    pain in the ass to our kindly hosts.
    Dupage25 likes this.
  5. mnredsoxfan69

    mnredsoxfan69 Disciple (321) Dec 27, 2013 Minnesota

    What do we pay them for? Oh, wait, we don't.... Ne'mind.
    devilben02, breadwinner and Phigg1102 like this.
  6. rozzom

    rozzom Champion (878) Jan 22, 2011 New York

    Re: the beers riding high - I haven't gone and pulled the numbers, but I agree they still are. But I would also bet that say in the case of Pliny, the rAvg would drop to something still very respectable (say a 4.3), but not something that would put it at it's current No. 5 spot on the top 250. I guess we would never know for sure unless the bros actually implemented this (or unless there's a BA with a lot of free time on their hands).

    Re: beers sucking at the beginning. If a beer is 7 years old, was a mediocre beer for the first year, and then had a recipe change that made it into a great beer for the subsequent 6 years - what's the value on having those original reviews pulling it down? The history would still be there (for written reviews) - they just wouldn't contribute to the current score.
  7. Domingo

    Domingo Poo-Bah (2,689) Apr 23, 2005 Colorado

    I think the main thing that isn't being factored in would be the BA's experience and perception. A lot of those classic beers are as good as they've ever been and are as good as the newer/sexier options. However it takes experience and insight to realize that.
  8. draheim

    draheim Poo-Bah (2,875) Sep 18, 2010 Washington

    Should my mortgage be revised annually based on what people are paying now for a similar property?
    I say, to the first go the spoils. It's one of the few advantages of paving the way.
  9. BrahptimusPrime

    BrahptimusPrime Initiate (0) Jun 6, 2014 Connecticut

    I say just let the numbers work themselves out. There will always be "over-hype" with anything in life. Yes, there are a lot of comparable great beers out these days that weren't a while back, but it doesn't make the old giants any less delicious. No matter what is done, there's always people out there that will just have to disagree just to disagree. You gotta remember there are plenty of people out there that will just say they dislike something because it's "too mainstream." haha
    are_doubleyou, rozzom and utopiajane like this.
  10. utopiajane

    utopiajane Poo-Bah (2,556) Jun 11, 2013 New York

    I also think the evolution of the ratings is part and parcel of the whole experience. It would be unfair to remove all the fervor and excitement form a beer that was justified then, simply because it is not, in the opinions of some, justified now. People will change and beers will change and these reviews are part of that history and overall picture. it would misrepresent the beer to remove the reviews based on the number of reviews or how hold the reviews are.
    TMoney2591, MichPaul, Ranbot and 2 others like this.
  11. breadwinner

    breadwinner Meyvn (1,217) Mar 6, 2014 California

    Rather than basing scores off the most recent X number of reviews, you could also implement some sort of graph/metric that shows average scores given by month or year. So, I could pull up Pliny, pull up a graph, and see that in 2007, it's average monthly score given was 4.7, but now it's 4.5 or whatever. I'm sure this sort of thing would be a bitch to put to together and isn't really a viable option, but it seems more appropriate to me than rendering invalid all those initial scores. Doing that just causes scores to reflect the current trends -- i.e., rich, juicy IPAs vs. well-attenuated, bitterness-forward IPAs. I know you bring up something like Rochefort probably going unaffected, but the Quad style hasn't undergone the changing seas of preference that something like IPAs or stouts have. I'd prefer to see the whole enchilada, with the ability to drill down into the data, rather than having my data points constantly changing due to subtraction.
    rozzom likes this.
  12. rozzom

    rozzom Champion (878) Jan 22, 2011 New York

    Just to be clear - no reviews would be removed. They just wouldn't factor into the overall score any longer. But i do get people's sentiments
    breadwinner likes this.
  13. UCLABrewN84

    UCLABrewN84 Poo-Bah (13,753) Mar 18, 2010 California

    No, all reviews since the beginning should count. If a beer is truly overrated, scoring trends going forward should theoretically lower the overall score of the beer in time.
    MichPaul likes this.
  14. guinness77

    guinness77 Meyvn (1,446) Jan 6, 2014 New York

    This! Times a thousand. Great post.

    I hate to be the old guy "get off my lawn" type, but a majority of the posters don't even know a drinking life where they DON'T have, routinely, a hundred options right down the block from their house. They see a 98 or a 99 rating here, go crazy trying to acquire it, and then after they drink it decide it's "overrated" without trying the 10, 50 or 75 similar styles to give them some perspective.
  15. Rekrule

    Rekrule Defender (604) Nov 11, 2011 Massachusetts

    Pliny is pulling 5s left and right now. With the ticking system in place there are just higher scores across the board. I'd imagine if you took the review avg and the tick avg they would tell two different stories. Most of what you eliminate when talking about an older beer is true reviews with for the most mart on this site tend to keep the numbers more honest.

    I personally feel the whole story needs to be told. That's what makes the beers of fame list special. If you eliminate old worse or better reviews you are skewing the scores in favor of the flavor of the month beers.
  16. Beer_Stan

    Beer_Stan Initiate (163) Mar 15, 2014 California

    But what say you about beers that consistently change over time, Like the Epic Big Bad Baptist, theres no way you can get a fair idea about that beer since every batch is different, The over all rating is for the name not the batches, and I doubt everyone will read through the entirety of it to figure it out...I mean drink it and if you like it, there you go but still...
  17. Todd

    Todd Founder (6,139) Aug 23, 1996 California
    Staff Moderator Fest Crew Society

    Not too long ago, I provided multiple examples proving that they actually tell very similar stories (and in many cases the same story).
  18. Rekrule

    Rekrule Defender (604) Nov 11, 2011 Massachusetts

    I must have missed that. I do see more 5s flying about or I'm just noticing them more.
  19. Todd

    Todd Founder (6,139) Aug 23, 1996 California
    Staff Moderator Fest Crew Society

    There's more ratings now, so you're going to notice more of everything.
    Brutaltruth likes this.
  20. jrnyc

    jrnyc Meyvn (1,158) Mar 21, 2010 New York

    I voted no, but would be interesting to see a separate list or an option for current list to look at ratings for a specified period, say last year.
  21. Flibber

    Flibber Initiate (0) Jul 27, 2013 England

    I agree. I'm quite happy to read someone talk about a beer. But giving it a numerical rating? I don't think a beer can be summed up in that way.
  22. BaalDagon

    BaalDagon Initiate (0) Jul 17, 2014 Tennessee

    Maybe somehow show a running rating in the form of a graph per yearly or monthly... whatever IT can brew up (no pun intended).
  23. Brutaltruth

    Brutaltruth Poo-Bah (3,342) Mar 22, 2014 Ohio

    I would chalk that up to inexperienced palates who are freshly blown away by flavor and others opinion.
    I have yet to rate a 5 and am not sure it, for myself, is even possible....when is anything "perfect"? I may have a "great" recollection of an ice cold Bud in a can on a smoldering hot day, but it does not glean a 5. It is the reviews and thought to the categories that give one a complete experience other than blindly rating 5. I've had the KBS but yet to review it, but would stick it at a little over 4. I have not had Pliny, but have had Zombie Dust and still looked at the ratings and just shook my head.....a single hop beer rated this high????

    Experience is the gift of living.
    PapaGoose03 likes this.
  24. BaalDagon

    BaalDagon Initiate (0) Jul 17, 2014 Tennessee

    I couldn't agree with you more. I can say that I am guilty of being overwhelmed by flavors I never knew beer to have. I will also say that in my short time with craft beer, my palate is evolving quickly and my scores are lowing accordingly. Unfortunately, I see no way of getting around an untrained palate except to spend some time reading the reviews.
  25. Todd

    Todd Founder (6,139) Aug 23, 1996 California
    Staff Moderator Fest Crew Society

    Locking this one down as it's obvious the vast majority of people who voted don't like this idea. I'm not feeling it either, but we do have plans on introducing extended stats.

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