General Questions

In a nutshell, Beerhive provides beer enthusiasts a platform to create and exchange beer profiles in a visual way, without relying on simplistic, subjective five-star ratings or long-winded written reviews. It helps you to improve your tasting skills, understand better why you like a beer and discover new beers based on your preferences.

We are a team of 4 Belgian beer & IT geeks who thought something was missing in the existing mobile app offering. We are completely independent of any big brewery group. Our purpose ? Engage people globally to share and grow their beer knowlegde through co-creation, independent of the level of expertise.

Signing up gives you the ability to store and retrieve your own beer analysis anytime on any device. It will also allow us to provide you with personalised suggestions. We do not share your individual analysis with anybody, data is only used in an aggregated (f.e. averages of several users) and anonymised way.

April 2018 we will launch the Beerhive mobile application both in Android’s Playstore as in Apple’s App Store. Just download the app and register via your email, Facebook or Google credentials.


Beerhive beer profiles

A Beerhive beer profile is a compact visual representation of the flavour characteristics of a beer. It describes the taste (sweet, sour, bitter), mouthfeel (intensity, body, dryness) and aroma (malty, fruity, hoppy) aspects of a beer. To add enough granularity, specific aroma icons (raspberry, chocolate, wild yeast, etc) are listed.

You can define your own profile of a beer in ‘my analysis’ (how ? see FAQ below). Or consult the Beerhive ‘group analysis’.

The ‘group analysis’ profile of a beer is a ‘smart’ average of the analysis of : 1) the brewer AND/OR 2) affiliated expert tasters AND/OR 3) “regular” beer lovers in the Beerhive community. All have their weight in this average.

Currently our database contains 3000+ Belgian beers from 500+ Belgian breweries and beer companies. Not all might have a detailed visual Beerhive profile yet though because users (brewer, experts, regular users) have not provided enough analysis yet.

Beerhive takes a 3-step approach to analysing the characteristics of a beer. Under the ‘my analysis’ tab you can describe the ‘colour and flavour’ (step 1) and the ‘mouthfeel & aromas’ (step 2) of a beer, and add your ‘rating & notes’ (step 3).

You can complete as many steps as you like, in the order of your preference (e.g. only the colour and basic flavours, or only a rating of your general appreciation). Off course, the more detailed your own personal analysis, the more useful it becomes in calculating an accurate ‘group analysis’ beer profile.

In the ‘colour & flavour’ step you can indicate the colour of the beer (by way of a colour chart containing 9 colour categories), describe the basic tastes (sweet, sour, bitter) and some general flavour parameters: malty (caramel, roasted, bread etc), fruity (citrus, dried fruit etc), hoppy (fresh hops, grassy etc).

The ‘mouthfeel & aromas’ step allows you to add more detail to your analysis. We have selected five mouthfeel parameters, each of them to be judged on a five point scale (absent / mild / moderate / heavy / dominant):

  • intensity: duration of the sensory perception
  • body: perceived thickness, ranging from thin (light-bodied) to oily (full-bodied)
  • dryness: the mouth-drying effect of a beer (like a dry or ‘sec’ wine)
  • alcohol: perceived mouth-warming feel
  • carbonation: perceived tingle caused by the amount of carbon dioxide in a beer

You can add as many specific aromas to your beer analysis as you like. For ease of use we have grouped the aromas into seven categories:

  • malty: aromas caused by the use of different types of malt/grains, e.g. caramel, biscuit, roasted, coffee, smoked, etc
  • fruity: all kinds of fruity aromas, without distinction as to their origin in the brewing process, e.g. fruity esters created during fermentation, fruity aromas due to dry-hopping or maceration on real fruit, …
  • hoppy: fresh/old hops, grassy/straw (fruity aromas rendered by aroma hops are to be indicated in the ‘fruity’ category)
  • spices: nutty, herbal, floral and other spices, but also salt (and yes, we are aware that this is actually a taste and not an aroma, but given the rare presence of this parameter in beer, we decided to include it here)
  • animal: (wild) yeast, leather, butter, …
  • wood: oak, pine, various types of barrels used for barrel-aging
  • misc: mostly ‘off flavours’ like paper, cooked corn (DMS), vinegar, …

A list of all your personal analyses is available via the menu option ‘my analyses’. Beers are listed alphabetically. In a future version of the app, sort and filter options will be added.

We use a specific mathematical algorithm to calculate the similarity between any two ‘group analysis’ beer profiles. All parameters that can be analysed in the Beerhive app are taken into account. The more parameters are shared between any two beers, the more similar they will be.


Searching a beer

In the search page you can do a text search on beer and/or brewery name or use a hashtag.

Alternatively, you can search a beer based on its characteristics: colour, flavour (sweet, sour, bitter, hoppy, fruity, malty), mouthfeel (intensity, body, dryness, alcohol, carbonation) or specific aromas. This way you can search for example a blond beer with heavy bitterness, moderate intensity and aromas of grapefruit and fresh hops.

The number of beers corresponding to your selected search criteria are shown at the bottom of the screen. If you want to remove a selected characteristic from your search criteria, you can do so by tapping on the corresponding icon. If you want to start a new search from scratch, you can delete all selected criteria by tapping on the leftmost ‘X’ icon.

For the moment you can’t add new beers or breweries via the app, only admin users and brewers can do so. Since data quality is of great importance to us, we want to avoid the creation of multiple entries for the same beer. Another reason is that we initially focus on Belgian beers only. The Beerhive team keeps an eye out for new beers on the Belgian market and we will regularly update our database. If you can’t find a particular (Belgian) beer, please let us know at info@beerhive.com

We will first test run our solution & algorithms on the rich Belgian beer offering, but obviously will be adding beers from other countries as well. We will do this country per country since we have developed a very specific methodology to guarantee data quality. If you are interested to help us in doing so, drop us a line at info@beerhive.com