Sensory Science for Craft Brewers | UC Davis Extension

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New Sensory Science for Craft Brewers

Sensory evaluation skills should be an essential part of your brewing operation and are critical for maintaining consistent quality, developing new brews and evaluating changes in ingredients or processes. Fundamental sensory science can easily be applied to your craft brewing operation. In this course, you will acquire tools and methods for assessing your brew's flavor and style and how to measure the impact of changes in ingredients, production techniques and packaging.

Get robust quality insights and hard data on which you can base your business decisions. Learn how to use sensory measures with precision to determine your signature flavor profile, ensure consistent quality and identify which brewing changes make a significant difference. Discover how to apply these techniques to developing new products, qualifying new ingredients, assessing changes in production techniques or storage/shipping conditions, shelf-life determination and quality control. Class exercises include demonstrations of sensory evaluations of brews and the chance to discuss your actual research and production issues with professional sensory scientists.

This course is recommended for owners, general managers and any brew-master or production supervisor who wants to ensure the distinction and consistency of their products. The techniques learned are applicable to both beer and cider.


Christian Miller, MBA, has worked in market research, brand and category management for more than two decades. He is the proprietor of Full Glass Research, which provides economic and market analysis and research for food and beverage producers and marketers. His recent projects have included trade surveys, label tests, analyses of direct customers, new product marketing plans and a study of the interaction of wine and beer consumers. Clients range from small wineries and cheese producers to large multi-brand or packaging companies. Miller also co-directs UC Davis Extension's annual OIV Wine Marketing Program.
Janet Williams a founding member of Dragonfly SCI, has more than 25 years of experience directing strategic research projects at Tragon Corporation and Miller Brewing. 
Rebecca Bleibaum, M.A., is president of Dragonfly SCI, a sensory and consumer insights research company, specializing in product testing and professional education. She has more than 25 years of experience in applied research from Tragon Corporation, one of the leading consulting companies in sensory science in the U.S., as their chief sensory officer. Bleibaum is co-developer and instructor of UC Davis Extension’s popular and long-running Applied Sensory and Consumer Science Certificate Program. In 2016, she was awarded the prestigious UC Davis Extension Outstanding Service Award for her contributions and dedication to continuing education.


Sat., 9:00am to 4:00pm, Jun 23


Davis:Sudwerk Brewing Co. 2001 2nd street suite 5, Davis CA 95618

Section Notes

Please park in the large lot surrounding Sudwerk Brewing Company.  The classroom is located on the East side of the building in Suite 5. Please use the sidewalk along Second Street to access the classroom. The door to the classroom faces Second Street. Plan to arrive by 8:45 a.m. to check-in and pick-up course materials. Coffee will be available when you arrive.

You must be 21 years of age or older to enroll and attend.




Special Discounts

CAAA Member Discount:

Current members of the Cal Aggie Alumni Association and other UC alumni associations receive $50 off the course fee.  If you don't have your association discount code contact UC Davis Extension Student Services at (800) 752-0881.

Capitol Corridor Rider:

Capitol Corridor riders are eligible for a one-time $100 discount on a UC Davis Extension course (some exceptions apply). The Discount Code is available on the UC Davis Extension course page on the Capitol Corridor’s onboard Wifi system.

Enrollment Policies

Drop requests (withdraw with a refund) will be approved, less a $30 processing fee, if the request is received seven calendar days before the course begins. Click here or visit to view complete enrollment policy information including details on withdrawals and transfers.

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