Judge correctly you say!? That is exactly to the point. Ive been doing this long enough to know where and were not to send beers for competitions throughout the US. Its quite funny actually. I have an IPA that ALWAYS wins. Its highest score was a 46/50...very very nice beer. However, I sent it to a competition down south and it got a 24...too hoppy for style they said.
You have to understand that the judges are people and no matter how much we wish they were always accurate to some degree there will always be differences.
I understand your frustration, justly so, the judge put something that was incorrect on your score sheet and took points off for it. When I make a beer that I know is very good and get something back that says it has an off flavor...well its tough to argue about that because I bottle condition most of my beers and there is a slight difference from bottle to bottle. However, when they make a statement like yours did then its worse than bad.
The fact of the matter is every competition will have style guidelines at each judging table. So there are 2 possibilities: 1) The competition didnt have style guidelines 2) and even worse he did not read them.
However, these are just guidelines and most people cant pick out things that shouldnt be there. The first thing that every judge does is look for flaws in the beer. I mean pretty much everyone can tell you there is something wrong with it and maybe even give you a flavor/ aroma they get. The hard part becomes when everything is 'right'. So if there are no flaws then they concentrate on the direct style.
Ok say that its a great Austrailian Lager but I smell Cascade hops. Well Cascade hops are American and its an Australian lager...get the idea.
It becomes my worst nightmare when I see people judging the way that you are indicating. Making very bold general statements are bad. Whats even worse is the manner in which is was present...."IF I DETECT THIS THEN I WILL MARK THE BEER DOWN!!!" The brewer has paid good money to enter the beer to be critiqued not preached to.
Ive found that there are alot of brewers that enter into competitions not trying to win any thing but just to see whats that flavor/ aroma and how the hell do I get it out of there and make better beer. They are basically paying for my advice on how to fix what went wrong.
The best part about judging is getting an absolutely horrid beer and critique it and then meeting the person who brewed it and them saying. Man, you were right. I had that problem in all my beers but I took your advice and that funkyness is gone!! Thats the best part.
I always include my email address on every score sheet I do so if the brewer has any kind of questions they can directly get in contact with me. Sure I get a few emails about, "I must not have been tasting the same beer." Then there are others who thought their beer was perfect, I point out a flaw, and they say, wow....yeah I see exactly what you are talking about.
Look, the entire reason I got into judging was so that I could make better beer. Now that Im more advanced I can pick out pretty much all the main off flavors/ aromas and tell how to improve it. In addition, I had many good beers that just didnt have "that" thing to make them stand out...tHe thing that makes good beers great...and try to make a few comments about how maybe to give it a little something.
Crist Im rambling....
Ok so it comes down to this. The judge was wrong...plain and simple. It happens. People are just people.
As for your beer and pretty much every beer you make, if you are going to enter competitions, dont worry about small differences in your beers numbers. Like your FES, never worry that a beer is too BIG for style, judges like big beers not to mention its really hard to say exactly if its to big. Too small on the other hand is very easy to tell. If the FES is only 6.5% but has a great body then enter it in RIS, if not then FES. If I were you, I would enter it in both the FES and RIS. They are 2 totally separate categories and as I said it seems that a FES always wins the stout category.
As for guidelines, Im not sure if you guys use the same ones. However, Im sure they are at least close. Here is the line to the BJCP site with the guidelines in many formats. YOu can even download them for PDA (nerds!)