Columbia Common - Widmer Brothers Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Columbia CommonColumbia Common

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BA SCORE
82
good

48 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

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Reviews: 48
Hads: 229
rAvg: 3.59
pDev: 5.01%
Wants: 7
Gots: 11 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Widmer Brothers Brewing Company visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
California Common / Steam Beer |  4.70% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: welldigger888 on 12-29-2012

No notes at this time.
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Reviews: 48 | Hads: 229
Photo of Mises85
4.32/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had this on tap in standard pint glass at perfect temperature 48-50 degrees

Appearance: beautiful amber color with 1.5-2 finger head.

Smell: Dry hopped, floral, touch of citrus, wheat malt

Taste: touch of mango, with a dry spicy finish. hoppy but very flavorful

Mouthfeel: nice carbonation, good balance.

Overall; definitely a nice spring beer that has a lively taste and a surprising hoppy note. (401 characters)

Photo of woodychandler
4.18/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I plucked this from the cooler at the Knickerbocker Hotel last weekend, a story in and of itself. That said, this is the Bros.' Spring Ale, following closely on the heels of Penn Brewery's Winter Ale. What day/season is it today? I have no idea after sitting through a bone-chilling baseball game yesterday.

I know/understand the style and I am not going to even touch the in-fighting of some of the previous reviews. Please, look at the style descriptor(s) and do some reading before launching into one another.

I went with a fairly aggro pour which resulted in a surprisingly brief finger of light-tan head with relatively low retention. It is a cool day and there is little to no humidity and the lack of head retention was surprising. Color was a deep-copper with NE-quality clarity and if there was a way to cash it in at my local recycling center, I would be on my way there now. I had a babe of a g/f in the early 1990's and her hair was both copper-colored and coarse as wire. I wonder if she braids it up and sells it as scrap? Man, what a beauty! Both the g/f and the beer. Nose was solidly malty with a slightly minty/grassy scent underneath. I was vaguely reminded of Girl Scout mint cookies. Taste was semi-sweet and quite tasty. It occurred to me, in writing this review, that I have never reviewed Anchor Steam, despite it being one of the first micros I ever put up to my lips, I wonder how the two will compare. This was worthwhile. (1,451 characters)

Photo of secondtooth
4.14/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a lovely, rich amber, with fine a tri-finger head. Lovely spoke-style lace, as well.

Nose is crisp grains and grassy hops. Perfect aroma for a proper lager, so points here, too!

Taste is very palate-pleasing, with a light body but full of flavor. I get enough citrus hops and bready malts to be an ideal balance for a session-style spring lager. Very enjoyable and well-done! (383 characters)

Photo of anarchia
4.05/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Translucent orange with a large head, excellent retention. Aroma is fruity, grapefruit & orange hops with some floral notes. Very crisp beer with strong fruitiness, some grassy notes, honey-like sweetness but finishes very dry. Strong carbonation, but not so strong that it interferes with drinkability. Fantastic session ale, it'd be nice to see more stuff like this on the shelves. (383 characters)

Photo of welldigger888
4.02/5  rDev +12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Brilliantly crystal clear garnet hued amber gold color that has an off white head leaving some lacing as the head went rather quickly.

Wonderful earthy hoppiness seems to dominate a rather grainy malty goodness that has some caramel sweetness. Good stuff here for sure.

Very earthy spicy noble like hop that has a firm bitterness and a nice sweet caramel malty graininess that screams to be consumed.

Nice and solid medium mouth feel here that is nice and sessionable .

Solid brew from a solid brewer, I enjoyed and will buy all I can get. (551 characters)

Photo of constantine_272
4.01/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Light brown with a redish tint. Extremely low white head. Highly carbonated.

S: Malt. Slightly bready. A hint of yeast and a tiny bit of warm spice, maybe nutmeg.

T: Initial taste is of wheat and rye which fades fast to a tingle of mellow hops. I detect a hint of tangy grapefruit which adds an understated brightness. A spice flavor lingers on the finish.

M: Full consistency at first from the malts, but the hop finish wipes the slate mostly clean.

O: I bought a six pack of this. The first one I didn't like so much. I had another a few weeks later and it really is starting to work for me. At first I thought there wasn't enough hop to balance out the flavor but I changed my mind. Though not ad hoppy as some of my more usual beers, it is actually quite balanced. It would make a good session beer. It's a tasty beer but its missing something to really make it pop. (877 characters)

Photo of Brenden
4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The color is just shy of amber, a nice yellow-orange. It's nearly clear with maybe just a touch of haziness in the middle. An off-white head grows to sit at around 3/4 of a finger. Dissipation is fairly quick, though a sturdy island of foam remains. Lacing is left on the glass by way of light, thin patching and some spotting.
All said, this is a nice beer overall and, as I understand, a very nice example of a Common. There's some dryness to it and some toast in the nose lends itself to a cereal grains note, but over all of that is a solid, sturdy aspect of what really comes out in the flavor: a predominantly floral note complemented by grass and a bit of perfume. It's got sweetness as well, which really rounds it out nicely as well as creating an added complexity. Pear and apple flesh, a lightly herbal note, and even a touch of woodiness make for a very well-rounded flavor profile.
The carbonation works for this beer; it doesn't go crazy, doesn't get too spritzy or bite too hard. It does, however, provide this beer with a good nip and a creaminess in a light-medium body.
All in all, this was a pleasant surprise for me. (1,136 characters)

Photo of avalon07
3.92/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had an amber color and a clear texture. There was a half inch of foamy head that quickly dissipated. Fair lacing.

S: An okay, if somewhat underwhelming, aroma of malt and light hops.

T: More than anything else, malt was the centerpiece of the flavor. It's not overbearing, but certainly very present. Also had light malt and a citrus element as well. A solid, light flavor.

M: A well-carbonated beer with a lively, yet smooth, finish. Light-bodied.

O: While this beer won't win any points for originality or complexity, it is refreshing and easy to like. Drinkable. (610 characters)

Photo of Zorro
3.87/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Clear copper colored ale with a medium sized off-white colored head. Darker than expected.

Smells malty with a strong caramel scent. Herbal and fruity hop with some grass. Toasted grain an a faint scent of melon and roasted chile pepper. Smells woody and very faintly smoky.

Starts out mildly sweet and woody with a strong caramel syrup on wheat biscuit taste. Bitterness is about medium and perfectly matched the the malt. Some mineral water taste. Faint wood and smoke. Not real complex but it is quite tasty.

Mouthfeel is good.

Overall a surprisingly tasty beer. Wasn't expecting much here but this is an excellent mild ale. (631 characters)

Photo of Guden
3.81/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A- Brilliantly clear copper with a one finger head of tight bubbles that slowly fade to a small ring. Pretty looking beer.

S- Some earthiness, some strawberry/banana fruitiness giving a taffy smell. Just a little minty herbal character and a touch of sulfur as it warms.

T- Up front the fruity esters (again strawberry) dominate with a woody, herbal, minty hop balance in the middle and a slightly sweet toffee/taffy sweet finish.

M- Light body with low carbonation that gives some similarities to an English bitter and makes for a very mouth filling beer.

O- I liked this one a lot. Not dominated by any single characteristic but the herbal hops are balanced well by everything else going on. Seems to have held up even greater than 4 months after bottling. (762 characters)

Photo of vkv822
3.79/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz : tulip

Pours a clear, copper color with a craggy, foamy white head. Good retention, and spotty lacing.

Quite grassy, floral spicy hop notes, blends with some weizen yeast notes and biscuit malts.

Biscuity, pale malts upfront in the taste, followed by grassy hops.

Medium body, active, bubbly carbonation.

An enjoyable steam beer, well suited for spring and easy drinking. (382 characters)

Photo of shand
3.78/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

It's been a while since I've had a steam beer. Columbia Common is a beautiful beer, it pours out a brilliant copper color capped with a lovely head. The aroma is a little weak and what's there of the toasted malts is a bit. It ticks the flavor marks just right though, with that whole "not a lager, not yet an ale" thing going on, with a wonderful slight malty nuttiness. A bit of hops hang out with a grainy finish. The mouthfeel is on the heavier side of light and highly carbonated, and the drinkability is solid. A solid attempt at a under-brewed style. (557 characters)

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.78/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

a style of beer id like to see come around a little more, this is a great spring seasonal with all the necessary attributes. it pours an amber to copper color, clean and neat, with an inch of lasting white head. the nose is pretty well hopped, a little citrusy, with a fairly big malt profile for such a light and crisp beer. there isn't rye in this, but is has a certain spice element to the smell as well. the flavor is really well balanced. plenty of grain happening, some caramel sweetness, a little tannic thing going on, and a good size body. the hops are exclusively in the finish, hardly bitter at all, but of a neutral fruity feel to them, good compliment to the bigger malt flavors. the finish is super crisp and refreshing, and this is an easy beer to drink quite a few of. I like it in early spring here because its got the clean satisfying drinkability and summery hop complexion, but it also has enough body to be useful when its still cold out. a well made example of a style that I am finding I really enjoy. (1,024 characters)

Photo of zeff80
3.76/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A - Poured out a clear copper color with a one-finger, off-white head of foam. It left some sudsy trails of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled floral with a malty/bready backbone.

T - It tasted somewhat spicy with notes of sweet bread and caramel.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A light to medium bodied ale with a dry, clean finish.

O - This is a good steam beer, maybe even better than the original. (409 characters)

Photo of russpowell
3.75/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bottled 12/12/12

Pours an effervescent honey /bronze color with 2+ fingers of pearl colored head. Good lacing & alright head retention

S: Green apple skins, some dry cereal scent, pear notes, a bit of toastyness

T: Pears, a touch of herbal hops & some lemon zest up front. Fruittyness & a touch of lemons as this warms, plus a some dryness & golden delcious apple. Finishes fruity & crisp

MF: Medium bodied, light carbonation, crispness picks up as this warms, nicely balanced

This started a little shakey, but improved as it warmed. Very drinkable, would love to get some fresher just to see if it is any better (617 characters)

Photo of BrianJohnson
3.75/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was expecting almost a Pilsner style color, but this was much darker than a Pilsner. Not a heavy hop smell - very bready and almost lager-ish. Taste was very similar, not quite a smooth, dark, winter ale but also not quite a light, summer ale. Essentially a beer to have around year-round, I think. Very nice taste and mouthfeel. Again, very lager-ish, but extremely pleasant and enjoyable. I very much enjoy this beer. (421 characters)

Photo of JohnGalt1
3.74/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Picked up tonight at the COOP... Poured into my slim tulip glass.. clear light amber/orange... short lasting eggshell head really doesn't leave much in the way of lacing or a cap.

Nose is pale malt with a nice toast punch... hoppiness is an odd but inviting mix of floral and grassy elements.

Flavor pretty much mirrors the nose with a decent finish of toasted malt and the above hop notes that weigh heavier on the grassy side of things.

Body is a solid medium, especially for such a low ABV beer... carbonation is light/medium.

Tasty and very drinkable.. I will buy it again.

3.5/3.75/3.75/3.75/3.75 (606 characters)

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.74/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a dark gold color, with a short off-white head that fades quickly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains citrus, lager yeast, caramelized malts and some hops.

T: The taste starts out bready with flavors of lager yeast and a hearty malt character. Then some sweet flavors of caramel and citrus come in. The hops presence is mild and brings a good balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Smooth and a little crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, mild kick, good representation of style, this is a solid sessionable beer to drink for a while. (717 characters)

Photo of KTCamm
3.73/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. Mix a six pick up.

Pours dark amber with thick 1/2 inch foam. Heavy blackish tint. Malty nose. Bready. Light flavorful malt, backed by a flowery hop. Thin body. Not much carbonation. Quite good.

Nice job on a Cali Common brew. (268 characters)

Photo of RJLarse
3.73/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

I bought a six-pack of Columbia Common in a grocery store. Poured into a pint glass.

Pours a medium gold color, clear, with a thin bubbly white head. A few bubbles are rising in the glass.

Smell is faint, a light grain aroma perhaps.

The taste is good. A cereal flavor up front, with a mild bitter fruit flavor on the finish and a dry bitter aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is light crisp and clean.

Overall a nice beer, and very timely for the coming of spring. (457 characters)

Photo of barczar
3.73/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a brilliant light copper color with a dense one inch cream head that slowly dissipates, leaving holy lacing.

Grain, malt, and floral hops form the initial aroma.

Flavor is fairly grainy, grassy, and floral. Slight toasted malt backbone and hints of citrus lead to a tad bitter finish.

Body is moderate, with carbonation a touch high.

Very sessionable beer, but nothing outstanding. (391 characters)

Photo of flagmantho
3.72/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Apperance: medium orange hue with a haze-free body and a moderate effervescence. Head is a finger of frothy ivory foam with moderate retention. Not too bad.

Smell: toasty malt aroma with a very yeasty/bready character. There's a resiny twist at the end which may be the hops. Mostly clean, but a little bit raw if you're not expecting it.

Taste: much like the aroma, but a little bit rounder and more finished in general. Creamy, yeasty flavor to which the toasty malt provides a little contrast; the hops are kind of minty and resiny, and bitterness is on the low side but still balanced.

Mouthfeel: medium-light body with a well-integrated carbonation and a pretty big, satisfying creaminess. I like it.

Overall: while this beer seems a little rough around the edges, it's actually not a bad example of the style. This beer is worth a try if you are into the style and want to expand beyond Anchor Steam Beer. (959 characters)

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.7/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance - Pours a clear, dark golden amber with an off-white, finger width head. Fair retention. Leaves a broken layer of microbubbles on the surface, while lacing is spotty at best.

Smell - Lightly toasted bread, hints of caramel, light pepper, subdued hops coming across as floral.

Taste - Strong overtones of caramel sweetness met by an addition of toasted bread, touches of honey and moderate grass hop character . Bittersweet finish.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Nice bite. Goes down with near buttery smoothness.

Overall - Nice take on the style, though I'm not big on the style to begin with. Much like the Ninkasi Spring Reign I had last night, this does well as a spring seasonal release. Easy drinker. Downright sessionable. (766 characters)

Photo of dbrauneis
3.65/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a crystal clear medium orangish amber in color with some light to moderate amounts of visible carbonation along with some orange and copper highlights. The beer has a finger tall off-white head that slowly reduces to a medium to large patch of thin film and a thin ring at the edges of the glass. Light to moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Light to moderate aromas of toasted malts with earthy hops.

T: Upfront there a light to moderate flavors of toasted malts with light to moderate flavors of grassy and earthy hops. Light to moderate amounts of bitterness are present.

M: Light bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Fairly dry throughout.

O: A style that I do not come across very often but I do enjoy trying when I get the chance - a little dryer than I would have expected for the style but enjoyable and sessionable. (853 characters)

Photo of Murrhey
3.63/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass in high elevation Libby, Mont. Paired with a ham sandwich. Expectations are low. Reviewed live.

A- Two and a half finger foamy white head. Thick and fluffy. Decent retention. Peaked white lacing that clings high on the glass. Light brown with very high clarity. Looks like a typical California Common but with a nice head.

S- Light grains, the malts are subtle. Grassy. Hoppiness is slight, but rather inviting. Not a very pungent or complex smell at all.

T- Flavor is slightly hoppier than the nose lets on. Some toasted malts and floral, grassy hoppiness. Earthy and richer than the nose.

M- Smooth and well balanced. Wet with a moderately dry finish.

O- Above average. Cool and refreshing with a nice spring hop taste to it. (780 characters)

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Columbia Common from Widmer Brothers Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 48 ratings.