Best Of Beer Camp: California Common - Beer Camp #8 | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

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Best Of Beer Camp: California Common - Beer Camp #8Best Of Beer Camp: California Common - Beer Camp #8
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468 Ratings
Best Of Beer Camp: California Common - Beer Camp #8Best Of Beer Camp: California Common - Beer Camp #8

Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
California, United States

Style: California Common / Steam Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Brent on 05-11-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
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Ratings: 468 |  Reviews: 312
Photo of Vdubb86
3.61/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served in a Sam Adam's Perfect Pint Glass

Thanks to TMoney2591 for hooking me up with a style that is hard to get a variety of

This beer pours a nice clear copper color with a thin not very long lasting head to it. The smell has that sour mash aroma that smells of corn syrup, though apparently is typical of the yeast used in the not so lagering process. The flavor was interesting. Much cleaner on the palate than the aroma would lead you to believe. There was a slight pepper to it and faint nutmeg. There wasn't really any hops, just mostly malt and yeast flavoring. The mouthfeel was a bit abrasive on my tongue. Not something I prefer in something that supposed to be even semi-lagered. Overall this was a solid beer. It lived up to the style and was exactly what I expected. That having been said, it has yet to convince me that the style is worth any hoopla.

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Photo of alexgash
4.2/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle. 2011 on the label.

Clear clean golden body. Small, persistent, off-white head. Clean malt on the nose. Honey and cidery fruit. Light herb, grass, and pepper hops as well.

Toasted grain and light hop bitterness up front. Honey and apple sweetness mix with some malty grain and bread notes. Peppery, somewhat spicy hop flavors into the finish. Dryish finish, with lingering honey malt. Medium-bodied, with a prickly, thirst-quenching feel. Very nice!

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Photo of CMB2012
3.81/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle from Beer Camp Sampler. Served in an American pint glass.

A- Pours a very clean gold with slight amber hue in its center. I get a nice thick foam of two fingers, mostly white head, that dissipates slowly and leaves sticky lacing. All the while there are lots of tiny bubbles emanating from the bottom of the glass.

S- Pretty clean smelling- some graininess, a little smoke, grassy hops (not intense, but crisp and leaning towards the end). The more I investigate the more citrus I notice, orange and lemon zest.

T- The flavor is much more powerful. Citrus and grassy hops up front that meld into clean grain and biscuit notes, finishing slightly bitter and dry.

M- The mouth on this is surprisingly smooth and creamy. Perfect size bubbles for a great feel. Finish is mostly crisp and a little dry. Keeps you coming back for more.

O- This is a really tasty and refreshing brew. Great for warm days and full of flavor. I haven't had Anchor's Steam Beer in a while, but I would have to say this is right there with it from what I can remember. This would be a very nice spring/summer release if not a year round for SN.

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Photo of Hojaminbag
3.9/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A clear, light gold body has at least a finger of off-white head. Retention and lacing are both pretty good.

There is a lot of light bready malt in the aroma of this one, with a hint of fruity yeast behind it. The hops are pretty noticeable, with bitterness, lemon, and just a hint of a mineral flavor.

The flavor is more hop-forward than the aroma. Lots of grassy and earthy flavors, with just a hint of citrus. Lemongrass is noticeable from the hop profile also. The fruity from the yeast is actually pretty muted. The malt profile has a good mix of dry, cracker-like malt and sweeter, bready malt. The bitterness in the finish does have a touch of a mineral flavor it it. This is a nice tasting steam beer.

The bitterness is pretty prickly with a big, creamy type of carbonation.

Good effort. This is my first beer camp beer, and I have high hopes for the rest after trying this one.

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Photo of lnashsig
4.17/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into my DFH snifter- pours a transparent orange color, visible small carbonation bubbles. Smell- light fruits, maybe apricot? bready malt, sweet floral smell. Taste- sweet apricot up front, the carbonation makes the sweet flavor a bit dry, some sort of green apple, light fruit flavor on the end. Mouthfeel- I love the carbonation on this- it is perfect. Drinkablity- this is highly drinkable, if it wasnt 6.5%, it would be the perfect session beer.

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Photo of silentjay
3.76/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

crystal clear, yet glowing copper color with a nicely sized off-white head that lasts a while and leaves decent lacing.

pretty tame aroma with light malts and a slight hop presence.

hops hit the palate first and are actually a bit spicy, but malts are there in abundance and are crisp, sweet, and bready with a bit of buttery flavor as well. yeast is there too, providing some fruity esters in a very balanced brew.

rightfully light bodied with a nice carbonation level and a rather crisp finish.

overall, very good brew with everything balanced expertly. very nice.

 570 characters

Photo of Eriktheipaman
3.97/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very clear yellow with slight amber. White head that eventually fades.

The smell is of almost a spicy bread.

The taste is on par with the smell but more complex. At first lots of carbonation and a little bitterness. Followed by strong flavor of Coriander and a biscuit malt.

Damn fine beer. This variety pack is completely full of gold!

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Photo of Scotchboy
3.82/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle to Perfect Pint.

A: Pours a very nice clear yellow/straw, with an eggshell colored head and tons of carbonation streaming off the bottom of the glass.

S: Very nice light, crisp, clean lager smell; there is delicate sweetness, maybe some honey, and a nice moist bread-y character. Great floral presence on the nose.

T: Also nice, light and refreshing. This beer goes down smooth and easy. There is a tiny tingle on your tongue from maybe the faintest of hop presence, but for the most part this beer is crisp lager. Again, a slight sweetness, maybe some faint honey and hints of apple and grass. The malt really balances it out well.

MF: Tons of carbonation, crisp and clean.

O: A perfect summer beer, lighter even than a heff or wheat beer, with nice floral component and a great malt backbone. Completely light and refreshing.

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Photo of MrOH
3.71/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Deep gold with a massive, tight, white head.

Grainy malt, touches of caramel, corn, roast grain as color adjustment? Floral hops as an even background to the malt aromas, I know it sounds backwards.

Very floral taste. To the point of drinking rosewater with lavender buds steeped in it. But kinda under control, nice malt backbone without being really noticed. Light on bittering. I'm almost certain they used some corn in this.

Medium-light bodied, good carb, doesn't really hang around too much.

Definitely not what I expected (an Anchor Steam clone with SN-style hops). Good though. Not something I'd especially want to repeat again.

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Photo of Jmamay22
4.19/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a honey shaded amber with a foamy ecru head that settles down to a thin collar. The beer smells slightly fruity of apricot and grapefruit. This is a complex hay background that is difficult to pick apart making each sniff enjoyable and fresh.

Tastes fairly hop forward with a piney grapefruit that finishes dry. A very clean crisp beer that becomes almost too easy to drink. The carbonation is moderate with a medium body. Another winning beer from Sierra Nevada.

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Photo of ProfessorHomer
3.81/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear golden color. Attractively so. Creamy head with nice life, decent lace retention. Smells clean, fresh, lager-like. Tastes clean & fresh, with hoppy notes at end. Some malt notes. Has something for everyone – a people’s beer. Very much like Anchor Steam but with more hops. Overall, a nice representation of the American Steam Beer style, further Americanized with additional hops. Sessionable.

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Photo of JizackFH
4.38/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - This beer pours a very clear golden copper color. It has a big fluffy 2-finger white head on it. The head has good retention, and leaves some nice sticky lacing on the glass.

S - It smells of nice bready malts, and a bit of some earthy hop character. There is also some scents of grain and some floral notes.

T - This starts of with a nice bready malt backbone. There is a sweet yeast flavor, and a great hop character that slowly intensifies. It has a great complex malt flavor, that works perfect with the hops. I am also getting some earthy bitterness. The finish has some lingering earthiness and hop bitterness.

M - This has a medium body and good carbonation. It has a very smooth creamy feel to it. There is some lingering hoppy bitterness. This is a very nice feel for the style.

O - This has good drinkability. It goes down super easy, and the flavor is great. Truthfully, I did not expect much from this beer, but boy was I wrong. Every aspect of this beer is wonderful, I will definitely be picking up more of this. Look out Anchor Brewing, theres a new california common in town.

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Photo of Dan3279
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is the second beer I had out of the Summer Camp mix, and it was a great selection for the 12 pack. I poured the 12oz bottle into a pint glass to find a clear, golden body with a light head that left little lacing. The aroma was on the mild side, dominated by the malts and a few hints of sweetness. The taste was good, malt heavy with some hints of hops and bitterness in the middle that mellowed out nicely. The drinkability was good, it was an easy to drink beer that was crisp with a bit of carbination. This is only the second steam beer that I have had and I enjoyed it.

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Photo of TenHornsProud
4.21/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a golden copper, completely clear with a white head that laces nicely.

Smells of bready malt with some fruit hop character. Not amazingly aromatic.

Tastes like bready malt ala ESB with sweet yeast flavor that perfectly compliments the malt and hops, which linger in the fine finish.

Full mouthfeel with medium to lower carbonation that works well with the flavors.

Wow, this is a damned fine beer that really rocks the bready malts but is complex because of the yeast and hop combination which blends into a unique taste. These BC beers should be in regular SN rotation.

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Photo of aerozeppl
3.96/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Clear golden color. A finger of off white head with some lacing. Tons of visible carbonation and I poured this into a standard pint glass.

S: The nose is fairly neutral with quite a bit of breadiness. Very clean.

T: The taste is hands down the best steam beer I have ever had. Tons of malt complexity with just a nice hint of the hops. A modern take on the style while sticking to it's roots.

M: Well carbonated. Medium bodied.

D: Best example of the style I have ever had. Really well done overall. This would make a great seasonal.

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Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4.35/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle served in a glass beer mug.

L - clear brass color with a off-white head that left some thick lacing on the top of the mug despite it's thinning out.

S - sweeter malt aroma with a hint of pungent hops.

T - good all around balance of sweet and bitter flavors dancing on my tongue.

F - medium bodied with a smooth, refreshing feel.

O - a very good beer.

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Photo of TylerPrichard
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured this one out of the bottle into a Guinness Pint Glass.

A little darker than I had anticipated, leaning towards the orange golden side and less on the amber side. Good color and pretty good head with a ton of bubbles shooting up from the bottom the whole time I was enjoying it. Not much lacing and the head died after a minute or so.

The nose isn't overpowering but has a nice floral hop aroma and some maltiness on the back end.

The taste is awesome with a good hoppy punch when it first hits your tongue. Reminiscent of a solid pale ale. As it moves through your mouth it has a pretty smooth texture despite the carbonation and a good bit of malt in the mid palette. This beer ends with a bit of bitterness which you would expect from the hops your getting in the nose and on the tip of your tongue. The higher ABV is showing in this beer though as you feel a bit of alcohol hanging around after you've swallowed.

Another great beer from Sierra Nevada.

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Photo of Brent
4.1/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Included in the 2011 Beer Camp mix pack. Anchor Steam was one of the first micros available to me years ago, so the California Common style holds some nostalgia. Sierra Nevada hit the ball out of the park with this, eclipsing the Anchor standard. Surprisingly well hopped, with a depth of flavor of an ale, but the body and drinkability of a lager. No grain notes at all, which was both pleasing and surprising. ABV is a touch higher than I would have expected, but I'll take the label's word for it. I'd like to see this become a regular seasonal.

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Best Of Beer Camp: California Common - Beer Camp #8 from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.77 out of 5 with 468 ratings
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