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Flemish Kiss | The Commons Brewery

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Flemish KissFlemish Kiss

Brewed by:
The Commons Brewery
Oregon, United States

Style: American Wild Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Right out of primary fermentation this beer is decidedly an American Pale Ale, but as it enters secondary, a bridge to Belgium is built with a dose of Brettanomyces Bruxellensis. A 5 week maturation results in slightly dry, fruity beer with a hint of floral Brett character that will evolve over time.

Added by chumba526 on 03-19-2011

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Reviews: 34 | Ratings: 192
Photo of barleywinefiend
2.7/5  rDev -32.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

A: Poured a light amberish color with big carbonation yileding a bit white fomay cap.

S: Dried fruits in the way of cherries and some apples. Plenty of hay and barnyard funk going on with some spice. However, I do pickup some plastic on this...

T: A nice stinging booze bite upfront with some yeast, spice, fruits and funk. Then some plastic appears, not good. The finish is dry, lingering hay and funk with more plastic in the background

M: Light-medium bodied, well carbonated, perhaps a tad bit to high. Effervescent.

O: I may have scored a tainted bottle.

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Photo of mactrail
3.41/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Murky lighter shade of amber in the tall glass. Big foam up on first couple of pours, but it is not so bad after blowing off the head. This one should probably be stored in the refrigerator for a while to get the yeast to settle down.

Flavors are tart, tangy, and cidery. Very fruity and weird with plenty of the "meaty" flavor that goes along with the Brett yeastiness. Apricot nectar with a little vinegar. But complex and full of crazy flavors. It's just a lot of damned yeast. I am liking the plain Brett brews, but not so sure about this multi-yeast concoction.

From the 750 bottle purchased at Bottleworks in the Wallingford neighborhood of Seattle.

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Photo of vkv822
3.45/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml : tulip snifter

Pours a lightly hazy golden-orange with a thick, foamy, craggy off white head.

Light Brett tartness blends nicely into faintly sweet, fruity and floral hops.

Floral notes transition into lightly tart Brett notes. Decent malty backing.

Medium body, with active, foamy carbonation.

An enjoyable Belgian-inspired take on a pale ale. The brett added a nice tartness without becoming downright sour.

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Photo of zhanson88
3.58/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Big thanks to Rbald42 for picking this bottle up for me.

Appearance: Pours a hazy golden color with about an inch of white head. Very good head retention, and decent lacing. Nice warm color on this beer and nice head characteristics.

Smell: A bit of malt peeks out, but overall the smell is dominated by brett funk. Perhaps a bit of tartness in there, but mainly funk, horse blanket, with some grassiness and florals thrown in there as well.

Taste: Nice malt backbone initially injects a bit of sweetness, followed by grassiness, funk, and light tartness. Extremely dry on the finish.

Mouthfeel/Overall: Mouthfeel is light with medium-high carbonation. As I mentioned before, very dry on the finish. Overall, pretty nice beer. Nothing mind blowing by any stretch but a good, easy drinking beer that I would even consider sessionable at 5.7%, as it probably does not even drink that big. Worth a shot for sure.

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Photo of kevanb
3.6/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle poured into a The Commons Brewery tulip.

This bottle had a slight gush to it, but nothing major, however upon pouring into the glass, a massive head filled nearly the entire glass. Once settled, the beer is a lightly hazy straw color, hues of gold and orange with a billowy, fluffy white head, that is easily 3 fingers high that has moderate retention and leaves almost no lace behind. The aroma is of light bretty funk, pale cereal grain, modest fruity yeast with a bit of clove. It's simple, very simple, but welcoming. The flavors are right in line, yeasty fruit and clove hit straight away, bretty funk brings out some berry flavors before pale cereal grain takes over the finish, a little musty and skuzzy, but not unpleasant. The body is lively, a bit over carbonated, coats the mouth moderately well, but it's a bit abrasive and prickly, even at the finish.

Verdict: Decent at best from The Commons, but not an unpleasant beer to drink. I found it improved in complexity and drinkability when it warmed up a bit, but still settled in mediocrity.

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Photo of tectactoe
3.62/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Mike for bringing this one by. It's hard to not get excited about nearly *any* beer from Oregon nowadays. Orange-y and amber-y body without any real distinction between the two colors at any given moment. Middle of the road haziness, topped off with a stark white, creamy foam that reduces swiftly into a thin cover across the brew. It fizzles and cracks violently during its atrophy.

Cherry poppin' daddys on the nose; buckle up and get them Chelan skins, baby. Just as big as the cherry presence is the Brett. The brewer must've dropped a big bucket of brettanomyces in the fermenter on this one (I kid, I kid). Lots of funky, pineapple-y aromas from the Brett with the introduction of woodsy oak somewhere in the back.

A spice is present, too, and gets a little more relevant upon warming, though I can't exactly put my finger on it. I'm gonna say cinnamon. It smells a little like cinnamon. Kind of spicy, warming. A little tannic, too, but not off the charts. Mostly just sour cherry skins and a Brett-coated oak barrel. Lots of stuff going on here - take it slow so you don't miss out.

Somewhere along the line, something gets a little lost in translation, as the flavor is quite a bit different from the aroma. It's not nearly as sour as it smells, which I'm typically okay with, but there's also a huge bourbon and boozy oak presence on the palate that I can already tell is going to eventually impede the drinkability of this beer down the road.

Oak, bourbon, funky, sweaty, yeasty Brett on the dark side with peach, cherry skins, and mild acidity on the brighter side. That bourbon, though, whew! It reigns supreme over just about all flavors, which is surprising for a beer like this. Just doesn't mesh so well, you know? I don't mind a little booze, but it's just a tad too much at this time, and too dominant in the finish. Thin body; sharp biting mouth feel and lots of carbonation.

This had the potential to be something excellent, or at least great, just from the aroma. The taste unfortunately falls short in refinement and comes off a little amateur-ish with the unnecessarily heavy amount of present bourbon. Tone that down a bit and amp up the sour levels to match the funk, and you've got yourself a damn good beer. This is just decent.

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Photo of Murrhey
3.66/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 750ml standard pressure-cap bottle into a tulip glass in high elevation Libby, Mont. No best-by date. Reviewed live.

A- Two-finger white head with heavy carbonation and big bubbles. Some sticky white lacing. Amber color with thick particulate. Very hazy. Fine looking beer. The head lasts for quite some time which is nice.

S- Apples, wheat, strong brett notes and fermented Belgian yeasts. Spicy, sour and floral. Not too aggressive, but definitely the presence of brett.

T- A Belgian pale. The proper balance with malts and yeasts but just kissed (I guess there's a lot in a name) with the brett. Not sour, but characteristics of the live culture are present. Nice flavor, nothing earth shattering though.

M- Medium bodied, active carbonation and a semi-dry finish.

O- Decent brew. I've had better from The Commons, and better of this style, but it works. I like the brett notes balanced with the spicy yeast.

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Photo of Sarlacc83
3.69/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at the Commons.

A: Reddened copper with a minimal head. Expected a bit more out of this of the tap.

N: Cherry, brett, biscuit, raspberry, and dried cranberry. Excellent red fruit scents here.

T: Bit of a letdown after the nose. Straight forward biscuit and a drying yeast. Pine and earth are present from the hops. Very well balanced. There’s a slight lemon zest. Very bready. The brettanomyces are subdued at the moment.

M: Light on the tongue, though it can tend towards oiliness.

O: A very solid beer that’s quite quaffable and which ought to get better as the yeast prevails. I'll keep buying bottles, but I hope this returns to the quality of last year's batch which I was more impressed with drinking.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.7/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to AndrewK for sharing this one at his tasting.

Pours a clear orange with a foamy bone colored head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Foamy swaths of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, fruits, and Brett. Taste is much the same with the Brett being the dominant flavor. There is a mild bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer but it smells better than it tastes in my opinion.

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Photo of artoolemomo
3.71/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Appearance- Pours up practically no head and therefore has no retention. My guess is that the head is close to a pure cotton white while the body is a medium amber that glows pale when held up to the light. Slight amount of lacing.

Nose- Delightful. Lots of tartness- apple, cherry, some strawberry. A hint of straw but there's not much else in the area of funk. That might require a little more age. Swirling shows a more crisp, tart apple but not much else.

Taste- Starts off a lot less sour than the nose- for a minute, I though I might be drinking a sour and I was not in the mood for that. Fortunately, the funk shows up. Straw, mushrooms, stinky cheeses, notes of barnyard that move into a seemingly coffee note. It's not really coffee (as it does not have that linger) but it is quite similar. Very dry finish. Almost every note of the flavor profile is erased except for a bit of straw and grass. Slight fruit and tartness of the nose starts to show with cherry, orange and some apple. The funk is more subtle than my first taste and the faux coffee hides in the background with some light oak. This is a good beer but I would like to see it with more age. It seems to lack some presence (which I feel might develop with age) but it has excellent integration and balance. Some spice notes on the linger- mostly cinnamon. Good beer, almost solid but you have to consider its well established competition. If the faux coffee taste comes from the yeast, it is the most interesting and unexpected yeast flavor I've encountered.

Mouthfeel- Light to the point of being a little watery. Definitely could use more carbonation. This is the biggest failing in this beer.

Drinkability- Pretty easygoing and interesting enough for the palate. It ain't cheap though. 10 bucks a bottle is almost prohibitive.

Overall- A good beer, a little less than solid. Definitely worth a try and if I weren't always moving on to the next thing, I would probably invest in a bottle for aging. But tickers gotta tick.

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Photo of flagmantho
3.79/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from 750mL bottle into a tulip.

Appearance: medium golden hue with a light haze and a light effervescence. Head is two fingers of fluffy ivory foam with good retention. I like it.

Smell: lightly fruity malt aroma with pear character and a little breadiness. There's also a little sourness and a little grassy funk from the Brett. It's a little muddled, but mostly quite good.

Taste: lightly sour with a bready malt flavor and less fruitiness than the aroma. It's not bad, but it's a little low on character for this style of beer.

Mouthfeel: pretty light body but with a huge, well-integrated carbonation yielding a large, though evanescent, creaminess. Good stuff.

Overall: this is an interesting Brett beer, but it doesn't really go to the next level for me. An interesting wild ale, but not outstanding.

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Photo of BuzzLitebier
3.8/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Picked this up on a recent trip to Portland.
Poured it into my Heady Goblet
A: it had a lot of yeast on the top of the foamy white head, which settled into very nice lacing. The beer was unfiltered with a cloudy honey color.
S: Very characteristic of a sour with just a hint of vanilla oak, really nice
T: This was a pretty complex beer with oak and a sour finish. As I continued to sip this, the oak actually overpowered the taste, which was a bit of a bummer, but still pretty good.
M: Med-Light body with nice carbonation.
Would I have it again? Definitely worth a try, and I would have it again, but it wouldn't be my go to for sours. Of course, I can't get it here in MD, so...

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Photo of JohnGalt1
3.85/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a beautiful Riedel white wine glass.. slightly hazed orangish red... off white head... good retention...

The nose is surprising... good malt profile with a nice bite of fruity brett brux.. a hint of sweet cherries and sweet acetic notes...

Flavor begins as a nice malty pale ale.. good balance between light funk and mildly sweet malt vinegar... cherry essence.. finishes surprisingly dry.... really digging this one... I had easy 4 good pours... finishes a bit dry and certainly fruity..

This brew will bridge the gap between nerds and "light" beer folks.


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Photo of HuskyinPDX
3.9/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a bottle in Portland and opened it on 6.12.12

A - Pours a opaque dark orange with a large light tan head with very good retention.

S - Bret, some Belgian spices, and apples?

T - Subtle spices and funk. Pretty muted, but tastey.

D - Great carbonation and a light body.

O - Light pale with some Bret funk and spices.

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Photo of ccrida
3.92/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On draught at Bailey's, Flemish Kiss is a dull and murky caramel brown. The small off-white head leaves scattered lace.

Smell is pretty brewtty, this one has a fair amount of the fruity pineapple esters.

Taste is pretty snappy, again, it's really about the brett here. I suppose there is some herbal bitterness to the hops, but I'm not getting anything from a flavor perspective. The maltiness, which is greater then most belgian blondes, adds a nice layer.

Mouthfeel is dry, but a bit heavier then I prefer in the style. Indicative of their hybrid approach I suppose. Nice amount of fine carbonation.

Drinkability is pretty good, it washed down a Santeria buritto muy mueno. I prefer a cleaner malt base though for bretty blondes.

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Photo of Rutager
3.98/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance. Pours gold-orange with a very light haze and almost three fingers of billowy off-white head.

Smell. Light fruits and some cherry, some funky brett and a bit of wood and cloves.

Taste. Dry brett with a little bit of light grains, spicy saison yeast and light fruits. Quite dry overall, just a little bitterness in the finish.

Mouthfeel. Medium body, medium-strong carbonation.

Overall. A nice dry saison with plenty of brett. I thought this was a saison anyways until looking up at the catagory. Okay, well it's a very saison-like pale ale ...hmmm. Good stuff, whatever you want to label it.

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Photo of DefenCorps
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from Whole Foods in Tanasbourne. Thanks for the recommendation, Mike!

Pouring a nice, clear, golden copper with a dense, off-white head with excellent retention and nice lacing, this is a good-looking beer. The nose is all Brett. very spicy, almost saison-like, with pepper, clove, fresh-cut herbs (grass, a little lavender), honey, mineral, some oak-like tannins, a little vanilla... this is pretty complex while remaining light. It does have some bandaid esters that I'm typically not a huge fan of, but with the freshness and vibrancy of the rest of the beer, it works. Dried sour cherries are also present. Very nice.

The palate is a delightful blend of all the nose has to offer with a dash of acidity tying it all together. The acidity is clove-heavy with a touch of plastic, but again, it works with the combination of dried fruit, honey and fresh cut grass, it is very refreshing. A mild toasted malt sweetness is present. The mineral character does keep things bright and snappy as well. Drying and almost a little tannic on the finish (husky, grainy tannins), there's a blend of lingering spice and Brett B flavors on the finish. Light in body and highly carbonated, this beer is very enjoyable. Recommended.

Adding the yeast does muddy up the palate a little bit, so I'd actually look for this on tap for a different experience

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4.03/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a cloudy dirty beige color ale with a large foamy head with good retention and some good lacing. Aroma of tart notes with solid dry Belgian style malt backbone and light dry hops notes are also noticeable. Taste is a complex mix of tart and funky yeasty notes with solid bready malt backbone with a long finale. Body is full with good carbonation. Easy drinking with quite a bit of complexity. Balance is also pretty good with not much acidity.

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Photo of draheim
4.08/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

750mL into a tulip. Pours a crystal clear beautiful honey amber color w/ a big monster Brett head that leaves behind some very nice clumps of 3-dimensional lace. Looks great.

Aroma is nicely tart, funky, earthy. I like it.

Taste follows nose. Slightly grainy pale malt, a nice tart funk from the Brett yeast, a touch of sweet candi sugar and tropical juicy orange, with a slightly bitter aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is slightly prickly from the carbonation, light and crisp. Semi-dry finish.

Overall a very enjoyable Belgian pale, vaguely reminiscent of Orval but perhaps not as complex.

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Photo of rudzud
4.08/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to JLindros for sharing.

A - Poured into a Kate the Great tulip a nice crystal clear copper hue with a fat two finger white head that fades to leave thin wisps.

S - Aromas of light grassy hops, nice funk almost creamy lactic lemon acid. Very nice brett brux.

T - Taste is similar to the nose, very nice funk, I'm missing the lactic lemon creaminess too. There is very good light brux too.

M - Mouthfeel is nicely carbonated, fluffy, clean.

O - Overall this was a solid beer with a nice almost berry funk, really good barnyard funk.

Serving Type: bottle

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Photo of Gobzilla
4.1/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured amber brown in color with orangish highlights and a thin head that left a little bubbly lacing sticking to the glass. Definitely plenty of brett funk upfront in the nose with signs of cherry fruit, hints of vinegar, wood oak and slight brown sugar notes. The brett funk character dominates the palate with a variety of grainy notes alongside mild citrus, hints of hops citrus zest twang and oaky accents. The brew was medium in body with a good amount of carbonation which had an oaky, bretty, funky, slightly fruity, mild vinegar and tart finish. I thought it was a solid brew and def was interesting for a funky pale ale.

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Photo of jlindros
4.15/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Picked up at the brewery when I was there, shared with rudzud

Pours a huge fluffy creamy 1.5 finger head that fades at a need pace with messy lacing, crystal clear copper orange color.

Nose brings big tart Brett funk, tart berry farmhouse funk, raspberry almost, acidic funk little creamy malt thing.

Taste brings Brett funk out front, little farmhouse Brett, but a lot of sour fruity funk, berry like funk, creamy lacto like creamy mild acidic funk, little flemmy finish, mild acidity lingering, little funk mostly sour acidic fruit vinegar notes.

Mouth is med bod, nice fluffy carb, little flemmy finish mild acidity.

Overall not bad, fun Brett, fruity fair funk and tartness, good beer.

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Photo of jpmccann
4.2/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Its a decent beer. After getting a whiff of vinegar & tartness, the taste falls a bit short. I love the smell, but the taste doesn't stand up to what I was expecting from the small. Its a beautiful dark orange color.

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Photo of bylerteck
4.3/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from Fonduevoodoo in CanBIF Spring 2014.

A - Gusher to start. In the glass it's a nice cloudy burnt orange colour. Two fingers of thick white head on top with strong carbonation. Great lace wall and a half finger of retention.

S - Peach, funk, vinegar, hay. Quite a lovely and complex aroma.

T - Fruity, yeasty and tart, but the tartness is restrained, yet not in a bad way. Tart, hay, dusty, fruity, less acidic than the aroma. This is pretty nice stuff because it walks the line between funky, yeasty, and fruity. The Brett profile is subtle, but present and very complimentary to the profile of the Belgian Pale.

M - Strong carbonation, medium creamy body and a dry/Bretty finish.

O/D - This was much better than I was expecting. Pleasantly tart, yet not overpoweringly so. This does a good job of playing all angles and not doing any of them too aggressively to make a nice, drinkable Belgian-style pale. Well done.

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Photo of Hopdaemon39
4.31/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Got at good beer in alphabet city- pours a hazy orange color with lots of frothy white head, modest retention and little lacing. Looks beautiful and really is quite active.

Smells a lot like Brett- awesome!

Tastes very nice- graininess up front followed immediately by the Brett funk which then turns into a slight tartness with a little green apple flavor. Lovely.

Mouthfeel is prickly and light bodied. I really like this beer- I'm going back to get another one tomorrow to age for a while to bring out the funk. If you like Brett seek this one out!

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Flemish Kiss from The Commons Brewery
3.99 out of 5 based on 192 ratings.
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