Virginia Common
Ardent Craft Ales

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Ardent Craft Ales
Virginia, United States
California Common / Steam Beer
3.78 | pDev: 9.52%
Oct 19, 2021
Jun 19, 2014
A sessionable ale-lager hybrid that will satisfy almost any beer drinker.
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Photo of stevoj
Reviewed by stevoj from Idaho

3.53/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5
Taster at Ardent. Light amber pour, patchy head. Aroma and taste are toasty malts, sweet. Pretty full bodied, right on target for this "uncommon" style
Oct 19, 2021
Rated: 3.98 by Boone757 from Virginia

Sep 11, 2021
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Reviewed by TemptNBag from Virginia

4.41/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5
Fantastic beer. Pours a rich dark amber. The mouthfeel is both rich and effervescent at the same time. The taste is subtly bold, with notes of sugared vanilla and very mild browned butter and a . This is authentically a fall beer---its greatest effect will be felt on crisp, brisk evenings of October and November. But it's complex enough to be enjoyed any time of the year.
Aug 18, 2021
Rated: 3.75 by BEER88 from North Carolina

May 09, 2018
Rated: 4 by avisong from Virginia

Oct 23, 2016
Rated: 4.25 by MaddDogg84 from Texas

Aug 14, 2016
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Reviewed by danmouer from Virginia

4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
Ardent Craft Ales is one of the top craft brewers out of a large crop of craft brewers currently brewing in and around the city of Richmond, Va. I had not previously tried the Virginia Common, which, as one might expect, is brewed as an example of the California Common style created or resurrected by Fritz Maytag as Anchor Steam Beer. This review is based on a growler fill from a local locavore gourmet shop in Richmond. I was told the keg had just been tapped, so the beer is presumeably fresh. Likewise, I tapped my growler just after a couple hours of fridge time.

The beer pours a beautiful crystal-clear orange-amber, shooting up a lively but short-lived head. The aroma is minimal and perhaps a touch oxidized. I really searched for some aroma, even towards the bottom of my first glass, with a bit of warming and swirling, but it's just mostly MIA.

The flavor makes up for it. Nice hints of sweet caramel malt--perhaps more than I would ask for if judging by BJCP standards strictly. Nice bit of toasty warmth. A sane touch of alcohol, all very beautifully balancing the woody, rustic hop bitterness and flavor I associate with Northern Brewer hops. Not a hint (thank the Beer Goddesses) of tangerines or grapefruit here. Just earth and wood and a pleasant bitterness.

The mouthfeel seems just right to me, if perhaps a touch under-carbonated: a quality I suspect is due to a fairly hard draw from the keg to my growler, and my own splashy pour to see just what sort of head I could pull out of this brew. Basically, though, the mouthfeel is excellent. Like the flavor, very nicely balanced. Hard-core craft-beer hopheads might find it disconcertingly malty and fruity (doesn't seem like Chico yeast was used here, for which I am grateful), but as ale fermentations go, this is very restrained, very tame, very clean.

Overall, an excellent beer, reasonably true to a classic style.
Aug 09, 2016
Rated: 4 by squack from Virginia

Jan 10, 2016
Rated: 3.5 by Cobratrooper from Virginia

Oct 08, 2015
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Rated by vabeerguy from Virginia

3.88/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Poured from a growler fill. Dark orange color. Mild hop flavor. Overall a good beer.
Sep 21, 2015
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Reviewed by clayrock81 from Florida

3.85/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75
Poured a copper body with little head and lace and has some sweet malts in a dry, earthy hop aroma. Balance is kept in this clean beer that has a touch of maltiness to back up a dry, clean body. Pretty simple yet effective and easy drinking beer.
Sep 05, 2015
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Rated by johnnyd10vt from Oklahoma

3.38/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75
Very dark golden hue. Amazingly complex flavor: I taste apricots in the start and hazelnut in the finish. Really neat, unique ale-lager cross-over.
Aug 15, 2015
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Reviewed by McBraniel from Virginia

4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Pint poured into a stemmed glass. Dark orange color, and nice bitterness with a good malty backing. Reminds me of a good pale ale, and I think this will become a go-to when I'm at Ardent.
Aug 07, 2015
Rated: 3.81 by Links41 from Virginia

Jun 18, 2015
Rated: 3.75 by timothybarney from Virginia

May 27, 2015
Rated: 3.9 by ncaudle from Virginia

Mar 23, 2015
Rated: 3.53 by Sludgeman from District of Columbia

Mar 08, 2015
Rated: 3.57 by Drknight from Virginia

Mar 02, 2015
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Rated by BigJdizzle from Virginia

3.91/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Had on draft. Very easily drinkable beer. Great mouth feel.
Feb 05, 2015
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Rated by VeganUndead from Virginia

3.28/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25
Not my style, a decent offering of the a for mentioned.
Dec 30, 2014
Virginia Common from Ardent Craft Ales
Beer rating: 86 out of 100 with 27 ratings