California Common

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California Common, also known under the trademarked name Steam Beer (a trademark of Anchor Brewing Company), is an American style lager using a special strain of lager yeast fermented at warm temperature. California Common beers have a hoppy flavor and clean finish.


California Common beer originated in the late 1800's in California where lager beer was fermented in shallow fermenters under poor refrigeration. Over time the lager yeast strains were developed that could handle the higher temperatures and produced a unique style of beer now called California Common.


Medium body, moderately malty. Clean lager flavor, but character of an ale. Dry, with a hint of toasted/caramel flavor. Med amber to light copper color. Low fruitiness, ester and diacytl. Clean. A mixed style, highly hopped with Northern Brewers hops, fermented with lager yeast at ale temperatures and then lagered cold.


  • Color Range: 10.0-14.0 SRM
  • Original Gravity Range: 1.048-1.054 SG
  • Final Gravity Range: 1.011-1.014 SG
  • Bitterness Range: 30.0-45.0 IBU
  • Alcohol by Volume Range: 4.5-5.5 %
  • Carbonation Range: 2.4-2.8 vols
  • BJCP Category Number: 7B


  • Pale and small amounts of toasted or medium crystal malts
  • Northern brewer or other high alpha American hops
  • Lager yeast fermented at ale temperatures (55-60F)
  • Low sulfate water with moderate carbonates


  • Anchor Steam Beer, Southampton West Coast Steam Beer, Old Dominion Victory Amber, Flying Dog Old Scratch Amber Ale

See Also

External Links