Devil Dog Imperial IPA - Laughing Dog Brewing

Not Rated.
Devil Dog Imperial IPADevil Dog Imperial IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

222 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 222
Reviews: 121
rAvg: 3.8
pDev: 11.84%
Wants: 15
Gots: 10 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Laughing Dog Brewing visit their website
Idaho, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: johnbonham1980 on 03-18-2007

The Devil Dog will chew you up and leave you whimpering for more.

At 98 IBU’s and 5.6 pounds of hops to the barrel it is an all out assault on the senses. Devil Dog Started as a labor of love but quickly took on a life of its own, leaving us drooling like Pavlov’s dogs at the mere mention of its name. Triple dry hopped and at 10% ABV, more than one of these bad boys will cause you to howl at passing strangers and chew up your toys, or anything else you can get your sharp little teeth on.

98 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 222 | Reviews: 121
Reviews by bismarksays:
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A friend of mine shared a few left coast DIPA's with me last night this being one of them.Poured a clear copper/light amber with a thinner but well sustained sticky white head,different sort of hop aromas than what you usually find,mango and peach aromas stick out most with a bit of citric quality and a fading pine note with a bit of sweet alcohol thrown in.The hop flavors dont blow you away but are there in force thruought the whole beer,again the flavors are more of a mango and peach variety with a bit of herb,a hefty caramel base holds on till the end with the alcohol providing some sweetness as well.Just a solid DIPA in my book with a different hop profile than most.

Photo of tigg924
3.4/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: minimal head, clear, amber in color

Smell: citrus hops, pine hops, and caramel malt

Taste: citrus hops, pine hops, and caramel malt

Mouthfeel: medium/light bodied, low carbonation, sweetish start with a strong bitter middle and a less bitter end

Drinkability: This one is a sipper if not for the super bitter middle. I could have a couple of these, but the high abv hits hard. I like the pine flavor. An above average dipa.

Photo of badbeer
3.48/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from after4ever, thanks! Copper color with a white head that left a little bit of lacing. This is one of the maltier IIPA's I've had. A lot of sweet malt in the aroma, but thankfully there still is some dank, resinous hops showing up in there too. Taste is the same thing, plenty of sweet caramel which is battling citrusy hops for dominance. Full bodied with medium carbonation; sticks to the tongue quite a bit, a bit cloying. Decent beer.

Photo of jondeelee
4.33/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Devil Dog opens with a heavily sugary and citrusy nose, but with a surprisingly strong grain base that immediately speaks to a balanced and carefully crafted brew. Hops and sugars are still the most present aromas, however, mingling together in a lovely bittersweet blend of, from the former, pink grapefruit, grapefruit rind, dandelion stem, mint, anise, eucalyptus, rosewater, and lemon, and from the latter, huge rushes of orange, apricot, peach, nectarine, berry, cherry, and grape fruit esters, as well as brown sugars and thick, sticky caramel. The sheer volume and nuance of the hops and sugars is impressive, as is, despite the potency, the balance between the two, neither really overpowering the other. The rosewater, grapefruit, and sweet sugars particularly combine to create a candi sugar-like overtone, almost confectioner’s sugar-sweet in potency, but mixed with fruit esters to create a hard candy, Jolly Rancher aroma that, if it were actually made by Jolly Rancher, would probably revolutionize the industry. The grains also add Grape Nuts cereal, toast crust, and biscuit undertones, providing a sense of earthiness. As a whole, the nose is excellent, providing almost everything one could want in an Imperial IPA, and doing so in a classy manner that bespeaks a carefully vetted recipe and hours of careful labor.

On the tongue, the beer is far more hoppy and bitter than the nose let on, with dandelion stem, pine resin, grapefruit rind, mint, eucalyptus, pepper, and anise taking the lead to sear the tongue and soft palate, with bits of pink grapefruit and lemon oil adding touches of citrus. The sugars still bring loads of fruit esters, including orange oil, berry, cherry, and apricot, which combine with the citrusy notes to create a strange bubble gum-like overtone, which somewhat clashes with the heavy pine resins. Brown sugars and caramel add further sugary tones, balanced somewhat by toast crust, biscuit, and cereal grains. But it’s the hops that easily take the lead, the 98 IBUs biting in shark-like frenzy at the mouth, and flooding the tastebuds with bitter, citrusy, oily, piney resins. These also dominate the aftertaste, which lingers for a long time, utterly wrecking the palate for anything other than another sip of an equally hoppy brew. Mouthfeel is an oily medium to medium-strong, and carbonation is medium.

Overall, this is good beer, though fairly obviously not for the faint of heart. Anyone who’s not already a hophead will likely find this so bitter, resinous, and citrusy as to be somewhat unpalatable. Unfortunately, the sheer strength of the hops does largely overpower the other flavors, and the amount of strength the sugars lose from the nose to the tongue because of this is fairly large. Still, this is very much worth trying, as it’s difficult to imagine more hop flavor, and more varied and nuanced hop flavor at that, being shoved into a bottle. Just be aware that you’re not going to be able to taste pretty much anything else for a very long time after you’re finished.

Photo of pat61
4.46/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

L: Pours brilliant amber producing a rootbeer float quality stiff rocky cream colored foam cap that persists and grips the side of the glass.
S: malt aromas with some roast
T: The hops are big but so are the malt and the alcohol so the various elements achieve a détente. As the beer warms more fruit flavors come out – plum to peach and traces of melon and citrus.
F: Very creamy medium full body and medium carbonation.
O: Has a bitter tonic quality with barleywine levels of alcohol that evokes a mixed drink, and a very good one.

Photo of masikon
3.4/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Interesting beer, Very unique and probably doesn't really match the style. Taste is pretty much malt dominant in my view and is hard to describe as a DIPA. Style aside, it's very pleasant on the lips and has unusual fruit suggestions. I liked this beer, but as a DIPA it misses the mark...on it's own it's very nice.

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.97/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark yellow, aroma is hoppy, a little spice kick to it.

Taste, more hops, a little bit of heat (or is it the red tap handle?). Grapefruit, light tobacco feel to it. Different yeast vibe to it, like they did an 80/20 West Coast/Belgian IPA blend. Usual caramel and pale malt. Finished dry. Ample bitterness. Found it to have some neat nuances, a worthy beer from Laughing Dog.

Photo of biboergosum
4.33/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

When visiting this brewery back in September, I had been anticipating the opportunity to sample this extreme offering. When I got their tray of available beers, I was distressed to see that the place holder for the Devil Dog sat empty, no sample glass covering it. Aggggh. Suppressing my disappointment, I inquired as to why this was the case. The answer, of course, was that they were in the process of brewing a new batch, which wouldn't be ready for a few more weeks, but I might have luck in finding a bottle or two somewhere in town. Not feeling entirely hopeful, I went to their first suggestion - the local health food store. Now that makes sense - a high-alcohol concoction at a health food store. But, sure enough, there's beer - a surprising selection at that - at health food stores, at least in Sandpoint, Idaho. And lo and behold, there was a single bomber of Devil Dog still available at this store, whose name presently escapes me. The Dead Sea Scrolls this wasn't, but I still felt pretty euphoric with my 'find'.

So, 8 months later, on a holiday weekend celebrating the end of winter, I pull this bad boy out of its hibernation, and sample it alongside a Fish Tale 10 Squared Ale, for a comparative tasting of two of the big beers of the Pacific NW.

Into my souvenir Laughing Dog American pint glass, this beer pours a cloudy copper orange, with a smallish two-finger head that dissipates quickly, leaving a bit of lacing. The smell is of sweet caramel malts, with a slight pine hop essence. Check. The taste offers up much more of the pine and some citrus hops at the front, with substantial malt sweetness holding up the backbone. And does it ever - the body in this beer is freaking huge. A sip filling the whole mouth kind of huge. This beer activates and stomps on all of the taste buds in my mouth, and I keep coming back for more! The mild carbonation is lost in the war of attrition between the hops and malts, and the warming at the end is pretty timid, quite well hidden for the 10% ABV. This is one superbly crafted Imperial IPA.

As much as I like the weight of the body of this beer, I have to give it a lower drinkability score than the 10 Squared, which has a lighter body. Trade-offs are a bitch.

Photo of Sammy
3.7/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dark yellow with foamy head. This is a big hoppy melange with malt. The bitterness is lightly acidic and an untastable range of IBU 98, but it is a bitter mouthfeel. Yes its a very decent DIPA. 43rd or 44th state.Above average mouthfeel.Columbus, Northern Brewer, Ahtanum, Cascade

Photo of cjgator3
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle 

A- Pours a slightly hazy orangish amber color with an off-white head with good retention and lacing.

S- The aroma is sweet malt and some citrusy hops.

T- The taste like the aroma is sweet malt up front with a good amount of lingering bitterness from the citrusy hops. 

M- The mouthfeel is somewhere between light and medium bodied with a perfect amount of carbonation.

D- Overall, not a bad Imperial IPA. The alcohol is pretty well hidden making it pretty drinkable for a beer of this strength. Definitely worth a try.

Photo of johnbonham1980
4.12/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Drank this at The Front Door in Boise, ID. The guys over there are always hospitable. Great northwestern brew house and pizza place.

Probably the best IIPA I've had. This is a triple hopped Imperial India Pale Ale rated 98 IBU, with 5.2 lbs of hops/barrel. While its website states that it "is an all out assault on the senses", leading one to think that this brewery has drunk the Stone Brewing Kool Aid, it's really quite balanced and pleasant.

Poured from half nitro/half CO2 tap into snifter style glass, very dark amber, with a 2 finger white (if I remember correctly) head...

As the beer warms, hop character changes from piney, herbal, and floral to a pleasant mellow hop character, strongly reminiscient of marijuana. The malt has enough backbone to stand up to the hops, very biscuity and soothing.

Drinkability is great for a 10% beer, but this is one that's meant to be savored. Had this on St. Patty's Day with some corned beef and cabbage. The salty and sweet character of this dish went really well with the spicy, palate cleansing nature of this beer.

If you can find it in your area, try it. It's awesome.

Photo of Jazz1
4.38/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I really like this beer. I thought it was a bit pricey though. The head was incredibly creamy and thick but disappeared sooner on the second pour into a Sam Adams Perfect Pour glass. Believe it or not I'm getting a little chocolate flavor in the aftertaste which is something I didn't expect but like. It is hoppy that is for sure. Very tart. The label has flames behind the cute dog are telling because I'm getting good warmth in the belly on this one. If you like hoppy without a sweet aftertaste this one is for you. I'll be buying more.

Photo of russpowell
3.94/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up in Wichita last weekend...

Pours an effervescent amber with 1 finger+ of cream colored head. Head settles in to a nice creamy head 7 the lacing is fantastic

S: Huge breadyness, toffee & herbal hops showing up once warm

T: Follows the nose, plus herbal, piney & woody hops bitterness up front. Caramel, herbal & piney hops, slight apricot & tangerine fruittyness, plus dryness once warm. Finishes with grainy bitterness, caramel, dryness & pineyness; almost pulled a 4.5

MF: Chewy as all get out with nice creamy carbonation, also some nice juicyness to this. Fantastic balance

A well put together DIPA & easily one of my favorites from this brewery

Photo of Kegatron
4.08/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Pours a fairly clear amber with 2 big foamy fingers of off-white head. This retains with over a ½ finger of froth, just absolutely COATING the sides of the glass with rich sticky lacing. The aroma is very floral and spicy smelling, with some sweet citrus flavors coming through as does a thick backing of toasted grains.

The hop profile is very bold up front in the taste, with a big spicy bitterness and plenty of sticky resins. This is nicely balanced by a sweet (and surprisingly soft) mix of citrus and very grainy tasting toasted malts. Tons of dryness and spice just STICK to the palate after each sip. The mouthfeel is fuller bodied, with a good amount of underlying alcohol beef to the feel but this also possesses a softer creaminess to the carbonation that helps it go down relatively easy despite the strength of it.

With its aggressive hop character, grainy malt presence, and high alcohol content, this had me thinking American Barleywine at times but make not mistake that between it's well balanced hop bomb profile and deceptive drinkibility, this is very solid DIPA effort from Laughing Dog.

Photo of bjp2006
4.22/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

poured a darkish amber red with a smallish head, big hop nose and very hoppy but not overly bitter finish, carbonation was somewhat low on this beer but as big as it is that does not seem to hurt seems more like how a barley wine would be, as the beer warms up it becomes much more mellow and takes on a carmelly complex flavor. all in all i would say a very good 10% IIPA

Photo of BeerZack
4.31/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap @ Bailey's Taproom (Portland)
I've been wanting to try a fresher example of this brew since I was informed the bottle I previously rated was old, and I'm glad I found one.

Clear light amber or orange-copper color with minimal head that does a good job of lacing.

Smells teriffic. Very fruity and sweet smelling with light hints of caramalt and some alcohol. Red grapefruit and tropical fruits dominate, mango, pineapple, peach, hint of menthol - reminds me of strawberry mentos.

Sweet malt backbone and juicy hop flavors combine to do a pretty good job at hiding the 10%abv, but its not entirely successful. Not overly bitter for a DIPA.

Medium body with moderate carbonation. Great DIPA; glad I gave this one another try.

Photo of thagr81us
3.74/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Thanks to hopflop for this one! Served from bottle into a Duvel tulip. Poured a nice hazy dark copper with a small amount of sediment settling at the bottom with an off-white two-finger head that subsides to a one-finger after a bit. The lacing was excellent throughout. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, subtle hops, and small amount of alcohol. The flavor was of loads of sweet malt, alcohol, and a hoppy followthrough. It had a medium feel on the palate with medium carbonation. Overall this was a very flavorful brew. It had a nice balance of sweet of bitter to counteract the alcohol flavor so it wasn't overpowering. However it is not that drinkable though and you can definitely tell it is a heavy hitter.

Photo of bum732
3.65/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

S: Resiny hops, citrus, grapefruit mostly, slight skunk, floral notes, lavender in particular

L: Golden orange, nice creamy tan head with amazing lacing.

T: Wine and citrus hoppiness, semi-sweet malt. Fairly high earthy bitterness that lingers on the tongue. Very dry finish.

M: Solid medium mouthfeel, moderate carbonation.

An ok DIPA, more bitter than hoppy, pretty straitforward. A little too dry in the finish is my only complaint. Not bad.

Photo of brewbucker
2.12/5  rDev -44.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Alright. Lets give this one a try. I just drain poured a Dogzilla so lets see if the Devil Dog will bring me happier times. Doesn't look bad. Pours a medium copper with an average white head and nice lacing.

Now for the aroma.... Oh Oh!!! Light rancid sour and soap. Not as bad as the Dogzilla but still bad enough to put me off.

Next comes the flavor. Here goes. Ummm... Oh boy. More bad sour and oxidation. Once again. Not as bad as the Dogzilla but not at all good.

I'll be damned if I am going to drain pour two back to back bombers so I am going to tough this one out.

Photo of beerthulhu
3.54/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a clear, slightly dirty orange with a prominent 2 finger frothy shell white head that was very well lasing for several minutes (4-5) before settling to a creamy whipped layering. The lacing was spongey in nature leaving several concentric ring structures that clung nicely down the glass walls. Visible effervesce was faint and sporadic.

S: more of a citrusy fresh orange aroma then anything that resembled hopping. Seems all their imperial ipas Ive tasted seem to lack a good aroma or showing. Soft dried pine needles with a syrupy sweet caramel orange malting emerges giving this a more sugary then hoppy nose. Overall a weak display on the nose with a less then average strength starts this off like a whimpering (chiwawa) rather a wild dog.

T: Finally the hops show up late for the party but do show up. Starting off with dried orange peels the hops finally make their presence known with a bittering display of fresh wet hopping of pine needles and grapefruit that makes you pucker up. Peek-a-boos of sweet caramel periodically make a brief appearance throughout but it is the piney and wet leafy hops that really stand out here, something that was sorely missing from their alpha dog. A warming sensation of orange peels and alcohol gently laces the tongue upon the swallow. Overall a good showing of bitterness here, not much complexity per say but it is a imperial ipa. Sticky, sweet in the beginning with a good bitter finish makes this a good example per style.

M: was equally as good as the flavor, fairly thick and creamy, sticky and bitter with a lingering wet grapefruit hop fade. Carbonation was light with warming hop notes of pine and alcohol soon settling in.

D: Big hops with make this an honest sipper even for die hards of the style. Big wet hop leaves makes a bomber sufficient. Pass on the Alpha Dog and try this instead.

Photo of Docer
3.11/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Snagged a bottle...

- Dark caramel color... poured heavily... light head... quickly to a white creamy thin layer....

- Really sweet creamy caramel malt... some floral hops, and fruit. Much too big of a malt profile.... little bit of pine and bitterness.

- Strong creamy caramel malt... way too much sugar, brown sugar, malt... just sweet and thick. Certainly a lot of hops.. pine, bitterness.... floral...

- Chewy... and just too sweet.... sorry!

- Too sweet, and too thick.... not among even my middle 'drinkable' IPA's at all...

(10-06-2009) 4,3.5,2.5,3,2

New review:

Reviewing again... forgot that I had already tried this, and previously gave it a C grade. So I will edit, and see if it has changed over the last year or more.

- Pours a clear copper.. just like a new penny... minimal white head down to a light dusting and a healthy ring of foam.

- Smell is a rather powerful and sweet caramel malt with a touch of brown sugar and some bright citrus hops with a floral nectar as well. Not bad, but the smell isn't overly hoppy as the 7lbs. of hops would lead one to believe.

- A pretty crisp and sweet brew... huge caramel and brown sugar notes in the malt, and a rather nice bitterness that comes through ok. Pine, floral... and a citrus zing... but overall I still think the malt is overpowering... though it compliments the bitterness of the hops. I guess what I am saying, is that it lacks the other hop flavors one would expect from a IIPA.

- Medium to heavy bodied... sweet and syrupy.. a bit chewy and dry.

- Overall it is decent... but it's not a west coast IIPA which are my favorites. They can achieve the strength without being this sweet.

Photo of smakawhat
4.38/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass.

A great clear classic amber body, brown with a great red ruby edge hued shine to it. Head formation is very uniform and three fingers deep, coloring and off tan appearance an lots of sticky retention, clumping is just everywhere. Beer looks really inviting, it's looking really sexy.

Nose brings a real dry biscuit malt, with a soild hop presence. Incredilble amount of toasty aromas, I can feel the burnt crust bouncing around, taking a forward approach to the hop action which matches a dry crustiness as well. Sort of burnt dried out wood pine.

It's a bitter malt rush. Hop character is not defined, this is not citrusy, not even so much piney, floral or anything distinct. However it has an incredible toast malt body that puts most IPAs to shame it seems. Dense toast and snapping cracker finish with a nice tolerable hop indistinct bitterness. Texture is just hitting the right notes of thickness without being boozy or syrupy sweet. Lingering finish that goes on and on.

I am very impressed with this one but it's not a hop heads beer blast. I don't care it's so nicely balanced and wonderful without any indication of 10 ABV heat booze. Great job!

Photo of JohnGalt1
4.24/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz purchased at the Boise Coop, very much enjoyed out of my standard big red wine glass. Listening to the end of Global House Culture #3.

First of all, I will state I love the taste and aroma of this brew .... that being said, a solid 1/5 of the many I've tried were very low carbonated if not dead flat .... this one has nice carbonation, so I decided to review it.

Good pour with 1 inch eggshell head that sticks to the side of the glass ... with a big piney nose as soon as the beer hits the glass .... I am gonna like this one. Deep amber/reddish orange... maybe not the right color for a DIPA, but no complaints here... still a very nice color.

Smell is awesome ... no let down at all. Big malts and much bigger American hops. Grapefruit, misc. citrus, and pine coupled perfectly with stick to your nose-hair sweetness.

Taste is a lingering mash-up of balance. Thick without overpowering flavors. Striking bitterness gives way to viscous malts with a loooong lingering hop flavor. toasted malts are in there... mmmm! Big and balanced.

I love this beer. Some of the bottles are a let-down, but I've had too many to count ... and even the flat ones are great. If you get a chance to try it on tap, give it your full attention; the drinkablity is out of this world, and that may leave you in the dirt.

Photo of TheMaharaja
4.49/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

If you appreciate imperial IPAs this is one of the best. Great balance for the strength

Photo of franksnbeans
3.78/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours out a lively caramel color with a finger of tan head that dies quick to a ring. Spotty lacing. Smells of sweet malt, caramel and iced tea. Taste is big malty and tea like. Hops are missing for me. Finish is bittering but not hoppy. Full in the mouth. Takes some sipping. Falls very short for a DIPA. If I drink something with IPA in the name, I want some damn hops. I suspect this isnt even close to fresh.

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Devil Dog Imperial IPA from Laughing Dog Brewing
86 out of 100 based on 222 ratings.