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The Dogfather (Bourbon Barrel Aged) - Laughing Dog Brewing

Not Rated.
The Dogfather (Bourbon Barrel Aged)The Dogfather (Bourbon Barrel Aged)

Educational use only; do not reuse.

166 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 166
Hads: 455
Avg: 3.74
pDev: 25.4%
Wants: 19
Gots: 104 | FT: 7
Brewed by:
Laughing Dog Brewing visit their website
Idaho, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  10.85% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: brownbeer on 12-21-2009

Over 11 months in the making some of the Dogfather is bourbon barrel aged.

71 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 166 | Hads: 455
Photo of shnsajax
4.21/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2015 version for $6.99. A little bit of heat but balanced well with a little bit of sweetness. Not harsh at all, still thick and chewy. From a dollar per ounce standpoint one of the better BBA stouts I have had in a while. This is better than fresh Abyss and for half the price. I can't speak for older vintages but I'll be buying more this year.

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Photo of Stevem68
3.74/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a dark chocolate color with a cream colored head. Aroma is oaky, boozy and roasted malts. Flavor is a dry boozy toasted malt with a bitter fruit backround note. Aftertaste is a warm boozy mouthfeel. Overall not a beer. Probly not worth drinking again

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Photo of jasonpeckins32
4.13/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours black in color with a tan hued thick looking head retention.

This brew has a BIG roasted and toasted malt aroma. Roasted caramel malts (and possibly chocolate), somewhat sweet, dominate the aroma. Anise or black licorice is also noted.

Big chewy flavor. Very toasted and malty, as this beer should taste. A malt sweetness overload, with a lot of black licorice, some fig in the middle and a slight dark chocolate bitterness in the aftertaste. Not necessarily a whole ton of bourbon going on here, but its a touch warm from the high abv, actually fairly well-hidden for as high.

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Photo of DrDemento456
4.05/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Kind of hyped to try this one since I could never get the regular Dogfather finding the bourbon barrel aged version for just 8.99 seemed like a steal!

A - A god 1/2 inch of mocha head atop a very deep dark black beer if any the slightest ruby hue at the base.
S - Bourbon soaked chocolates, some mild licorice, and a touch of coffee in the nose. Smells somewhat sweet with a tint of vanilla as well.
T - Not bad it as all the aspects one would expect in a Bourbon barrel beer you get some muted bourbon, then roasty coffee bitterness, some dark chocolates and finishes with a bit of wood. Not too sweet or bitter its really average nothing stands out.
M - For almost 11% it is a tad thin for a stout making for easier drink ability but I could use more body I guess.

Overall its a very good beer if your looking for a bourbon stout but it doesn't really hold a candle to world class offerings. Not bad for the price regardless!

PS: I would like to know how barrel aging a beer LOWERS the ABV from 11% to just 10.85%
Really strange.

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Photo of pat61
4.18/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: Pours deep dark brown under a 1” tan foam cap that hugs the side of the glass.
S: Big coffee aromas, some alcohol, a hint of chocolate and vanilla, faint bourbon.
T: Big coffee chocolate vanilla flavors laced with bourbon character on the finish supported by dark dried fruit and a hint of plum. Overall lightly sweet with a slight tartness in the finish. No harsh or burnt flavors. The hop bitterness is moderate and well balanced by the malt and alcohol.
F: Soft in the mouth with medium body and below average carbonation. Slight warming.
O: Pleasant and easy to drink.

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Photo of BubalooBrewMaster
2.67/5  rDev -28.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

I would prob never revisit again.The only real reason is that the licorice taste that my pallete picked up was way too much for this licorice hater.
Overal: Not horrible other then that.

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Photo of bgold86
4.75/5  rDev +27%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Has a great nose, lots of dark dried fruit prunes raisins dates etc, almost mimics bourbon county stout. Taste is rich, lots of aforementioned dark fruits, vanilla sweetness, lots of bourbon, great mouth-feel and finish!

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.09/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a snifter glass. I know that I’ve had this bottled stored for at least 6 years.

A: The beer is a deep dark brown color, with a very large foamy light brown head that fades very slowly and leaves a very thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains bourbon, roasted malts, chocolate and some coffee.

T: The taste starts out with sweet flavors of milk chocolate, bourbon and coffee. Then a significant alcohol burn comes in along with the barrel-aging essence and some dark fruit flavor. The roasted malt character is very hearty and there’s a faint but complementary hops presence creating a good balance.

M: Crisp and very smooth, medium-to-heavy body, medium carbonation, finish is dry and slightly sticky.

O: Tasty, goes down easily, slightly filling, strong kick, good representation of style, this is a solid big stout to sip on for a long time.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
3.76/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Dark brown near black bother you with a viscous beige head. Burnt toffee, ripe plum, oak, vanilla, chocolate, roasted malt. Flavor is a bit lacking. Sweet, finishing with a slightly harsh tannic note. Middle of the road.

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Photo of floridadrift
3.41/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Horrible fresh.
Very hoppy.
Has no bourbon taste whatsoever.
Anyone after a cheap bourbon-barrel beer should stray away from this, it needs at least a year or two of cellaring to eliminate the extreme hoppyness of this beer. There may be bourbon-flavor under this but you won't know for years.

Says "Aged in 'old' bourbon barrels" on label. Super fishy

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Photo of jerseyjoe555
3.94/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Nice bourbon barreled imperial stout that I'd live to taste after some cellaring. A bit too overpowering on the bourbon taste. Still a solid beer though

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Photo of biboergosum
3.52/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

12oz chalice, during their tap takeover at Beer Revolution in downtown Edmonton.

This beer appears a solid, light-absorbing black hole, with pretty much nil in terms of any sort of highlights, and a thin cap of wispy, yet still rather foamy tan head, which leaves a near solid wash of thinly painted lace around the glass as it slowly abates.

It smells of semi-sweet Kentucky whiskey barrel - caramel, spicy rye grain, and boozy vanilla - further toffee malt sugary notes, bittersweet chocolate, a bit of root beer syrup, and a bristling alcohol astringency. The taste is strong, almost too strong grainy wood barrel notes - rye whiskey, of course, with the attendant toasted vanilla and caramel - a still heady toffee malt backbone, chocofied coffee, and a low-key, underwhelming leafy, weedy hoppy bitterness.

The carbonation is generally unassuming in its plain Jane, um, blandness, the body a stoic medium-heavy weight, and actually smooth, all other pertinent things considered. It finishes on the sweet side, the barrel still bullying its way about, to no one's real benefit.

I like these guys, I really do, but sometimes their headier offerings seem to come up short, as does this. There's certainly no question that this stout spent a considerable amount of time in Bourbon wood. The actual question is, should it have?

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Photo of guityler83
3.25/5  rDev -13.1%

A: Large tan, light mocha colored 3 finger head persisted a long time. When it receded it left a dense spiderweb looking trail of lacing down the edge of the snifter glass and a soapy, cola bubbles looking foam that stayed even longer. The beer is pitch black with no light shining through when held to a light source. Nice legs when agitated. (4.25).

S: The aroma is heavy in the barrel character, smokey, mesquite bbq, light vanillin and oak. Bourbon is medium to mild with a slight sweet boozy character. Alcohol is noticeable but not harsh or hot. Dark chocolate and sweet caramel malts come through at mild levels. No hops detected. (3).

T: Lots of roasty malt flavors boarding on ashy with a slight soy sauce like character. Dark cocoa and milk chocolate with caramel malts. Heavy in the barrel flavors similar to the aroma. mesquite bbq, slight smoke, lumber like oak, slight bourbon and vanilla. the balance is on the barrel flavors. The sweetness is medium with no hop flavor and just enough bitterness to keep it drinkable. (3).

M: Big viscous body with medium to low carbonation. Tingly mouth sensation from the bourbon and a hefty dose of alcohol warmth in the chest. (4).

O: In most cases of barrel aged stouts it can improve an already great beer, this beer seems to have done the opposite. The barrel seems to be either to new? or not aged long enough to mellow out the flavors or something.. but the mesquite, smokey, lumber flavor combined with the roast character is killing this beer for me.

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Photo of WAbeerfiend
4.75/5  rDev +27%

Label date of 12.30.13.
Poured from a bomber into a tulip on 06.04.14.

A: 2 finger tan head that retains well. Midnight black body with some red at the bottom.

S: Vanilla, bourbon, and chocolate.

T: Vanilla, bourbon, and chocolate dominate. Fig, very slight roastiness, and cherry are subtle.

M: Creamy silk. Perfect carbonation. Not too chewy, just perfection.

O: This is a well rounded BB stout. It has complexity and is perfectly balanced. There is some alcohol burn on the back end. This is regularly $5.99 to $6.99 in the Seattle area, which is an incredible value. This is one that I regularly buy.

Rating: A

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Photo of Boto
3.8/5  rDev +1.6%

22oz bottle: This one pours a opaque, very dark brown color. It has a light brown head, and no lacing. A bit of bourbon to the nose. Some oakiness also. Getting some chocolate malts also, but no sweetness. Some vanilla and roasted malts also. The taste is good. Some bourbon and alcohol flavors. Chocolate, hint of vanilla, some roasted malts and some of the oakiness. Not bitter, but they have balanced out most of the sweetness. Not bad!

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Photo of BeerHewitt
4.75/5  rDev +27%

Mine is from 2013 stock, sat on it for almost a year. Not sure what it tasted like green, but right now it is one of the smoothest bourbon barrel aged stouts I have had. You get a light burn from the bourbon and alcohol throughout. A good heavy mouth-feel coats heavy on the tongue. Molasses, dark chocolate, and pecan dominate the tastes. Finishes sweet with a dryness from the 11%. Loving it.

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Photo of macher0
3.68/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A. Very dark brown, near black. An aggressive pour yielded a 1-finger, amber head that retreated to a frothy, amber rim and substantial film. Almost opaque. Huge frothy laces.

S. Bourbon upfront. Other major notes of bourbon-soaked oak, vanilla, marshmallows, and dark roasted malts. Hints of tannins become apparent after it opens, Boozy. fairly strong aroma.

T. Strong booze dominates - not well balanced. With the strong booze is lots of bourbon and oak. Fairly strong dark roasted malts and hop profile. Hints of coco and coffee.

M. Fairly smooth given the strong booze presence and high ABV. High-fine carbonation.

O. very hot, but still decent. I actually had an aftertaste reminiscent of a bourbon and coke. This is a very strong beer that is best for a share. It wasn't a very spendy BA stout, so that should be considered. I would go for this again.

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Photo of deltatauhobbit
3.78/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a dark dark brown essentially black color, decent sized head but leaves not lacing or lasting cap.

Smell is mostly roasted malt with an almost coffee like aroma, bourbon is fairly faint to the nose but is present.

Taste starts out with the roasted malt and a strong dark fruit presence, almost raisin-y, bourbon is quite weak but at least it isn't so overpowering it becomes bourbon like some other barrel aged beers, creamy mouthfeel with medium-low carbonation that is very soft, not overly sticky but lasts long enough so not to be too thin.

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Photo of superspak
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle into snifter, bottled on 9/24/2012. Pours dense pitch black color with a 2 finger dense dark tan head with great retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of big dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, roasted malt, molasses, toast, toffee, vanilla, oak, cherry, fig, prune, light char, light smoke, and roasted earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of dark/roasted malt and oak barrel notes; with good strength. Taste of big dark chocolate, cocoa, roasted malt, coffee, toast, char, molasses, toffee, vanilla, oak, light bourbon, light smoke, and roasted earthiness. Moderate roasted bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, roasted malt, char, toast, molasses, vanilla, oak, light bourbon, and roasted earthiness on the finish for a while. Very nice complexity and balance of robust dark/roasted malt and moderate oak barrel flavors; with a great roasted bitterness/sweetness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and fairly full bodied; with a smooth, creamy, and fairly slick/chalky mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is well hidden with only a light warming present after the finish. Overall this is a damn nice barrel aged imperial stout. All around nice balance and complexity of very robust dark/roasted malt and moderate oak barrel character; and very smooth to sip on for the ABV. A very enjoyable offering.

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Photo of KYGunner
3.96/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I tried to score this BA stout on its own merits but was haunted constantly with the price...$4.99 a bomber. As a BA aged stout goes this had a nice balance of chocolate malt, chocolate, creme, whisky like sweetness and maybe a tinge of oak. Light aroma and feel it was not too terribly light as to deter but enough to make it drinkable. The flavor is a complete, subtlety complex and delicious. I give it a four on its own merit but a five on its bargain!

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Photo of Flounder57
4.08/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle was poured into a large snifter.

Appearance: This beet poured a two finger head that reduced to a thin layer. It is a pitch black color with no clarity or vision of bubbles coming up through the glass. Spotty lacing on the glass as the beer was drank.

Smell: Vanilla, oak, bourbon, milk chocolate, roasted coffee, toffee, caramel, coconut, and chewy malts.

Taste: You definitely get the bourbon oak vanilla part, but nice barrel char to go with milk chocolate and roasted notes. Cool stuff. Wish I could pair it with the original non barrel aged Dogfather.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, full bodied, creamy, boozy, smoky bitterness, and medium carbonation.

Overall: Pretty tasty barrel aged imperial stout. Mellowed out a bit after 11 months and smooth to a "T". Now I just have to find the non barrel aged version to see how it would normally taste.

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Photo of SaCkErZ9
4.34/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I am assuming I am reviewing the correct beer. The label indicates nothing of its barrel aging, the bottle on the Laughing Dog website indicates nothing of barrel aging, but the beer has all of the qualities of barrel aging. No idea how old the bottle is because there is no date anywhere.

Great looking beer. Pitch black with a frothy, silky smooth, dark tan head of about two fingers in size. Generous lacing and the retention is awesome.

Aroma is filled with coffee, chocolate, bourbon, oak, vanilla, bourbon. Really nice.

Flavor is spot on as well. Bitter chocolate and the hops provide some bitterness with a touch of astringency. Fully flavored bourbon and oak, smoky, alcohol, tobacco.

A very solid beer. I think i paid like $4.99 for a bomber, which makes this an awesome value. Loved this beer.

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Photo of thecheapies
3.74/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

he Dogfather.

Practically black with a nice tan cap. Holds pretty well.

Huge aroma with all sorts of crazy volatiles. Toasted coconut, bourbon, rye, waxy vanilla candle, oak, hints of passion fruit (strange?), and floral/perfumey notes. Interesting nose.

Has a thin tartness with that bright oak and waxy bourbon barrel notes. More coconut, toasted wood, perfumey fruit, black olive pit bitterness, and some dark chocolate tones. A tad bit of caramel, too. One of a kind, I'll give it that.

The body seems a bit thin for this style. Alcohol is strangely disguised, however. This feel is out-of-bounds. Indescribable how this beer works.

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Photo of AtrumAnimus
4.59/5  rDev +22.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

The appearance is super fine for an imperial stout that pours a midnight black that adsorbs all light around it. The head is thick and tan and very, very long lived that settles to a pile of foam that looks like it will never go away. The lacing is thick and long lived as well.

The nose is bready with definite bourbon notes and a definite, classic imperial spicy stout scent to it. The sweet smokey malts are balanced by the fruity malts with a tiny bit of tartness that is nicely balanced.

The taste is surprisingly dry for an imperial stout. The bourbon is strong in presence, but not dominating. The smokey malts are nicely balanced with the sweet malts that have a nice hoppy finish that is well balanced.

The mouthfeel is also a great balance for the imperial stout. It is just right, not thick and not watery.

Overall this is one impressive example of a imperial stout. The bourbon additive is a nice touch and works better than expected. I really like this one and will definitely drink it again.

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Photo of illeagle05
4.39/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

2013 22 oz bomber poured into a snifter

A: Black with a foamy light brown head. Nice lacing from the point where poured and head is retained throughout consumption.

S: Chocolate, oak, light bourbon

T: Chocolate, dark fruits, roasted malts, milky sweetness, bourbon

M: Full bodied, syrupy, nice warming alcohol, slight bitterness. Very nicely balanced.

O: Absolutely solid barrel aged stout (especially for the price). I can't say necessarily that anything was lacking for me...just that compared to some others BBA stouts it came up a bit short in aroma and forwardness of the bourbon's impact in flavor. That may be a blessing in disguise for this concoction because it comes out extremely balanced for me and is extremely drinkable.

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The Dogfather (Bourbon Barrel Aged) from Laughing Dog Brewing
84 out of 100 based on 166 ratings.