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Doggie Claws - Hair of the Dog Brewing Company / Brewery and Tasting Room

Not Rated.
Doggie ClawsDoggie Claws

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,013 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,013
Reviews: 529
rAvg: 4.17
pDev: 10.79%
Wants: 397
Gots: 245 | FT: 16
Brewed by:
Hair of the Dog Brewing Company / Brewery and Tasting Room visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  11.50% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
"a Barley Wine made in the West Coast style. Big malt and hops make this copper colored ale one of our most popular products. Produced in September and October and released in November, this Beer will improve for years to come. Alcohol: 11.5% by volume. IBU's 70"

(Beer added by: faernt on 11-16-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,013 | Reviews: 529 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of T_Hass
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

T_Hass, Dec 04, 2013
Photo of ithinkimasofa
4/5  rDev -4.1%

ithinkimasofa, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of juliusseizure
4/5  rDev -4.1%

juliusseizure, May 28, 2013
Photo of jeonseh
4.1/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a 2006 bottle poured into a Snifter

A - Color is a deep copper with hint of gold within. There was no head at all within it and surprisingly there was a good bit of carbonation seen trailing upwards.

S - Smells of candied pineapple with a light smack of pine. There is also a big whiff of honey and toffee as well. There were hints of apple, figs and mango in there as well. This was one big and sweet nose!

T - The taste is rather sweet at first. There are hints of mango, sweet pineapple and honey and toffee. I can also taste some rum coming through and reminds me a bit of an rum soaked candy. As the beer sits in the mouth, there is a slight hint of pine that comes through as does the 11.5% alcohol. This is one heck of a malt bomb.

MF - Manages to be sticky without becoming cloying. The thick and syrups MF seems to fit the beer's flavor profile. Very light amount of carbonation in the MF which is surprising given the amount I saw in the inital pour

D - Overall this is one big and sweet beer. Definitely an American Barelywine in that it packs a ton of flavor in it and has the alcohol coming on strong. I think the nose is the best part of this beer as I just mind myself smelling this beer over and over again. I do like this and if I could find it easily, I could see myself buying one each year but I don't feel like I'd trade to get it again.

jeonseh, Aug 31, 2008
Photo of srgj88
3.75/5  rDev -10.1%

srgj88, Dec 07, 2013
Photo of Devman171
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

Devman171, Oct 20, 2014
Photo of warriorsoul
4.08/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a few of these at Shoreline Beverage on my most recent visit to Long Island...Shoreline is in Huntington and well worth the visit if you find yourself w/in 30 miles of this place...sorry, it's just the way I feel.
Pours a murky, dark brown w/ two full fingers of tan head...lacing thick and has great cling.
Aroma is real nice...sweet raisins and subtle cherries w/ no alcohol present.
Taste is very enjoyable...a tad sweet, but not overly so. Has a real nice malt backbone and although the alcohol does make an appearance as it warms up, it is not taking anything away from the overall enjoyment of this barleywine.
Mouthfeel is fairly thick and syrupy for its style and the carbonation is perfect IMO. I could enjoy a few of these in a session if the opportunity arose.
Real glad I picked up a few of these...will fight the urge and wait to try the other two in a year or longer.
Ignore the bad reviews...if you like the style, you will dig this offering from HOTD.

warriorsoul, Jul 21, 2005
Photo of walleye
4.43/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

got this in a trade but lost my notes. so thank you to the one that sent this beer. poured a orangish brown with a slighty off white head. aroma hops and more hops, alcohol, grapefruits, pine. flavor, got to lot the hops and the burn of the alcohol, caramel, citrus and just a touch of malts and fruits. a very good beer.

walleye, Feb 10, 2006
Photo of Boilerfood
4/5  rDev -4.1%

Boilerfood, Jun 07, 2013
Photo of DaveHS
3.95/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Vintage 2008 shared by nbree00.

A-Pours hazy, iced tea brown. There was a lot of chunky yeast in the bottom of the bottle, so pour carefully. No head.

S-Baked apples, cinnamon, mulled cider. Thin waves of toffee/caramel sweetness.

T/M-Very light, thin carbonation. Mouthfeel is creamy and warming on the back of the throat. Baked apple sweetness layered on muted piney hops. A thin, concentrated sweetness provides the baseline, and provides a lingering sugary finish.

O-Another standout beer from Hair of the Dog. Very unique.

DaveHS, Oct 31, 2011
Photo of bleedsblu
4/5  rDev -4.1%

bleedsblu, Jun 19, 2014
Photo of imyourhero21
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

imyourhero21, Jan 22, 2014
Photo of Piddmeista
4/5  rDev -4.1%

Piddmeista, Dec 18, 2013
Photo of AndyAvalanche
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

2012 release, a 12 oz. bottle poured into a munique stemmed glass. The liquid portion comes out sort of a natural apple cider brown and just as hazy. There is a ton of setament floating around in this one. Not usually something I like , but when held up to the light it has a nice glow that I like. There's a tangerine citrus colored cap that erupts after a pretty hard pour, various different sized bubbles. Good amount of lacing and the cap sticks around for quite awhile.

Smell is awesome. The first thing to jump out at you is the hoppy smell, it's very hoppy, but it's certainly not overwhelming, probably because there's a lot going on. Hop aromas of pine and some slight citrus peel/zest and some nice floral notes going on too. It's very sweet smelling, it's almost like a candy coated date/nut blend then glazed with sweet holiday liquor. Good malt backbone and some honey sweetness as well. A touch of alcohol in the nose that warms and tickles, but not as strong as you'd expect on an ABV this high. Really nothing not to like about the smell.

Taste is just as outstanding as the smell, maybe the slightest big robust. Again, there's a great amount of sweetness, but not quite a sugar bomb that you'd expect by my description. Seriously, you can almost pick out some liquid sugar and/or honey. Still there is a super generous portion of hops and according to the label amarillo and simcoe (2 of my favorites). Not much of a taste even though it's a strong ABV. Everything blended together is quite nice, really a quality tasting beer, I'm getting upset that this beer is going away.

Mouthfeel is actually really good. As I said before, I'm not usually a fan of beers that arn't well filtered, but this is good. Full bodied in every sense of the word without crossing into the syrupy category. Sweet and smooth with a nice clean finish. Speaking of which, I can't believe how clean this beer seems to feel. Mainly because of the setament, it looks like it would feel dirty (in the bad way), but doesn't! Oh, and like most quality beers, the carbonation is done right, and there's not really a bite from the alcohol, more of a warming feeling (nice on a crisp night like tonight. A really drinkable beer too. I could have drank this a lot quicker, but I intentionally paced myself so I could enjoy this.

Really such a great beer, probably one of the best barleyywines I've ever had the privilege of trying. Thanks Gregg for a sending ANOTHER great beer. Now I'm going to hit the "review button" so I can enjoy the last ounce or two remaining.

AndyAvalanche, Mar 07, 2013
Photo of ThreeFishes
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

ThreeFishes, Oct 10, 2013
Photo of Risser09
4.63/5  rDev +11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2004 Vintage • 12 oz bottle poured into a tasting glass

Appearance: Thick, honey-like appearance pours into the glass with minimal head and traces of lingering lacey bubbles. Considerable sediment floats at the bottom of the grog. Looks like thin caramel.

Smell: Aromatic vanilla and sweet floral tones. Smells of brown sugar. MMM

Taste: Very complex. Birch. Floral hops initially. Mango. Orange. Rose. Midtones consist of vanilla and sweet sugar. My tongue is overwhelmed with flavor. Finish is long and delicately balanced between malts and hops. Alcohol burn in minimal but evident. Warms the throat and stomach. As the beer warms I start to taste caramelized pears.

Mouthfeel: Buttery without very much carbonation. Dangerously creamy and begs for me to drink more. It's a shame I only got half a glass. Alcohol not present and well hidden.

Drinkability: Awesome. I could have 2-4 of these on a good night. I wish I could have more of this stuff. Ages extremely well. This is a testament to cellaring American Barleywines. I'll probably buy a bunch of different barleywines each year and pace them out. What an experience!

Risser09, Dec 28, 2006
Photo of whitenads
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

whitenads, Jul 31, 2014
Photo of RedHaze
4.35/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Year made 2005, purchased in Spokane, WA.

Pours a very hazy amber, with a very thick two finger head, that even after 15 minutes only fades to about a fingers worth of foam. The lacing is just one solid sheet of foam on the inside of my glass.

Smell; (once the foam settle enough) even after a year and a half hops are still very evident in the aroma, with some pine and citrus. Rich caramel and chocolate, with a mils touch of cherries. There's also a little vanilla and honey in the nose as well.

Taste; the piney and citric hops are present in the flavor, but they're a little more mellow than they were in the nose. Vanilla, honey and some hints of cinnamon wrap around caramel and chocolate covered apples. The finish has a bit of spiciness that I really like, and where the hell is that 10.5% abv? Oh wait, there it is, i can't read the clock across the room anymore.

Mouthfeel is full bodied and very creamy, with a dangerously high drinkability. As a matter os fact, the only thing that really hurts this one for me is the ABV. If I had more than one of these, I don't think I'd be able to walk straight, if at all.

RedHaze, May 03, 2007
Photo of AOShabaz
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

AOShabaz, Jun 30, 2013
Photo of John11486
5/5  rDev +19.9%

John11486, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of mjw1200
4.75/5  rDev +13.9%

mjw1200, Jul 06, 2013
Photo of tewaris
4/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Doggie Claws
12 oz. bottle from 2011 sent generously by Ron. Thanks! 11% ABV. Poured into a snifter.

A good combination of malts and hops, Doggie Claws smells sweet and caramel like, yet floral-fruity at the same time... much like honey? Swirling lets the nuances of hops come forward and the pungent character of American hops is felt.

Taste is only moderately sweet and bitterness is medium but lingering. Age will certainly treat this beer well as the label claims. Having been on a barleywine kick for a while now, I find myself short of adjectives but suffice it to say that it's good. Notable and somewhat distinguishing features are: a sweetness that holds its own against hops that sometimes seem to overwhelm fresh American versions; strong citrus peel; and a floral character that is probably from honey. I am no expert on braggots but I have enjoyed whatever I have had, so I am certainly digging this floral sweetness. Hints of booze are only welcome.

The body is good but carbonation seems a tad high. Regardless, swirling and warmth will take care of it. I like this beer.

4, 4, 4, 4, 4

tewaris, Mar 16, 2012
Photo of everetends
4/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle I got in an impromtu trade with my man, Ding. Thanks, buddy, totally not necessary but really appreciated. So this is a 2008 vintage and served this puppy up in a snifta'.

A: Very cool look to this beer. This has a very muddy, dusty, dirty look to the body. It looks like a mess but I love it. Has a brown with a nice orange/yellow hue to it. Kinda like a fresh, homemade apple cider. You can't see through this sucker, very muddy with tons of debris in here. Lots of sediment, and thats a good thing to me. Had an aggressive pour but had one of the slowest building heads I have ever seen. Head is an off white, quarter finger. Holds up for a little while but fades. No real lace to talk about.

S: Nose is very interesting. Very citric forward, wasn't really expecting that. Good amount of orange peel and meat building in here. Booze comes in behind that. A good amount of sweetness is blossoming with some caramel and honey presence. Light toffee kickin in here. Little spicy, little herbal. Not all of the aromas are as distinguishable but its complexity is quite interesting.

T: Things start off here with a good amount of a flavor I can only describe as an herbal boozy character. With age, I am sure that mellows and creates a cleaner flavor. The orange is here as well but its not as heavy as it was in the nose. The malts come out with a good amount of caramel and toffee. The malts shine a bit more than the hops, but the hops are still present. A touch of citrus and bitterness kickin and balancing. Nice honey flavor with some dark fruit as well. A touch of candied sweetness but its not out of hand. It actually has a really subtle sweetness.

M: Full bodied with a very light carbonation. The beer is allowed to just shine without too much carbonation, but it still doesn't feel too crazy heavy. Alcohol is nice and warming, but not out of hand. A little sticky and chewy. The aftertaste is some sweetness and hops bitterness to further ponder.

D: This beer is just all around good. It is like everything is just enough without getting out of hand and that is a great thing. Hair of the Dog just finds an amazing balance in almost every category. Very beautifully crafted. Would love to try this a couple years down the road to see how it mellows. good stuff for sure.

everetends, Nov 24, 2009
Photo of Googs
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2011 Vintage poured into a Hair of the Dog tulip.

A: Lovely. Auburn/amber color with an off white one finger head. It's very frothy and dissolving slowly into a good 1/4 inch head thats not going away. Alcohol legs sticking to the glass.

S: First, I'm getting sweet malts. Heavy raisin bread and caramel mixed with some earthy, floral hop aroma. Slight citrus notes, orange or grapefruit. I could sniff all day.

T: Taste follows suit to the smell. Rich caramel malts with a touch of honey soaked biscuit. This vintage isn't very old so the hop aroma and bitterness is still quiet present. A nice fruity bitterness. I'm even getting a slight dark chocolate in the after taste. Delicious. A complex brew, that shares some characteristic with other HoTD beers. I believe it's the Scottish yeast strain that Alan Sprints uses.

M: Medium body with moderate carbonation. There's a really nice creaminess to it, which makes it easy to drink and not something I have to sip necessarily. Flavors coat the mouth and linger nicely. Alcohol is present, which is not surprising me for the ABV of the beer. You can feel the warming down the throat and in the stomach. I like my big beers.

O: This is my second time having this beer and I must say, I love it. It's great holiday Barleywine and by far one of the best American style Barleywines. The first bottle I had was a 2010, so it had two years of age on it. It was a more balanced, with less bitterness and less heat from the alcohol, which goes to show that this beer ages gracefully as the label suggests. I'm planning on doing a vertical of this one. Get this if you can, really. But consider cellaring a few.

Googs, Dec 09, 2012
Photo of kzoobrew
4.3/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to camil1mj for this bottle.

2010 vintage

Pours a very murky, dirty bronze color. The body is full of sediment leading to a very opaque beer. Four finger vanilla pudding colored head. The head is rather stubborn, retention is phenomenal. Once the head eventually works its way back, heavy lacing clings to the walls of the glass.

Bold and assertive barleywine. The aroma displays a nice balance between the hops and malt. Heavily caramelized malt and raisin combines with resinous pine and citrus.

The flavor mimics the nose rather well. The malt rolls across the palate first. The caramel flavor is much lighter on the tongue than in the nose. Soft and sweet caramel transitions towards the darker fruit flavors on the back of the tongue. The hop flavor is less assertive than the aroma. The sweet citrus flavor is prominent, paired with a slight resinous flavor. The malt shines from beginning to end, but the hop flavor is one hell of a compliment. May not be evenly balanced but dare I say it is perfectly balanced. With a year on this bottle there is not much heat but a pleasant warmth on the back end.

Full bodied Barleywine, carbonation in moderate. Thick, nearly chewy texture. The finish is long as the heavy flavors dig into the tongue.

Doggie Claws is a very good beer. I am not ready yet to call it my favorite Barleywine but if it were readily available to me it would have room reserved in my cellar. The balance of the beer is incredible. A definite sipper but highly enjoyable. Certainly a beer to seek out, I am very glad I had the opportunity, I will be looking for more in the future.

kzoobrew, Nov 01, 2011
Doggie Claws from Hair of the Dog Brewing Company / Brewery and Tasting Room
93 out of 100 based on 1,013 ratings.