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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.

982 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 982
Reviews: 528
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 11%
Wants: 389
Gots: 246 | FT: 17
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: 982 | Reviews: 528 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of cswhitehorse


4/5  rDev -4.3%

The Doggie Claws 2008 version poured a reddish orange color with not much in the way of lacing or head which I would expect for a high abv of this type.

The aroma was like apple cider. Little bit of burning esters is you swirl and stick the nose in deep. A nice burn.

Taste real laid back with the maltiness staying on the tongue all the way through. It had a sweet apple cider malt taste to it. A tinge of hops give it some bitterness on the end. Overall it is a good effort but could use more of a hop profile.

12-21-2008 05:42:52 | More by cswhitehorse
Photo of chezztone


2.93/5  rDev -29.9%

I'm drinking a 2006 bottle that I bought at the brewery when new and aged in my cellar. Unfortunately I have most of the case left, because it is not aging well. The caps must not be attached well, because the beer is still. This is not the only bottle in the case to turn out flat, either. Strange, because an earlier Doggie Claws -- 2003 -- was extremely bubbly, so much that the brewery sold cases at a hefty discount for several years afterward. It kept building up fizziness in the bottle. And it was a great beer! Champagne-like in its color and delicate flavor, once you waited for the head to die down. But there is no way to let the head "die up" on the newer one. It tasted good when fresh, but aging is supposed to benefit it. Well....It's a copper-colored, flat, sweet, strong drink. Sort of like an off--brand sherry. It might be good for cooking, except for all the hops. Really a shame because I usually like this brewery and love this beer.

12-17-2008 04:24:00 | More by chezztone
Photo of freeeekyyy


3.7/5  rDev -11.5%

'08 bottle. For sipping, not gulping. Looks like unfiltered apple cider. Smells like it too. Big chunks of yeast floating around in the bottle look like dandruff. Fairly high in the hops category, but still nothing compared to some double IPAs. Big malt. A very well balanced beer. If it weren't so high in the alcohol, or masked it a little better, drinkability would be great too. I definitely plan on getting another bottle, and aging that one.

12-15-2008 01:06:35 | More by freeeekyyy
Photo of mugglesandhops


3.48/5  rDev -16.7%

Had an 05 and an 08 and didnt care too much for either one. First off it didn't pour with a very good head at all, almost non-existant, the smell was strong with alchohol but on the plus side I got some fruity notes out of it, maybe cherries. But still a very strong almost whiskey smell. It tasted very stong of alchohol as well, and very sweet with a strong after taste. It was Syrupy but thin at the same time if that makes since. the 05 had alot of sediment floating around in it. Not really my cup of tea.

11-27-2008 05:54:26 | More by mugglesandhops
Photo of Magpie14


4.28/5  rDev +2.4%

A: hazy red copper with thin ring of foam and lace, looks rather nice in the glass. The bartender was super great and gave me a huge sample and said " Merry Christmas" before I ordered one! IBU rating was 70

S: sweet hoppy punch up front with a slight malt edge that makes for a tempting brew. My nose wants to describe it as a strong Belgian-type brew

T: malt presence and hop bite all surrounded by a butterscotch sweetness, or some type of honeyed caramel flavor. It also brings to note various fruit characteristics that is in favor of hops. Considering its alcohol content it is rather complex and not just festering with alcohol tones. It is rich overall but malts and hops share the load and keep things interesting. Since were on the topic, by far an "interesting" barleywine brew.

M: creamy with syrupy type feel. Not super heavy but knocking on the door. Slight lemon/orange flavor in the finish

D: sometimes barelywine beers make me cringe as they are to over the top. They are not my favorite, but this one is by far the best I have had of its kind.
The first sip I had blew my socks off, the second sip blew my pants clean of my legs...this one put me on cloud nine and made my legs light and rubbery. Alcohol is a bit to much for my liking, but if in the right place, like by a roaring fireplace, this beer is perfect

11-26-2008 03:30:03 | More by Magpie14
Photo of TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

3.33/5  rDev -20.3%

2006 release, acquired from Viggo courtesy of Birthday Club 2, so a big Thank You goes out to him. Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light brown color, with no head and no lacing which can happen with this type of beer when it's got some age one it.

S: The aroma is of brown sugar, caramel, bourbon, alcohol and a decent amount of hops.

T: The taste is sweet up front with flavors of caramel and brown sugar, there's a strong alcohol burn that follows along with a toned-down but complimentary hops presence. The malt character is very hearty. The after-taste is sweet.

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

D: A little tasty, goes down ok, not too filling, strong kick, decent representation of style, I've certainly had better barleywines, but I have a strong feeling that this beer would be much better fresh.

11-19-2008 03:09:59 | More by TheManiacalOne
Photo of BigMcLargeHuge


4.28/5  rDev +2.4%

2004 vintage consumed Dec. 2007. Pours a murky amberish brown with a lasting tan ring foam head. Man, the aroma is complex. I'm getting pine, hints of citrus hops, some grassiness, a mild alcohol sensation inside a smooth mixture of dates, prunes, cherries, raisins then behind that I smell roasted, chocolate and caramel malts. The fluid is viscous initially ushering in citrus and pine hops that are mild and muted along with stewed fruits like plums, figs, raisins, prunes, cherries and dates. Just like the aroma there is an under current of malts like chocolate, caramel and mild roastiness. The one tiny fault I get is the hops are just a hint much for the style. That's getting a bit too picky. Very enjoyable elixir.

12/02/06 Walk the Line Barleywine Festival, Dunedin, FL. 2002 vintage sampled from 12oz bottle. Hazy orange color with off white head. Very light aroma with some mild malt sweetness and a hint of maybe citrus. Tastes a bit tart with pale malts, pine and citrus hops.

11-17-2008 22:59:52 | More by BigMcLargeHuge
Photo of atsprings

North Carolina

4.45/5  rDev +6.5%

2007 vintage poured into a Unibroue tulip. Pours a murky dark orange with a nice frothy cream head. Aroma is some crisp sweet malts and pine hops. The taste is a wonderful abundance of burnt caramel, molasses, dried fruits and pine, all dancing together on the tongue. The beer is certainly a heavy sipper, but I the alcohol is still fairly well hidden, I am certainly going to let this one warm. This is simply one of the best Barely Wines I have had the pleasure of drinking, words cannot describe how much I would love to see these guys sold on the East coast.

10-17-2008 03:48:42 | More by atsprings
Photo of djeucalyptus


4.58/5  rDev +9.6%

Cracked open a 2007 and poured into a snifter.

a. deep and complex orange lemon amber colors with a definite caramel haziness to it. Slightly dull and murky on the whole. As expected, a fairly thin but dense head bubbled to the top with an average pour, leaving behind some nice gummy lacing.

s. The depth of the aroma on this one is incredible. Initial notes are of sweet malt with some piney hops, coated with fruit. Mandarin oranges, pear, figs, and a bit of banana. There's also some subtle sweetness reminiscent of creme brulee or butterscotch pudding. As it warms, more of the pear, apple, raisin, and tangelo notes pull through, along with some sweet and pleasant alcohol esters.

t. Taste is a beautifully smooth blend of rich, almost citrusy malts and subtle but powerful citrus and floral hop notes. Very hoppy but not bitter, very malty but nauseatingly so. For aging less than a year, this one is pleasantly mellow for a barleywine with flavor profiles this strong. Some honey and caramel sweetness is definitely there, as is unidentifiable fruitiness akin to asian pears, persimmon and cherimoya. There are some beautiful flavors mixing together to create something pretty smooth and impressive.

m. Pleasurable is an understatement. Thick without tasting like sipping molasses. The carbonation escorts the thick barleywine down the tongue, making sure the tingling alcohol and bitterness from the hops is fully realized. Depth in mouthfeel is awesome and hard to come by.

d. Awesome, as most from Hair of the Dog tend to be... very well done. Malty and sweet but enough of the hops to remind you of an DIPA every now and then... which is perfect. This would definitely age beautifully, but at the same time, it's fairly impressive relatively fresh, which seems like a sign of a kickass barleywine in my books.

10-10-2008 18:19:20 | More by djeucalyptus
Photo of brewdlyhooked13


4.75/5  rDev +13.6%

Appearance - pours a hazy dull orange, a thin but solid cover of off white, holding well.

Aroma - citrusy, orange and pine, estery vapors alongside. Smells potent.

Taste - huge, sweet malty opening, roasty coffee-like malts chiming in early as well. Followed by syrupy, citrus, juiciness. Light on the bitterness, though not the hop flavor. The swallow stays sweet and grows slightly bitter with peach, dark fruit, mandarin orange. Abv is well-masked but makes its presence known with a finishing warmth.

Mouthfeel - heavy and drapy with low carbonation.

Drinkability - what a wonderful bottle of beer. Fresh or aged, I imagine this will be a fine experience. Big thanks to udubdawg for parting with one of these for my sake at DLD08.

09-23-2008 15:54:30 | More by brewdlyhooked13
Photo of JohnGalt1


4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

2007 vintage 12oz inflatablechair picked up in Portland for me and SAS... much appreciation... It's been in the fridge for a couple of weeks.... tonight is the night. Poured into my New Belgium snifter.

1" head good lacing and hazy lite amber brew...

Aroma is thick malts with American hops.. some citrus and pine with more than enough caramel and toasty malts.

Flavor mirrors the aroma but with a big punch of yeasty frutiness and citric hops .... caramel and dark fruits.. rummy but in a good way.. big American hops.. but still there is an earthy hop component.. Huge complexity.. There is a bunch going on with this brew. Body is viscous but creamy carbonation.. a sipper but I will always want another drink. Very fine... loving what HotD is brewing.


09-11-2008 09:45:08 | More by JohnGalt1
Photo of trill


4.2/5  rDev +0.5%

2007 vintage, yet another from tanyer. Thanks lady!

Pours a cloudy burnt orange with a 1/4" white head that stays and leaves quite a bit of lacing. Aroma is an intense burst of pungent American hops, fruity malt (pears, raisins, dates), brown sugar/caramel, and some cinnamon or nutmeg. Smells like a richer version of SN Bigfoot. Flavors are similar and equally big, but incredibly smooth for a barleywine this young. This one tastes like it already has several years under its belt, with a balance between malty dark fruit and hop bitterness. After about eight months in the bottle, the specific Amarillo and Simcoe flavors and aromas are gone, but their smooth bittering properties are hanging in there. Drinkability is truly exceptional for a beer this big; aside from a very slight dry/warm alcohol in the finish, you wouldn't guess this one is almost 12%. Mouthfeel is also solid for the style; it could actually be stickier/more viscous for my tastes.

09-03-2008 20:48:42 | More by trill
Photo of jeonseh


4.1/5  rDev -1.9%

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.

08-31-2008 00:13:19 | More by jeonseh
Photo of jamesm7485


4.68/5  rDev +12%

2002 vintage poured into a oversized brandy glass
even with a carefull pour a thick white frothy head is quick to form on a dark amber body.

The smell is very nice with lots of malt oranges and something i just cant quite put my finger on.

The taste is very heavy on the orange but in a good way.

Mouthfeel is nice lots of carbonation despite it being 6 years old now.

This barleywine drinks just as easy as a lager yet is far more fun, ill be going back to my secret store to get more of these for sure!

08-15-2008 01:04:43 | More by jamesm7485


4.8/5  rDev +14.8%

An inch and a half of fizzy deep tan head with nice retention and no lace. Body is a full burgundy brownish. Nose is big and lovely with slight sticky hops and lucious thick dark fruits with boozy tones. The first sip is monsterous with lots of intertwined attractive flavors. Mellow candied spices, a hint of juicy sharp hops, ripe plums, rum soaked raisens and homemade cherry pie all show up. The flavorful complexity swirls around the tongue with such grace you wouldnt know it was 11.5% alchol. Mouthfeel is thick and very enjoyable. Leaves quite a hue on the buds. A super sipper and a joy to drink.

08-09-2008 20:58:33 | More by SPLITGRIN
Photo of Goliath


4.3/5  rDev +2.9%

Pours a deep amber color with a large 2 inch light tan head. Good retention.

Aroma is hop dominate with some citrus notes and rather floral.

Taste is quite good. A nice hop profile, fairly floral and a bit of citrus. Well balanced with some nice malting. Caramel, fruit, and sugar all come to mind. It's more complex, but I can't quite put my finger on all of it.

Mouthfeel is full bodied, thick and syrupy with a very gentle carbonation.

Drinkability is fairly high. Great flavor makes this brew easy to consume, and the alcohol is very well hidden. Would love to see what age does.

08-06-2008 03:52:10 | More by Goliath
Photo of gford217


4.43/5  rDev +6%

2007 bottle courtesy of gregc and shaebs99.

A: Pours a hazy golden amber with a one-finger off-white head that lingered for quite a while leaving decent lacing.

S: Smell starts with a big citrus hop aroma with grapefruit up front giving way to the caramel malt and toffee background. There is also a big sugar sweetness throughout the nose.

T: Taste is a bigger version of the nose with the hops up front in the form of grapefruit and lemons. The sweetness takes over right after that burst with molasses and caramel. There is a hint of the booze as well on top of a ton of raisins and dates before the citrus hops come back for a slightly bitter finish.

M: Mouthfeel is unbelievably creamy with strong carbonation that prickles the tongue. Alcohol is present but not overpowering in the least.

D: This is a fantastic and original take on the style and one that I enjoyed immensely. Another great brew from HotD. Highly recommended!

08-02-2008 02:20:30 | More by gford217
Photo of mhewes


4.33/5  rDev +3.6%

A : Pours a murky golden-orange color with a good two finger eggshell white head. Very little lacing left behind.

S : A nice fruity smell, some sweetness also along with hints of hops

T : Really sweet with a pineapple flavor and some spicyness like pepper. A nice hop bitterness on the finish.

M : Full-bodied and oily on the finish

D : Definitely a sipper but one I would have again

07-29-2008 00:06:22 | More by mhewes
Photo of wagenvolks


4.5/5  rDev +7.7%

2006 Vintage poured into a Duvel chalice.

An aggressive pour initially fails to produce a discernable head, as a group of thin tan bubbles immediatly dissipates. However, slowly but surely, a thin patch of minute bubbles rises up to cover the top layer like a thin veil of bright stars against the night sky. Of course, in this case the night sky would be the incredibly cloudy body resembling a melted Sugar Daddy. Can't wait to try this. The aroma is a lot like HOTD's Fred, with immense notes of caramel and toffee filled to the brim. Doggie Claws also produces subsidiary notes of cinnamon apple, booze-laden cider, and chocolate.

Oh my...liquid heaven in a bottle. A touch of spice up front opens to gooey notes of caramel and brown sugar that coat the palate, while a boozy alcohol warmth and sweet, Belgian candied malts seal the deal. Body is uber-viscous and thick, perhaps overly so, but the overall mouthfeel is an enjoyable experience. Hooray for Hair of the Dog; Doggie Claws has completely sealed their position in my mind as one of my favorite craft breweries, and perhaps as masters of the American Barleywine style.

{EDIT: bottle of 2007 drank December '08 smelled highly of simcoe and amarillo hops--not surprisingly. Amazing appearance, thick lacing left behind from a well-retained, light khaki head; decided to bump my appearance rating from 4.0 to 4.5 accordingly}

07-23-2008 03:35:05 | More by wagenvolks
Photo of Halcyondays


4.2/5  rDev +0.5%

12 oz. bottle, 2006 Vintage, bottle has a dog with a Santa hat on it next to a couple of menorahs, 10.5% alcohol,

A: Pours a murky red-brown, with really no head except for a few bubbles, light ring around the perimeter of the glass.

S: Great smell as I am used to in many an aged barleywine. Dark fruit, raisins, sweet malt, molasses, fig juice, and booze.

T: Quite a complex amalgam of flavours. Dark honey, brown sugar, and fig form the main flavour, it is quite sweet. An earthy and minty hop overtone ends the brew.

M: Carbonation is practically nil, somewhat watery, and viscous, ethanol character.

D: Quite good for a high octane brew like this one. It is quite good now, in one or 2 years it could be absolutely fantastic.

07-18-2008 04:41:26 | More by Halcyondays
Photo of Wetpaperbag


4.3/5  rDev +2.9%

2007 bottle in a normal pint glass.

A- A dark copper color, fluffy one finger width head on top. Some of the sediment did end up in the glass and is floating around.

S- A nice fruity smell, hints of pineapple and the smells of fruit juice. The hop smell is a great smell to have tickle the nose.

T- Very sweet, nice slight bitterness from the hops. There is a hint of spicyness that comes though at the end of the taste. The pineapple taste is more of a full flavored taste. It reminds me of the Fred, but more on the sweet side with more pineapple taste.

M- A slightly thick and oily feeling. Sweet and viscous.

D- Easy to drink, but better off as a sipping beer. The flavors really come though as the beer warms up. Another great showing from HOTD.

07-18-2008 04:39:17 | More by Wetpaperbag
Photo of Donnie2112


4.55/5  rDev +8.9%

2007 poured into an oversized wine glass.

so I spilled the yeast but it appeared to be a nice orangish hue with good carbonation and good head retention for the style. I dumped the yeast though and so now it's a cloudy burnt orange. still a very good looking beer

so much sweet citrus in the nose, mandarin oranges, grapefruit a bit grassy and herbal as well. The hops and the malts combine to create a citric nose experience.

caramelly, molassy malts just a bit of clovey yeast and plenty of snappy lemon zest hops. Absolutely wonderful

the carbonation is awesome, wonderful full body, smooth and oily just the right amount of cleansing astringence

this beer is very drinkable for the style and I enjoyed it a bunch! This brewery alone warrants a trip to Portland! I must go!


Put another 3 years on this beer, very good stuff. At this stage the beer is completely flat though. Still incredibly drinkable, great winter warmer for the great white north

07-07-2008 02:12:52 | More by Donnie2112
Photo of OWSLEY069


4.33/5  rDev +3.6%

Vintage bottle 2002.
Pours a hazy orange/ copper color with an off white head. In the aroma, sugary and plum like, and alcohol presence and a small hop in there too. In the taste, hops, plum/ fruitiness, and a hint of alcohol in the end. A bitter, medium to big mouthfeel and a semi-dry hop and alcohol in the aftertaste. Nice hopp presence, bitter yet smooth, big in alcohol yet hides it well.

07-05-2008 22:26:28 | More by OWSLEY069
Photo of thickerfreakness


4.38/5  rDev +4.8%

Thanks to younger35 for trading me this one at DLD.

It pours a murky, dark orange with a beige head and leaves decent lacing on the glass.

Really vibrant smelling. Citrus hops, orange peel, caramel malt, pine.

Really similar to the smell with the orange peel and deep, caramel malts really coming through.

Thick, creamy mouthfeel with medium carbonation. A real sipper though.

A really great barleywine. I loved the intense orange flavor and mouthfeel of this one but it is a pretty high ABV and gets a little too sweet towards the end.

06-25-2008 02:54:09 | More by thickerfreakness
Photo of dsa7783

New Jersey

3.6/5  rDev -13.9%

Single, twelve-ounce bottle purchased from New Beer Distributors in Manhattan on Chrystie Street...
Beautiful appearance... A slow and steady pour yielded a hazy and murky orange hue with a gigantic foamy and frothy head that exhibited enormous staying power...
Smell replete with a nice combination of malts and hops along with a dose of honey in the nose...
Thick, creamy, rich, ultra-sweet taste, bordering on cloying... The taste was extremely sugared with loads of honey, caramel, a hint of vanilla, molasses, and super-sweet syrup...
Mouthfeel was thick and creamy as well...
Drinkability was average at best due to the high ABV and slightly cloying flavors...
Definitely a good depiction of the style, but certainly a sipper more than anything...

06-14-2008 21:22:38 | More by dsa7783
Doggie Claws from Hair of the Dog Brewing Company / Brewery and Tasting Room
93 out of 100 based on 982 ratings.