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Fred From The Wood - Hair of the Dog Brewing Company / Brewery and Tasting Room

Not Rated.
Fred From The WoodFred From The Wood

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

435 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 435
Reviews: 229
rAvg: 4.25
pDev: 10.12%
Wants: 495
Gots: 95 | FT: 10
Brewed by:
Hair of the Dog Brewing Company / Brewery and Tasting Room visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Aged in new, medium toast American oak barrels for at least 6 months

(Beer added by: freed on 03-28-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 435 | Reviews: 229 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by davod23:
Photo of davod23
4.35/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I need to give a lot more of my business to HOTD. Seriously. Poured from the bottle (2009) into a tulip.

Brilliant copper color with a half-finger eggshell head that shockingly sticks around a while. Perfect clarity. Very nice lacing down the sides of the glass. The beer clings to the sides of the tulip nicely when swirled. This is one pretty beer.

The aroma is very nice. It's not as robust as I have experienced in other barrel-aged barleywines (e.g., Perfect Storm, Angel's Share) but what is there is enjoyable. A sweet caramel, a spritzing of cherry juice - which is completely unexpected and awesome - oak, leather, with a hint of booze. Hops call from a long distance away.

Taste is great. I'm getting a host of bright fruit flavors that I do not typically associate with the style, but I'm completely on board with them. Cherries, peaches, and coconut served on an oak plank and drizzled with caramel. Some leather on the finish. How can I not have any more bottles of this?

Mouthfeel is good. Carbonation is perfect, body is medium-thick. It would be a perfect score, except I'd like it if it were a bit stickier on the finish.

Drinkability: This ale is leaving my glass way too rapidly. I could see myself drinking a couple of these in a night, which is saying something considering the alcohol content and the complexity of this brew.

Highly recommended beer. Well done, HOTD.

davod23, Aug 13, 2010
More User Reviews:
Photo of tectactoe
4.11/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Thanks to Kevin for bringing a bottle of this - always love me some Hair of the Dog. Fred from the Wood pours a very deep brown color, with some rust-laden and orange-tinted edges. The beer warps from being completely opaque at the core to quite transparent at its extremities. The head quickly settles to about a millimeter or so and lies somewhere between stark-white and beige.

Fred from the Wood is like smelling a stave covered in beer. Copious amounts of boozy-oak, hand in hand with a river of burnt caramel, molasses, and light brown sugar. There's solid notes of deep raisins, black cherry skins, and tobacco; signature Hair of the Dog. A reasonable amount of dark-fruit skin sweetness hashes through the booze and oak for pretty good aromatic balance.

There's plenty of up-front barrel, just as the nose would indicate. Oak, brown sugar, caramel, hints of apple and raisin and grape sweetness and a bit of booze. Despite the fact that Fred from the Wood is 10% ABV, thick, and heavy, the boozy aspect doesn't burn or get hot, rather it just adds a bit of warmth and another layer for complexity.

I really like the mix of deep fruit, sugary caramel, and boozy-oak that's apparent in many Hair of the Dog brews, and though Fred from the Wood may not be the best or most complex one of the line-up, it's pretty damn enjoyable. The key to Hair of the Dog's success is being able to "balance" these huge brews. It's certainly still a sipper, but it never becomes a chore.

Huge, sticky toffee and oak in the aftertaste, with a palate drying woody essence, up and a down. The body of Fred from the Wood is big, thick, sticky, and almost creamy. The carbonation is pretty low, and after about ten or fifteen minutes in the glass, you're left with a still beer. Somewhat fitting for the style, but a little more carbonation wouldn't have hurt.

Another extremely solid brew from Hair of the Dog. Their sleight of hand with these old ales and barley wines is really something to marvel at; they are the kings of the slow sippers. Fred from the Wood is unique in it's capacity of oak and ability to still drink so (relatively) easy for the heftiness of the brew. I'd like to get my hands on some more of this.

tectactoe, Jul 06, 2013
Photo of ricke
3.98/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2008 vintage.

A: Hazy orange/amber color with a stylish ivory-colored big and hard head that slowly settles into some chunky lacings. A really good looking beer.

S: Lots and lots of wonderful aromas of fresh/new oak barrels, very clean and well defined. Plenty of vanilla, Some notes of grassy and spicy hops. Candy. Perhaps a hint of fruit. A hint of alcohol.

T: A wonderful taste of fresh/new oak-barrels with big notes of vanilla. A tasty semi-sweet malty backbone beneath the oak character. The taste is quite sweet actually. Candy. Honey? Light hop aromas in the mouth. The finish is pleasant with a nice bitterness to it, some alcohol and mild phenols, and some spicy hops.

M: Medium body with a very smooth texture.

D: I really liked this one. A very refined and sophisticated character, yet with plenty of edginess to make things interesting. The aromas of fresh oak barrels in this one are amazing.

ricke, Aug 03, 2009
Photo of orbitalr0x
4.47/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 64. 12oz bottle from the bottling for RateBeer.com. Pours into my tulip glass a deep murky brown/orange with a nice inch of bubbly light tan head that stays the course. Plenty of active carbonation. Aromas begin with a cornucopia of fruits, caramel and hop resins. Citrus, pear, apple and pine weave in and out. A big oak aroma surrounds everything. Thoughts of a filled humidor come to mind. Yeast and spiciness run wild as well with a touch of vanilla. Wow, just a really complex, deep aroma here that draws you straight into the glass.

First sip brings rich caramelized malts and a great melding of fruit flavors as well. Citric, piney hop resins move in along with big woody oak tones. A nice yeasty spiciness runs underneath. It flows down with a touch of vanilla, tobacco and a solid bitterness on the finish as well. A bit of alcohol comes through too. Overall, a wonderfully tasty, interesting brew.

Mouthfeel is viscous with a chewy body and good sturdy carbonation to support it all. Not overly heavy or syrupy at all. This is right on and drinks like a treat. Overall, the wood aging really adds a wonderful twist to Fred and I only wish I had more than one bottle. A truly awesome brew that's worth seeking out. I hope to have the chance to try this and Adam From The Wood again sometime!

orbitalr0x, Jul 31, 2007
Photo of JasonA
4.35/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz from my main duck in BIFIII. Batch #64.

First let me say it was recommended I let this sit. Due to me not listening before I opened, I am drinking it now. Maybe I can get my hands on another bottle at some point :)

Pours a cloudy light copper. Lots of head with significant lacing. Looks yeasty to me. Not what Im used to for a balrey wine

Smells delicous. Some sort of fruit I cant place, yummy. Is that hops I barely smell? Dont smell any of the 10abv which is nice.

Taste seems very full with a wide range of flavors. Sweet alcohol initial, floral hops maybe in the middle, ending with the fruit smell I cant place. Tastes very very good. Taste also has staying power. Like its sitting in my mouth reminding me there is still some left in the glass.

Mouthfeel is wonderfull. Carbonation moving but not exploding. Almost creamy for a barley wine. Not what Im used to at all.

This beer is very drinkable. Teeters on the drinking side, but should remain on the sipping side. I would love to get my hands on more of these at some point. I have 2 other HOTD to go through, very excited.

JasonA, Nov 21, 2006
Photo of NWer
4.93/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

At the brewery. Murky brown appearance. Aroma is overpowering from the get-go. Just taking in the aroma from the glass is time well spent.
First sip is a wow. Very nice. Strong alcohol prominent. A little sweetness balances out the hops perfectly.
A very good sipping beer that reinforces why I prefer beer to other alcoholic choices.
It took a long time for me to make the effort to stop at Hair of the Dog Brewery. It won't take much of an effort to go back for a second visit.

NWer, Sep 10, 2011
Photo of warnerry
4/5  rDev -5.9%

warnerry, May 11, 2014
Photo of TimoP
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

TimoP, Oct 25, 2013
Photo of badbeer
3.58/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Amber color with a white head and bits of lacing. Head quickly recedes to a ring around the glass. Hoppy aroma, like a mixture of pineapple and pickles (strangely); there is also a little bit of oak. Woody taste with sweet caramel that comes through before a pineapple finish. Medium carbonation and body. This was Batch 64. Pretty good, but I wouldn't go nuts about it.

badbeer, Dec 28, 2008
Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2009 vintage.

The beer pours an amber color with a off-white head. The aroma is full of oak and dark fruit, with a little bit of cherry coming through. The flavor is a lot more complex. I get some oak and wood notes, as well as some cherry and cinnamon. There is also a strong yeast character, as well as some caramel malt. Overall, the oak is quite strong. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. Glad I got to try this one.

Mora2000, May 02, 2012
Photo of Cynic-ale
4/5  rDev -5.9%

Cynic-ale, Oct 14, 2013
Photo of jpbebeau
4.75/5  rDev +11.8%

jpbebeau, Jun 08, 2013
Photo of glid02
4.43/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared by Paul - much obliged!

Pours a slightly hazy dark copper color with a half-finger off-white head. The head recedes into a thin layer on top leaving solid lacing.

Smells of smooth caramel malts with good amounts of oak and lighter amounts of spices. Also present are mild amounts of medium fruits.

Tastes very similar to how it smells. Light caramel malt flavors kick things off and are joined quickly by mild amounts of medium fruits. Midway through the sip good amounts of oak flavors work their way into things along with earthy hops. Faint spices make an appearance before fading into a moderately bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a nice thickness with grainy carbonation.

Drinkability is very good. I finished my glass quickly and could easily have another.

Overall I enjoyed Fred and I was happy to see that Fred from the Wood didn't disappoint. Well worth a shot.

glid02, Aug 08, 2010
Photo of kevwcamp
4.25/5  rDev 0%

kevwcamp, Jul 30, 2013
Photo of Reino
4.38/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance- After pouring very cautiously, I'm left with a creamy white two-finger head in my snifter. The head sticks around for awhile as big bubbles cling to the side of my glass. The body is a beautiful, burnt-orange color with very nice clarity.

Smell- A beautiful blend of sweet tangerine, mango and oak character with just a tiny bit of heat. The vanilla from the wood really makes its presence felt while melding all the scents together. A very pleasing aroma.

Taste- Those juicy tangerines show up again but this time are accompanied by a sharp, white grape juice flavor. There's a strong, malty base that is almost matched by some hop bitterness. Nice vanilla and [what I'll call] brown sugar flavors are present for a lot of the ride. The finish is where the oak comes in and it brings with it some heat, and something almost peppery. That pepper might actually be some piney/earthy hops mingling with the booze. Finishes pretty dry except for some tangerine that manages to linger on the back of my throat. There's quite a bit of depth to this beer and each sip brings something different out.

MF- A gorgeous mix of thick creamy body and a nice medium/low carbonation. If you've drank a flat Fred or Fred ftw before, and I have, you know that it is extremely syrupy in body. However, this bottle has carbonated the perfect amount in the bottle giving the fullness just enough lift, but still letting it massage the tongue and throat on the way down (that's what she said).

Drinkability- Goes down pretty easy considering the abv and complexity. If this came in bombers I could see myself putting one down by myself without thinking twice. This is a great beer. That Alan is either a mad genius, or he keeps getting lucky. I'll assume the first until proven otherwise.

Reino, Jan 15, 2009
Photo of pwoods
3.83/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Huge thanks to OHLRangers for the very nice extra from our trade on DLD.

12oz. brown bottle poured into a snifter.

A: Pours a fire-y slightly murky deep oragne. A modest head forms but can't hold too long. Some lacing throughout.

S: Good woody notes with a bit of earthy sweetness. Soft alcohol aroma with some spicy and citrus hops. The hops have a bit of age showing. Big sweet malts.

T/M: Big malts, sweet but not as much as I thought from the nose. Alcohol is pretty big, lots of complexity. Alcohol gets really big as it warms further... I can dig it but I could definitely see this being a draw back. More of the aged hop build with some citrus and spice. The wood has melded nicely with the alcohol and lends further woody and earthy flavors. Low carbonation makes the body feel fuller than it probably would be and a bit syrupy.

D: Definitely a sipper. Not the most drinkable but tasty and would work as a good night cap.

pwoods, May 06, 2009
Photo of hughesm4
4.18/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had a bottle poured into a pint glass.
a-Beautiful beer, has a light orange/copper around the eds-ge of the glass and a is a very cloudy amber in the center of the glass.
s-It is very sweet and malty smelling with a variety of fruits.
t-Taste is much of the same with a caramel sweetness taking the lead and and a crazy almost bitter balance of fruits following up.
m/d-Extremely sweet and full bodied. My only knock on the beer is that it seems too sweet, but it is delicious non-the-less.

hughesm4, Aug 22, 2010
Photo of timc100
4.68/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

2013 vintage

A: Pours a gorgeous murky brown with slight hints of the gold from non BA Fred. Sits a a very murky, dark ruby brown. Amazing head, considering the aging and abv. - dense, creamy rustic looking beige with substantial retention and sticky lacing that last throughout.

S: Huge! The barrel aging has done wonders with the base. Big flavors of organic woodiness, tabacco, some oaky vanilla and a little leather. As it warms some cherry comes through and cocoa powder. Being as fresh as it is, the crystal malts and bright hops are still there. Also some very slight oxidation.

T: Almost as amazing as the aroma, but less vibrant and complex. The huge notes of wood and tobacco come through along with some smooth oaky vanilla. More chocolate and some caramel. Getting a little big of some dark fruit, wish there were a little more, and a lot less of the base beer than there was in the aroma. Very organic and woody

P: Incredibly smooth, barely any alcohol heat to speak of, proper soft carbonation. Really highlights the flavor. Medium to full in body, definitely doesn't feel big as much as full

O: What else to expect from HotD? They make amazing beers. The oak aging has been done with tact and understanding of what flavors can be extracted and complimentary to the existing beer. I would to have an older vintage, but this certainly drinks well fresh. May actually prefer this to the bourbon variant.

timc100, Jun 02, 2013
Photo of weonfire
4.25/5  rDev 0%

weonfire, May 02, 2013
Photo of biboergosum
4/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A splendid treat to find available upon cycling to the taproom in Portland.

This beer appears a cloudy dark reddish amber tone, with one finger of creamy off-white head, which settles slowly, eventually rendering a berm-like ring of lace around the glass. It smells of singed caramel, toffee, vanilla, astringent bourbon barrel wood, and leafy, deep dark woodsy hops. The taste is sweet toffee, warming alcohol, a lessened vanilla woodiness, and equally tamed earthy hops. The carbonation is quite low, the body full and slickly smooth, but somewhat prickly at the same time. It finishes sweet, under a rock overcrop of suppressed booze and oily barrel wood.

Pretty sweet - good thing it came in a small glass - but the booze and hops keep things from being cloying or hysterically overwrought. Nice, if skewed barrel characteristics are your thing.

biboergosum, Jul 13, 2011
Photo of mdaschaf
4.25/5  rDev 0%

mdaschaf, Aug 15, 2013
Photo of MrVonzipper
4.25/5  rDev 0%

MrVonzipper, Jan 18, 2013
Photo of seanthornton152
5/5  rDev +17.6%

seanthornton152, Nov 16, 2011
Photo of Metalmonk
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Batch 64...and a big thanks to msubulldog25 for the bottle. Hail thee, Sir Brian, of Port Lands.

Pours into the Lucifer snifter glistening like fine spirits...deep, dark copper color with some haze sits under a really creamy head made of tiny compact bubbles. Head lasts a very long time, extraordinary for a 10% barleywine. Gorgeous beer. So far, so great.

Unmistakable oak aroma also reveals freshly mown grass, whisky, and even mint. I'm not an oak-barrel expert, but had I not read the label, stating this was aged in "new American oak barrels", I might have guessed the barrels were new anyway, as the aroma lacks that musty scent of beers that are aged in older barrels bought used from wineries and distilleries. Or maybe I'm talking out of my ass...either way, the clean, potent, freshly-cut oak smell is entrancing.

The flavor is heavy on spruce, reminding of a fairly obscure Belgian called La Forestinne. It's up-front in the flavor, but if you try hard you can swim through it and also taste spearmint, brown sugar, caramel and fresh-cut wood. Not just one of the most unique barleywines I've ever tasted, but one of the most unique beers period. It's solid and has a strong character, not just strange for its own sake.

Mouthfeel is frothy and dense, like steamed milk with carbonation, really excellent and another unique element of this beer's multi-faceted character.

Super-delicious, but it's so unusual that I probably wouldn't recommend it as any every-day type thing. (and heck, it's retired anyway.) Also seems like it would do well laying in the cellar for a few years. But as is, this was a real treat.

Metalmonk, Jan 21, 2007
Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.03/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to a very generous and patient blisscent for this amazing EXTRA!

2008. Pours a nice looking golden orange with a slightly hazy body, and a nice stark white head that hangs around for a good while and leaves good lacing.

Nose is very complex. Malt sweetness, some pretty strong spice, deep earthy tones, some butter, and a bit of wood and alcohol.

Whoa. Intensely complex flavor. Very malty. Sweetness of dark rum soaked fruit comes out with force. Maple syrup and fall spices come into play as well. Tobacco. Very complex. Hop profile is less than i expected, but still very much present. Subtle bitterness creeps up on the finish, and eventually provides quite a bitey and dry aftertaste. The wood and alcohol are still quite strong in this bad boy. Very sweet yet. Sugar resides on the lips after putting this one down.

Mouthfeel is on the viscous side. Very much so. Damn near syrupy. I would love this one to be a bit thinner. Just a bit. Carbonation is good. I was worried about that with adams track record in that dept. but this one is just about right.

Drinkability is good here, but this one is still quite hot. I would imagine that this would do very well with a few years of age, and this category score would improve somewhat, but as it sits, this one is a bit hot. The viscosity also hampers it a bit, but this is drinkable, relative the BA barleywine world. haha

Overall a very nice and impressive creation from HOTD and the black cualdron vat kettle of doom. A very well crafted beer, one that is defenitely made for a cold cold night with snow and wind and a fire in stove. Sweet, rich and malty, this one is a sure sipper. Another hit from HOTD. Recommended. Good beer.

AKBelgianBeast, Oct 21, 2008
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Fred From The Wood from Hair of the Dog Brewing Company / Brewery and Tasting Room
94 out of 100 based on 435 ratings.