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

Not Rated.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,621 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,621
Reviews: 840
rAvg: 4.09
pDev: 11.98%
Wants: 368
Gots: 296 | FT: 18
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: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Fred was created to honor beer writer and historian Fred Eckhardt. It is made with aromatic and rye malts and includes 10 different hop varieties.

10% alcohol by volume
65 IBUs.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-13-1998)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,621 | Reviews: 840 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ripdog
1/5  rDev -75.6%

ripdog, Nov 08, 2012
Photo of Frankieteardrop
1/5  rDev -75.6%

Frankieteardrop, Apr 17, 2012
Photo of Kaveman
1/5  rDev -75.6%

Kaveman, Dec 27, 2013
Photo of qazeqaz
1/5  rDev -75.6%

qazeqaz, Feb 13, 2014
Photo of JReites
1.06/5  rDev -74.1%
look: 1.25 | smell: 1.25 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Batch 88 bottle poured into a goblet glass.

A- Very hazy orange color upon pouring. No head at all.

S- Very strong smell of dark fruits, sweetness, and an overall off putting aroma. Can't put a finger on what the smell is I am getting.

T- Very sweet with hints of dark fruits. Not sure what is going on with the taste, seems to be very confused flavors overall.

M- Very thick and syrupy with a strong, warm alcohol presence.

O- Honestly I was looking forward to finally trying a beer from Hair of the Dog. I could not drink more than 2-3 sips of this one. Same goes for the rest of the people around when we tasted it. Poor flavor and hard to tell if this was still good. Have heard of problems with consistency with this beer, would try it or other HotD again, but only if offered as a sample. I am definitely not willing to pay full price for a bottle or draft of this or others until trying something better.

JReites, Jun 21, 2013
Photo of Osskjc
1.25/5  rDev -69.4%

Osskjc, Aug 05, 2014
Photo of earlholman
1.5/5  rDev -63.3%

earlholman, Jul 08, 2013
Photo of nhindian
1.6/5  rDev -60.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

12oz bottle poured into a Cantillon wine glass.

Batch 78.

To begin with: This beer is explosive. I poured a little bit of the beer gently into the glass and I was met with a rushing cloud of foam and carbonation. I had a half inch of liquid to 10-feet of foam. I literally had to scoop the foam out with a spoon to get it to a level where I could actually get a drinkable amount of beer into the glass. Their first beer I had from them was dead flat and this one's bursting with carbonation.

Anyway, onto the review.

A - After scooping out spoonful after spoonful of dense foam, I am left with about 2.5-fingers of incredibly thick, creamy head. This is the closest thing I've seen that resembles the head that Allagash beers get, but this one gets a little chunky at the top and doesn't budge. Even after sitting for almost a half hour, there's still carbonation and head sticking around on this, unfortunately as it's so thick I'd prefer if it went away. I find no faults with the body, however, as it is a beautiful amber gold with a lot of radiant glow to it. It's hazy, but it's easy to see the multitude of carbonation. The lacing benefits from the persistent head, as it coats it almost completely.

S - After taking my first smell of this, I can definitely tell this is off, as if the head and carbonation didn't give it away. It's full of tart green apples and is slightly sour. I can discern some yeast, malts, and bread, as well as some spices? The back has some citrus hops to it, but not much.

T - The flavors from this are just a mess in my opinion. From the tart notes, to the bready malts, to the overactive carbonation, this is a jumble of flavors that are not congruent at all. I am actually having a tough time picking out specific notes in this. Yeast, green apple, caramel, slight citrus hoppiness. All vying for pole position only to get blindsided by carbonation.

M - Mouthfeel is medium-bodied with too high carbonation. Again, this is the second Hair of the Dog beer I had in as many days that suffer from mouthfeel and carbonation problems. Adam was completely flat, and Fred is brimming with carbonation. Very awkward for the style and flavor profile and I can still feel it bubbling in my stomach.

D/O - Drinkability is low. I kept going back and forth on whether I should drain pour this, being conflicted that it might foam up and clog my drain and pipes, and then getting scared as to what is going to happen to my digestive tract. Eventually I lost the battle with this beer, getting knocked down by the yeast and carbonation, and then finally TKO'd by a surprising amount of sweet cloyingness that manages to rise from seemingly nowhere and assault me in the finish. Stay away unless you can get a guarantee you are getting a clean bottle, which from my now 0/2 track record from Hair of the Dog, makes me think it may be harder than it seems. Take out insurance.

nhindian, Jun 22, 2011
Photo of DarthGuitarHero
1.75/5  rDev -57.2%

DarthGuitarHero, May 05, 2013
Photo of bulldogg915
2/5  rDev -51.1%

bulldogg915, Mar 06, 2014
Photo of kmoen
2/5  rDev -51.1%

kmoen, Jan 12, 2014
Photo of BGsWo22
2/5  rDev -51.1%

BGsWo22, Mar 19, 2014
Photo of brianmandell
2/5  rDev -51.1%

Batch 92. Hazy golden pour with zero head. Visibly viscous.

The nose is very sweet with honey, caramel and hints of stone fruits. A touch of sherry.

Taste is quite similar to the nose except it is pervaded by a strongly unpleasant astringent bitterness. Flavors of sweet honey, vanilla, caramel, raisins and sherry come through along with an alcohol bite.

Mouthfeel is slightly viscous with no carbonation.

I didn't mind the lack of carbonation so much as I couldn't stand the astringent bitterness. Smells great but tastes awful. Drainpour.

brianmandell, Sep 05, 2014
Photo of trytoketchup
2/5  rDev -51.1%

trytoketchup, Dec 07, 2013
Photo of Hoptometrist
2.08/5  rDev -49.1%
look: 1.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Served from the bottle (Batch 88) into a globed glass

A- Poured a dark hazy orange color with zero carbonation, no head, nothing.

S- Big dark fruits (figs, dates), rye, honey, and tons of sweetness, cardboard, slight wet dog aroma. Not a great aroma

T- Pretty muddled, lots of sweetness, honey, graininess, rye, and marmalade. Some cardboard notes.

M- Very low carbonation, syrupy, fuller bodied, big alcohol warming. Drinks pretty flat overall.

O- I was excited to try a beer from Hair of the Dog but had heard bad things about carbonation issues and have avoided buying their bottles for that reason. This is my first bottle from them and it might be my last. Too much money to spend on unreliable quality issues. Their beers sounds really interesting, maybe I will catch some of their beers on draft sometime. Could not drink more than a couple of ounces of this.

Hoptometrist, Jun 15, 2013
Photo of shleepy
2.18/5  rDev -46.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Served from a small bottle (bought at K&L in Redwood City) into a snifter.

A: Dark amber, cloudy. Some yeast sediment floating around. Medium-high head with decent retention.

S: Caramel and floral hops. Maybe even some hot alcohol.

T: Wow, that's bitter and intense. There's almost a stinging sensation a couple of seconds after taking a sip. Bitterness in the aftertaste, as well. Other than that, there are a few complex flavors hidden in there - caramel, maybe liquorice, citrus.

M: Heavy. Medium carbonation. As I mentioned above, the bitterness is quite overwhelming.

O: Definitely a slow-sipping beer. I don't enjoy beers this intense, unless they're barrel-aged stouts or maybe barleywines.

shleepy, Apr 01, 2012
Photo of Trilogy31
2.3/5  rDev -43.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Batch 80 in a tulip. Pours a sunset amber with a beautiful frothy head and leaves nice sticky lacing. Unfortunately for me this is where the good looks end. Nose and taste is like a completly out of balance doggie claws. Overly sweet malts and citrus on the nose with little hop balance and alcohol esters more of the same in the mouth as well with a hot finish. Reminds me somewhat of stone old guardian 2011 which is not a good thing. Not a fan but at least its nice trade bait.

Trilogy31, Mar 28, 2011
Photo of nrb1
2.3/5  rDev -43.8%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

I had the same issue - 2 bottles totally flat. Not a hint of carbonation. No head. This is from Batch 88. Bummer. Will try to find a couple of bottles that are in better shape. Also have a couple of bottles of Adam, same batch. Hopefully not with the same problem.

nrb1, May 28, 2013
Photo of smakawhat
2.33/5  rDev -43%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

Poured from the bottle into a Hair of the Dog tulip glass.

Lifeless pour. No carbonation, just a gooey orange apricot glow out of the bottle, filling with an orange and a screeching lifeless faint tan collar on the edges. Nothing going on here.

Aroma is sweet malts and honey. Hop aroma hinting toward spiced pine, with some clove esters a bit. Sugary. Sucrose, and lots of syrup

Palate hints at what could have been. Flat flat lifeless body. Palate fills with a bit of woody hop and pine, but is overtaken by sugary syrup and sucrose thickness. Lifeless and overly sweet.

Remind me to never drink bottle Hair of the Dog ever again, I'll stick to the brewpub where the beers actually shine. This is a disaster, basically drinking liquid sucrose with a bit of hop bitterness.

--- Old review look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4 | Final 4.3

Fred consists of very yellow almost lemon yellow opaque appearance. A good solid head that doesn't seem to dissipate too quickly.

The nose on the beer is quite surprising. An overwhelming sense of tropical fruit, specifically mango, and sweetness. Tastes of a sweet sugary honey, but not of heavy alcohol that linger in aftertaste.

An enjoyable beer but depending on your preference for fruit you may not care for it.

smakawhat, Jul 12, 2014
Photo of harrymel
2.35/5  rDev -42.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Batch 80

A: Pours golden and lifts a fine white less than single finger head which thins to a sheet of the same. Slightly hazy.

S: Sweet grains. Apple skins (too bad). Floral, citrus, vitamin scents here as well.

T: Sweet, alcoholic, phenolic. Not real hop feel here. Woody tones.

M: Syrupy, heavy, moderate carbonation. Coats the mouth and remains resonate.

D: One's enough for me. Too sweet.

harrymel, Feb 26, 2011
Photo of kojevergas
2.38/5  rDev -41.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2

Identifies itself as a "Golden Special Ale." Batch number 84. 10% ABV confirmed. 12 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a conical Samuel Smith's pint glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Acquired at K&L Wine in Hollywood. Expectations are high given current ratings.

Side-poured slowly per instructions on the label. Served straight from the fridge.

A: Pours a 5+ finger light khaki colour head of fair smooth cream, nice thickness, and great (9+ minute) retention. No lacing at all. No bubble show. Body colour is a hazy nontransparent translucent orange. No yeast particles are visible. Generally appealing for a golden ale, with an impressive head. Decent vibrance.

Sm: Fresh orange fruit, mandarin oranges, malty sweetness, pale malts, tropical fruit esters, off-putting pineapple, floral hops, candied fruit, banana, some spicy graininess, light honey, clove, and heavy booziness. Alcohol definitely comes through on this one. Not the refreshing golden ale aroma I expected. It's a bit off-putting, to be honest. The tropical fruit mixed with the alcohol just isn't at all appealing; it's redolent of a crappy cocktail. A moderate to strong aroma.

T: Hrm. Candi sugar, heavy alcohol boozy character, tropical fruit, banana, mango, and overdone sweetness. Green apple. Maltiness here is poorly executed. The balance is crushed by the one-two punch of tropical fruit and alcohol. Ugh. Severely disappointed. No subtlety to this one all. There's decent complexity here, but without balance it's useless. Not liking it. Way too sweet. It's a mess; I'd point to the overly diverse hop varieties as problem-inducing here; that definitely feels like a marketing gimmick. Caramel (and why is this in a Golden Ale?).

Mf: Eroding in its sugary sweetness. Smooth and wet. Tingly from crystal malt. Way too thick, even syrupy and viscous - what is that doing in a Golden Ale? Doesn't suit the flavours all that well. Carbonation is too high, to boot.

Dr: Real hard to drink; the flavours aren't appealing nor is the ABV well hidden. I'm not gonna enjoy finishing this glass. I honestly don't understand the high ratings for this one; it's a failure as a Strong Ale and as a Golden Ale. Trying this makes me happier I haven't sought out Fred From The Wood. If this is the base beer, I don't expect much from any variant. Really disappointed in this one.


kojevergas, Mar 13, 2013
Photo of Brew33
2.4/5  rDev -41.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A very generous "want" extra from Black13. Thanks Michael!

I popped the top on this and began to gently pour into my Founders tulip. Fred produced a glass full of sticky foam and around 1 inch of beer at the bottom. After letting it settle for 15 minutes I stuck my nose in the glass. Herbal hops, alcohol, and light belgian candi sugar dominate the nose. Really a muddled mess that the excessive amount of CO2 didn't help at all.

I don't know if it was my high expectations or a bad night or if I really just don't like Fred but this is not a good beer based on my one bottle sample. Lots of candi sugar. The most prominent flavor I got out of this beer. Candi sugar is pretty darn distinct and I've used it in home brews before in small doses. They seemed to go overboard. Earthiness from the yeast and/or rye malt is apparent. I think the candi sugar and highly attenuative yeast really dry this beer out. Overly carbonated but the mouthfeel is creamy and pleasant. Yeasty, earthy, bitter, dry, boozy. An odd beer.

Overall, I don't get it. I'm sure the ingredients are top notch but it's a freaking mess. Too much going on with 10 hops, candi sugar, rye malt, and booze. Weird beer but I'm certainly glad I was able to try it.

Brew33, Oct 16, 2012
Photo of 2x10
2.46/5  rDev -39.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Spent way to much on this bottle. the batch I tasted was 4 yrs old. Maybe I am not a fan of aged beers. Very heavy mouthfeel, not friendly to the nose. Way to much bready taste and a HUGE belgian yeast aftertaste that lingered and did not go away. Nice to try something different, but we decided Fred can just lie in his bed, permanently.

2x10, Feb 18, 2013
Photo of Skye1024
2.5/5  rDev -38.9%

Skye1024, May 12, 2012
Photo of DrMindbender
2.5/5  rDev -38.9%

DrMindbender, Jul 17, 2014
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Fred from Hair of the Dog Brewing Company / Brewery and Tasting Room
92 out of 100 based on 1,621 ratings.