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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.

1,516 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,516
Reviews: 827
rAvg: 4.1
pDev: 11.71%
Wants: 359
Gots: 291 | FT: 20
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: 1,516 | Reviews: 827 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of alpinebryant


4.08/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

received in trade from kstrickler - batch 76

Poured a huge creamy white head with a hazy golden body.

Smelled strongly of booze, rye, caramelized sugars, candied sugar and a strong malt presence.

Tasted very similar to taste, a rich rye infused strong ale with a strong booze flavor. The finish really brings out the flavors of the Belgian candied sugars - it almost has a cotton candy like flavor at the end. Slightly syrupy body.

Carbonated enough to give it a huge head - the huge frothy head and yeasty flavors make this one a sipper for sure. Would be interested to see what this one tastes like with a few years on it , but only having one of these on hand makes that part difficult to manage aging.

Serving type: bottle

01-11-2010 00:39:32 | More by alpinebryant
Photo of Monkeyknife


4.4/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle a deep clear orange color with three fingers of rocky off-white head. The head fades slowly leaving behind a sticky lacing.

Aroma is bright with orange creme, rock candy, caramel malts, toffee, and apricot.

The taste is sweet caramel malts, hoppy orange peel, apricots, toffee, and booze.

Medium bodied, rich and smooth, with a moderate carbonation.

This was my first beer from Hair of the Dog and you can call me impressed. I now have a new favorite barleywine.

Serving type: bottle

01-10-2010 19:51:38 | More by Monkeyknife
Photo of Lunch


4.5/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served from a 12oz. bottle purchased at Shangy's in Emmaus, PA into my Cigar City snifter at the appropriate temperature (01/02/10).

A: Pours an slightly hazy oily caramel color with a one finger off-white head. The head dissolves rather quickly leaving only a cap, but it produces some nice lacing.

S: Wonderful aroma of caramel, toffee, and candied citrus blanketed in a tone of sweet booze. Malt certainly dominated the nose, but there is a very strong hop aroma as well containing some pine.

T: Caramel hits the palate first leaving some sugary layers of citrus and pine to meld into a malty concoction like no other I have tasted. The booze is slightly present throughout, but never in an overpowering way. The hops are slightly bitter with some tones of nectar and help to balance out this malt bomb. Very unique and pleasing.

M: Fuller-bodied with smooth and creamy carbonation. The alcohol is present leaving a prickling feel on the tongue in collaboration with the piney hops.

D: For the style, this American Barleywine is incredible drinkable even with the detection of booze in each sip. This beer drinks much less than its 10% abv. and mouthfeel lead one to believe.

Overall this was my first beer from Hair of the Dog and I have been singing their praises ever since. Very impressive American Barleywine with a lot of uniqueness and character. Highly Recommended

Serving type: bottle

01-04-2010 20:03:02 | More by Lunch
Photo of rfgetz

New Jersey

3.95/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy an rich copper brown color with huge off white head. Settled somewhat quickly. Good lacing. Smell somewhat mild and a somewhat medicinal blend of citrus rind, artifical sweetner, slight metallic twinge with hints of butterscotch, carmel, beer nuts. Taste is of rich, sweet carmel malts backed with a citrus rind and hop flavor. Booze noted on the back end. Some ginger and grassy bamboo noted. Full bodied, chewey yet good carbonation level. Interesting, complex yet smooth and mild on the palate.

Serving type: bottle

01-04-2010 16:40:20 | More by rfgetz
Photo of mikedashg


4.18/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A - pours a slightly hazy orangy copper color with a moderately small white even head. Great lacing on the glass.

S - Alcohol, boozy, orange rind citrus apricots candied caramel toffee malty goodness

T - Again, Alcohol, boozy, orange rind citrus apricots candied caramel toffee malty goodness. Tons of hops. Quite the powerful brew on the pallet. But what do you expect from a 10% american barleywine?

M - Moderate to moderately high carbonation, pretty darn creamy and smooth on the tounge, mmm mm good.

D - Really a tastey one, hits all the right notes, a little on the boozy side, but I kind of like it that way me thinks.

Serving type: bottle

01-01-2010 05:29:12 | More by mikedashg
Photo of MysterySwirl


4.22/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I got Fred from Liquid Solutions.

I thought this beer was a barleywine as said on BA, but it doesn't drink like one. It pours a clear dark gold almost orange/amber-like in its thickest concentration area of my glass. There's little head but the aroma is sweet -sweet -sweet! A bit bready, and spicy and a bit of alcohol. I can see why They say put Fred away to age for years.

I taste heavy malts/bready with hints of light fruit to give it flavor and it drinks spicy in the back of my mouth as I swallow it. This is a strong beer and I'd recommend letting it sit for a while, and when you do open one, enjoy each sip since it has lots of promise and aging potential!

Serving type: bottle

12-28-2009 07:34:48 | More by MysterySwirl
Photo of Jwale73

Rhode Island

4.33/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz. bottle courtesy of Thirstybird. Batch #74 served in my Darkness snifter. Poured the color of unpasteurized cider - murky with a half inch, creamy white head. Some sheets and spots of lacing exposed during the tasting. Nose reveals toffee, fruit and candi sugar. Taste consistent with nose with the addition of some hops bittering and a pruney/bready quality. Mouthfeel was medium bodied with a lively, active background effervescence with a slightly dry character that nicely offsets the sweetness in the flavor profile and cleanses the palate between quaffs. A delicious and enjoyable barleywine with a well-hidden abv. This beer improves as it warms and is a wonderful sipper. I defiitely need to track down some more HOTD offerings.

Serving type: bottle

12-27-2009 23:40:19 | More by Jwale73
Photo of beertunes


4.22/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is listed here as a barleywine, I disagree. This is from batch #74.

Poured into 16oz goblet. Poured a slightly translucent golden brown with a thin cap of just off-white head that dissipated instantly and left just bare traces of lacing.

A full rich aroma that featured earthy tones and fruity sweetness greets the nose. The scents are full and pleasing without being overpowering. The taste follows along, with a surprise of hop sharpness that wasn't apparent in the aroma.

The body was surprisingly light and crisp for a beer this big and hefty. Drinkability is very good for a beer this strong. Overall, a great beer. If you're expecting a traditional barleywine, this isn't it. As a strong ale, this beer is very close to my standard of that style, North Coast Old Stock Ale.

Try this brew and enjoy it for what it is.

Serving type: bottle

12-21-2009 01:55:18 | More by beertunes
Photo of kunstdrache


4.2/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This review is for batch 73

After a blow-up where I lost about 1/8th of the beer, I poured this goodness into my delirium tremens goblet. Appearance is a slightly cloudy with some sediment on the bottom (which I like). Smell is slightly sweet almost similar to Adam- some notes of fruit. Taste is just as smooth, with a slightly sweet taste, again like Adam, hops are faint but does make an appearance, albeit a short one. Mouthfeel is good, with some alcohol stirring the pot a little, but overall a good aftertase.

Like most of the HOTD beer this is a special beer, having more than one just somehow feels...wrong. Pair this up with the strong ABV and it boils down to being only drinkable up to one or two bottles. Still, its a great brew!

Serving type: bottle

12-17-2009 02:06:24 | More by kunstdrache
Photo of dgb3


4.08/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle from City Beer Store. #77 Poured into a New Belgium goblet.

Poured with a beautiful head.

It's still there... I've got about a thumb wide foam stand. Purdy.

Only thing is, can I get some more beer into the goblet? Please?

A: Color reminds me of the flesh of the persimmon I had for breakfast. Crystal clear.

S: Candied orange peel. Sweetness dominates the aroma.

T: Sweet up front. Toffee. Burnt sugar? Alcohol in the mid palette. Hop bitterness towards the finish that leads to a grainy/husky flavor. Maybe some oak at the end? Flavors linger lightly. Very pleasant.

M: Thick and coating with a spritzy carbonation.

D: Hides the 10% extremely well. Nice sipper. Enjoying it as it warms.

Hey! The head is there there!

Serving type: bottle

12-06-2009 07:23:01 | More by dgb3
Photo of k3n


4.28/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle, batch 71.

Clear, reddish-amber. My careful pour to keep the sediment in the bottle left me little to no head, which then died away to nothing. Careful agitation stirs up wispy bubbles, but that's it. Oh well.

The nose is all sweet malt, perhaps with a hint of some spice waaay in the background.

Taste follows the nose with huge malt sweetness up front. Despite the lackluster head, the mouthfeel is a bit prickly and lively, lightening up the heavy malt presence. Flavors continue with some fruit in the middle (apricot, peach) and the finish is again faint spices and ends faintly bitter. 10% alcohol is pretty much nonexistent.

Superb sipper for cold weather.

Serving type: bottle

12-06-2009 03:19:34 | More by k3n
Photo of Freethyhops


4.38/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12oz bottle thanks to trill. batch 70. what a fantastic extra.

A- pours an opaque light amber color. much lighter than I expected. a minimal white head was produced an reduced to a thin film almost immediately. very heavy lacing for the amount of head, though.

S- full of sweet caramal malts, with a nice pungent floral hop bitterness in the backround. actually smells a little spicy actually.

T- first impression isn't overwhelming flavor, but instead a very well balanced beer, that hides it's 10% unbelievably well. A load of sweetness is provided by, what I'm sure is, a massive malt profile centered around a load of Light/caramel malts. a nice bitter backround is present, along with a little breadiness, to balance out the sweetness. I usually find barleywines a little too "malt bomb" like, but this one is an exception to that. right in my comfort zone.

M/D- great mouthfeel on this one. fairly thick for a barleywine, with ample carbonation that accents the hoppiness to create a pleasantly crisp barleywine. this thing goes down super smooth. I wish I had WAY more than the single 12oz bottle I have. drinks almost as easy as an IPA.

Serving type: bottle

12-06-2009 00:24:20 | More by Freethyhops
Photo of mynie


3.98/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Massive, uncontrollable head. Large and rocky. Pour this fucker nice and slow.

Smells like a goddamn sonofabitch. Giant giant caramel, big dry hops and wood and then some sour, some sour right from the hops.

Tastes like just a bit too much. Wood, like the aged it with oak chips. Yes--yes I am familiar with the process of barrel aging. This seems different, somehow. Cheaper. The beeriness is like lamp oil only nice. First couple of sips I really hated it but, man, it grew on me.

What a bizarre, offensive beer this is.

Serving type: bottle

12-03-2009 03:32:38 | More by mynie
Photo of DanOLeary


4.55/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aroma: Sweet orange peel with a melanoidin malt backbone. Citrus hop aromatics lie behind the malt with hints of dark frut also lingering. The aroma is very rich with the orange presence becoming stronger as the beer warms.

Appearance: With a slow pour down the side of the glass the beer forms a massive billowy white head. I had to wait to pour the entire bottle. The beer is the color of diluted amber with a slight yeast haze.

Flavor: Initial blast of an alcoholic and warming flavor of dark fruit. Not hot. Rich malt complexity of fresh white bread, caramel, nougat, and toffee. Finishes with an alcoholic bite.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with medium carbonation. Not as much carbonation as expected considering the massive head. Clean on the pallet but with a slightly sticky lingering presence.

Overall: I was a bit disappointed in the fact that I couldn't even pour the entire beer at once, because of the bottle conditioning I wanted to leave the yeast behind but with multiple tips of the bottle I was sure to stir some up. Otherwise an excellent and complex, nicely sipping, warming ale. Great malt and citric complexities from the nose to the mouth.

Serving type: bottle

11-28-2009 04:15:30 | More by DanOLeary
Photo of olmatty


4.55/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Batch 76

Appearance- Pours a deep, cloudy, brown amber with a puffy white head

Smell- Earthy woodiness and hints of biscuit

Taste- Woody, earthy, a citrus zing, dry biscuits, brandy alcohol

Mouthfeel- Crisply carbonated, refreshing and yet powerful and palate filling.

Drinkability- I could happily drink many, but I'd probably pass out from 10% ABV.

Serving type: bottle

11-19-2009 08:04:53 | More by olmatty
Photo of largadeer


4.6/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another awesome vintage beer shared by HopHead84. Thanks, Shane. This review is for Fred batch 1, bottled October 28, 1997, consumed on November 8, 2009, making this just over 12 years old.

Gently poured into two snifters, this beer is tawny-colored with a slight haze. Half an inch of off-white head rises and slowly settles to a thin film. With plenty of carbonation, this looks great for a 12 year old beer.

The aroma is rich and nuanced. Oxidation has changed this beer quite a bit, and mostly for the better. It has developed notes of sherry, leather, wood and earth. The toffee and honey-like sweetness found in fresh bottles of Fred is still noticeable in the aroma, but hops have long since faded. I get a faint spiciness as well - allspice and nutmeg.

It's initially sweet on the palate, honey and caramel up-front, with more earthy, woody, drying flavors mid-palate. The body has held up quite well, as has the carbonation. I'm amazed at how gracefully this has oxidized, taking on port and sherry-like characteristics without developing any unpleasant staleness. The finish is bittersweet, flavors of toast and caramel leading into a woody, spicy aftertaste.

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2009 22:03:36 | More by largadeer
Photo of Pencible


3.7/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch 73. This poured a nearly opaque greenish gold with tons of head. It smelled like caramel and honey and creamy yeast, with sugary oranges and light copper hops. It tasted like sweet caramel and toffee and honey wheat, followed by strong waxy lemon and grapefruit, and a bit of sour yeast. It was somewhat thick with smooth carbonation, and had a lasting bitter aftertaste with alcohol warming. Overall this was a pretty powerful drink with unique character. Some flavor elements were good, but others were not, and they generally didn't mesh well. It had great body but the alcohol was harsh, so this was not easy to drink. Splitting a 12 ounce bottle was plenty for me. I would imagine this improves with several years of age, but I wasn't a huge fan of it at whatever age this bottle was.

Serving type: bottle

11-10-2009 20:28:32 | More by Pencible
Photo of jnn4v


4.05/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: incredibly foamy. Head filled 3/4 of the glass and took minutes to die down. Tons of greenish whitish milky sediment at the end of the pour.

S: candy, Belgian yeast, lemon zest, and honey. Some hints of orange and coppery scents on second try.

T: very sweet with nice caramel malts followed by hoppy bitterness and citrus tartness. Lemongrass and almost fresh ginger on second sip. Good balance and blend of flavors. Pretty unique.

M: felt thick but also very bubbly on first sip. Good weight, and decent Belgian texture.

D: very drinkable. 10% alcohol is well masked by the flavors and texture.

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2009 19:58:19 | More by jnn4v
Photo of morimech


4.35/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Batch 75

Unfortunately I was not careful on the pour and got quite a bit of sediment in my glass. So the result is a cloudy bronze color with a small white head that quickly settled to a thin cap. Not much for lacing. Has a very malty aroma with some Belgian qualities. I would not call it a Quad but the candied sugar and fruit notes are unmistakeable. A slight hint of alcohol. The flavor is very Belgian in qualities with its strong malt and candied sugar. Hints of dates, plums, and pears. Strong alcohol flavor and warmth in the finish. The strong alcohol aids in cleansing the palate. Full bodied with just enough carbonation to keep things alive. Has a very good texture.

A interesting beer that does not really fit into a style. A meld of English, Belgian, and American styles and ingredients. Wish I had more than this one bottle.

Serving type: bottle

11-07-2009 19:46:13 | More by morimech
Photo of biggred1


4.43/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Cloudy bronze colored with a massive eggshell head that takes five minutes to settle enough to be able to take a sip and leaves splotchy lace behind on the glass. The nose is fresh fruity hops and gingerbread spice. The flavors are great and grow more complex as it warms, imagine a Belgian quad with big, dank hops and caramel malt. A full bodied beer that begs to be sipped slowly and enjoyed. I'm glad I finally got my hands on one of these. A great beer that lives up to it's hype.

Serving type: bottle

11-03-2009 03:51:47 | More by biggred1
Photo of jujubeast6000


4.33/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed 8/10/2009 (Bottle batch#35):

Pours a golden orange colored body, with a small white head, diminishing. Syrupy aroma, sweet like something. Strong aroma. Some kind of syrup. Smells good. Strong taste, old and musty tasting. Syrupy taste, like maple. Woody taste. Sweet aftertaste, almost cloying. Very tasty, doesn't overwhelm. Some alcohol bite. Sticky sweet aftertaste, like syrup. Really good, not quite a sipping beer, could have almost a whole pint without overwhelming.

Serving type: bottle

11-03-2009 03:08:16 | More by jujubeast6000
Photo of WCBCFrank


3.03/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Hair of the Dog's Fred is a strong Belgian style golden ale - think of Chimay White with tons more complexity and notes of alcohol in the finish. This is a strong beer, somewhat sweet but typical of tripel-style brews. It pours yellow-copper orange in a goblet and has a medium head with good lacing. Aromas of ripe apples and sugar are appealing....tasty but a powerful somewhat sweet alcohol finish might perturb some taste buds. Overall, a well made brew, but for my palate not a home run.

Serving type: bottle

10-30-2009 16:25:58 | More by WCBCFrank
Photo of tai4ji2x


4.05/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

from either liquidsolutions or bottletrek, by way of stevemcqueenjr.

12oz bottle. batch #73. tasted in late may/early june 2009. poured into tulip.

deep coppery amber. almost clear, but some hazy/dusty sediment remains despite leaving behind 1cm in the bottle. small, 1-finger head only forms with a hard, vigorous pour. nearly white in color. a nice, nitro-like "reverse cascade" effect takes place tho. fades to thin wispy layer and ring. a sparse splotch of lace.

aroma: anise-like character upfront along with the citrusy and piney hops. grapefruit tones fade into apple and grape, then finally to a caramelized malt base.

taste: malts are more upfront here, with an apple syrup character. then back to piney hops with citrus (mostly rind and zest, but also a touch of fruity flesh), giving a moderate, resinous bitterness that lingers lightly. alcohol is perceptible, almost boozy, but not over the top.

medium body, w very syrupy feel. resinous notes in the finish, but still smooth. very gentle carbonation helps with the perception of smoothness. perhaps the most pleasantly surprising aspect of the beer, in fact.

Serving type: bottle

10-30-2009 09:12:34 | More by tai4ji2x
Photo of FarmHouseJam


4.18/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This brew pours copper orange, with a red hint in the middle of the glass put up to a light....

Smells great....on to the story

This is batch #76...

Appearance and drink-ability fit in the same category for me,

It poured to such a serious head at around 42 degrees it was impossible to pour in a glass without a cloth under it. Even a soft pour got such great head retention it was near undrinkable for 20 minutes. Maybe this is a brew of patience ordeal which I don't care for at the price I paid....$6 12 oz bottle in northern Indiana....

Fred has a very sweet smell, and finishes sweet too, very sweet.
the Candi sugar is a huge part of this, and without the rye malt to spice- it might have just killed this beer in my perception.

Seems hopped well to attenuate the sugar profile.

My end of story is this is a worthy beer of its price, its done well nice light color for its alc. profile.

The head retention made in undrinkable in my mind for 2oz pours or a whole bottle. After a sip and BA write the glass lip made my lips stick to it...almost too sugary for me....

This is me...so try it for you!!!

Support the craft anytime you can!!

Serving type: bottle

10-23-2009 06:05:26 | More by FarmHouseJam
Photo of sprucetip


4.38/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From notes. when I had this at Horse Brass it was called "Fred Strong." Maybe there is another beer by that name? But I'm going to assume that they are the same. (June 2012 updates in parentheses)

Clear, copper, good head, spotty lacing.
(2+ inches of head in the tulip, amazing retention, thick lacing).

SMELL Sweet, dark fruity, estery heat, spicy. Sweet and boozy, mainly. (same components but more synergy, complexity and balance than what I said before.)

TASTE boozy, sweet, spicy, raisins. Very complex and unique and difficult to describe. Hop presence is for sure, but not much bitterness. Intetesting. My notes say "reminds me of a barleywine."
(very rich, complex and balanced. Unique and special.)

FEEL full body, slick, strong warming. (super smooth, really nice and full.)

OVERALL Sipper. Sweet, tasty, s-l-o-w sipper. (This is special).

Serving type: on-tap

10-09-2009 01:05:52 | More by sprucetip
Fred from Hair of the Dog Brewing Company / Brewery and Tasting Room
92 out of 100 based on 1,516 ratings.