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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.

1,570 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,570
Reviews: 835
rAvg: 4.09
pDev: 11.98%
Wants: 367
Gots: 294 | 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: 1,570 | Reviews: 835 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bifrostguard
3.73/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Golden in color with a tall off white head and moderate carbonation.

S - Smells of sweet malt, apples and maybe some dark fruit.

T- Almost too sweet for me, but good nonetheless and a solid beer. Apples, pears, sugar, alcohol and malt. If it was less sweet I think I would really enjoy this beer.

M - Nice and thick. Smooth and enjoyable.

D - So sweet that 12 ounces was enough. I could keep drinking this but I think I'll switch to something drier.

bifrostguard, Oct 13, 2008
Photo of lackenhauser
3.15/5  rDev -23%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bright, slightly cloudy orange in color with a huge, creamy and fluffy head that does not quit. Very hoppy aroma-has a big fresh mowed grass smell to it. Huge hop flavor dominates-almost to an astringent degree. Very puckering and almost sour. Needs a lot more malt to balance the hops. I realize this is a US version but it still needs some more malt please. Ok mouthfeel. Lacks even the oily slickness of a lot of hops. As much as I love US barleywines this one just doesnt do it for me. Way overhopped-even for a US Imperial I find it overhopped. Not my thing.

lackenhauser, Oct 09, 2008
Photo of cswhitehorse
4.03/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The Fred poured a dark golden with a wicked 3 finger foam head that looked like a pillow to lay my noggin down on. The lacing was sticky and encompassing.

The aroma had a nice hop smell with a slight rye and it was sweet. The taste was a rye malt that takes the forefront then you get the sweetness and then the alcohol hits you.

In the mouth it was silky smooth and leaves quite a mark on the tongue and roof of the mouth. It was well carbonated. I found it to be a good barleywine.

cswhitehorse, Oct 03, 2008
Photo of Hojaminbag
3.85/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Got this sucker in a trade with CCrida, thanks for the beer Adam.

Fantastic looking beer. A very dark golden to orange hue with a towering off-white head that is creamy. Retention is fantastic, leaving heaps of head throughout the drink. Lots of solid, sticky lacing left on the glass.

Smells very sweet with some darker malt character in there also.

A mix of very sweet and darker, almost bitter chocolate malts. Finishes with just a touch of alchol.

Mouthfeel is thick and creamy with some warming at the end.

Fairly drinkable, nice beer.

Hojaminbag, Oct 02, 2008
Photo of MisterClean
4.85/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

From bottle, though I should have reviewed when I was there in July.

A - Lots of head, as it practically burst out the bottle. Pours a nice golden copper, with white head. Leaves a nice lacing too.

S - Malts, flowery hops, and slight alcohol. The combination of the two leaves the beer smelling like a rose.

T - Um, excellent. Lots of rose flavors and very malty with a little bit of alcohol.

M - Well-balanced, just excellent again.

D - Although these were very expensive beers ($4 for a 12oz retail), they are well worth it as they are so tasty.

MisterClean, Sep 22, 2008
Photo of Mauerhan
3.83/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pours a coper/orange with little to no head. thin layer of film forms a ring around the edge of my glass. which leaves a subtle amount of lacing around the edge of the glass.

smell is heavy on the sweet. almost smells like brown sugar or molasses. very appetizing.

first sip catches me off guard. not what i was expecting from an american barleywine. very sweet. almost too sweet. then i let it play a bit. warm up to room temp and its great. almost as if i was eating a candied apple. yum. the sugar is prevalent and obviously the star of the show. this would be a great desert beer. paired up with an apple pie or strudel.

mouth feel is good. almost syrupy. leaves a lingering layer on my tongue. you get a bit of the booze at the end. but not much.

a relatively easy drinker. i wouldnt say its my favorite beer in the world but i wouldnt pass it up if i had the chance to drink it again.

Mauerhan, Sep 18, 2008
Photo of Gmann
3.95/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a cloudy blood orange color with an average white head that settled into a ring around the glass. The aroma is of honey, floral, sugary sweet, and a muted hop presence. The taste is sugary sweet, honey/bready malt, some grape/wine like flavors, and grassy hops. The Belgian candi sugar dominates, with the rye malt giving a slight spiciness and the PNW hops seem to trickle in at the end. The feel is heavy, slick and sticky: some booze-ahol burn in the nose. A tasty beer for sure but a bit sugary and sticky. Some Belgian yeast would have worked nicely with this brew.

Gmann, Sep 07, 2008
Photo of MuenchenerKindl
4.22/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle to a pint glass the liquid is dark gold with very nice carbonation. The head is big, 2 fingers of off white fluff, and leaves great lace with great retention.

The smell is good, a fruity mix of light malt and nice hops.

The taste is also very good excellent caramel and molasses malt, nice light fruity notes of apple and pear. The hoppy finish add excellent balance to a huge beer.

The mouthfeel is very good, very thick, and good carbonation

The drinkability is very good, it drinks like and old ale or barley wine. A must try for the Big Beer drinker.

Prosit, und Zum Wohl, MK

MuenchenerKindl, Sep 04, 2008
Photo of homebrewhawk
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Dansting. 12oz bottle, Batch 71. Served in a Duvel tulip. Bottle conditioned. Poured a hazy reddish gold with a thin white head. Spicy aroma with burnt sugar sweetness. Also a little alcohol. Full bodied and rich mouthfeel. Great malt complexity. Raisiny fruit. Some yeast esters. Maybe a little oxidation. Hop bitterness is restrained. Alcohol is warming. Definitely a sipper. Unique beer, very enjoyable.

homebrewhawk, Sep 03, 2008
Photo of 3Vandoo
4.47/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Fred, who is Fred? Fred the Barleywine, or Fred the old Ale...
Burgundy in color with a very shy head, not much retention at all.
Smell is sweet sugary, with some malty touches and caramel and some lactic flavours, lactose added? It reminds me of some hybrid with an old ale and a milk stout or I am totally going nuts. Both might be good!
Taste is of malted and milky lactic flavours, flavours of caramel and some shy butterscotch.

3Vandoo, Sep 02, 2008
Photo of kmeves
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy pale orange with a huge frothy off white head. Aroma is medium sweet with light caramel and citrus as well as a bit resiny. Flavor is big with a good deal of caramel malt and piney hops. Finishes long and sticky with a slight alcohol burn. Medium bodied, smooth texture.

kmeves, Aug 28, 2008
Photo of JohnGalt1
4.47/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 69.. not sure who I got this from because my record keeping has been shitty with HotD brews (If I had to guess, I would say ASymon13) ... but anyway, big thanks to whoever helped me catch the elusive Fred... poured into my New Belgium globe.. shared a small portion with Brenda.

Big 2 finger head out of the bottle.. I poured it fairly quickly.. nice lacing and the head sticks around forever.. brew is hazy orange.

Aroma is floral/spicy hops with some background citrus ... sugary .. and spicy.. reminds me of an American hopped BSPA... fruity with some peach and apricot... very nice.

I can see this being an American BW, but it is more complex than most... the fruitiness is bigger.. so is the spiciness... melon and some lime.. ginger .. toasty maltiness and some background caramel.. This batch of Fred at this moment in time is purely fantastic.. the fruitiness is playing perfectly with the hops and there is just enough sweetness to make the playground fun for everyone.

Hugely complex and wonderful.. but it seems so simple too. Thoroughly enjoyable and the alcohol never raises its head making me want more and more. Fred is a badass, so is whoever traded me this batch... thanks.


JohnGalt1, Aug 28, 2008
Photo of RustyDiamond
4.53/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 46, bottled on 12-12-02

Poured very slowly into my SF Strong Beer goblet. Striking deep chestnut red with a frothy perfect 2 fingered near-white head. Gorgeous when held to the sunshine.
Aroma of fig, sweet molasses, prune with a lick of phenol.
Plumy raisin taste, with a nice malty and somewhat hop flavor. Very warming, complex and delightfully drinkable. A tad of soy sauce and maple syrup but not too much to really notice.
I have been enjoying Fred throughout the years, and was surprised to learn I hadn't reviewed him yet.

Obviously, I'm a fan of aging this beer! I think I may have purchased Fred in Park City or from Plumb Jack in San Francisco during visits in the Spring of 2003.

RustyDiamond, Aug 26, 2008
Photo of cjgator3
3.83/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle
Batch 68

A- This one is a slow pour, the is a lot of carbonation in the bottle that creates a HUGE head that sticks around forever.

S- Very unique aroma that is very pleasant. A lot of sweet malt and caramel make up the nose along with some spices and earthy hops.

T- The taste is definitely not lacking in the flavor department, there is all kinds of things going on here that takes a while to put your finger on everything. I could sip on this thing for hours trying to figure it out. It is sweet and malty with caramel and brown sugar, along with spices and citrus and hops in the finish. There is also a good amount of booziness, not surprising though considering the 10% ABV.

M- Medium bodied with a high amount of carbonation.

D- This is a sipper for sure, no question and definitely a good night cap.

Overall, HOTD Fred is an interesting brew that is worth a try. I would love to get a couple of these bottles for aging. Recommended.

cjgator3, Aug 17, 2008
Photo of IBUnit63
4.22/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 71 into Coronado Brewing Company pint glass...

Austere copper mahogany- a clean, dark apple juice tone. Tight, wispy head with sparse lacing. Moderate rising carbonation.

Scent is pleasant but mild-yeast, spice of coriander and faint cinnamon, apples and strong malt backbone with faint alcohol tinge. Hops aren't really out in scent just yet...

...and now the hammer comes DOWN! There are the hops (almost lemon grassy with slight floral and citrus notes). Loads of oily caramel malt with alcohol balance.

Hop bitterness is rather poignant at back of palate. Spice is mild and consistent from start to finish as is caramel malt sweetness.

Definitely a sipper. Rolls heavy but wicked enjoyable.

IBUnit63, Aug 16, 2008
Photo of jwc215
3.95/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to bitterbill for this one!

12 oz. bottle - decanted into snifter carefully to leave sediment in the bottle, as per instructions on the label.

Pours deep golden with tight-bubbled white head that thins, but stays pretty well-retained for abv.

The smell is earthy, grainy, something "Belgian-esque" about it (bubblegum and some hay?), but with an American citric/pine touch. Interesting. Unique, for sure.

The taste is grassy/earthy becoming citric (grapefruity) and piney. Bubblegum/cotton candy sweetness balanced by bitterness. Alcohol noticeable, but not too sharp or overwhelming for alcohol level. There's a slight metallic sharpness that peeks through. An interesting taste that at first seems to go in different directions, but quickly blends together to work nicely/ It has a dry finish.

Medium-to-full bodied with just enough carbonation from being too syrupy/thick.

An interesting brew. It claims to use hops from five different countries. There are a variety of hop characters - ranging from graassy, leafy, to citric/piney, though they all blend together and interact well with the malts. The rye adds to nice dryness in the finish. A unique brew that shows creativity of American craft brewing well! Can become a tad "overwhelming", but "sips" well!

Thanks again - Bill!

jwc215, Aug 15, 2008
Photo of rxdrewthejew
3.88/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Got this at Vendome over the weekend. Batch number

A: Extremely murky amber color-this almost looks like a nectar it's so hazy. Practically opaque in the middle with just a bit of light coming through on the sides. Huge head, I got about 4 fingers although it eventually fades to two after the 5 minutes it takes to actually pour all the bottle into a glass. Head is off-white and heavily pitted, with really thick lacing.

S: Mild smell, the most prominent flavor is quite bready. Hard to get too much more through the head.

T: Complex mix of flavors here, and everything kinda comes out all over the place. Opening is fairly bitter and hoppy, pine and citrus, but mixed in and building in intensity right after the initial hops is sweetness. Candi sugar and tropical esters quickly give way to a massive bready backbone. Then it seems all the flavors mingle a bit towards the end, although overall I would call this a hop dominant beer.

MF: Heavy body, syrupy in the mouth. Carbonation is light on the tongue but seems more bubbly farther back on the soft palette. Finish is dry and biting with hoppiness, as well as a somewhat raw alcohol feel that I assume would improve with age.. Not much warming considering the ABV, but the alcohol is quite noticable.

D: Very unique for a barleywine...not used to having this much hop flavor, but it certainly wouldn't qualify as a IIPA. My only real complaint is that it's just too harsh...the hops are harsh, the alcohol is harsh and even the sweetness is a bit harsh. I would definitely recommend letting this one sit for a while...as I think that would improve the drinkability greatly. Despite that, it wasn't a particularly hard to drink beer, although one 12-oz bottle is more than enough for one sitting. Would recommend giving this one a try, for sure.

rxdrewthejew, Aug 12, 2008
Photo of woemad
4.43/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle given to me by my brother back in January for my birthday, as it matches my name. Probably purchased in Seattle at Bottleworks. Batch # 70, according to the label.

Poured a hazy copper color that took on a more apricot shade when held up to the light. Big, thick off-white head. Lots of lace.

Complex smelling beer, this one. The nose first becomes evident with a sweet maltiness. Brown sugar and sweet orange breakfast rolls are what jumps out. But there's a very substantial spicey backbone to this, along with a floral hoppiness.

The taste starts out with the sweet malts - elements of caramel and brown sugar - crashing upon the tastebuds. Then the spices kick in - coriander, orange zest, etc. Also, a more overt fruit flavor like pineapple in the background. There's a warming alcohol sensation that becomes more obvious as time goes on. Modest dryness at the swallow.

Medium bodied, with a slightly slick, resiny mouthfeel. I think hops are at their most evident in the mouthfeel, which is a first for me.

This seems like a Belgian-ish take on the barleywine style. I've never had a beer quite like it before. Not really drinkable in a sessionable sense, but it works well as a nightcap. I'll be purchasing this in the future. Thanks again, Bro!

woemad, Aug 11, 2008
Photo of JasonA
3.25/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Batch 66 received in a BIF in 06.

Uh oh. Pours a light carmel more unfiltered translucent than transparent. Virtually no carbonation present. I am worried about this bottle. Agitate, agitate, nothing. I am worried.

Light malt, maybe grapefruit zest, and some ABV. Maybe biscit, maybe hops.

Wow. Talk about against the sensal grain! Smooth malt, carbonation in the mouth, light bodied for the ABV. Better than expected (thankfully)

I finshed an Adam from the same 06 timeframe, cellared the same way. Though somehow it doesnt seem this bottle came through. Im going to chalk this up to a bad batch. While this isnt a horibble brew, it simply doesnt compare to the Fred Wood I had originally and the Adam I just finished.

This makes me think of Barley Wine and making a 'Light'. Medium bodied, not a huge malt character.

I almost dont want to submit this rating. Sorry.

JasonA, Aug 10, 2008
Photo of DIM
4.4/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

batch 71 sampled side by side with Fred From the Wood.

a: This was a clear, pale, golden copper color. It poured with a huge, fluffy, craggy white head that was sticky and long lasting.

s: Sweet aromas of candied sugar with just a hint of some sour rye. The hops aromas are unique and complex, smelling of perfumed pine with come grapefruit. Moderate levels of alcohol blanket everything.

t: Up front I tasted moderately sweet candied sugar that is blunted somewhat by sour rye notes with a hint of cherry. The dry hop finish tastes of flowery mild grapefruit. The warming alcohol at the very end is spot on.

m: Nice silky body, but despite the huge head, this felt under carbonated.

d: I enjoyed this quite a bit, but I wouldn't call it a barleywine. I rated this as a beer that does not fit into any category.

DIM, Aug 04, 2008
Photo of rye726
4.5/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I have wanted to try Hair of the Dog's beer for a while. This brew pours a nice copper brown and has a silky tan head. Excellent lacing. The nose is quite sweet yet well balanced with floral hops and spicy Belgian yeasts. The taste has tropical fruits, candy malts, sweet complex alcohols with a constant fruity hop presence. Delicious. The full body passes like silk over the palate. Nice blend of a Belgian Strong Ale and a Barleywine.

rye726, Aug 01, 2008
Photo of Tilley4
4.08/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I believe I received this one from joeybeerbelly, so thanks go out to The Belly...

This pours out a very hazy dark golden color with loads of carbonation... Steady streams of bubbles make their way up and fortify an already awesome head... Very attractive brew..

Pungent floral hop aroma wafting off of this mixes wonderfully with a sweet syrupy malty aroma that has me ready to get after this...

Whew... The hops are definitely present and at the forefront along with a fairly prevalent booziness as well... I probably should have let this one lay for a while longer but I couldn't help myself..this is good but its still a bit hot...

My first HOTD and while it didn't blow me away, I'd like to try some more offerings..

Tilley4, Jul 24, 2008
Photo of Foxman
4.28/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

It pours a very hazy amber with a center spike of cocoa brown. Four frenzied fingers of light tan head swell energetically and sustain and sustain. Flares of lacing project along the inside of the glass.

In the aroma, toasted malt and savory rye hint at a sugary sweetness. A light hop air joins crisp apple esters to blur slightly the honed edge of alcohol.

Upon sipping, the malt is touched by caramel and then the rye smooths the ground as the hops spice and the esters crisp with green apple and a mild aromatic effect. Further, the hops and esters dry any semblance of sweetness and permit a draft of toasty alcohol to shine through. A blush of biscuit precedes a considerably crisp onslaught of dry, lingering bitterness in the finish. What a sound, crafted, tasty concoction.

North of medium bodied, it's a slick flowing, lively carbonated palatal sensation.

It's an iconic beer, and unlike too many, it lives well up to its status. It has a comfy, homey character the brings a happy atmosphere to bear. The ABV is double-digit and a caution, but it's incorporated and blended like everything else, and worth the eventual tilt. Thanks, Fred, for being worth the wait and the time.

Foxman, Jul 23, 2008
Photo of Onslow
4.13/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured after a tough day on the trail .... wow, is a yummy beer, melts in your mouth and brain ... lots of sweetness ... alcohol is pretty well hidden ... good lacing ... can tell the candy sugar is in there ... is a very nice beer that is just damn enjoyable, would love to try the wood aged...

Onslow, Jul 21, 2008
Photo of bort11
4.83/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Solid punch to the face from JohnGalt1 and the Fight Club BIF.

12 oz bottle, batch #71, poured into a Ommegang flute. The head and to think about it for a few seconds before it decided to show itself. A quarter inch light tan froth that recedes quickly and leaves some spotty lacing. Color is a hazy caramel brown/orange. Small bits of sediment float by.

Smell is a malt bomb of sweet and juicy aromas. Banana and melon, spicy cloves and dark bread. Rich rye malts give it a tang. Taste is equally an explosion of sweet goodness. More bananas, caramel malts, ginger, brown sugar, oranges and passion fruit. Hops are more noticeable as it warms, but just adds to the spiciness.

Mouthfeel is thick and chewy. The last swallow has that tasty sediment grit. Damn this is good. Must get more.

bort11, Jul 10, 2008
Fred from Hair of the Dog Brewing Company / Brewery and Tasting Room
91 out of 100 based on 1,570 ratings.