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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 surfer4life
4.18/5  rDev +2.2%

Poured into a snifter from a 12oz bottle.

A - Pours a dark amber, with a huge head. Lots of lacing.

S - Smell was very fruity but bordering on funky. Would almost think it a sour from the smell.

T - High amount of alcohol taste, oranges, hops and some caramel malts.

M - Medium body with higher carbonation level. Very good on the pallet.

D - Highly drinkable which is a bit scarey considering the alc content.

surfer4life, Mar 08, 2009
Photo of SeattleAdam
4.18/5  rDev +2.2%

A- Wow. Not much head. Opaque amber-brown. Is mine flat?

S- This smells big and like honey.

T- This tastes a like barely-wine. I'm not complaining. It's big and warm in the middle and ends with a big note of honey. The honey is not over powering and not too sweet. It tastes sooo good.

M- Not as heavy as it smells. Syrupy but not sticky. Kind of like honey tea. Under carbonated.

D- I like it a lot. I would have as many of these as I could. I do love barely-wine (even those this isn't one). 10% ABV can be tasted but doesn't overpower and the honey perfectly balances it out.

SeattleAdam, Apr 30, 2009
Photo of Tupperwolf
4.18/5  rDev +2.2%

What the heck? I should be more observant.

I read 'golden special ale' on the bottle and assumed that this would be, I dunno, an American Amber Ale or something. NO. It's a barleywine. That 10%ABV note on the bottle is way too small. There goes my lightest to heaviest lineup for the night.

So, after pouring it a bit wrongly into a pint glass, I get a tall pint of dark amber-brown liquid capped with a sticky, creamy head that leaves a ton of lacing, but... unfortunately.. is full of tiny bits of swirling particles. Probably coagulated proteins. Nothing wrong with the beer, just a little off-putting.

This is a nicely complex beer in smell and in taste - hell, it should be, with standard and rye malts and TEN different hop varieties. You know, I keep trying these beers with a ton of different malts and hops, and they always turn out great (He'Brew 9 springs to mind). It's impossible to describe the smell of this brew because there's a lot going on, but it's deep, rich, and flavorful.

Lots of caramel, hazelnut, rye, hoppiness, chocolate, coffee. Very complex and tasty.

Thick, but drinkable on the palate; Smooth, medium-heavy, with a lightly lingering aftertaste.

Nicely drinkable, tasty barleywine!

Tupperwolf, May 04, 2006
Photo of canucklehead
4.18/5  rDev +2.2%

Cloudy dark gold with a good head, this beer grabs you by the lapels and makes you take notice. Lots of hops with a slightly sweet finish this is balanced yet bold in flavours. Like all of the beers from these guys I am impressed with the quality involved and heartened by the limits pushed.

canucklehead, Sep 09, 2004
Photo of sockeye101
4.18/5  rDev +2.2%

Poured a deep amber/orange with a huge frothy head and left some nice lacing. The aromas were sweet, fruity, with a bit of toasted caramel. The flavor a beer of this size was very nice. Hop bitterness up front then quickly squashed with a sweet, caramely, malty smoothness and then finsihed with a lingering bitterness. Alcohol is masked beautifully with this one. Mouthfeel, creamy smooth and delightful. Overall a very nice drink...

sockeye101, Oct 19, 2006
Photo of FarmHouseJam
4.18/5  rDev +2.2%

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!!

FarmHouseJam, Oct 23, 2009
Photo of blitheringidiot
4.18/5  rDev +2.2%

Quite the elaborate 12 oz'er bottle declaring "Batch 56."

Pours a foggy peach amber hue topped with a solid dense craggy ivory head cap loaded with tiny beading rising tall. Lace left behind is a glass coating residue of impressive ingredients.

Scents are an intrussive wicked tangerine hop blast along the lines of a De Ranke.Bold bright citrus orange and grapefruit.

First swigs: Citrus assault. Grapefruit rind and a firm malt backing. Incredibly sharp balance. A stand up brew. Hop and citrus bite leads a tongue attack.

Feel is firm medium with a taunt sharp powerful carbination with a kick! A bit warm in the throat going South. Acidic sizzle adds to the heat.

Last swigs: Reminds me an awful lot of 120 minute. Style transcends the golden ale designation. Leans towards a double IPA, really. Well, who wants to argue over the style. A beer that immediately makes me want more. Poured out $4 smackers for this gem at Tops Liquors in Phoeniz, AZ. 146/4.09

Beer is good. Happy strong hoppy quirky beering.

blitheringidiot, Nov 18, 2005
Photo of Knapp85
4.18/5  rDev +2.2%

Snagged a bottle of this at my local place, one ofthe first beers I bought from there actually. This was something I had wanted to try since I enjoyed ADAM so much. The beer poured out as a nice hazy honey colored brew. It's not transparent at all. The beer looks to be pretty thick. The head it's pretty good to for a little while. The smell of the beer is strong with sweetness, boozy malts and a good dose of hop aromas too. The taste is sweet and has some elements of honey in there to me. There is a zesty hop bite in there as well. The flavors of maple I think are even coming through in the aftertaste. The mouthfeel of this beer is pretty heavy. It's got a nice oily body to it that coats the mouth and lingers for a long while. Overall I'd have to say this is my favorite HotD release yet.

Knapp85, Jul 01, 2011
Photo of Scrumtralecent
4.18/5  rDev +2.2%

Poured from a bottle into a snifter. Batch 81

A - Golden orange with a thick white head. Looks like a good amount of carbonation that keeps the head lingering. Head lingers for a long while.

S - Belgian spice, citrus, some grain that makes it feel like almost a very imperial pilsner.

T - Hmmm, first impression is a candied Belgian. Has a underlying smoothness, but an intense sweet candied flavor on top of that. Quite sweet, makes me feel like a little kid eating candy, like this beer is incredibly bad for me in a good way. Hops and some alcohol burn poke around in the aftertaste slightly, but the sugary sweetness along with Belgian flair dominates.

M - Quite carbonated, but brings some silkiness. Coats the mouth with flavor which makes it medium bodied. It was a sipper for me.

O - Very intense sugary goodness with Belgian flair. And I like it. It is quite bold, and attacks the palate on all fronts. It looks like a nice bubbly little Belgian and proceeds to blast you with sugar candy dipped in some hops. Very drinkable and a good late night beer.

Scrumtralecent, Oct 13, 2011
Photo of BigHead
4.18/5  rDev +2.2%

A honey colored brew with a definite haze. The aroma gives hints of the rye malt and citrus. Right away, they hops are apparent followed by the citrus flavor, almost grapefruit in nature. After a few sip, some of the spices spring up in the flavor, not overpowering, subtle. The hop character and citrus undertones make this an intriguing beer. It's not a beer that I could drink a lot of but is very tastey!

BigHead, Apr 05, 2003
Photo of sisuspeed
4.18/5  rDev +2.2%

Batch 75

Poured into a Portsmouth tulip glass. Orange-grapefruit in color with a thin creamy white head. Sudsy lacing left on the glass. The head actually has some nice staying power. An elegant looking barleywine.

Cherries, grapes, apples and some alcohol on the nose. Sugary sweet candy malts. Honey and even a touch of citrus. Light, floral hop bitterness.

Sugary, fruit-infused, malts on the tongue followed by honey and some alcohol heat. Grapes and apples mixed with sticky, piney, hop bitterness. The Belgian candy sugar comes through nicely.

Mouthfeel is extremely smooth, almost velvety, which is probably partly due to the extremely low carbonation. The bubbles are there, but I think the mouthfeel could improve with just a tad more carbonation. A good amount of warming alcohol and some decent hop bitterness.

Drinkability is good. This is a sipper, like almost any barleywine, and the ABV is definitely noticeable, but doesn't hinder any aspect of the enjoyment or flavor.

Overall, this is a very well done American Barleywine. It's on the maltier/English side, but that's what I prefer anyways. Really glad some California BA's hooked me up with this beer. I've got another in the cellar and I'm excited to see what a couple of years does to this beer. Worth seeking out.

sisuspeed, Jul 15, 2010
Photo of BigJYoungblood
4.18/5  rDev +2.2%

Very very good beer, very fruit flavor that does a very good job of hiding the alcohol flavor, although it is still there in the aftertaste. Pours a clearish gold with good lace. Very enjoyable beer and during a long day just one alone did me good, which just so happened to be how many I had. Purchased while at the brewery having a flight taster, was my favorite that was in to go bottles and not just a growler, Batch #89

BigJYoungblood, Aug 23, 2013
Photo of Scotchboy
4.18/5  rDev +2.2%

Batch 80. Poured into a Stella Artois glass.

For the record, this beer wasn't anything that I expected; from presentation to the mouthfeel this beer surprised me at every turn.

A: Poured a golden straw color, with tons and tons of creamy off-white head that clings to the glass and sticks around. This beer is well carbonated and appears pretty clear despite the fact that it is bottle-conditioned.

S: Malt forward; caramel and toffee, fruity esters, sweet moist breadiness, a touch of alcohol. Spicy and earthy hops underneath, but the sweetness and candy sugar really shine here and pull all the aspects of the aroma together. Really big and complex.

T: Its a sweet beer, with waves of candy sugar and sweet bready malt, but the spicy hops are underneath and prevent this beer from being one dimensional. In the end it works together, the fruitiness and the sweetness and the hops, but its almost too much. Between the sweetness and the alcohol heat on the back end, the cellar would probably calm this beer down a lot in a year or two.

MF: Like a good American Barleywine, this beer feels juicy and big. The carbonation does move everything around though and keeps the sweetness from becoming cloying.

O: Its a darn good beer, but teetering on undrinkable to me (although I think HotD did exactly what they wanted to do here). But to me its a good beer now, as a sipper. We'll see how an aged version holds up. This beer also convinced me to give HotD another shot, since my Batch 77 Adam experience nearly ruined my opinion of the brewery.

Scotchboy, Mar 27, 2011
Photo of BastardKing24
4.16/5  rDev +1.7%

$4.99 for a 12 oz and a 92 rating, I'm about to see what the hype is. Poured dark gold without any head. Hmmm so its flat? I dont know let me see then "Sip" yeah its borderline flat. Oh well at least its tastes ok.

Smell is a wonderful bouquet of flowery esters and fruit. Peach, apricot, wet hay, strawberry, some banana, just a really interesting complex smell, very unique.

Taste is very intriguing. Main flavor I get is golden raisin, in a big way. Never had a beer taste like this before. Other fruits come to mind, like apricot, pineapple, sweet syrupy goodness, but It's even more so because this bottle was not carbed well. Anyways, kind of belgian like, I dont know if from the yeast or hop combination or what, but its like a condensed belgian triple. Big flavor profile with a strong alcohol taste. It's pretty hot, more so than other 10% beers.

mouthfeel is slick and syrupy, hardly any carb on this one but I am enjoying it anyways. If this beer typically has more carb then I will give it a 4. Must be a bottle defect or yeast problem. This is ever so slightly carbonated to keep it from being all flat, but still needs more.

Over all this is a very unique beer and its way different than anything I've had before. My second Hair of the dog beer, as I have had Adam before. Looking forward to trying some of their other beers but I won't buy this again as it was a unique experience and I think thats enough, for 5 bucks.

BastardKing24, Dec 13, 2013
Photo of lorenwhite7
4.16/5  rDev +1.7%

lorenwhite7, Aug 12, 2014
Photo of orbitalr0x
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%

Batch #57. Fred departs the bottle a dirty amber orange brown hue with a huge pillowy white head in my tulip glass. Wow..thick patchy lacing sticks to the side of the glass as the massive head slowly works its way down. Impressive. Big spicy, citric hop notes battle each other as they waft up into my nostrils. Hints of pepper mesh with sweet caramel candy, vanilla and fruity tones. Complex and intruiging.

A nice sweet caramel/toffee maltiness arrives first along with a veritable cornucopia of hop notes...floral, spicy and citric all make a showing, with hints of tropical fruits. A candi sugar sweetness does a good job of balancing out the bitterness. A yeasty, spicy finish makes this seem like a Belgian-esque barleywine to me..quite an interesting brew overall.

Mouthfeel is suprisingly arid on the palate...good body with a lot of tight, bubbly carbonation. A bit less carbonation would make me happy. As for drinkability...this is definetly a sip and savor brew. I could see having a couple on a cold night. I might have to track more of this down to cellar. Many thanks to weefisheads for the opportunity to sample this one.

orbitalr0x, Feb 20, 2005
Photo of blitz134
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%

Batch 35: Looking at the Hair of the Dog website it appears this beer has been in the bottle just over 5 years. Wow! I had no idea of that fact when I bought it.

Pours with a golden body with some red highlights when held up to the light. Lots of floaties since I emptied the body (oops...don't bother me though...I like it better that way). Not much head, even with an aggressive pour. What is there is only a couple bubbles thick and white as can be.

Amazing smell on this one. Lots of sweet caramel with a good hit of butterscotch (not in a diacytl way, though). Carrying on with the sweet aroma some bubble gum and cotton candy come through. A touch of sweet alcohol as well. A treat to smell.

Taste isn't nearly as complex as the smell. Mostly has a sweet caramel malt taste. Has some bread yeast qualities as well. A touch of citrus and light fruits round it out. A good hit of alcohol that burns a bit at the finish. A overall good flavor with the alcohol well incorporated. As it warms a bit more the alcohol subsides a bit, but after 5 years its still holding on.

A full bodied brew that slides down the tongue. Coats the mouth well and allows that caramel sweetness really linger. Drinkability is good for this high of an ABV. It does warm the stomach making this a true sipper.

blitz134, Nov 17, 2005
Photo of dirtylou
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%

12oz single, recently obtained but cant recall from where..batch #54. split with blackie blackistone

so this is the new year

appearance: murky/muddy orange-amber...poured into a snifter. huge beige froth with great lacing

smell: very aromatic...big pine presence, super hoppy and sticky. thick caramel-honey malt base

taste: yikes, this is a very large beer. strong notes of honey, super bitter pine, citrus hopping. sugary sweet malts. its a tad boozy but it goes down rather smooth, minus the insane bitterness. I approve

mouthfeel: very high bitternes but very smooth otherwise and very coating. very rich

drinkability: 1/2 of 12oz will be easy

dirtylou, Jan 01, 2007
Photo of Alieniloquium
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%

12 oz. bottle poured into a goblet. Batch 81.

Appearance - Golden light amber body. Quite clear, but with some sediment suspended in the beer. Huge head that nearly overflows my glass. Great retention and great lacing.

Smell - Apples, pears, and other light fruits dominate. A huge light malt presence. Hops in the back, but they're not terrible aromatic.

Taste - Sweet and immediately fruity. Apples and pears again. The malt is fascinating. Slightly sweet and caramel flavored, but then earthy. A hefty hop bitterness rounds it out, although it seems a bit heavy-handed.

Mouthfeel - Well-carbonated and hardly any alcohol. Feels like a strong beer, but it isn't overly sweet or heavy.

Overall - A strange concoction. It really defines categorization. Reminds me of strong English ales with it's gigantic light malt bill. While I didn't find any aspect of it to be truly great, the beer is quite interesting and different. I found myself enjoying it more once I gave up trying to figure out how it was supposed to taste.

Alieniloquium, Jan 16, 2012
Photo of Ghenna
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%

Poured into a SN pint with 2 fingers of light cream head. Ok lacing.
Smells sweet- malts and a little creamy caramel.
Taste- fruit followed by a little warming spice. Pleasant hop balance finish
MF- Not particularly heavy, generally pleasant

My second favorite BW behind Lagunitas' Gnarleywine. Lots to like about this brew, though in my mind it lacks a little of the beefy complexity of the gnarleywine. Will buy again if I can find it in my area

Ghenna, Feb 11, 2010
Photo of sweemzander
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%

12oz. bottle poured into a snifter. No bottled date; just has Batch #76 on the front label. Major thanks to kstrickler for the bottle!

(A)- The initial pour just erupted with a creamy & foamy looking white head that stuck to every inch of the glass & isnt going anywhere; looks like a mushroom cloud exploded in my glass with this giant mound of foam in the very center! Has a light caramel color to the beer with a bit of haze.

(S)- Rather fruity; some grapefruit & pineapple with a twist of butterscotch-like toffee. Plenty of pine behind the fruits. Near the end, there is this nice wheat, yet more biscuit-like aroma.

(T)- Precisely what the smell predicted. The fruits are much more pronounced with a candied persona to them; caramelized grapefruit & pineapple? Yeah thats it! Let this warm up to cellar temp.

(M)- An explosive carbonation level that is a little frustrating because it distracts from the great flavors this beer has. However, the more I had, the better it got with time out in the open air, so that the carbonation simmered down. A bit bitter since some of the sediment got into the glass. That grapefruit is seriously tart; almost sour. I kinda like that though.

(D)- Certainly a good barleywine; I particularly like the candied fruits in this. The big carbonation was easily remedied by letting it mellow for a bit in the glass. This could age easily for quite some time. After my horrible experience with their Adam beer, this has redeemed by frustrations for sure. This is good, but definitely a sipper.

sweemzander, Mar 07, 2010
Photo of Gavage
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%

Pours an amber / orange color with a 1 inch head. Plenty of lacing from this one. The aroma is of malt, yeast, honey, and grass. The flavor is complex. Numerous tones arrive at different times through the drink as it warms. Yeast, malt, honey, grass, and hops are all highly evident. A sour apple flavor seemed to be there too. Alcohol levels are very noticeable.

The mouthfeel is very smooth. The alcohol, malt, and bitterness last long on the tongue. Very interesting full flavored beer.

Gavage, Jan 19, 2004
Photo of Buebie
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%

Batch 73

Bottle courtasy of Arbitrator

Holy freaking active yeast! Wow, this pour produced a 2'' head that grew, rather then receeded. The growth of the head has billowed in foam over the top of the glass to a good 4'' now. A hugenormous amount of carbonation rise inside the beer, it looks like its boiling with all the carbonation bubbles. It does not have the look of infection, this is a different look.
The color is a mildly hazy darker copper, that glows bright when held to light.
Its now going on ten minutes and only the slightest bit of receeding has occured. This could be the longest I've gone without taking a sip from a beer.
Lace is thick and coating all the way around, it gives the look of a frosty glass, its that thick.
Retention has come to a dallop of whipped cream like look, its a good inch thick and now going on 20 minutes after the pour. I'm going to call it good to drink. The carbonation rise has slowed in the liquid, its still very actively bubbling, but does not look like its boiling anymore with activity, just looks like a belgian now.

Aroma is super bready yeasty, lots of sourdough and pncake batter aroma. Its pretty sweet smelling too with a large amount of unfermented sugars and cereal grain sweetness, some honey, but mostly grain aroma.

Mouthfeel has alot of biting carbonation. Some slickness and a fuller feel, although mostly masked by carbonation abundance. I think this could have used more time to age. I'm kinda wondering more about infection though, it doesnt taste off, but the carbonation bursts and inflates on each sip in my mouth creating foam with agitation on the tounge.
Its sweet upfront with a good honey caramel grain flavor, some burnt sugars and roasted quality here. A good amount of hop flavors. Its bittering mostly in the hops catagory. A mild chalky aspirin taste through the swallow with the hops. Its not exactly pine and not exactly grapefruit, but it is bitter...

IIt took almost 20 minutes for the 4" head to receed and the carbonation to stop boiling. But once it did, this beer was terrific and the overly carbonated mouthfeel has come ot be very creamy and thick with a slickness to it. The beer is good, its not infected and it just needed time to settle. Never before have I ever seen this, it surely put on a show!
Great brew.

Buebie, Jun 09, 2009
Photo of kagent777
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%

This was passed onto me by a service rep from I company I work with. I poured this batch 82 bottle into a CCB snifter at slightly below room temp.

Appearance: This thing had a huge head. Easily three or four fingers that did not settle down for a very long time. Needless to say, it left a glorious amount of lacing on the glass. The beer itself was a hazy pleasant orange.

Smell: First thing I notice is the dominant boozy sweetness. Followed up by the woody maltiness.

Taste: I like this beer. The taste is hard for me to classify. It is definitely sweet. It reminds me of some wood aged beers that I have had in the past. There is a caramel like sweetness that is almost too much. There are fruity aspects that remind me of sticky syrupy peaches.

Mouthfeel: The flavors are very strong and coat the mouth well. The body is medium and the carbonation low because all was expended in the opening with the head.

Overall: This is a potent beer, not for the faint of heart. A beer to sip on for an hour while reading a good book during a snow storm.

kagent777, Feb 06, 2012
Photo of jameaterblues
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%

So this beer was poured into a pint glass....although it is classified as a barley wine I really did not interpret it that way while drinking it. more of an imperial pale ale or something along those lines. Slightly reminded me of Terrapin's Rye2(squared)

Batch #63

A- Dark amber/gold with a ruby hint to the color. Head was a dark cream, and just shy of the rim of the glass.

S- Alcohol, spice(ginger and clove), citrus (dank orange), light hints of rye, and musky malts(not sweet but with a hint of caramel).

T- Citrus(tangerine), big spice ginger and a little cinnamon, rye malt present throughout entire body...with so many hops the flavors are combining and it is really difficult to pick out specific flavors....but there are alot of them.

M/D- Tingling bubbles and decent carbonation....thick mouthfeel....interesting and well worth it for the $3.50 a bottle definitely would buy this one again.

jameaterblues, Nov 10, 2006
Fred from Hair of the Dog Brewing Company / Brewery and Tasting Room
91 out of 100 based on 1,570 ratings.