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

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,222 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,222
Reviews: 986
rAvg: 4.26
pDev: 10.09%
Wants: 582
Gots: 462 | FT: 37
Brewed by:
Hair of the Dog Brewing Company / Brewery and Tasting Room visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
Old Ale |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-12-2001

A re-creation of an historic beer style originally made in Dortmund, Germany. Adam was the first beer produced by Hair of the Dog.

10% alcohol by volume
50 IBUs.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,222 | Reviews: 986 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of tjfinkle
3.92/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into tulip

Appearance- Dark chocolate brown with some light brown head and light carbonation

Smell - Light chocolate malts, leather and dark fruits with a healthy kick of alcohol

Taste - Very chocolaty up front with some nice slightly bitter hoppyness. Definitely has some dark fruity flavors, but not as much as the smell would suggest. Also has a significant alcohol kick.

Mouth- This is a pretty thick beer and at 10% this has a pretty significant kick, however the carbonation helps keep it well balanced

Drink- Good beer, but very heavy and difficult to enjoy in much quantity as is expected with this style. Would definitely recommend it.

Photo of BarrytheBear
4.95/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

12 oz bottle of Batch 72 into a snifter. Purchased in SF last fall during a truly memorable trip.

Deep burgundy body topped by a full almond crown. Very excite!

Nose is slightly spicy with a heavy milk chocolate frothy milkshake vibe and a faint hop finish. Throughout the entire glass I just sat with my snout perched on the rim of my glass while taking in the entire experience.

Adam tastes like my image of the 1950's. Grabbing a fork and knife, this beer drinks like a motorcycle jacket recently involved in a malt shop throw down. Smoky unfiltered Lucky Strikes and leather smothered by a creamy blueberry milkshake. Or did they call it a malt? Regardless, this is a beautiful experience.

Drinks like a dessert beverage. Lush and creamy in the mouthfeel without being thick and heavy. Damn...

So very approachable and enjoyable with the heat only making an appearance as Adam reaches room temperature. In reading the bottle it seems this beer memorializes a fallen friend. What an amazing tribute.

Photo of John_M
4.4/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Was pleasantly surprised to see this on tap at the Horsebrass the other night.

Adam pours a dark cola color with very good head retention and considerable lacing. The beer looks impressive, and is a presage of what's to come. On the nose this beer smells almost sinfully good. There is considerable chocolate, but with some underlying vanilla, golden raisans, coffee and light licorice. On the palate, this beer is every bit as good. It's fairly sweet of course, but the melange of sherry, wood, vanilla, cherry liquer, dark chocolate and light licorice (in the finish) keeps me coming back, wanting more and more, after every sip. Fresh Adam also seems to have some noticeable hoppy bitterness in the finish that helps to counter and balance out the sweetness as well. Mouthfeel is full with a long, drawn out finish in this richly delicious beer. Drinkability is pretty good, though I'm aware of the 10% abv. in this beer as I go along. Hard to imagine having more than one of these at a sitting, but nevertheless, this is just an exceptional, well made beer, and an absolute treat to have on tap. Yummy!!!

Photo of boMD
4.9/5  rDev +15%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This was maybe my second Hair of the Dog ever shortly after moving to Portland four years ago, I was naive in my beer drinking capabilities with my notes below. But i have to say, after almost four years of having nearly all the Adam I can drink, it is still one of my absolute favorites. It's rich with smoked malt and alcohol complexities. It's one of the most unique beers out there.

[Previous notes from 3/5/2007] I snagged a bottle at Higgins for dessert, and I couldn't of made a better choice. Poured a deep brown/black with a huge tan head. Sweet cocoa-like, malty aroma... flavors of chocolate, figs, tarts, smoked meat or cheese, and maybe something like a coffee undertone. Had amazing smokey, leathery, charred finish.

Photo of ibbjamin
3.55/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Paid $3.99 for a 12oz bottle from Monument in Concord, CA. Poured into my Lost Abbey Tulip to review.

Surprisingly large tan head for this old ale. Head is rather frothy and consistent of relatively large carbonation bubbles. Very dark brown in color with a noticeable layer of retention.

The descriptors on the label are pretty spot on for me in terms of aroma; roasted malts, smoke, figs, chocolate, leather and well balanced with dank hops. I also detect molasses, oak and a hint of booze. All in all quite complex and attractive.

Taste is really smoky. Just a bit overboard in this department for my liking. There is that leather and roasted malts I detected in the nose coming through even more now, especially as it warms. Not as balanced as the nose suggested for me. Hints of coffee and chocolate in the long finish.

Full in body and the carbonation is noticeable, but I was expecting more from looking at the pour.

The strong taste of smoke, coupled with the price will probably prevent me from purchasing more of this beer.

Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Exiled for sharing this beer.

The beer pours a dark brown color with no head, but a few tan bubbles. The aroma is chocolate, roasted malt, smoke and some soy sauce. The flavor is smoke, burnt malt, chocolate, roasted malt and soy. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Photo of Proteus93
4.29/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Not sure of how old this bottle is, as I am not seeing any sort of date code on it. What I am seeing is a lack of head forming, and that doesn't seem to be standard for this brew. I tried to force it towards the end of the fill and got a thin layer that was very bubbly. It maintains a razor thin collar of it, though, over a deep and murky brown.

S: Loads of caramel and some dark fruit scent... currant and fig, paired with a big maltiness. I almost pick up on a little hint of anise, as well.

T + M + D: Like the head would have suggested, carbonation is minimal. What is there suits it, though, I find... with a beer with a flavour as big as this, it makes sense. Toffee, some dark chocolate notes (though not too big), fig/currant, with a little sting of alcohol on the back of the throat. Despite being a big sipping brew, it is strangely easy to drink. I'd be interested in trying this with more carbonation, as others have seemed to mention, because it worked out great the way it was. Maybe the bottle conditioning didn't take off, maybe there was some age on the shelves, but either way, it didn't cause any harm at all.

Photo of stonelis
4.72/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured a dark brown with a thin head which lingered through the end. had an aroma of a touch of fruit wine with toasted malt. Taste of
Sweet, rich, malty, chocolate, mild smoke. I really enjoyed this one. Strong alcohol presence has that warming feeling. This was batch 76. I would love to get some more and cellar a few for a couple of years.

Photo of ptykozoon
4.36/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

*batch 75* Pours black with a very impressive, highly dense & lasting head, decent lacing, and a much lighter color than I expected. Basically flawless, this beer is a photographers dream.

HA! there is so much bloody foam on this thing I can't even get through to the smell! After about 3 days, the foam dissipates. I'm getting chocolate, maybe some other sweetness..To be honest it may just be my particular bottle or batch but I really have to take bif wiffs to get a smell out of this, which isn't necessarily a bad thing, as the subdued flavors I am getting do smell delicious.

Oh. my. dear. God. does this taste good. For a beer that hasn't been barrel aged or mixed with vanilla or any other noticeably apparent fancy flavors I must say it is impeccable. If you are a fan of rich, creamy, chocolaty desserts-in-a-glasses like I am then have I got news for you: this beer has got it goin' on! Chocolate is the main culprit, syrup, smokiness, a dash of real vanilla.. It just tastes perfectly brewed. Bitter roastiness as an aftertaste, which is notoriously hard to do right as not everyone enjoys the bitter tang of coffee; however this beer balances it perfectly. I simply must take a half point off however as it would simply be so much better with a few more flavors. Perhaps bourbon? Cherries?

Mouthfeel is extraordinary, the perfect density. I have seen others say the alcohol is too strong but to me it's just perfect, Adam lets you know that he is not a session beer or about to be chugged, the sting lets you know you're alive! Roughness to it that makes you want to growl like a tiger after you take a swig. Besides its mostly marred by the chocolate cake flavors anyways.

This beer will age magnificently for a few years. Now one of my absolute favorite beers. Look out for #75 as it is a winner. Bravo.

Photo of thetomG
3.79/5  rDev -11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from Batch 77

Very dark brown pour with very very little head - some spotty lacing is left behind on the glass though as you drink.

Aroma is mostly a mixture of malts and spices with a little booziness as well.

Flavor is very sweet & malty but in differs form the smell inn that the spices a more reserved with the booziness comes through quite strongly. There is a nice spicy/bitter finish that makes things interesting, and the mouthfeel is nice and thick but smooth. Overall though the drinkability suffers a little because the alcohol flavors are just too overpowering.

I'd drink this again, but am probably not likely to seek it out...

Photo of Amalak
4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had at The Diamond in Greenpoint, Brooklyn.
A- It's basically black with limited head and good lace.
S- Nice, nutty malt scent.
T- It has a very fine chocolate stout/lager taste. It's malty. It has a strong alcohol taste, but not overbearing. It has the feel of a stout/porter, but there is a lager taste toward the end. Confused. But good.

Photo of zeff80
4.44/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Into the snifter it is a dark brown color with a small, tan head of bubbly foam. As you drink the beer it almost has legs like a good red wine.

S - Very pleasant aroma of sweet dark fruits - plum, raisin, and figs. Also, some caramelized sugar notes.

T - Delicious blend of plum, raisin and fig (maybe a touch of cherry). It has sweet malty caramel in the background with next to no hop bitterness.

M - A medium bodied beer that has a warming alcohol heat and is silky smooth as it goes down.

D - This is a fantastic old ale. It manages to be sweet and malty without over doing it.

Photo of jlindros
4.17/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Another HotD to cross off the list thanks to mikereaser.

A: Big frothy 2 finger head develops on the pour into my snifter glass. It fades pretty slowly with light lacing over the very dark murky brown with very light dark reddish hues around the edges.

N: Some nice aroma blends, with some dark malts, crystal malts, caramel, a little roast, porter like aromas, a slight strong ale aroma, touch of earthy aromas, touch of warming booze, and that definitive "old ale" aged strong ale aroma that really gives you that feel of drinking an old ale. Imo, it isn't an old ale unless it has that nice aroma to it. It also has a slight sweetness and almost nougat candi-bar like effect.

T: Starts pretty sweet, perhaps just a little too sweet. THen lots of malts, roasted malts, caramel, chewy malts. A little earthy spicy hop flavor even. Some dark fruits like fig with a slight brown sugar and molasses flavor. The booze is a little spicy and warming, definitely there. Again that aged strong ale flavor, that gives this a definitive old ale flavor, but it's less pronounced than the aroma was. Also more fluffy almost nougat style candi-bar effect.

M: Semi thick and smooth, with good carbonation, more than I expected actually (perhaps the bottle conditioning helped). Lots of warming and tingly booze though.

F: Still somewhat sweet, a little dry as well. More tingly spicy and warming booze on the tongue, almost anesthetized. A slight sticky sweetness, with lingering brown sugar, molasses, caramel, and chewy nougat still. A slight roasted malt and porter on the finish too, as well as a slight earthy bitterness.

Perhaps a little too sweet and too much alcohol heat, but otherwise a really tasty beer. THey did a great job with this one, maybe my favorite HotD yet, as far as I can remember that is.

Photo of daledeee
4.23/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was cautious when I started this beer. The last one I had was flat, totally flat.

I poured this and got a really black body with nice tiny bubbles. Lace was nice as well.

The nose is quite strong and difficult to put into words. The best I can do is roasted malts with caramelized sugar with spice.

Taste. Now this is how a barley wine should taste. Very flavorful with sweetness, licorice, dates, figs and hop bitterness in the finish. Truly a complex and fine taste.

Mouth feel is good with carbonation and a heavy sweet finish.

Drinkability is great but I can see others who would find this beer overwhelming because of the BIG flavors. It is right down my alley.

Photo of Pahn
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle into Duvel tulip. Batch 77.

Appearance: Free pour yields a one and a half inch, foamy tan head. The head dissipates slowly, leaving a few millimeters of lacing ring that itself falls slowly to the surface of the glass leaving behind wine-like legs. The beer itself pours a solid black, has great legs, and leaves a few swatches of lacing.

Smell: Chocolate cake, brownies, fig, raisin, really malty and rich. Smells somewhere between a great Belgian dark and a great stout. A bit of solvent-like alcohol in the background.

Taste: Lots of chocolate cake, with some faint nut and dark fruit flavors. The hot finish lingers a long time, as do those creamy, beautiful cake flavors that continue to develop and transform to raisin and caramel more than a minute after taking a sip. There's lots of smoke through the middle, and a small bit of the advertised leather early on as well.

This is like a decadent chocolate cake with caramel and a fine spirit poured all over it. Creamy chocolate and smoke are the dominant flavors, but as I slowly make my way through the bottle I'm getting all sorts of new flavors popping up in random sips. Suddenly it's a little sweeter, there's a little more fig and raisin, suddenly it's all smoke and tobacco. This beer doesn't stop.

Mouthfeel: After the first sip I immediately wrote in my notes simply: "5". Perfect. Smooth as silk, with just enough carbonation (not much), a hot but not overwhelming finish. Imagine every time you're drinking something and think, "that's just a bit TOO bitter, just for one sip," or "That chocolate is overboard," or "That alcohol is drowning out the flavor a bit," ...for me this beer has none of that, ever. Perfectly palatable. The mouthfeel couldn't be better.

Drinkability: I'll be returning to this beer. As long as I have a few hours to take my time with it, "ease of consumption" is close to maximum.

This beer kind of makes me want to take up smoking again, and sit around next to campfires drinking it during harsh winters (though maybe it also makes me not want to take smoking back up, since I don't want to miss any of these deep, often subtle flavors). This kind of endless, beautiful, generous supply of flavor is why people seek out and pay premium prices for expertly crafted beer.


edit: Having a batch 76 almost a year after this review (reviewed on 7/26/10, batch 77, drinking batch 76 on 6/9/11). Got the bottle in a trade with generous BA msulinski.

Poured as if flat, but there's definitely enough carbonation. Smells like deep English barleywine and chocolate cake. Tastes like chocolate, tobacco, leather, lots of fig, lots of rum soaked chocolate cake. Seems hot at first, but mellows considerably early on. This is a great, great beer. Smell develops subtly throughout, and the interplay of sweet, rich, smokey, savory, leathery in the flavor is world class.

Photo of metter98
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: The beer is jet black in color and poured with a small tan head that faded to a thin layer of bubbles on the surface. A light amount of carbonation is visible from the bubbles rising near the edges of the glass.
S: There are moderately strong aromas of chocolates and dark fruits in the nose.
T: The taste is very rich, complex and malty. It starts with some initial sweetness and transitions over to a mild bitterness, containing flavors of bittersweet chocolate, brown sugar, raisins and smoke along with some hints of leather. The alcohol is well masked and doesn't detract from the overall taste.
M: It feels full-bodied and very smooth on the palate. There is definitely some warming from the alcohol.
D: The beer is very filling (almost a meal in itself) and a good one to sip given its high alcohol content and complex flavors. There's no way I could drink more than one of these in a sitting but this will certainly be a beer that I will try again, perhaps on a cold winter night.

Note: Batch #77

Photo of bluejacket74
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to jgasparine for this awesome extra! 12 ounce bottle, Batch #68. Served in a Sam Adams BL glass, the beer pours dark brown with an inch and a half tan head. Head retention is excellent, and there's a good amount of lacing as well. Aroma is molasses, dark fruit, wood, roasted malt, brown sugar, caramel and some smoke. Taste is the same as the aroma, it's a really good fruity, smoky and malty brew. Mouthfeel/body is full, it's creamy and velvety with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is pretty good, it's very smooth and easy to drink. I think this is a pretty good brew. I'm not sure exactly how old this is, but I do know it's aged pretty well! It's a great brew, if you have a new bottle I think you should definitely age it for a while before drinking it. It's one of the best brews I've had lately!

Photo of BMoney575
3.43/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Sampled on 7-15-10

Pours an extremely deep brown color, almost black, with blood red around the very edges. A thin head quickly fades, leaving a slick single ring of lacing.

Smell is all boozy sweet malt. A little aged, a little funky, aromas of molasses and black licorice dominate. Strong, complex, and very daunting.

Taste is exactly like the smell. Hardcore malt and alcohol, and a medicinal edge that I can't place. I think it's an odd combination of the booze and hops, and its very off-putting. Complex, but hard to get down.

Mouthfeel is thick, slick, and creamy. It fits the extreme flavor.

Drinkability is poor, odd flavors and harshness are a fatal combo.

Overall, I expected better, but I guess I'm just spoiled.

Photo of Arbitrator
4.26/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Adam Batch 78. Purchased at K&L in Redwood City. Chilled well.

A: Poured into a glass: dark brown/black color. Not totally opaque against the light. The bottle has been chilled continuously since inception, I imagine: I got it out of the cooler at K&L and left it in my fridge. A young beer like this means the bottle conditioning hasn't had time to work. There is a slow dissolution of bubbles when the beer is poured, but it never forms a head, collar, or lace. Sorry Alan: I understand what's going on but I can't just give you a pass.

S: This beer really shines. Tobacco, leather, and dark fruits (notably smoked prunes). Chocolate, raisins, caramel, some anise. I am thoroughly impressed. The tobacco and leather are an Adam signature, and I've noticed they become more pronounced as this beer ages. It's very remarkable that he gets the beer to feel so 'old' when young.

T: This is one beer that benefits heavily from warming up, and it only begins hitting its stride at 55 F. Out of the fridge it's just a pointless drink. It's defined by a melange of chocolate, caramel, and anise at first. Tobacco, leather, and smoke color the dark fruit (prunes, raisins) to produce an amazing finish. It's a little on the sweet side when young, but not unbearably so, and it dries out some as it ages.

M: Full-bodied, heavy. I suspect the low (nearly flat) carbonation contributes to this. It's a little boozy, but not as much as expected for a 10% brew. It obviously has a high gravity, though it's not dominated by tons of sugars. This is one beer where the low carbonation is at least passable, though not wonderful.

D: Delicious, but drinking a fresh bottle is missing the point, in my opinion. Hair of the Dog is one of those breweries that I generally buy, wax, and age without tasting. That's because as good as this young Adam is (A-), it gets even better after a few years (A+). Do yourself a favor and put some away.

Photo of biegaman
4.2/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beers of this strength don't usually have such a resilient, hard-skinned head; not only won't this thing budge under pressure of high alcohol or lengthy aeration, but the imprints it leaves become permanently smudged over all parts of the glass. The colour is equally austere, an unyielding dark brown (essentially black) tone that allows NO light through.

The aroma, in sticking to theme, is also exacting and stiff, a yeasty perfume of dark bruised fruits and musty spices. It boasts an oak-laden persona with heavy notes of cigar smoke, dry cocoa and black licorice. It's not anything that fits neatly into any one style, that's for sure. The bouquet is impressively powerful, but also somewhat nauseating.

You want to know the flavours - how long do you have? My goodness, they seem to never end and warming only unleashes more: bittersweet chocolate, bananas and figs flambeed in rum and brown sugar, barbecued black currants and coffee-infused spiced plum pudding (!). The alcohol and sweetness combine to make a sherry-like finale.

That one-two combo of sweetness and alcohol might be overpowering if not for it having such a profound and overwhelming base of flavour; regardless of the conditions, you can't help yourself but to go back in for more. While the beer definitely lends itself to a snifter (and a long, well-paced evening), a 12 ounce bottle is not too much...

Nay, for a beer with this level of complexity you've just become introduced to the beer at ounce 12. And even then there's the factors of temperature (warming reveals a whole other side) and age - this particular sample (batch 67) is approximately 6 years old now and, while still recognizable as HOTD Adam, has evolved substantially in that time.

Most of this brewery's beers offer contemplation in place of mindless drinkability - Adam is a perfect case in point. This beer's complexity and uniqueness were, if not firsts in the American craft brewing Renaissance, certainly amongst the longest-running and leading examples. If you're sick of ordinary beer, this Hair of the Dog will do the trick!

Photo of ManVersusBeer
4.32/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown as it gets without being black. A light brown head settles and sits obediently like the dog on the label.
The smell is huge leather and tobacco--like a smoking jacket--and prunes and dried dates with some sweet honey. I sip and taste heavy tobacco and smoke, dark fruit--plums, now, mostly, slight alcohol burn of malt and maple sugar with some roasted bittersweet chocolate. There are some woody, cedar/oaky hints that tame it well. Mouthfeel is smooth and while the alcohol is present it is not overpowering--toffee and creamy with little carbonation, but still silky. Leather and tobacco are the most dominant though it is so balanced and tasty it's easy to take down. Batch #77. It's a good one.

Photo of jdklks
4.54/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

This one pours a very deep, dark brown with dark amber edges when backlit. The head is a dark tan, bordering on light brown, and has pretty good retention. The smell couldn't get any better. Chocolate, oak, figs and other sweet dark fruits. A hint of alcohol that blends beautifully with the rest of the aroma. Some caramel and brown sugar.

The flavor matches the smell for the most part. There is a heavy sense of smokiness that wasn't expected. Some chocolate sweetness up front that give way to figs, plum, and overripe cherries. A hint of hops and alcohol in the finish with a smooth oaky vanilla. A very good beer overall.

Great mouthfeel. Amazingly thick and perfectly carbonated. The drinkability is limited only by thickness and abv, otherwise, I could drink this all the time.

Photo of AgentZero
3.07/5  rDev -27.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

At a tasting with jrallen34.

A - Pours a dark mohagany color with pretty much know head. Looks somewhat intimidating just sitting there with litle activity, but not a whole lot going on with it.

S - A sharp, lighter sweetness with the caramel malts. Dark fruit and a surprising hops bite on the end of this. Little bit of alcohol burn on there as well.

T - Not as good as it smells. A lot of licorice and some dark fruit. Very heavy malts and something that tastes burnt, like wood or maybe even barley? Touch of brown sugar, but it's overpoweringly burnt and fairly disappointing.

M - Under carbonated, almost flat. Full bodied.

D - Hard to drink due to the pungent tastes and the high abv. Had trouble splitting the bottle.

Photo of jrallen34
2.5/5  rDev -41.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Tasting with AgentZero.

12oz bottle into my Rochefort glass.

Pours dark brown with almost no carbonation on the pour or when swirling...The aroma is very strong dark fruits, grain alcohol, wood. A little to strong of alcohol, not super, doesn't make you want to taste it...The taste is not good, super strong of wood, bitter alcohol, maybe licorice. The feel is super light, not very drinkable at all.

Overall, this is not a good beer, not one to search out.

Photo of jampics2
4.4/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Batch #73 and review #350. A 12 oz bottle into my Founders snifter. Thanks for the birthday beer, Cameron, much appreciated buddy! This is my first HOTD!

Looks great in the snifter. Dark brown with some plum highlights. Small white head sticks around and looks lively. The only minor downside of the appearance is the murky brown cloudy mess I managed to avoid going into my snifter. I poured out the last ounce or so, but thank God those nasties didn't make it in. I know it's not truly "appearance" but if someone isn't careful it will be. Pour slowly!

Smell is really complex and threw me for a loop at first. I got some initial brown sugar and caramel, then was completely overtaken with some smoke and molasses. This is really complex. Dark fruit and chocolate are kissed by smoke, anise, and some soy sauce. But really interesting, just unlike any old ale I've had.

My mouth is watering. I need a sip already. WOW! Holy crap, this is stunning. Such levels of flavor and depth. This starts out with some very sweet cherry and then goes the way of the roast and rauch. Ends with some great molasses sweetness and bitterness. I love the three levels of flavor I get from this - fruity, chocolatey, smokey. Masterfully crafted and one of a kind.

Mouthfeel is medium to heavy. Nice level of carbonation makes it easy to drink. Not a beer I'd ever have more than one of in a session, but still very enjoyable as a special treat. I think this is a true beer geek's treasure. I've never had anything like this - thanks to HOTD for challenging me a bit for my 350th review and thanks so much for the bottle, Cameron!

Adam from Hair of the Dog Brewing Company / Brewery and Tasting Room
95 out of 100 based on 2,222 ratings.