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Sled Dog Dopplebock - Wagner Valley Brewery

Not Rated.
Sled Dog DopplebockSled Dog Dopplebock

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
84
good

165 Ratings
THE BROS
79
okay

(view ratings)
Ratings: 165
Reviews: 100
rAvg: 3.7
pDev: 13.51%
Wants: 5
Gots: 6 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Wagner Valley Brewery visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Doppelbock |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-28-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 165 | Reviews: 100 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of generallee
4.03/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a mug. The label has no freshness date or abv%.

Appearance: Looking into the glass I am presented with a deep garnet red brew with good clarity and a tall off white to light tan head. This head slowly fades out leaving some spotty lacing at the top of the glass.

Smell: There is a big rich malty character coming out of the glass. In it I get candy sweet notes like a grape sucker or grape soda. This is backed up with a big bready sweet maltiness

Taste/Palate: The big malty sweetness from the aroma hits the tongue with candy like grape notes inside of a somewhat modest medium to full bodied bready sweetness. In the back ground there are some very subdued hop notes that offer a touch of herbal leafy spice with almost no bitterness. The palate is very smooth and lightly carbonated. Its sweetness sticks on the palate a bit but not in a heavy or to cloying a way.

Notes: It’s not the most complex Doppelbock but there is something about its basic character that I like and find enjoyable to drink.

generallee, Apr 29, 2011
Photo of alexkeil
4.22/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is my first taste of Wagner Valley (Vineyards) and I'm duly blown away. I like the label although I like the packaging for their IPA slightly better. Pours smooth, a dark ruby color with a struggling off white head (either because of the alcohol, or more likely from my glass). Huge malty sweet, brown sugar aroma that is impossible to avoid. The flavor is not overcomplicated, 4-5 flavors that are used well: brown sugar, malt, prune, and I swear something like a ripe apple in the back end, but maybe another ripe fruit would be more appropriate to describe it: lets say Asian pear to be really fancy. The mouth feel is silky with a medium to full body. The finish lingers for what seems like hours. If there are hops detectable it is only slight and maybe in the finish but balanced beautifully. My only concern is maybe a tad too carbonated...and in all fairness maybe I served it slightly warm, but it did foam up a bit on initial taste; however, this is nitpicking and in the grand scheme of things unnecessary.

alexkeil, Mar 21, 2011
Photo of spinrsx
3.65/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12oz Bottle

Appearance - Slightly hazy reddish brown colour with an average size frothy beige coloured head. There is an average amount of carbonation showing and there is some fair lacing. The head lasted for only a few minutes before it was completely gone.

Smell - malts, grapes, cherries, chocolate

Taste & Mouth - The beer has a below average amount of carbonation but it still feels fairly creamy on the tongue. I can taste a lots of dark fruit sweetness - cherries, grapes, and raisins mixed with some brown sugar. I could also taste apples and as the beer got warmer I could pick up on some notes of chocolate. The beer finished with a malty/grapey aftertaste.

Overall - Although not a spectacular beer, I found the Drinkability to be quite high. The alcohol was well hidden and it seemed like the beer was gone in a flash. Not sure I'd seek it out again, but I'm curious to try some of the other Wagner Valley offerings.

spinrsx, Mar 16, 2011
Photo of nycbeerfreak
4.05/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - A dark color with a two finger head that has impressive retention and leaves a nice lacing.

S - Strong caramel malt aroma with a hint of pepper. I am thinking not to high abv

T - I get sweet caramel and some bourbon oak with a bit of maple. i am getting candy sugar on the back end of this baby.

M - Smooth, extremely thick and very refreshing. The carbonation makes its presence known a bit too much.

D - Sweet I could drink a few of these no prob...let it come up in temp.

nycbeerfreak, Dec 19, 2010
Photo of CaptDavyJones
3.8/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured clear and reddish-brown from a 12 oz bottle with no freshness date or ABV on label. The head was thin and disappeared quickly. Aroma is hard to describe, more like molasses mixed with wheat husk mixed with some hard sugar candy. Taste is a mix of malts, tart and sweet fruitiness. The ABV slowly takes over after a few sips, mouth feel is good. Decent lacing, indeed a different double bock beer, very complex and is definitely worth a try.

CaptDavyJones, Nov 30, 2010
Photo of yesyouam
3.6/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Wagner Valley Sled Dog Doppelbock is a very clear, ruby lager that's topped with a khaki ring that leaves decent lacing. It smells sweet, melanoidal and grainy. It's full bodied and syrupy with a dry, chewy finish. It tastes slightly sweet and bready. Alcohol is present in the finish. It has a slightly medicinal bitterness. It's a solid doppelbock.

yesyouam, Nov 23, 2010
Photo of Nutleybeer
3.83/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at my hotel up in Watkins Glen, then had a bit more at the brewey/winery restauarant too.

A nice dark bodied brown bock. A fair amount of foamy head, but not too much. A deep alcohol smell. First sip was good. A strong beer. You taste the 8.50% ABV, but the alcohol doesn't overwhelm the flavor.

Heavy, thick, sweet flavor. Candied fruit comes to mind. Not a session beer, but makes for a nice, slow sipping drink.

Nutleybeer, Oct 22, 2010
Photo of Franz4
3.58/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Dark reddish-brown when held to the light. Zero head on this beer.

S- smells biscuity with a little chocolate in it, some spiciness as well (maybe a touch of clove?)

T- Biscuity and fresh, a little toffee is present. I'm not noticing the chocolate that was present in the nose. Spices are present in the finish.

M- Very clean, light-bodied for a d-bock, but feels very fresh.

D- The big plus to this beer was the "clean" mouthfeel, taste isn't anything spectacular, but it is worth trying. It's a good alternative if you want a refreshing doppelbock rather than a heavier one.

Franz4, Oct 20, 2010
Photo of far333
3.83/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Low head of beige foam that settles out quickkly. Light reddish amber colored liquid.

Aroma of sweetish toasty malt, slight metallic note, some brown sugar.

Rich flavor of dark malt, caramel, some raisin and prune, faint notes of leather and smoke, some grape. Firm offsetting bitterness, but well balanced.

Even mouthfeel, finishes tingly, fairly full. Tasty and drinkable.

far333, Oct 05, 2010
Photo of cooch69
4.08/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This Sled Dog pours a very deep amber mahagoney hue, with barely a trace of any kind of head.
It's carbonation is pretty low. Just enough to give your tongue a bit of a vibrant tingle.
This beer smells very welcoming. It is just staight up booziness. Alcogol right off the bat, followed by nuances of mollasses, rum and raisins. A bit of a similarity to a strong Belgian Dubbel in the nose.
Upon tasting this beer is caramelly, sugary and alcoholic with hints of figs and raisins.
This beer is syrupy in the mouth with a small brisk carbonation. It is a very inviting beer that is easier on the palate than it's ABV suggests. This is a winter beer all the way.

cooch69, Sep 30, 2010
Photo of akorsak
3.8/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A 12 oz bottle purchased at the brewery in late July. If you've never been, the views of Seneca Lake are beautiful.

A: The doppel is a ruddy brown-red color, just dark enough to obscure anything on the other side of the glass. A small head, never more than half a finger, quickly recedes to a thin band.

S: The bockbier has a plenty malty nose, bready malts so concentrated that they take on a fruity glow. Syrupy rich threads have plenty of sweet caramel to go around. A warming nose.

T: The taste starts off with as much richness as the nose offered. Full malts, bready with a heaping of caramel, have a fullness that verges on that of a smoked beer. A soft citrusy hop flavor runs underneath the malts, subtle but a definite change of taste. While the ale is malt-centric, it isn't an overpowering flavor. Heck, I'd be more inclined to call this a bockbier, rather than a doppel. It's nice drinker though.

M: The mouthfeel is caramel sweet, very bready and full. A warming beer that works well on a cool late-summer night.

D: The bockbier doesn't feel like an 8.5% ringer. The bready base that improves over time.

akorsak, Sep 14, 2010
Photo of moester13
3.9/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Very nice dark, copper coloring. Minimal head, but good carbonation.

S: Sweet and caramelly, reminiscent of several red ales.

T: Great, unexpected burst of chocolate up front, with a bittersweet malty finish.

M: Surprisingly thick, very pleasant.

D: One thing I noticed was a wicked alcohol kick, didnt realize this brew comes in at over 8%. My first Wagner brew, didn't have many expectations, but this is definitely a great beer.

moester13, Sep 09, 2010
Photo of jwc215
3.63/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark cherry/ruby towards brown with a small tan head that stays and leaves some lacing.

The smell is lightly roasted semi-dark maltiness - toffee-ish with a cherry-like fruitiness in the back.

The initial sweetness (with a touch of bread), and some fruitiness doesn't have much of a hop balance until some herbal dry-ness in the finish. The maltiness is not as rich as in the aroma, but close.

Medium carbonation in a medium-to-full body.

A nice, warming interpretation of the style!

jwc215, Feb 04, 2010
Photo of AndyAvalanche
4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pretty good Dopplebock in my opinion. Poured it into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint glass. Has an amber/brown color that has good clarity to it. It had a cray slightly orangey creamy colored head. All in all a pretty good looking beer. The smell is good, very sweet. Mostly compiled of sweet malts, and dark fruits. Has a sweet toffee type aroma as well. The taste is also pretty sweet has all the characteristics of the smell, maybe a little heavier on the darker fruits and has an aftertaste of butterscotch. I thought that you couldn't taste the hops at all until about a minute after one of the sips, it's feint, but present. The mouthfeel is really good too, pretty creamy and smooth, reasonably full bodied. Only a slight bitter bite from the hops, more like a little pinch on the back of the tongue. Pretty drinkable beer of this style, nice sipper on a winter night.

AndyAvalanche, Jan 31, 2010
Photo of ClavisAurea
4.55/5  rDev +23%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap in a pint glass.

Appearance: deep brown with a thin head.

Nose: malty sweet, nutmeg and allspice

Taste: sweet, complex and spicy, very very small hop finish

Mouthfee: thick and creamy

I really enjoied this beer. It is an excellent doppelbock that is great for cold nights with a rich bowl of beef stew.

ClavisAurea, Jan 01, 2010
Photo of LilBeerDoctor
2.9/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Reviewed on 8/11/09. Bottle. Pours a clear dark amber with a small tan head. Aroma of vegetal notes, bready malt, toffee. Flavor of bready malt, some cola notes. Wow, this is the same beer as the Amber Lager (maybe a little better? It hardly matters really). Pretty lackluster overall.

LilBeerDoctor, Dec 18, 2009
Photo of tlinner
4.28/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Starts off underwhelming. Didn't even tip the glass when I poured, and it didn't really come close to overflowing. In other words: very weak head, and little lacing. However, the smell is big and malty, with sweet caramel and dried fruit dominating. The taste is pure doppelbock; bready malt, caramel, nuts, and dark fruit, with a bit of a sharp bitter aftertaste. I really liked this one, and the cherry on top? It was brewed just twenty minutes from where I grew up in the Seneca Lake.

tlinner, Dec 12, 2009
Photo of Buckeyes67
3.83/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served on-tap on site.

I haven't had too many Dopplebock's to compare this too so I'll keep it short. This beer has a great flavor. It was dark but not cloudy and the head hung around long enough for me to finish the beer. The smell was nice and it didn't sit to heavy on the palate. As for drinkability well it went down good and the crowd of people that were half in the bag would agree with me.

Buckeyes67, Dec 12, 2009
Photo of mikesgroove
3.95/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Another new one for me, I have been lucky to have a ton of NY brews to try lately. This one was served cold and poured into a pint glass, consumed on 10/04/2009.

The pour was about dead on for the style. Rich brown in color with a small tan head that peaked at about two inches but settled down and left behind only token amounts of side glass lacing. Aroma is caramel malts, hints of bready touches and a light grainy touch to it. Rolls right into the flavor, only know here is that it is a little thinner then I would have liked to have seen, but still nice feel. Rich caramel and bready flavors dominated here. Smooth, with no hint of the abv at all and a long and drawn out flavor of candied sugar that caps it all very nicely.

Overall a solid example of the style. Nothing earth shattering but it does its job. I would not turn it down.

mikesgroove, Oct 05, 2009
Photo of cvstrickland
3.83/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The decrowned 12-ounce longneck poured briskly into my SA shaped pint glass yields a clear cherry-copper colored brew topped with a slim cap of fast-fading pale beige foam. Drooping rings of filmy lacing briefly hash-mark the sip lines onto the interior of the drinking vessel before sliding back down to the fading collar ringing the liquid surface below.

The aroma is sweet and malty with prominent notes of caramel, ripe orchardfruit, saltwater taffy, and a sprinkle of dark chocolate. A tingle of spice livens things up just a bit.

The taste is rife with overripe caramel-coated red apples and sports a meager but balancing note of dark roast. A drizzle of dilute unsulphured molasses spices things up, and as the drink warms a bit, a note of mellow caramel become much more prominent. Alcohol flavors are very, very well-suppressed and are likely responsible for the dash of pepper and appley fruitiness I've been enjoying in Sled Dog thus far.

The drink is silky-smooth and on the lighter end of the medium-bodied spectrum. Carbonation is quite mild and the brew is plenty drinkable. Thanks to Lum for the bottle!

cvstrickland, Aug 22, 2009
Photo of Bitterbill
4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I got this bottle in a trade with Nutbrown. Thanks Alan!

This pours a clear deep amber with a 1 finger head of foam.

The smell is malty as heck...bread, chocolate, roasted.

The taste is equally malty with plenty of caramel malt and bready malt up front with lots of grain and a light taste of chocolate. There's *some* bitterness and a mild tartness in the background that is interesting. The alcohol is very well hidden here; not even a bit of warming after the swallow.

Good medium mouthfeel with a light level of carbonation, it finishes decidedly on the sweet side but not overly so.

Drinkability? A good solid, tasty example of the style that fits the style very well. I'd drink more, for sure.

Bitterbill, Apr 13, 2009
Photo of RblWthACoz
3.83/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I guess we're trying the whole Wagner Valley line here. This one pours a clear amber brown with minimal head. Nose is malty and sweet. Flavor is pretty nice. Seems like a touch of apple tones. Smooth feel. Overall nice to drink. Not too shabby really.

RblWthACoz, Mar 10, 2009
Photo of everetends
3.73/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle thanks to the great Lum and his wonderful care package he sent me. Served this one up in a mug.

A: Pours red, cherry wood type color. Has a really nice brown color with a lot of red coming out. When held to the light, a nice amber comes out. A pretty fst pour only got me about half a finger of head. That head gave way rather quickly but kept a pretty solid white ring through out. The ring creates some lace lines on the glass. The beer is incredibly clear and clean. Nothing awe inspiring, but it doesn't look bad either.

S: Smell is a bit off for me. There is just mostly some sweet, sugary malt coming out. No other smells are jumping out except for a toasted grains and earthiness. This is a bit of disappointment because it doesn't have those powerful doppelbock smells. Pretty average.

T: Taste is a step up from the nose. Those sweet caramel malts and toasted grains are there, don't get me wrong. But, there are the doppelbock flavors. A really nice banana nut bread flavor mingles nicely withhose malt flavors. Then there is a slight touch of spiciness in here with just a touch of ginger and nutmeg. Nice tastes fo sho.

M: Feel is on the light side of medium, with just a touch of wateriness to it. The carbonation is a bit high, with just a bit too much crispness for my liking. Just seemed a bit off to me. The ABV is well disguised especially if it is 8.5%. Aftertaste is mostly just a bit of grains, but it finishes pretty damned clean.

D: Drinkability is nice and this one goes down pretty easily. The flavors are a good, but the aroma and feel is a bit off. This is still drinkable and it would be a good session beer except for the supposed ABV. Is this thing really 8.5%? I mean really? This doesn't even seem like its close. Crazy. Good beer but not the greatest doppelbock.

everetends, Jan 31, 2009
Photo of SLeffler27
3.93/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sled Dog is a dark red, almost eggplant beer with a fine, one-inch mocha head that settles to a delicate lace.

A port wine aroma leads the nose, followed by subtle apple, and a bittersweet chocolate finish.
A mild brandy and molasses entry fills out with plum and vanilla as the alcohol warms. My recollection is that this was better from the tap.

A pleasantly smooth beer with a light carbonation; simple but pleasurable.

This working dog is surprisingly easy... no, make that alarmingly easy to drink for a 10% ABV beer. I'll definitely be returning to the east slope, above Senaca Lake, for another round.

Date consumed: 29 June 2008

SLeffler27, Jan 10, 2009
Photo of joe1510
3.7/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz Bottle

I received this bottle in a trade awhile back from israel, thanks again man! This doppelbock pours a rich cherry wood brown with tiny particles suspended throughout. A few streams of carbonation swirl slowly to the surface. The bone white head grew a finger on the pour but quickly fizzled down to practically nothing but a tiny collar. The head isn't very cooperative and leaves zero lacing behind.

The aroma on this brew is a little off considering the style. Instead of the banana bread that I'm used to finding I'm pulling lightly toasted grains. There's a sugary sweetness that reminds me of moist fruitcake with a sugary cherry here and there. A current of booze flashes through in the background. I actually enjoy the aroma of this beer but it just doesn't smell very dopple to me.

The flavor comes back to dopplebock form and is quite different than the aroma led me to believe. Slight banana bread upfront combines with the lightly toasted grains to form the canvas of this big brew. There's a hint of spiciness in the way back that reminds me of gingerbread. There's a little too much sugary sweetness for my liking in the form of fruitcake, and yes the cherries are back. The sweetness never really gets in the way but does walk the line. The finish brings a mild spicy booziness.

The body is smooth and velvety but slightly sticky on the swallow with a full body. The carbonation is about as mellow as it gets which actually helps the feel out allowing the beer to glide across the tongue.

The sugary sweetness and heat hamper the drinkability but this one bottle is no problem to finish. Sled Dog is a solid winter brew with the warming heat and big flavor.

This is my first brew from Wagner Valley. It's not a great doppelbock but it's solid enough to give a try. I could see myself picking up a sixer each year to drink on these cold evenings. Thanks Israel!

joe1510, Dec 19, 2008
Sled Dog Dopplebock from Wagner Valley Brewery
84 out of 100 based on 165 ratings.