Doggie Claws | Hair of the Dog Brewing Company / Brewery and Tasting Room

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Doggie ClawsDoggie Claws

Brewed by:
Hair of the Dog Brewing Company / Brewery and Tasting Room
Oregon, United States

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.50%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
"a Barley Wine made in the West Coast style. Big malt and hops make this copper colored ale one of our most popular products. Produced in September and October and released in November, this Beer will improve for years to come. Alcohol: 11.5% by volume. IBU's 70"

Added by mattmaples on 10-12-2001

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Ratings: 1,188 |  Reviews: 552
Photo of Hop_God
4.27/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

So I reviewed a 2015 in 2015 of this and hated it.

This is a 2010 drank 10/6/16

A: deep amber to ruby. Thin khaki head

S: sweet dark fruit. Vanilla. Oak. Caramel. Candied fruit.

T: oaky. Sweet fruits. Candied orange. Vanilla. Oak barre. Lots of burnt caramel.

F: creamy. Oaky. Smoky. Bitter bite.

O: well with 6-7 years of age this is awesome. Fresh was not anything to be excited about.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
4.27/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled 2002, Sampled May 2004
Pours a bold copper color, it is highly carbonated with a cream colored head. There is a citrus hop aroma with apricot notes, obviously has been muted over time but it is still front and center in nose. There is a bit of oxidized character in the nose as well. Overall this has a pleasing balanced aroma. The taste is lightly sweet with a nice balancing bitterness in the finish. There is still a lot of hop flavor in this beer. I notes that the finish has a bit of alcohol in it. This beer has definitely started to oxidize, but the hop character suppresses this quite a bit, it allows the oxidation to just be an addition to the complexity. As I get into this beer I can taste notes of bergamot, apricot and pear. This is still quite good after two years. I can imagine that the hops have toned down quite a bit, but the hops are still a huge part of this beer. I am really enjoying this beer right now.

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Photo of Chriscrundwell12
4.27/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a Darkness snifter.

Year Made: 2010

A- I opened the bottle and turned away for a sec which was not very smart, the beer started flowing out of the top, such a waist of beer. Luckily not a lot came out. Really carbonated beer, from the pour 3 finger frothy head, that dissipates slowly, dark burnt orange almost brown color, a lot of sediment on the bottom and flowing throughout the beer, really nice lacing.
S- Really nice aroma, nice hoppy aromas, pine citrus, as well as spice and malt. Looking forward to trying this one.
T- Really well brewed beer, pretty sweet, slight bitterness, nice hoppy notes, pine and citrus some grapefruit, big malt presence, nutty, bready, some spice notes as well, really tasty.
M- Medium mouthfeel, well carbonated, smooth drinking, crisp finish.
O- Solid brew from HOTD, love what they do with their beers, making them unique and different from other beers of the same style. Really impressed.

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Photo of SierraFlight
4.27/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of mnbearsfan
4.27/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of kzoobrew
4.27/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to camil1mj for this bottle.

2010 vintage

Pours a very murky, dirty bronze color. The body is full of sediment leading to a very opaque beer. Four finger vanilla pudding colored head. The head is rather stubborn, retention is phenomenal. Once the head eventually works its way back, heavy lacing clings to the walls of the glass.

Bold and assertive barleywine. The aroma displays a nice balance between the hops and malt. Heavily caramelized malt and raisin combines with resinous pine and citrus.

The flavor mimics the nose rather well. The malt rolls across the palate first. The caramel flavor is much lighter on the tongue than in the nose. Soft and sweet caramel transitions towards the darker fruit flavors on the back of the tongue. The hop flavor is less assertive than the aroma. The sweet citrus flavor is prominent, paired with a slight resinous flavor. The malt shines from beginning to end, but the hop flavor is one hell of a compliment. May not be evenly balanced but dare I say it is perfectly balanced. With a year on this bottle there is not much heat but a pleasant warmth on the back end.

Full bodied Barleywine, carbonation in moderate. Thick, nearly chewy texture. The finish is long as the heavy flavors dig into the tongue.

Doggie Claws is a very good beer. I am not ready yet to call it my favorite Barleywine but if it were readily available to me it would have room reserved in my cellar. The balance of the beer is incredible. A definite sipper but highly enjoyable. Certainly a beer to seek out, I am very glad I had the opportunity, I will be looking for more in the future.

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Photo of ehammond1
4.28/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle (2011)

Texas Liquor
Carlsbad, CA

Dark brown and dark ruby with just the slightest bit of sediment running throughout the beer. A small khaki colored head quickly forms and quickly recedes. This beer leaves sheets of sticky lace down the glass. Gorgeous.

Wonderful aroma consisting of dark cherries and raisins, floral and citrus hops, sweet freshly baked bread, sticky caramel candy, and just a bit of warm, stinging alcohol. Phenomenal.

The flavor is nearly as good as the aroma as the caramel and toffee flavors really emerge, accompanied by sweet, tart, and dark cherry flavors. There's a bit of warming alcohol but nothing overpowering. Delicious.

Medium to full mouthfeel with low to moderate carbonation.

A fantastic barleywine. I'm surprised at how good it is fresh, brewed just 2 months ago.

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Photo of BARFLYB
4.28/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz 2009 vintage silver capped into a tulip glass watching Damages. This was 'cellared' in my basement for all of three days, I could not wait.

A melted copper penny shine with some reddish outlines, This looks quite different from Fred. With about five ounces poured my tulip exploded with a caramel, off white, creamy colored mass of foam that made noise and was active, almost like molten lava. Fingerprints of lace around the base of the glass.

I've had a 9 year aged version of this and this semi fresh version is much bolder with ripe hops bursting out west coast style. Smells of grapefruit and some papaya. Citrus blast indeed, doggie has a sweet caramel touch with slight chocolate and bread from the malts. The malts come out with big warming as well as some alcohol.

Doggie digs it's claws with grapefruit mixed with some booze and some semi dark fruit action. The flavor is just so rich and something that i'm enjoying alot. Light sugar mixed with a little more caramel rounds out the sweetness with a small candi like vibe. Some molasses and brown sugar adding to the sweetness. The chocolate is real minimal or perhaps im imagining that. A big toastiness from the malt addition with a splash of alcohol.

This stuff really is a marvel on the mouth. When cold the citrus hop burst does it's thing without wrecking the tounge, or palette. With warming the malts do their thing and claws becomes a more sweet barleywine with the hop bite fading, but never fully. An above medium bodied beer that may have a bit to much carbonation, I like it, but it's huge, but I think it works. I've heard of complaints on carb on this vintage, but not from me.

Insanely drinkable, while the alcohol is noted and felt, I just kept picking up my glass. I did not care for Fred at all (perhaps it was the added rye) but doggie has a style all of it's own, this is the bomb. It's not far off from any other well crafted American Barleywine in taste, smell, feel, but this is damn good and just a pleasure. I thought this would be a boozy mess at this semi young age, but I was surprised at the complexities and togetherness of this beer.

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Photo of Goliath
4.28/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep amber color with a large 2 inch light tan head. Good retention.

Aroma is hop dominate with some citrus notes and rather floral.

Taste is quite good. A nice hop profile, fairly floral and a bit of citrus. Well balanced with some nice malting. Caramel, fruit, and sugar all come to mind. It's more complex, but I can't quite put my finger on all of it.

Mouthfeel is full bodied, thick and syrupy with a very gentle carbonation.

Drinkability is fairly high. Great flavor makes this brew easy to consume, and the alcohol is very well hidden. Would love to see what age does.

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Photo of seeswo
4.28/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

(2009 bottle) I love barleywine. I think I fell in love with the style drinking an Olde School from DFH. At this point, that beer might be a bit sweet for me, though it is still good - just a sipper. While I have made an effort to collect some allegedly good ones, like Great, BA Old Ruffian, I have not yet tried them. What I have tried is here in front of me, Doggie Claws, and it is freakin' delicious. It is a touch less sweet than Olde School and exceptionally smooth. There is not a lot to the nose, but frankly, I don't care. This has almost none of the bite or cloying sweetness that sometimes spoils a barleywine. I would actually say that, for me, this is something I could drink a few of. Of course, I wouldn't be able to walk if I did.

Really, what we have learned here is that I am going to have to effort a case of this shipped to me in the midwest. I would love to try this beer barrel-aged, but I don't want to get carried away.

One of my favorite barleywines and a really good beer. IMO, if you don't like this, you don't like American Barleywines. Get some.

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Photo of Anaxagoris
4.28/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of kylehay2004
4.28/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of grub
4.29/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle. 2006 vintage.

pours deep reddish copper colour with no head, even from an aggressive pour straight into a pint glass.

aroma is great. alcohol. huge malts. caramel. slightly burnt roastyness, but not in any way unpleasant. hints of smoke. oaky vanilla. bit of tangerine. ripe dark fruit.

taste is great. still that hint of burnt roast, and still liking it. alcohol. tons of malt. nice caramel sweetness. medium bitterness level. bit of resin and pine. very light grapefruit. bit of tangerine. some ripe dark fruit. hint of smoke.

mouthfeel is good. nice big body. almost completely non-existent carbonation. would have been better with just a little more to bring it to life. i had been warned that this one suffered in the carbonation department, so i was babying it, trying to coax a little more life from it. over the last 6 months i've resuspended the yeast in this bottle many times, hoping that they might chew on it and bring out more carbonation. looks like it had no real effect though, since it seems as flat as other reviews have noted.

drinkability is great. even with the lack of carbonation i still enjoyed this one. well balanced. make no mistake, this is a big beer, but it was nice to kick back with a glass of this as the sun went down on the lake and sip on it into the evening.

 1,324 characters

Photo of jameaterblues
4.29/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From notes:
A- Dark amber almost brown in color. Frothy big that the beer did not even fit in the pint....thick dense lace that follows the beer as you drink it down the glass.

S- Caramel and toffee, floral, and grapefruit notes. Musky dank undertone to a very dense sweet beer. Extremely complex, and I could probably pick out more scents if I had more experience.

T- Big sweet caramel flavors, with light toffee. Herbal hops create a savory sweet interplay....and a hint of cinnamon and ginger.

M/D- Really complex, light carbonation, syrupy and mouth coating....I can't wait to try it again next year.

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Photo of grilledsquid
4.29/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Wetpaperbag
4.29/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2007 bottle in a normal pint glass.

A- A dark copper color, fluffy one finger width head on top. Some of the sediment did end up in the glass and is floating around.

S- A nice fruity smell, hints of pineapple and the smells of fruit juice. The hop smell is a great smell to have tickle the nose.

T- Very sweet, nice slight bitterness from the hops. There is a hint of spicyness that comes though at the end of the taste. The pineapple taste is more of a full flavored taste. It reminds me of the Fred, but more on the sweet side with more pineapple taste.

M- A slightly thick and oily feeling. Sweet and viscous.

D- Easy to drink, but better off as a sipping beer. The flavors really come though as the beer warms up. Another great showing from HOTD.

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Photo of Sean9689
4.29/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Magnum, 2004 Vintage, brought to DLD 2012 by yours truly.

A - Pours a rusty reddish/brown color, lots of sediment towards the end of the bottle, thin brownish/tan head, thin collar.

S - Sweet & smooth nose. Dark fruits, caramel, oak, burnt sugars, smooth booze, and light chocolate & honey. Really, a perfect nose for me and the age has really worked wonders on this beer.

T - Again, just simply stunning. Dark fruits, caramel, burnt sugars, light chocolate, and maybe some slight oxidation (if any at all). The booze is just perfect right now, ultra-smooth and rich. Finish is dark fruity sweetness and smooth barleywine booze.

M - Medium to full body, rich and smooth, light carbonation, creamy finish.

O - Wow, this one even surprised me! I must say, this beer is drinking off-the-chain right now. If you have a 2004 (or so) bottle, open it and enjoy. Glad I have more! :D

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Photo of Mar02x
4.3/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I had this beer pored in by Alan Sprints himself during the Alvinne Craft Beer Festival. What a fantastic moment.

A - A yellow beer with a white head.

S - A fruity hop scent; mango citrus.

T - There is fruity mango, pineapple, candy sugar, but the fluid is not crispy. Alan told me that it came because of the added honey. I didn't notice it though. I know it sounds stupid but I thought that I was drinking a Imperial IPA. Later I discovered it was a barley wine.

M - A soft carbonation and no real bitterness. This beer is beer lemonade!

O - A real nice beer, and so easy to drink. I know that I am nagging now, but a bit colder would have been nice.

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Photo of Rifugium
4.3/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

First had: on tap at their brewpub
Also have bottles of this for later consumption.

Poured a nice brownish amber with a small cap of tan head that retained fairly well. Sweet caramel and brown sugar in the nose, with some fruitiness and distant hop tones. Sweet and thick with dark sugars--caramel and brown sugar--notes of raisins and red wine, with an obvious alcohol kick, and a touch of citrusy hops. Smooth and nearly full-bodied, very drinkable. Great barleywine.

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Photo of OWSLEY069
4.3/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Vintage bottle 2002.
Pours a hazy orange/ copper color with an off white head. In the aroma, sugary and plum like, and alcohol presence and a small hop in there too. In the taste, hops, plum/ fruitiness, and a hint of alcohol in the end. A bitter, medium to big mouthfeel and a semi-dry hop and alcohol in the aftertaste. Nice hopp presence, bitter yet smooth, big in alcohol yet hides it well.

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Photo of Gotti311
4.3/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of Drinkerofales
4.3/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours murky copper brown with red in the lights. A large light brown head forms and stays.

Smell is pungent hops, dark fruit, sweet roasted malt, toffee, and booze. Huge.

Taste is candied fruit, booze and roasted malts, hops are present as well.

Feels thick and creamy. While there is an alcohol presence, but it's not too to, just about right.

Nice beer, big and pungent. Gonna get some to age....


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Photo of Gushue3
4.3/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2009 vintage. Thanks to HuskinPDX for the smooth and ridiculously fast shipping job.

Holy fucking gusher. Thing exploded all over my table and laptop. I hastily dumped some into my glass to stop the carnage from getting worse. There's a foamy finger and a half head after all settles and leaves lots of lacing. The body is a murky brown orange hue and has some floaties hangin around. Looks good but the gushing really put a bad taste in my mouth.

Sweet bready malt with some mollasses and caramel. Tint bit of sharp hops but definately smells really sweet. Smells more like an english BW.

There's the hops. Nice hoppyness thats complimented nicely with sweet malt, really great combination. Hops arent over the but hang around really nicely to work with the other flavors. Some sweeter caramel and toffee come through in the middle. Hops settle down toward the end of the middle and leaves a nice light sweet ride to the finish. Great balance of hoppy and malty. Can't wait to try it fresh.

Feels to be on the heavier side of medium and somewhat syrupy. good amount of smaller carbonation bubbles.

Besides the explosion really enjoyable beer. Taste was pretty spot on, awesome balance and everything was real nice. This brewery keeps growing on me.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
4.3/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2005- drunk in August, 2006.

This beer pours a hazy copper brown with a fairly small offwhire head. The head doesn't really stick around.

The smell is dark and rich like a fruitcake. Predominant flavors of liquor soaked fruit and lush malt.

The taste is very winey- sweet flovors balanced nicely with malt and hops are there and a spicy aftertaste.. Almost a fruit brandy finish. Warm alcohol flavors, but not hot- very well integrated.
A really pleasing barley wine.

The mouthfeel is good- if anything the carbonation has mellowed too much by now. Nice body, and despite all the malt not too sticky- very warming.

Great drinkability- definitely a sipper by the fire, although I'm enjoying it just fine on a cool evening in the summer in Palo Alto, California.

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Photo of JoEBoBpr
4.3/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip glass from a 12oz bottle.
Vintage: 2011

Pours a murky yet very attractive muddy water brown with some nice orange hues. Very oily, thick and viscous liquid. A nice 0.25 inch head forms that is a light cream color and is pretty dense and has some good retention as well.

Aroma of resinous hop notes. Tons of stuff going on in there with some nice caramel malt sweetness in there. Intense hop resins with some citrus and some nice intense grassy pine notes. There is some boozy notes as well.

Taste starts off with some nice intense hop notes. Nice caramel notes that are very well balanced with the hops. There is some nice sweetness that includes some nice raisin notes and some good bitterness. There is some boozy notes but they aren't overwhelming. I think 1 year has curbed some of the heat. Very good Barleywine. Mouthfeel is nice and sticky.

Good barleywine. Great sweetness and nice hop balance.

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Doggie Claws from Hair of the Dog Brewing Company / Brewery and Tasting Room
4.12 out of 5 based on 1,188 ratings.
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