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

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92
outstanding
1,188 Ratings
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Doggie ClawsDoggie Claws
BEER INFO

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

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

BEER STATS
Ratings:
1,188
Reviews:
552
Avg:
4.12
pDev:
11.89%
 
 
Wants:
402
Gots:
266
For Trade:
15
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,188 |  Reviews: 552
Photo of scott2269
4.75/5  rDev +15.3%

Photo of twelveinches
4.75/5  rDev +15.3%

Photo of samEBC
4.75/5  rDev +15.3%

Photo of baybassboy
4.75/5  rDev +15.3%

Photo of jbarra101
4.75/5  rDev +15.3%

Photo of younger35
4.75/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a couple bottles of this nectar from Bottle Works in Seattle while helping my buddy move into his new apartment. Drank this while waiting for everyone to get ready before we went to the Sonics game (courtside tickets, row 1 - Had to throw that in). Drank from my new Stone Indian Pale Ale specialty flute glass. 2007 Edition.

Appearance- Pours a yeast filled dark brown/copper with a huge two finger off white creamy head. Leaves a fairly decent cap and a nice thick collar for the entire duration of the brew. Some thick creamy lacing is left that slowly washes down the side of the glass.
Smell- Very crisp and clean Barley Wine with a big citrus American hop presence. The Simcoe dirtiness is fairly detectable with a very grassy, piney hop nose. Plenty of grapefruit and candied orange on top of the sweet toffee malt. Oak, Rum and dark boozy raisins add to the brown sugar like backbone. The alcohol is definitely not a stranger either.
Taste- Hmm, amazing. I was expecting a huge gush of raw hops followed by boat loads of sweet grainy sugar. I'm found with a meticulously balanced gem of a Barley Wine that starts just slightly sweet with a soft caramel tinge. Booze soaked raisins and prunes add a dark fruitiness that I've come to expect from all the HotD brews. Plenty of raw brown sugar and the honey lend a bit of sweetness before the lightly bitter citrus comes out. Grapefruit is the dominating bitterness that combats everything leaving me with ridiculously good beer. The alcohol is of course present but not as hot as I expected considering this beer has no age on it.
Mouthfeel- Rich and creamy with a smooth thick feel and light prickly carbonation.
Drinkability- For 11% ABV I couldn't imagine a beer being any easier drinking and any more balanced (for how big it is). The honey adds a nice gentle twist on the style that I really enjoyed. Fantastic beer from an absolutely fantastic brewery.

 1,924 characters

Photo of nickfl
4.75/5  rDev +15.3%

Photo of mjw1200
4.75/5  rDev +15.3%

Photo of DaPan
4.75/5  rDev +15.3%

Photo of marcpal
4.74/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I've traded for a few of these and apparently I have yet to review. God, I love this beer. I can say that I am not just influenced about my passion for HotD because in a previous improptu blind barleywine tasting, this came out on top alongside Foghorn. Much different indeed but both delicious.

12oz (2007) bottled poured into a big Delirium goblet.
Bottle Graphics: 9/10. HotD Classy.

A: Poured thick apple juice hazy peach color with a pretty thick off white head. The head was volumptious and did not go anywhere, nor did the lacing.

S: Intense sugar coated grapefruit right out of the gate. More of a mango aroma tickles the senses as it warmed up. The amount of hops can not be a joke here considering that their presence is more than blatant behind all those malts and sugars.

T: Not nearly as citrusy as the smell, the sweetness took over here. This is a roller coaster ride of flavor- it hits the mouth and it is sweet alcohol and malt, through the swallow it has a bit of tobacco and fruit and the aftertaste is laden with the bitterness. Terrificly complex with the closing out of toffee considerably dominating the caramel.

D: Dry with a resiny texture. More oily than creamy, albeit a full textured body. Can you tell this is weighing in at over 11%? Yes, but I don't care because I want to savor every single sip. This is a Mariano Rivera caliber closer for a night of smaller beers before it.

Another hit from the HotD house. I would love nothing more than to get a never ending supply in Jersey and will continue to trade to make it happen as much as possible. Hard to describe but it is one of those beers you drink and you know a lot of passion went into it.

This is a beer with a multiple personality disorder in that it is always changing with the flavors I am catching and love every bit of it.

 1,823 characters

Photo of goodbyeohio
4.74/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

says 2004 in the red box. 12oz.

amberish browny red with creamy head of foam.. luxurious and barleywinesque for sure in a 3 phils chalice.. hazy pour leaves a peppering of lace all down the glass. hard-core.

smell is freakin outstanding.. nutty base mingles with an alcohol-bearing caramel sweetness, blanketed gently by a dusting of bittersweet cocoa. yes folks, this is a goldberg's peanut chew in a glass. good u.s. hop choice enables 2 years to leave behind some residual candied orange wafts that simply add to the party goin on inside this glass.

taste? get outta here. this is freakin butter. hops become brown sugar.. this transforms into an alcohol twist, good and hearty like a single malt. carbon-y flavors of burnt rock candy leave the mouth salivating, partly thanks to the flavor-dominating hops that add juicy peach tang and little-to-no bitterness. ladies and gentlemen.. this is what a barleywine should be. a big punch in the nuts, with that alternating sweet and succulent side.

i could drink two bottles, but at 11+ i probably shouldn't. don't get me wrong.. i love the hoppy ones like behemoth, and the english ones give me a bit of a headache but resonate strong still. this is the mix i've been looking for. dare i say it.. a near perfect beer.

 1,279 characters

Photo of tavernjef
4.74/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A Christmas gift from weefisheads...Thank you! Love the Doggie Claws! This stuff is quite nice. Nice dark caramel brown color, very thick and deep with a fluffy tan head of tallness that resides slowly down to a thick fluffy skim mostly present throughout the glass and whispy strings of lace sticking. Aroma is nice and hoppy with a nice array of pine needles, herbs, spice, and resin with a nice roasty caramel malted backing. Has a certain sweet tone with some citrusy grapefruit peels too. Very nice nose! Good flavors and taste with a nice hop profile that has a nice creamy spicyness and herbal quality with nice tones of pine and grapefruit bitterness, those Amarillo hops are just lovely. Very toasty malt backing adding some twingy tang and lightly burnt notions. Feel is fairly sharp and filled with hop bittering tones and even a little bit of bittering burnness and alcoholic tinge going down late, overall a fluffy texture and full body with long lingering notes of bitterness from all those awesome hops. Calming and smooth with a creamy fluffyness with a very nice hop character. A fine, fine drinker, the sharpness of hops is a bit heavy but age will fix that I imagine and become calmer plus the alcohol is barely noticeable. Still, as a fresh beast this is very nice. Its not a malty thick or heavy barleywine in the least in my observation and sampling, its very IPA-like and was just what I needed for the holidays. Thanks again dB!

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Photo of drpimento
4.74/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

BOOM! Big Beer! Would've given it an even better score had I noticed it was a gusher before half the beer left the bottle and therefore my mouth. What I did get had a thick, creamy, foamy, frothy, fluffy, billowy light tan head that lasts all the way down and some lace. Color is a cloudy amber brown. Aroma is yeast, caramel, toffee, hops, honey, fresh leather. Flavor is like nose but with sweet and bitter standing out most with enough tang to balance and then other flavors too fleeting for me to identify. Soft full, round body and excellent carbonation. Finish is like flavor, fairly long, and only a hint of alcohol.

 623 characters

Photo of sweemzander
4.73/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz. bottle poured into a snifter. 2010 vintage. Huge thanks to black13 for this one!

(A)- Pours a hazy reddish sienna brown color that produced a huge foamy off-white head with superb retention. Tons of lacing around the entire rim of the glass as it took forever to dissipate. Extremely impressive due to the ABV level of this.

(S)- Some rich fruits of raisin, fig, and maybe even dates. Some hints at cherry & cocoa with some caramel or toffee sweetness.

(T)- Just like the smell predicted. Some rich fruits of raisin, fig, date, with hints at dark chocolate covered cherries. A light spiciness with a honey or caramel sweetness. Has a dry, almost bread-like finish with hints of peat.

(M)- A great carbonation level and balance. Rich and quite strong this fresh, but a complex one at that. Mildly bitter with a mild boozy warmth.

(D)- A world class Barleywine. Tastes great now fresh, but I can only imagine what a year or two would do to this. I need to acquire more of this to find out! It still is a bit too strong to have more than one of these at a time, but it sure hit the spot on this cold New Year's Day!

 1,123 characters

Photo of DimensionX
4.73/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2012 vintage

A: Dark amber colored with a light bronze hue visible around the edges of the glass. Highly carbonated, had to pour slow, great lacing and head retention.

S: Smells like big floral hops, piney and fruity, almost estery bubblegum but could just be overall sweetness/sugar.

T: Very hoppy with fruity citrus and dark pine flavors dominating, almost a spice like quality, not sure what. Rich malty backbone supports this interesting flavor combo, dark and deep with a dry finish.

O: One of my favorite barleywines lives up to it's reputation once again. Like all American Barleywines this beer greatly improves with cellar time.

 641 characters

Photo of smuttanator
4.72/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2005 vintage

Holy hell this beer is good. Full of hops and honey this beer really doesn't pull any punches. The honey compliments the generous amount of hops and malt beautifully. While I wouldn't call this anywhere close to drinkable, I don't think its intended to be. Perfect for a winter night.

 298 characters

Photo of boMD
4.72/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Have had many different vintages of Doggie Claws. It's exceptional fresh, and exceptional with some time on it.

This is a review of a 2002 vintage bottle I had enjoyed. Prior to 2003 and forward vintages, this had been brewed with Ahtanum and Vanguard hops opposed to Simcoe and Amarillo.

Poured a deep amber with a thick, long lasting, off-white head. Deep barley and alcohol aroma with a roasted and berry quality. Very smooth and still retained a good carbonation but very soft on the palate. Dark fruits like grapes or dates, vanilla and a whiskey like booze character. Roasted caramel malts. Not much in hop flavors left on this one. Also notes of smoked oak and lactose. Very rich, complex and a joy to drink.

 718 characters

Photo of bargerking
4.72/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

08 vintage poured into a snifter.

A Pale ruby. Very thin head. Thin lace. Low carbonation. This is an 08 though...

S sweet and juicy. Faded hops. Hints of pear. Lots of candi sugars. Dominate honey smell.

T Very sweet. Kind of thick. A little burn going down.

M Tons of honey from start to finish. The aftertaste is even stronger. Not boozey at all and really sweet.

D Great and deadly drinker. Canttaste the booze at all. Really sweet though. If you like honey and Bwine, this is the best it gets.

 503 characters

Photo of libertygrails
4.72/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Year 2005 Made

Pulled the cap off and curiously began reading the label and bubbles began oozing down my hand. Whoa, this stuff is screaming to be let out. Okay then....

Deftly poured into my Trappist Achel Goblet. An amazing carmel colored, earthy brown brew with one of the most dense, foamiest cappuchino-esque, tan colored heads i've even seen out of a bottle.
Cloudy yeasty looking sediment clumps quickly and settles to the bottom of the grail.

Coffee, caramel, estery hopps, earthy yeast all enter the nose immediately.

Earthy malts and estery hopps blend perfectly. A sincere delight.

Mouth is perfect. I could die and go to Beer Heaven right now. In fact this is quite honestly one of the best Barley Wines i've yet to taste. Strange. This reminds me of Trappistes Rochefort 10 Quad.

If i find this again, i will buy as many as are on the shelf. Sadly, don't think i'll have much luck. I count myself lucky just to have found this bottle!

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Photo of cducap
4.71/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of jamesm7485
4.7/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

2002 vintage poured into a oversized brandy glass
even with a carefull pour a thick white frothy head is quick to form on a dark amber body.

The smell is very nice with lots of malt oranges and something i just cant quite put my finger on.

The taste is very heavy on the orange but in a good way.

Mouthfeel is nice lots of carbonation despite it being 6 years old now.

This barleywine drinks just as easy as a lager yet is far more fun, ill be going back to my secret store to get more of these for sure!

 508 characters

Photo of beerceller99
4.7/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2003 from the cellar.
Beautiful clear garnet hue with a light brown head. Strong smell of caramel, raisons ; think cinnabon roll. Medium bodied with a full mouthfeel. Taste is a strong raison, roasted pecans, figs, dates with a pleasing alcohol finish.
The intense flowery hop essence of a fresh sampling is gone, but the classic old ale flavors have emerged in good form. Exceptionally drinkable.
Excellent.

 413 characters

Photo of brewdlyhooked13
4.7/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance - pours a hazy dull orange, a thin but solid cover of off white, holding well.

Aroma - citrusy, orange and pine, estery vapors alongside. Smells potent.

Taste - huge, sweet malty opening, roasty coffee-like malts chiming in early as well. Followed by syrupy, citrus, juiciness. Light on the bitterness, though not the hop flavor. The swallow stays sweet and grows slightly bitter with peach, dark fruit, mandarin orange. Abv is well-masked but makes its presence known with a finishing warmth.

Mouthfeel - heavy and drapy with low carbonation.

Drinkability - what a wonderful bottle of beer. Fresh or aged, I imagine this will be a fine experience. Big thanks to udubdawg for parting with one of these for my sake at DLD08.

 738 characters

Photo of alpinebryant
4.7/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

-2009 vintage -
Poured into snifter an overflowing light tan / white head that continued to pour out of the bottle like a melted ice cream would fall off of a cone. Quite possibly the thickest most sticky head I have ever poured. Lacing was obviously present all over the lass and the head stuck around for a while.

Smell of strong grassy , citrusy, grapefruity hops. Pellet hops were actually still present on the top of the head as it settled. Pine ever present in the nose, I really actually enjoyed the dry hopping that I believe actually occurred directly before bottling. Chewy has been given more meaning with hop particles actually present in my glass... Caramel and caramelized sugars very present in this high abv 12 oz bottle. Sugar cookie, Caramel, cotton candy, you name it, if kids were allowed to drink beer, they would probably apprecciate this one fresh. This is a sweet tooth drinkers brew, so if you do not have a sweet tooth, just send me your doggie claws.

Glad to have tried this one fresh, now to get a couple more and age them to see what a few years do to transform the flavors....

I hated to take points off for appearance, but this one literally overflowed from the bottle before I could pour it into my glass. Lesson learned for next time, but everything else was great.

 1,302 characters

Photo of mickeymac
4.7/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Uh . . . wow. Hair of the Dog is always a hit or miss proposition in our part of the country. A few bottles seem to show up here and there every now and then. Sometimes they're at Trader Joe's for $1.50 or so a bottle; other times they're on small liquor store shelves at twice the price. After seeing Adam and Fred on more than one occasion, I finally had the distinct pleasure of being all scratched up by Doggie Claws.

It comes in a 12 oz bottle with a somewhat festive but very interesting looking bottle. This is probably the only beer label in the world with a Menorah (actually two) and a bulldog in a Santa Claus cap. It pours a deep copper with a thick off-white head that lingers to the bottom. The smell is piney hops, loads of malt, just a bit of dark fruit, and-yes-alcohol. The taste is almost overwhelming yet somehow subtle at the same time. Hops seem to smack the hell out of the tongue on the first sip, but giant waves of malt immediately fill the mouth with hop bitterness and malt sweetness locked in a battle to the death. Fortunately for all the battle ends in a draw, leaving the promise of a re-match, or at least a return trip to the shop for more.

For a beer that approaches the abv of Pinot Noir, it's unbelievably drinkable. Seek it out: drink it, age it, introduce it to your friends, put it in the passenger seat of your car and take it for a scenic drive. This is a special beer.

 1,418 characters

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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