Fred From The Wood
Hair Of The Dog Brewing Company / Brewery And Tasting Room

Fred From The WoodFred From The Wood
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Strong Ale - American
Ranked #14
Ranked #1,232
4.27 | pDev: 9.84%
Hair Of The Dog Brewing Company / Brewery And Tasting Room
Oregon, United States
Fred From The WoodFred From The Wood
Notes: Aged in new, medium toast American oak barrels for at least 6 months
Reviews: 250 | Ratings: 574 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
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VABA from Virginia

4.49/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark cherry color with a slight head and lacing
Aroma has intense caramel, apple, smokiness and woody hints
The taste follows the nose with very well balanced caramel, apple, smokiness and woody flavors
A medium bodied decently carbonated beer
A very well balanced Strong Ale

Nov 25, 2021
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thebeers from Pennsylvania

3.73/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Pours a syrupy-looking, light amber color with strong effervescence and two fat fingers of lightly tanned head. Excellent retention. Thick lacing.

Big pear cider, apple and caramel in the nose. A little leather, vanilla and white pepper behind. Quite the mix.

The taste is completely different: massive wood, strong pepper, earthy bitterness, alcohol burn. Only hints of the fruit and caramel peak through. The woodiness and peppery bite linger.

Initially feels very thin against all those big flavors, but it's actually very chewy. Moderate carbonation.

The 180 from the nose to the taste is hard for me to get over. Worth a try, but the wood aging doesn’t do the base any favors, IMO.

Nov 06, 2021
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mushroomcloud from Texas

4.47/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2014 vintage. Opened 10-9-21 with a nice hiss.
1/4" off white head with some surprising retention, settles in as a cap and ring.
Orange-gold body - opaque but not murky, brightens and clears some during the session. No lacing.
American oak is still prominent on the nose after 7 years, wow. Smells like spicy fresh oak in a winery barrel room. Leather, vanilla, and some fruit (apricot, table grapes), underneath the wood.
Very fresh feel and taste for a 7 year old bottle. Big spicy wood, same as the aroma, more stone fruit and some vanilla.
Medium body with a round and slick mouthfeel. Smooth. Low carbonation. Tannic. Lengthy and ultimately dry finish.
The drinkabilty is phenomenal.

Oct 10, 2021
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REVZEB from Illinois

4.22/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Cellared bottle from (!)2014. Murky orangey brown, only white surface islands and webbing remains past initial pour. Nose is an expressive gem: flowers, bright oak, lightly toasted bread, orange, apricot, booze, caramel, vanilla, toffee and a kiss peach skin, super well balanced. Taste has the oak become the overlord of all the flavors, add some dark fruit depth underneath the nose elements but overall not as defined or balanced as nose. Feel has great oak character through the whole sip, booze, light botanicals and malt textures support artfully. Another winner from HOD, but if you do not enjoy wood forward beers you have been warned

Jun 19, 2021
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patre_tim from Thailand

4.09/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Dark brown with an amber tinge, slightly cloudy with moderate carbonation and a hair of beige head.

Smells of creme brulee, burnt brown sugar, raisins, vanilla and a hint of oak.

Tastes of raisins, oak, wood, brown sugar, and a hint of bitterness.

Medium body with moderate carbonation. Really covers the ABV.

I got this in Portland on Yamhill St, at the brewpub. 2013 brew, drinking in Redding, Nov 23rd, 2019. Excellent brew.

Nov 24, 2019
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Lingenbrau from Oregon

4.47/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2013 vintage from the bottle...

First thing noticed is how much darker this is than good ol' Fred. A ruddy amber brown with classic HotD lack of clarity. Above lies an oddly orange tinted tan foam, that snappy as bubbles continue to vocalize their demise. A thin ring and even more scarce patch are all that they leave behind.

The Fred signature Dark Belgian Candi sugar is still dominant in the aroma, but to taking on a much richer form. Dates and prunes soaked in classic cola and associated spices, accompanied by a lively leather and tobacco oak influence. Definitely takes Fred to the next level.

There's molasses, then there's Fred From the Wood. Straight up molasses. Syrupy, black licorice, oak, leather, fig and a touch of soy sauce. Once again, Hair of the Dog nails simplicity with insane and contradictory complexity going well beyond just the flavor. The finish has such a unique flavor that I can't quite put my finger on, yet it's so familiar. Frustrating as hell.... Raw cranberry juice perhaps?

Syrupy and smooth with just a faint pop of carbonation that colludes with the wood to employ a perceived dryness. The booze is remarkably well hidden, especially considering the source as being ones not shy of intensity. A sipper, and a pleasure with it's sweet yet bold demeanor.

Another, as expected, absolute pleasure. Once again, I have no context to this versus fresh. My first go with Fred From the Wood is this very bottle. 6 years old and absolutely fan-fucking-tastic.


Apr 02, 2019
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Lucnifter from California

3.79/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

2013 vintage.
Pours dark amber with a moderate tan head.
Aroma is tea, lemon and oxydation.
Flavor is carmel, tea and cardboard.
Medium heavy body.
Overall an okay beer. The 5 years is apparent. Not bad. Drinkable, but I prefer the non-BA version.

Dec 25, 2018
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Dactrius from Wisconsin

4.24/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2013. Nearly flat but more carbonation than a lot of their bottles. Oxidized but HotD makes beers that are really well suited to aging where the flavors actually work with age on them. The barrel isn't very noticeable, perhaps getting overpowered a bit by the oxidization. A great beer but not one I'd age much longer.

Oct 31, 2018
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ryan1788a5 from Massachusetts

4.49/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle

Tea and tobacco all over the nose, dried orange peel, dusty oak, toasted scones and burnt sugar. Taste follows suit. Thin caramel and burnt sugar, toasted scones, walnut. Flash of orange marmalade. Some berry. Deep earthy tones of tea, tobacco, and pine bark. Plenty of dusty and toasty oak. Long earthy tobacco and herb finish. Medium-full body with gentle carbonation and a slight sticky texture. A great American interpretation of an old ale, and full of character. A pleasure to drink.

Sep 12, 2018
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stevoj from Idaho

4.11/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Bottle from Jeremy, barley wine tasting 2018. Really smooth, sharp ABV notes in the aroma. Malty sweet and boozy. Perfect all the way around. Barrels really up the ante on this beer.

Apr 01, 2018
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Sabtos from Ohio

3.9/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

We did a side-by-side with Fred From the Stone at the brewery and the differences were stark.

This had a thicker head with an even more solid wall of lace all around the glass, yet had a lighter amber-orange hue that was fully opaque.

Aromas of really hard spirits hit the nose with woody spice, sticky sap, pear, apple and salted caramel. As it warms I also get maple and candied nut. The aroma here is the big winner between the two, hands-down.

Frothy and soft but with a medium level of boozy heat, this semi-dry version tastes of apple, pear, toast, wood, licorice and molasses.

Oct 23, 2017
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Ciocanelu from Romania

3.6/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Beavertown Extravaganza. Aroma has musty wood barrel, cellar funk and some fruits. Taste is woody, dusty and musty. Not as good as the regular version.

Sep 20, 2017
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HipCzech from Texas

4.22/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Hair of the Dog Brewery and Tasting Room, served in a stemmed 3 oz glass. Cloudy orange amber with a short, frothy crown of near white head. Big and boozy with plenty of oak barrel notes. Toffee, turbinado sugar, vanilla, sweet citrus fruit, and spicy new oak. Leather and tobacco tannins linger in the finish. Medium to full body and moderate carbontion along with some alcoholic heat. A potent brew with tasty, bold barrel notes.

Jul 09, 2017
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jrenihan from Canada (ON)

4.14/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This is one heavy beer. Tonnes of brandy, oak, caramel, leather. Nose also has spices. Thick and heavy, almost syrupy. It's pretty great, but about as undrinkable as it gets- boozy and heavy, a bit of an ordeal. Great for a small amount- but I can't drink it for too long!

Jan 23, 2017
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unclekeith from Alaska

4.49/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2013 12 oz bottle into a tulip

L: Murky brown with a nice 1-finger head settling to a thin collar
S: Caramel, spices, oak, vanilla, toffee - wonderful
T: Following the nose, leather, tobacco
F: Full bodied, good carb
O: Superb, complex, alcohol well hidden, worth the wait

Dec 15, 2016
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ptykozoon from California

3.86/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours ugly as sin mirky pond water. No head/lacing.

Sweet citrusy fruits, caramel, toffee, vanilla. Excellent.

Tastes like the nose only subdued. The flavors are very delicate but pleasant.

Mouthfeel is extremely smooth. ABV feel is handled well. Finish is a dry tobacco and molasses.

A subtle, smooth beer with lovely yet restrained flavors.

Apr 11, 2016
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Treyliff from West Virginia

4.31/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2014 vintage
12oz bottle poured into a snifter

A- pours a murky amber color with a small foamy white head that reduces to a ring around the edge of the glass

S- aroma opens with spicy young oak, followed by notes of leather & tobacco, molasses, caramel, dark cherry, vanilla, herbal tea & raisin, very complex

T- flavor opens up with a strong presence of spicy oak, followed by dark fruity sweetness, with notes of raisin & black cherry. Mid-palate brings more sweet notes of caramel & molasses. As it nears the finish, notes of spicy wood kicks in, along with some earthy notes of tobacco. The linger is of strong fresh oak and hints of vanilla

M- medium body with low carbonation leads to a slightly foamy mouthfeel that continues into the finish

O- the oak barrels play a huge part in this variation, and it works very well with the base beer, definitely recommended if you like strong woodsy flavors

Mar 03, 2016
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SportsandJorts from Virginia

4.04/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Vintage 2014

Appearance: pours a orangish brown color. a finger or two of a tannish head with strong retention and a big lacing behind. hazy and opaque.

Smell: lots of wood flavor. cinnamon, vanilla and huge virgin oak. some rye spice and alcohol.

Taste: opens with rye and a strong maltiness. huge wooden flavors take over completely with virgin oak, and minor notes of cinnamon and vanilla. fairly strong alcohol. some dark fruits float in occasionally.

Mouthfeel: heavier, slick and almost syrupy. strong lingering oak. fairly dry.

Overall: a huge improvement on regular fred. the pure oak flavor is killer, and almost takes over the whole beer. I wish a few more base notes came through but this is still a delicious beer.

Jan 28, 2015
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GarthDanielson from Virginia

4.32/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bottle into a snifter, the beer is an unfiltered, muddled, light brown coloring, with sparse trails of carbonation throughout the body, and no head to speak of. Aromas of super sweet toffee and caramel, vanilla, brown sugar, wood, roast, apple, date and fig, and a subtle spice blend of nutmeg and cinnamon. Wow...this is a layered trip for your nose. Flavors are rich and heavy forward, with a heavy dose of molasses, toffee, booze heat, woody character, candied apple, fig, and peat. Pretty decent blend of earth and rich sweetness. Smooth, creamy body that layers the flavors for you to uncover. Richly sweet, creamy, and heavily roasted aftertaste. Smooth, slightly cloying, lingering sweet finish.

Dec 30, 2014
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zonker17 from Texas

4.38/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2013 bottle consumed 10/5/15. Creamy beige head that stays for a while. Deep brown somewhat amber color. Smells like a wood and malt. Taste is better than most, with very little hop presence at this point. Mouthfeel is outstandingly over-medium with good level of carbonation.

Nov 26, 2014
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Zaximus from Colorado

4.5/5  rDev +5.4%

2014 vintage 12oz bottle into a newly acquire HOTD tulip. Pour produces about a 1/4'' head. No carb issues here.

Caramel, molasses, wood and a little burn on the nose.

Taste follows the nose. Sweet, caramel, malty, bready(?) goodness with perfect amount of wood and alcohol. I really dig this. Possibly a bit under appreciated and definitely recommended. HOTD crushes this style.

Nov 16, 2014
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dar482 from New York

4.78/5  rDev +11.9%

The beer comes a copper dark brown.

The aroma offers sweet bourbon, oak, toffee, caramel.

The flavor follows of a full mouthfeel with a good amount of carbonation. A punch of dried dark fruit of figs and plums. A rich brown sugar and caramel sweetness comes through with the beer drying out of oak.

A deliciously complex brew.

Nov 04, 2014
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Huhzubendah from District of Columbia

4.25/5  rDev -0.5%

Shared by ygtbsm94. Thanks Brad!

The beer is copper hued and somewhat clear with a small tan cap. Aromas of bread, oak, sweet malt, vanilla, booze. Huge flavor. A huge wave of oak carries over from the aroma to flavor, with additional flavors of wet wood, earth, vanilla, malt. A potent offering. While this is indeed quite tasty, it's best enjoyed in small servings.

Aug 10, 2014
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portia99 from Massachusetts

4.12/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

2nd in my series of Fred reviews in honor of my cat Fred who recently passed away.
1st bottle in series - batch #69 (2007) Fred

12oz bottle (2008 vintage) poured into a gold rimmed Harpoon 100 Barrel series stemmed glass.

A - Pours a slightly deeper amber color than the standard Fred and has a more pronounced reddish tint to it. Body is a touch muddy in contrast to the regular Fred which had excellent clarity. Head is a low finger high, light tan/creamy in color and tightly bubbled with good retention. Webby/soapy lacing is left on the glass.

S - Sweet malt base, syrupy and thick in aroma - caramel with hints of molasses, iced tea, faint cherries, nice woody oak aromas, some light vanilla, lightly boozy, yeasty and bready. Estery and fruity with notes of apples and raisins. Very malt forward for sure, but not quite to the level of the original Fred. Some mild toasty aromas also.

T - Very malty up front...much more than the original Fred. Toffee, caramel, brown sugar, molasses and honey-like sugary sweetness. Thick and syrupy in sweetness - a bit overpowering in character. Toasty, woody oaky-ness, warm booziness, nice vanilla aspects, a bit of ginger ale, really no hops left after 6 years. Slightly roasty and toasted on the finish, slightly drying out the character of the beer, but still remaining predominantly sweet on the palate. Super smooth and too easy-drinking for a 10% beer.

M - Thick and full bodied with a lowish carbonation that still manages a bit of a tingle on the tongue. Syrupy in feel, multi-varietal sugary complexity, smoothing vanilla barreling, woody notes. Sweet, but not overly sweet...really bordering on the edge of being too much, but straddles the line on the correct side.

O - Overall very good beer. I think I like the original Fred a bit more, but this is a fine beer without a doubt. Slight change in character, a bit smoother, a bit more sweetness, definitely a fuller bodied beer. A fine beer in the middle part of my tribute to my cat buddy, Fred.

Apr 16, 2014
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zaphodchak from Virginia

3.99/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Amber body, thinnish offwhite had and surface tracing.

Boozy nose, bourbon and some of the coriander of normal Fred.

Extreme smooth bourbon, faint citrus, borderline astringent levels of wood, but I enjoy this.

Smooth and even-textured.

Darn fine beer—I think I enjoy this less as it warms though.

Feb 08, 2014
Fred From The Wood from Hair Of The Dog Brewing Company / Brewery And Tasting Room
Beer rating: 94 out of 100 with 574 ratings