Fred From The Wood | Hair of the Dog Brewing Company / Brewery and Tasting Room

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Fred From The WoodFred From The Wood

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

Style: American Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Aged in new, medium toast American oak barrels for at least 6 months

Added by freed on 03-28-2005

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 541 |  Reviews: 238
Photo of dmsohyea
1.75/5  rDev -58.5%

Photo of Phyl21ca
2.46/5  rDev -41.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Bottle courtesy of Hogtownharry: Poured a medium yellow color ale with a small foamy white head with minimal retention and lacing. Aroma of oak and sugar is totally dominated by hot alcohol. Taste is totally dominated by hot burning alcohol which is not something that I am usually fond of. Some oak and sweet malt were discernable but still totally overshadowed by the alcohol. I honestly could hardly taste the original Fred in here and I sure could not tell if there were any hops in there. I’m glad I got the chance to try that one but it sure is not something I will seek again.

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Photo of Rhettroactive
2.5/5  rDev -40.8%

Photo of BgThang
2.52/5  rDev -40.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Thanks to jonathaL7890 for this brew

Pours a one finger head

Nose- Alcohol, perfumey, maple, cherries.

Appearance cloudy brownish/coppery

Mouthfeel I get some sweetness up front then its warmed by the alcohol.

Taste- Tobacco, toffee, maple syrup, slight grapefruit. alcohol shows up in the end

This beer is not one of my favorites. It might could benefit from age. I will not seek this beer out again.

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Photo of BarrytheBear
2.56/5  rDev -39.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

12 oz bottle from the 08 vintage shared with Kyle.

Yellowish carbonated beverage surprise.

Pear juice predominantly. Actually, this is surprising. There's no wood, no depth, no real complexity from a brewery that tends to nail layers and depth. Hurumph...

Sweet Jesus, Mary, and Joseph! Big red apple, skins and all. A bit mushy perhaps. A big honey sweetness as well. Just fruit juice and a slightly cloying floral syrupy finish.

Not sure whether Fred is just not my bag, or that aging has done this beer ill, or both. As is, this is just a messy bottle of fruit syrup that doesn't stand up well. A disappointment.

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Photo of mikey711
2.66/5  rDev -37%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

From Batch 64, poured into s snifter

A: A murky brown wih a big off white head and very good lacing. Some sediment sits in the glass.

S: HMMM, it smells exactly like A1 steak sauce... There is a hint of leather and some heat. Very stange and it makes me want a steak

T: Yeah still some A1, but lots of smokiness and sweetness. As it warmed up a bit more it continued to get better as more of the vanilla and oak comes out.

M: Boozy and sweet, but a bit lighter in body than I anticipated.

D: I am wondering if I got a bad bottle of this and am willing to try it again, but this time it want a bit tough to drink.

Note: I tried this bottle again to give it a second chance. Way to sweet for my liking and still reminding me too much or steak sauce

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Photo of benmiliron
2.68/5  rDev -36.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Gift from beer powerball.

This is a weird beer. Looks hazy tan orange. Smells pretty good, but there is a good dose of funk in there that I wasn't expecting. I don't think this should be a barleywine but a sour beer instead.

Taste is unique - American wild flavor that is becoming so popular lately. I just can't seem to develop a taste for this. Very weird with a barleywine, but admittedly the flavor combo is interesting. Kinda hot in the mouthfeel.

Overall I wouldn't recommend this brew unless you're into the recent US "wild" beer craze.

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Photo of jvillefan
2.75/5  rDev -34.8%

Photo of Arbitrator
2.89/5  rDev -31.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Review of 2009 vintage, courtesy of ramnuts, who has generously sent me several vintages of this beer. Thanks, Frank!

A: Hazy golden orange with moderate head that recedes into a ring around the top. It remains active and carbonated throughout the drink, with energetic lacing throughout.

S: Wood. Wood, wood, wood. Alan, did you forget about Fred? With some careful sniffing I pick up light fruits (peaches, I guess?) with a dose of caramel malt and toffee.

T: The initial taste is a nice malty flavor that is quickly overtaken a solid oak/wood presence. Alan's serious about this. Some caramel and toffee malts enter in the middle, with light piney hop taste in the finish. No alcohol burn detected.

M: Medium-bodied and medium carbonation, lacking that motor oil feel. Well captured presence.

D: I LOVED my 2008 bottle (the first time I had it). I am sure my palate has evolved, but I am also positive the 2009 batch is overwhelmingly woody. Wood from the Fred needs to be aged a bit to let that die out.

EDIT: I am consuming a 2008 vintage on 01/17/2012, and it is as I remembered it back when I first had it: balanced expression of wood and very peachy in the nose and mouth. I find this version far superior to the oak juice of the 2009 vintage.

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Photo of Sean9689
2.91/5  rDev -31%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Poured from 12oz bottle into Duvel tulip.

A - Golden color, mirky, with a small amount of white head that quickly vanishes leaving a white ring around the edge of the glass.

S - Lots of sweet cirtus, mandarin oranges, tangerines, and mango notes.

T - Similar to the nose, I get sweet citrus flavors. Some alcohol burn in the way down, but I think the 10% is hidden pretty well on this beer (as good as you can hide 10%). Bitterness on the end mixed with some alcohol burn.

M - very rich, creamy, medium in body. Slight carbonation, I think it could use a bit more.

D - Not really digging this one.

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Photo of fbc24
3/5  rDev -28.9%

Photo of charlesw
3.03/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Well, weird. This is a BA beer? Ah. Hmm. Right. Well, yeah. I'm comparing it to a BA Old Numskull so maybe... Maybe yeah. Still, I don't get the BA (or however they impart their woodiness) bit. I'd have to compare it to a Fred to really see, I suppose. Not gonna happen tonight. Anyway, what the heck is up with calling this an American BW??? What hop bitterness? And, wow, is it ever thick and sweet. Well, in a 'merican BW there should be the bitterness or some other kind of hoppiness to balance out the sweetness - if it's there. Mind you, hey, it has carbonation so all is not lost! Sometimes... Sometimes I check out other reviews while I'm going over a beer. It's weird. I wonder if we're talking about the same beer. Pronounced bitterness? Where? What? Strange. Ah well.

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Photo of rhinos00
3.05/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

2009 Vintage. Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a snifter.

A- Much like Fred. Pours a vibrant amber. Great clarity. Fingers width of white that quickly dissipates into a ring around the glass.

S- Interesting, but the combination of aromas wasn't doing it for me. The aroma was way too one sided with the heavy oak barrel notes. Some sweetness was able to escape to give it some diversity.

T- Rather disappointing. The first half was manageable and actually quite good. As in Fred, lots of fruit sweetness with a nice barrel presence. However, the second half was just atrocious. Unlike Fred, this beer developed a sweet artificial flavor that just permeated throughout. It was borderline disgusting. I've never experienced anything like this in any beer I have had. Oak barrels or not, the sweetness was not only overbearing on the end, it was synthetic like.

M- Like Fred, thin on the mouthfeel. For a barleywine I would expect a little more viscosity.

D- First half of the sip is good, second half almost hard to put down.

Overall, really looked forward to this one, but probably won't be seeking it out again. Sort of sucks because I am a huge barleywine fine, but this is just doesn't even compare to the better ones I have had.

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Photo of crossovert
3.13/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 4 | smell: 1 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle. It is a gusher 2009 vintage.

It pours beautifully, a beautiful orange/red color with a foamy white ehad that recedes to some gorgeuos lacing.

It is straight up fucking infected though, maybe a stray batch of Fred Flanders form the wood got bottled. It smells like a sour Belgian pale. It has a bretty presence and some sweetness.

The flavor is sweet and sour with a definite oak flavor. Well ill be fucked, it isn't half bad infected. It has a big lemony flavor, some cloying sweetness from the base barleywine. Some solid barleywine base flavors like caramel and toffee are very pronounced. The wood is big and bold and it has a bit of spiciness.

Ever had a sour Belgo-barleywine? This is it. I wish I could have it un-infected. And sadly because it is infected I have to dock points somewhere and I will go with the smell.

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Photo of JasonR1975
3.25/5  rDev -23%

Photo of siege06nd
3.25/5  rDev -23%

Photo of Zorro
3.33/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Received from thethrone in the Barrel 'O Beer BIF.

Clear amber colored beer with no head formation at all.

Smell is orange juice and vanilla with a significant sour note. Can smell the oak but that is about it, this smells quite weird.

The taste starts out VERY sweet with a strong vanilla flavor and pretty much a vanilla aftertaste. Hops are herbal and add a melon flavor to this. Weird flavor to this beer don't think the barrel makes it better.

Mouthfeel is thick.

I don't really like this one. The flavors don't really mesh well together.

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Photo of DIM
3.37/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

note: I had this right after a regular Fred.

a: This looks exactly like Fred. This was a clear, pale, golden copper color. It poured with a huge, fluffy, craggy white head that was sticky and long lasting.

s: This smell strange and very different than regular Fred. The candied sugar is still here, but the rye and hops are gone. Replaced by strong earthy aromas of tobacco, naked oak, and something spicy (coriander?). Overall, this was neither subtle nor appealing.

t: This features the same spicy, candied sugar that Fred does. The hops from the finish are gone, replaced by sweet vanilla and oak flavors. There is some moderate heat to found as well. At the very end, raw oak flavors linger for a long time.

m: This was creamier than regular Fred and the carbonation was a bit more lively. The aftertaste is unpleasant though.

d: As with regular Fred, I wouldn't call this a barleywine. It seems that I might not like beers aged in new oak barrels as much as beers aged in bourbon or whiskey barrels. This was worth trying, but I won't have another.

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Photo of Bung
3.43/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

12 oz. 2008
Brighter amber pour, more carbonation than some others here have described. Still just a thin layer on top, more throughout though.

Aroma is pretty sweet, but not overly so. Brown sugar, light red fruit, some oak, peat.

Taste is fig, brown sugar. Quickly goes to some red fruit and slight sour notes. A large amount of booze here also. Finsihes with some sweet malt and then drier oak, spicy, hops.

3 years, the taste is interesting, but wow is this still boozy. The mouthfeel is medium and carbonation is lightly there to stave off the stickiness some. The boozy nature, makes this difficult to finish even the 12 oz.
At $1 an oz, I'll pass on another.
Adam set the bar so high for me with these guys, everything else has paled in comparison.

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Photo of EuphonicHops
3.43/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of DavoleBomb
3.45/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured into a snifter. 2009 vintage.

3.5 A: Murky light brown color. About one finger of creamy beige head that falls rather quickly and leaves a small incomplete ring of lacing.

3.5 S: Holy shit is this woody! This is simply dripping with the essence of oak. Really, the oak is so strong that it covers up a lot of the other aromas, but I'll try to pick them out anyway. Sweet caramel and toffee, boozy, apricot and pear brandy, plum and raisin, vanilla, and tobacco. You really have to like wood to like the way this smells, I think there's just a little too much.

3.5 T: Again, strong oak, tobacco, pear brandy, plum and raisin, and tobacco. Vanilla from the oak, toasted malts, nuts, and bread. This is really boozy for 10%. If I had to guess without already knowing, I would have thought this was at least 15%. Strangely, this has the essence of a bourbon barrel without the bourbon, but not just the oak if that makes any sense (I doubt it does). This is absolutely packed with flavor, but it seems raw even with over a year of age on it.

4.0 M: Heavy body. Good moderate carbonation. Reasonably creamy, but a bit chewier than I prefer.

3.0 D: This has the makings of a fantastic beer, but I think it needs a good three years to get to that level. Even though this bottle had over a year on it, the taste was too earthy and raw. I love oak, but I found it to be a bit too aggressive. Also, the alcohol is way too apparent right now. It's quite boozy for only 10%. Great beer, just not yet.

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Photo of rayjay
3.45/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

2008 vintage. Delirium Noel tulip.

A blond strong ale. Fair appearance, not very lively though. Musty oxidized aroma. Very sweet malty body with faded hop bitterness. Butterscotch and salty almonds. So nutty it's off the charts. Between the spicy carbonation and the alcohol presence it packs quite a punch. Not very subtle, but with respect towards the style.

Admittedly not my style but interesting to drink. Reminds me of drinking a strong ale in the 90's when QC wasn't really a concern, you'd think "wow that's stronger than the average beer" but it wasn't really that great...but strong enough that you want to drink it. This beer has that sort of appeal.

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Photo of jp110099
3.5/5  rDev -17.1%

Photo of dfhhead25
3.5/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of yourefragile
3.5/5  rDev -17.1%

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Fred From The Wood from Hair of the Dog Brewing Company / Brewery and Tasting Room
4.22 out of 5 based on 541 ratings.
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