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

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238 Reviews
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MattMatt
BEER INFO

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

Style: American Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Brewed using two Munich malts, two Smoked malts and two types of Belgian candy sugar. It was aged in 33 year old Bourbon barrels and Apple Eau de Vie barrels for about one year.

First release: February 2009 (a.k.a. 'Bottleworks X')
Second release: November 2010
Third release: October 2013

Added by msubulldog25 on 01-27-2009

BEER STATS
Reviews:
238
Ratings:
826
Avg:
4.42
pDev:
11.09%
 
 
Wants:
1,444
Gots:
139
For Trade:
11
User Reviews
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Reviews: 238 | Ratings: 826
Photo of Phelps
4.32/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Vintage 2010 bottle split with tlay 10 and poured into a tulip. Big thanks to gford217 for providing this longtime want.

Dark chocolate brown blending into matte black. A dense half-finger head of light tan quickly becomes a thin ring.

Lots of barrel character in the nose. Very buttery, with bourbon, vanilla, dark sweet cherries and toasted coconut. It’s good, but I wish there was more of the underlying beer.

Ooh. Speaking of the underlying beer. The flavor begins like the nose, with the initial hit of barrel character in the form of vanilla extract, butterscotch and cherry. After the swallow, smokiness steps in, reminding of bacon or pork. The barrel character itself isn’t incredible, but when the smoke rolls in, it's absolutely incredible. It’s like sipping bourbon in front of a campfire, and I like it more with each sip.

The creamy, buttery feel is like velvet on the tongue, so smooth and substantial. The carbonation lightly massaging my tongue is perfect here. Alcohol is noticeable as a tongue-numbing sensation, but it’s otherwise impressively blended.

Incredible. I don’t believe I’ve ever had a barrel-aged smoked beer before, but I love it. The smoke is perfect and smooth, like the aroma left in your clothes after a good cigar. Looks like I’m going to have to get some more Matt.

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Photo of Sean9689
4.32/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

**I was able to taste a more recent batch of Matt (2010 release), which I enjoyed quite a bit more then the first batch (Bottleworks X release). Firstly, there was perfect carbonation (compared to the X release, which was flat). The booze was there, but not quite as up-front as the previous version. Just a couple of small observations and overall, a better beer.

Poured from 12oz bottle into Duvel tulip.

A - Brown in color with very little head present. There is some lacing though, once you tilt the glass from side to side. The brown is clear though, as you can see a small amount through the glass. Small bubbles are visible along the edge of the glass, but really nothing much to note.

S - Lots of sweetness going on here. Some fruits, sugars, malts all hitting your nose all at once. A big whiff puts the smell in your nostrils for a good amount of time even while the glass is away from your nose. There is some alcohol burn but really not a lot considering the ABV on this beer.

T - Apples, bourbon, oak, sweet sugars and vanilla. Very little alcohol detected here, which is impressive. A full-creamy finish, very rich. Lack of carbonation takes away from the taste.

M - Medium bodied. Very rich. Pretty much flat, which is disappointing for me.

D - A sipper for sure, but I do like this one. I don't know if I'll try to score another through trades, because I'm disappointed that it's basically flat.

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Photo of teamizm
4.32/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to Roodie for sharing this as well to Brian at Blue Palms for allowing us to crack this one open in the bar.

Poured into a goblet and allowed to warm up for about 10 minutes.

A - Dark, mahogany brown, almost espresso like with less than a finger head that disappears.

S - Amazing. Chocolate, maple syrup, tobacco, coffee, brandy. Just super complex and really the most amazing part of this beer.

T - Smoky, maple syrup with toffee and chocolate notes. Sweet red apples and some brandy notes as well. It taste amazing, but it smells just a tad better than it tastes.

M - so carbonation, very smooth.

D - Not too much of an alcohol burn on this one despite the 11.5% on this one. Excellent rainy day beer (exactly when I tried it - on a pouring Saturday evening in LA).

Love it fresh and can't wait to try to aged.

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Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.3/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Big thanks go's out to JohnGalt1 for the bottle. You rock tobes!

Pours a deep blackish brown with some ruby highlights, but cannot see through it. A light tan watery head is produced by a vigorous pour and retains for a couple minutes leaving minute lacing.

Nose is very complex. Huge bourbon barrely notes, some apple, and an almost flemish tartness come out in the nose.

Wow. A very tasty beer. Big chew malty sweetness. Great bourbony alcohol and huge vanilla oak notes. Not catching alot of the apple, but it is there. A uniquely dry finish for a beer of this magnitude and style. There is a noticeable hop bitterness on the finish, and any hop flavor actually shows up the most in the aftertaste. Flavors linger FOREVER after each sip. Magnificent barrel aging.

Mouthfeel is FANTASTIC on this beer. A nice creamy chew viscous feel REALLY strikes the right chord with this brew. Excellent. Carbonation seems odd, and typical of previous HOTD issues on the poor, BUT a head does rise if it is summoned hard enough, and on the palate the carbo is right where it should be for this beer.

Drinkability is pretty solid. The abv shows up, and is complimented well by alcohol and oak flavors, but still doesn't seem as high as 11%. By the styles standards, quite drinkable.

Overall a very impressive and unique beer from HOTD. A very tasty barrel aged concoction. Love the barrel profiles and the mouthfeel is just incredible. I really would love to have a few more of these, but one cellared bottle will have to suffice for now. I think this one definitely has great aging potential. If you have the opportunity to get your hands on some of this beer, get a few. Excellent beer.

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.3/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

500th review. Big thanks to ipa247 (Jeff) for this one. 2010 2nd release version. Poured into a Darkness snifter. Shared with schen9303.

A: Standard pour yields a .5 finger off-white fine head with moderate retention that dissipates into a thick ring around the glass. Beer is an opaque dark brown. Lacing is spotty and patchy with moderate cling and nice legs. An attractive beer overall.

S: Nose is apple puree and brandy. Nutty backdrop. Caramel, toffee, and brown sugar. Aromatic, sweet and very complex.

T: Opens sweet apple brandy and brown sugar. Spicy cinnamon and nutty notes towards the middle with a moderate helping of booziness. Caramel and toffee come in towards the middle and end, further sweetening things. End is sweet brown sugar and some dark over-ripe fruit. Finish is spicy with a sweet, nutty, aftertaste. Very impressive. An oustandingly tasty beer.

M: Medium to full bodied and moderately carbonated. Slightly pricky and spicy in the mouth but goes down warm and smooth. Finish is sticky and messy with an aftertaste that lingers. Pleasant and spot on for its style.

O: Probably the best HotD beer that I've had to date, Matt is really impressive. Incredible taste and solid in every other aspect, this one is definitely worth seeking out.

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Photo of brystmar
4.3/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottleworks X (2009) shared with friends at the brewpub. They all live in Portland but had never been to HotD before. How could I not right this wrong?

Leathery, boozy, tobacco-y, smokey malt aroma and flavors dance around my senses at every sip & whiff. Black licorice and molasses impart even more darkness as I swish in my mouth. Boozy warmth throughout, creating an intense, bold flavor profile. So creative, so complex. And not for the faint of heart :)

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Photo of womencantsail
4.29/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of Paul (2010 release), appropriate Hair of the Dog tulip glass courtesy of Mihir.

A: The beer pours into the glass with an impenetrable darkness and a small khaki colored head.

S: A very sweet and complex nose here. Lots of caramel, toffee, dates, figs, raisins, and wood. There's a nice bourbon aroma along with lots of vanilla. Perhaps some black cherries, red apples, and even a bit of smoke/peat.

T: Not quite as impressive as the nose, but still damn good. Lots of caramel, bourbon, oak, and apple. There's a definite smoke flavor along with some mildly tart raisins and cherries. The alcohol is more pronounced here which is really the main pitfall.

M: The body is about as full as you can get with a fairly low, but smooth carbonation.

D: A bottle of this is plenty, but a real pleasure to drink. Sort of wish I would have traded for more than one.

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Photo of surlytheduff
4.27/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2010 bottle. A rough pour into my tulip resulted in just a smattering of bubbles around the rim of the glass. The beer was a rich, deep brown with red undertones. Although I wasn't expecting a big head/blatant signs of strong carbonation with this style of beer, I was a little worried that this first time trying Matt might end up like my experience with 2011 Cherry Adam - overly flat and syrupy.

The smell was full of complex aromas. Super sweet caramel toffee, prunes & figs, leather, alcohol, malty bourbon oak, apple and vanilla. The taste was as rich as the nose. Initially I was in a wash of sweet dark sugary ambrosia which was quickly balanced out by the sharp alcohol, dark fruit and lingering fruity vanilla finish. Mouthfeel was slick, low carb and full bodied. My fears of a 2011 CAftW-letdown were quickly quashed after a couple drinks. This was a real pleasure to drink and, having just finished my glass I'm sure I'm going to try to chase another one of these down in the future. Having had a couple vintages of CAftW and FFtW, this is the best HotD offering I've had the opportunity to drink.

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Photo of Dope
4.27/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2013 batch, just released.

A: Pours a very dark brown with a little red highlight. Small light brown head, even with an aggressive pour. Surprisingly decent retention, despite the miniscule head. Just the smallest specks of lacing.

S: Whoa. Lots of barrel aging. Bourbon is strong in this one. Loaded with caramel and brown sugar. Quite a bit of smoke tries to compete with the bourbon too but compliments instead of overpowers. Sweet malts underneath further add to the decadence. Not overly boozy despite the 11.5% ABV and barrel aging. Very unique, strong and complex aroma.

T: Very strong and bold barrel flavors up front. I have to stop and carefully examine the flavors, this is so complex. There is heavy and smooth caramel and toasted sugars. Sweet dark fruits, raisin for sure but also quite a bit of apple - like apple brandy. Almost a caramel apple flavor at points. Lots of smoked malt too, not very acrid due to all the sweetness but it's more of a umami type flavor. Like burnt BBQ'd meat. Not overpowering but prominent and a key factor to balancing all of the sweetness. Belly warming from the alcohol but no stinging alcohol taste. A little charred oak in the aftertaste with light hints of smoke floating around between sips. Big syrupy caramel coats the mouth forever.

M: Heavy, thick, sweet, borderline cloying.

O: Pretty serious brew. Super complex but nothing is overpowering. Garnering balance with this high ABV and multiple barrel agings is a rare thing but they pull it off pretty well. I'm not a fan of smoky beers but the huge sweetness and barrel aging has tempered the smoked malts quite well. Don't get me wrong, it's still smoky and meaty but it's tolerable for me. This one is very sweet, syrupy sweet and heavy. A sipper for sure. Dessert beer. Very unique.

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Photo of inthebeeraisle
4.26/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

2010 vintage served at Hair of the Dog Tasting Room. Poured into a Hair of the Dog tulip.

A: I've had some HotDog gushers before, but this beer was totally flat. A very dark color.

S: Definately a strong alcohol aroma. Not much else.

T: Simply put this is one of the most complex tasting flavorful beers that I have ever had. Caramel, Chocolate, Apples, Smoke. Incredible.

M: Not as hot as you might think, and not as thick either. Great mouthfeel.

O: I don't know how many of these you could drink or afford to drink. Totally worth seeking though. Quite unique.

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Photo of projectflam86
4.26/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Huge thanks to youradhere for throwing this in as an extra in our trade. You rock dude!

12oz bottle poured into a snifter. 2010 release.

A- Pours a very deep dark brown color with a minimal head that doesn't leave any lace. Pours more like a wine or spirit than beer.

S- I can tell just from the aroma that this is going to be a sipper. Bourbon is very prominent in the nose along with caramel malt and alcohol. Dark fruits, leather, tobacco, and oak round out the nose. Hoping it tastes as good as it smells...

T- The bourbon barrels definitely lead the way with some vanilla, oak, and brandied apples. As it warms the smoked malts become noticeable along with Belgian candy sugar, dark chocolate, red grapes, and raisins. The alcohol isn't exactly hidden, but I wouldn't have guessed it being 11.5% either.

M- Full bodied with very low carbonation. Thick and creamy with an almost syrupy feel that coats the mouth.

O- Just a touch more carbonation and I can't imagine it getting any better. Very glad I got a chance to try this one. Thanks Jim!

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Photo of Jmoore50
4.25/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This was consumed during Lakers-Celtics game 6 tasting. This beer flew under my radar on terms of hype and buzzworthy beers, but my buddy James got hold of one and shared it. Good beer, different and well crafted.

The bottle opens with no pop or fizz, just silence. It pours with some tan bubbles, but they leave fast. The beer is colored pretty dark, has a dark leather brown heart with lighter cocoa edges.

It smells of sweet apple, brown sugar, booze, oak.

The beer is perfectly carbonated for the tastes. It has a very low carbonation, but because of the strong liquor tastes it blends everything perfectly. Great base beer, with hints of brown sugar, alcoholic booze, strong notes of apple brandy and bourbon, oak and earth. The barrel is great, not too strong but still very much there. The apple brandy threw me for a little bit of a loop, it is obviously apple and it almost stands out like a sore thumb from the rest of the flavors. Great blending from the brewers though for it is balanced very well.

Mouthfeel for an Old Ale/Strong Ale is perfect. Little carbonation that lets the flavors blend well. Delicious sipper of a beer that should be enjoyed by whoever gets the chance.
J

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Photo of ffejherb
4.25/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to KRAMER17081 for pulling out not one, but TWO of these at his holiday party on 12/26/09.

A - Poured a dark walnut brown body with slight reddish hues and a thin sliver of bubbly head on top.

S - Opens with a warm alcohol presence, burnt caramel malt and sugary character. Aroma is quite woody with lots of caramel/toffee notes, a hint of licorice and toasted coconut, the latter of which was a pleasant surprise.

T - Initial flavor is quite malty with caramel, marshmallow and butterscotch notes. Subtle boozy alcohol notes creep into the mix midway through, followed by a delicious tosted coconut character paired with chocolate notes in the backend. Finishes with plenty of earthy bitterness.

M - Medium to full-bodied with a thick, smooth and creamy texture and a slight oily feel. Moderate bitter notes encapsulate the tongue in the finish.

D - Matt's got a lot going on, including plenty of malt goodness and a pleasant toasted coconut character that took me by surprise. Good stuff fo' sho'.

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Photo of Thorpe429
4.22/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to younger35 for this bottle. Received from him in a trade at Dark Lord Day 2009.

G: Poured into an oversized snifter.

A: Cola brown coming out of the bottle, gathering into a near-black as it sits in the glass. Almost zero head. Faint swirls as the beer warms up and is swirled. This also creates mild lacing.

S: Caramel with lots of dark fruits and hints of green apple. Perhaps the tiniest bit of anise. Some hints of oak, as well as plenty of warming esters from the alcohol. Some yeasty sourness.

T: Smokiness is my initial impression. More of the tart green apple than was present in the nose. The same hints of oak are there as well. As it warms up, the apple brandy and oak tastes are coming out a bit more.

M: Medium bodied with very little carbonation. Not too many hints of alcohol.

D: A very nice sipper. Complexity increases as it warms up. An all-around very good brew.

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Photo of msubulldog25
4.22/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle, one of a modest amount I picked up at the 'Earth Day' Dock Sale last April; it's held down the back corner of the fridge since then, patiently awaiting tonight. A nice day of late-summer warmth and office-sponsored golf (the par-3 course at Edgefield) ends in a snifter-sized pour of Matt as a nightcap.

A: Brackish ebony, a deep and dark murkiness that at first seems a bit lifeless, then magically springs to life with a roil of carbonation and a gauzy swirl of tan film. Creamy rim-hugging band and small flecks dot the glass. Held to light late in the pour, there's plenty of dusty detritus hanging around.

S: Aroma of cocoa and caramel-wrapped apples, a sweetness like maraschino cherry, with a hint of tartness (lime?). Dried tobacco amidst a bourbon char. Hops are there, but are hard to distinguish behind drippy malts. Full and fragrant, smell-able from 3 feet away.

T: In the same way the appearance was dull for the first few seconds, so the flavor was an abrupt turn-off. Then a creeping, coating chocolate, followed by molasses and a grape-like fruitiness. Barrel oak follows, a charred vanilla and a dose of herbal hops. Ends a little 'off' for me, an odd medicinal (cough syrup) backing.

M: Fantastic mouthfeel from the start: luscious, chewy, fully coating. Enough warmth, without bragging about its 11.5% alcohol too boisterously. Lip-smacking malts, carbonation is there - but where?

D: Tough call here: an amazing brew, replete with varied flavors and tantalizing aromas. Will I have this again? Fortunately, yes. Will I place this in my upper echelon of 'must trys'? Certainly. Is it 'drinkable'? Well, that's debatable; definitely a wonderful sipper, but a few ounces go a long way. Find a lover of fine beer and share a bottle...

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Photo of mdfb79
4.22/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From 06/09/12 notes. Bottle is from November 2010, tried in the same tasting as Adam, Fed, and all their variations.

a - Pours a brown, almost black color, with less than one inch of tan head and low carbonation evident. Almost flat.

s - Smells of roasted malts, licorice, bourbon, sweet dark fruits, plums, figs, raisins, and oak. Very interesting, but very nice mix of bourbon and licorice.

t - Tastes of bourbon, licorice, roasted malts, bourbon, oak, and light smoke. Nice, though I like nose better.

m - Medium body and low carbonation, with a very smooth body.

o - Overall I liked this one a lot, though it is very different. I preferred Cherry AtfW, AftW, and FftW, but this is still a great beer I'd like to have again.

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Photo of jrallen34
4.22/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle, big thanks to Nate for this rare tick for me, drank from a perfect pint glass...A dark brown with a hint of mahogney with a small light tan head. The 2010 is actually carbonated!...When you get this out, let it warm for a bit then the nose really starts to show off; apple brandy, with molasses, and a hint of spice. On the sweeter side, but meaty enough to not get in the way...The taste is liquified apples soaked in brandy, so great, nails a fruit the way Short's can. Its a little hot, but very good.

This is really yummy, surprised this lived up to the hype. Track this down!

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Photo of kingcrowing
4.2/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into an acbf tasting glass.

Pours a very dark brown with a small and thin light brown head. Nose is sharp, boozy and sweet.

Taste is very sharp an pretty boozy, with a sweet finish. Mouthfeel is creamy and syrupy, quite tasty and drinkable though!

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Photo of afksports
4.19/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

I'm sitting here with my woman, thinking, "What a strangely good beer this is." Matt, from Hair of the Dog brewery in Portland, Oregon is a special release that I got hooked up with at Bottleworks in Seattle. Thus review is drinking the 2010 vintage.

Boyo boy oh boy. It looks pretty normal pouring a deep brown with minimal head and lace, but wow! What a punch in the nose when you smell it. Bourbon meets Belgium meets fruit - apples and smoke. It's all there. The last time a beer smelled this complex was a while back. My only complaint is that I'm just hit a personal fan of smoke.

It's not overly smokey though, in smell or taste. It's more subtle. What comes through mostly is the candy sugar, the sweetness of bourbon in the back of the throat, and some apple fruit too. Almost like an aged barleywine. So much comes from the barrels, it's a generously smooth beer. Very very sweet an rich. Dessert in a glass, if you can handle it.

Almost like a sherry, Matt goes down very easy, and you don't see the alcohol at 11.5% at all. In fact, it's so well composed that you could drink it for a while if you can deal with the caloric intake.

Simply put, Matt is one bad dog. Not bad meaning bad, but bad meaning good.

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Photo of Dactrius
4.19/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

2013 bottle at the brewery. Delicious with tons of awesome dark fruit flavors and just a bit of apple. Extremely drinkable, and carbed which helps matters significantly. Just a bit of smoke which is prettymuch the perfect amount in this case. My liver and wallet are very thankful I don't live close to HotD.

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Photo of KeefD
4.18/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

Huge thanks go out to Knifestyles for hooking up this long sought-after want! 2010 bottle. Pours a cloudy dark brown color, almost black in the tulip glass with zero bubbles or lacing. This one looks flat. Amazing aroma. Loads of dark chocolate, fudge brownies, maple syrup, a touch of smokiness, and lots of dark fruit with a slight burn of alcohol in the nose. Wow, this is one of the best smelling brews I've come across. Taste is right on par with the aroma. Chocolate is front and center, then it's backed up by a syrupy maple-like sweetness, brown sugar, with maybe a touch of herbal hops on the finish, but there's no bitterness whatsoever. This is outrageously sweet, but damn, I like it. More fudge and a nutty, creamy finish. YUM! The only downfall of this beer is that it's completely flat. There was a slight hiss when I popped the cap, but there's really no carbonation which detracts from the creamy, silky mouthfeel. If this had bubbles, it would be an A+ winner all the way. The 11%+ alcohol is almost non-detectable, and well hidden. I sipped this one over the course of an hour and enjoyed every drop. Smells great, tastes great, but give me some carbonation!!

Thanks again, Chris!

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Photo of Gueuzedude
4.18/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served lightly chilled around 55ºF / 13ºC
A vigorous pour into my 25cl tulip glass just produces a fat-one-finger thick, nicely browned, dark tan colored head. The beer is quite dark, almost black really with perhaps a touch of brown to it. When held up to the light the beer shows brilliantly clear, deep, dark ruby highlights. The aroma is quite smoky, phenolic even; the smoke character doesn't have the richness that I associate with beech-wood (Rauchbier) or alder-wood (Alaskan Smoked Porter) smoked beers, instead it is a little thin, though really this might be because the smoke is not nearly at the same level as those other smoked beers. The smoke here combines with a distinct fruitiness that reminds me of raisins, prunes and even some brandy like notes along with a touch of warming alcohol. At times the alcohol can be quite noticeable in the aroma, especially after I have started to drink the beer. The fruit character becomes very rich and interesting if you concentrate on the nose for a bit. There is also a touch of roast malt character noticeable after a bit as well. Not a bad nose, but the up front smoke character is a little thin and sharp at times, though it does have a nice underlying richness.

The beer is creamy and viscous feeling with only a faint carbonation that supplies a very soft prickle. The beer is fairly sweet, which accentuates a dark, concentrated fruitiness, but both of these are offset somewhat by a sharp malt influence. Roast grain notes provide a burnt-bitterness to the finish, perhaps a touch of acrid notes as well as a touch of burnt acidity. The smoked malt is a bit fainter than it even was in the nose, but it does provide a subtle smokiness that provides some richness to the beer as well as a hint of sharp smoke phenolics that is just noticeable at times. The rich fruitiness is the most noticeable part of the flavor; notes of prunes, raisins and roasted berry notes are all quite noticeable. Subtler fruit notes of caramelized apples, a touch of dates as well as some not so subtle rich, Brandy-like fruitiness. Alcohol is evident, but donesn't get past supplying a nice warmth and a bit of spiciness. While rich feeling on the tongue, the beer isn't overly heavy and in fact is a bit more drinkable than might be safe.

For a beer that has a fairly middling aroma to it, the flavor has turned out to be quite nice. This is definitely a sipping brew and I am really enjoying the rich, concentrated fruitiness here that is just supported by roast malt notes and a hint of smokiness. After a slow start, this ends up being quite an enjoyable brew.

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Photo of FosterJM
4.17/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

674th Review on BA
Bottle to Flute
12 oz

Bottleworks X & 2nd batch

App- A very dark beer, browns and reds in the glass. No real head, just the normal HOTD bubbles around the edges, no lace, no cling

Smell- Big ol punch in the nose. Bourbon, fruits, sweet, malty. More of the dark fruits with a sugary note and a bit thick.

Taste- It's a very different taste for a strong ale. Its deeply thick with the bourbon and has a lot of darker fruits to lend a balance to it with some chocolate tinges and not sure what else is there but there is a lot of it.

Mouth- Medium bodied and medium carbonated. Very thick on the mouth and very creamy.

Drink- To be able to try both at one time I was very happy. Thick, boozy, tastefully balanced and well done.

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Photo of Deuane
4.17/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the February 2009--'Bottleworks X release.

A-Copper tinted deep brown with a thin light tan head that held on strong and deposited spotty lace.

S-Fairly complex with notes of earth, oak, smoke, prune and deep malty sweetness.

T-Very bitter up front with a strong oak character coming to the forefront. Prominent raisin/prune notes with a significant earthy hop bite and an interesting toasted coconut, dark chocolate finish.

M-Medium body, VERY dry and fairly sharp in the finish. Drying notes of oak and walnut build with warming.

D-Quite strong, very nice and certainly tasty. Alcohol heat does become present and noticeable upon warming.

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Photo of Kegatron
4.14/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2010 bottle purchased and consumed @ the Hair of the Dog Brewery and Tasting Room (Portland, OR) on 9/3/11. Served in a tulip glass.

Pours a flat black in the glass, with literally no head to speak of. Maybe just the tiniest bit of retention hangs on the edges, with vigorous swirling getting a very light cascade of spotty lace. The aroma smells of cocoa, molasses, vanilla, and pithy darker fruit. Bourbon heat singes the edges of this, while some softer oak character is standing out as well, and I’m definitely getting a nice smoky roastiness across the back of the nostrils.

The taste is thick with notes of chocolate, caramel, and ripe dark fruit character, while a gentle roasted smokiness spreads out across the back. Bourbon and alcohol gives this some real zip on the edges of the profile, mingling with notes of vanilla and oak, before pulling in the finish with a good bit of dryness and warmth. The mouthfeel is full bodied, with some alcohol heft and a soft carbonation combining to give this a heady feeling chewiness in the mouth. Speaking of the ABV, it’s actually fairly well kept in check, with any hotness to this appearing to mostly come from the bourbon flavors.

This was certainly flavorful and complex but still had a bit of rawness to it from the barrel that held this back a bit for me. I’d love to try this with a bit more age on it, as I’ll bet this one soothes out nicely. It was still really awesome that I was able to buy this here at the brewery.

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Matt from Hair of the Dog Brewing Company / Brewery and Tasting Room
4.42 out of 5 based on 826 ratings.
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