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

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

Style: Fruit / Vegetable Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
An organic ale named after Greg Higgins of Higgins restaurant in downtown Portland. Greg is brewed without hops and makes use of the kambocha (green pumpkin) squash for about one-third of the total sugars, lending it a distinctly squashy, pumpkin taste. This beer is available on draft at Higgins, at the brewery and occasionally elsewhere in the Portland area.

Added by Bierman9 on 01-26-2003

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Reviews: 28 | Ratings: 76
Photo of lostinyonkers
1.7/5  rDev -53.7%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Well, normally I don't read reviews of anything before I experience it because I am very protective of my own raw impressions. I like to take in everything as if it's the first time, and let my precious "inner voice" tell me what she thinks of a flick, a restaurant, a book, or in this case a beer.

After my opinion is formed, it's very gratifying to either validate or perhaps reconsider my impressions by reading other's--

And so when WRITING a review, I prefer not to read those who have gone before, lest I bend to popular opinion and diminish the earnest aspects of my own review.

In the case of Greg, however, I was compelled to read the other folks' because I felt so sure that although my pint of Greg was forgettable (on a good day), I also wondered if the keg I was drinking from was just simply beyond it's prime.

I am glad I read the others' reviews, as I see there were some positive nights out with Greg.

My experiece was that he was too caramelly- too candied and malted in a bad way. He sat limp and still in my glass, and really offered nothing to the exchange.

I tried to coddle him a bit- sip here, sip there... but I was just left with the impression that there was something really rotten beneath his candy-coated exterior. As he left me-- I could only say one thing about him "corny".

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Photo of olympuszymurgus
1.96/5  rDev -46.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

On tap at the new taproom. The nose is all sugar, malt, vegetable matter, and phenols. A taste reminds me of mediocre homebrew, that stuff hippies call "beer" but is really just fermented sugar and herbs, hootch we call it. Not good, not something I would drink again.

I love HoTD, this beer makes me lose a little bit of my respect for Alan.

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Photo of Smurf2055
2.47/5  rDev -32.7%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours muddy brownish with two finger big bubbly chalk white head, quick dissipation. Smell is squash, sweeter veggie, a bit earthy. Taste is bland, squash and veggies, sort of like a light bodied abbey ale, but sweet. Thin mouthfeel. Interesting and drinkable, but I don’t really want to try it again.

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Photo of wagenvolks
3.45/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Higgin's Restaurant in Portland, Oregon.

Pours a hazy, iced-tea colored brew with a decently retained custard cap of foam. Aroma is a decent blend of juicy tropical fruits and spicy yeast. Apparently, no hops are used to make this brew, and it "smells" accordingly.

The flavor lacks the hops as well. I actually had to adjust my score accordingly, because the bartender told me this was a "Double IPA" I reviewed the beer all I could think was "Where are the HOPS??!!". Anyway, the flavor is a nice blend of tropical fruits, pale caramel malts, and, again, zesty yeast notes. Mouthfeel is a bit thin and uninspiring. I won't be revisiting "Greg" again, but I haven't lost faith in HOTD...I immediately ordered a "Fred" from the bottle and was in beer nirvana.

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Photo of Arbitrator
3.5/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A taster at the brewery. Alan mentioned this was brewed with squash only, no hops.

A: A pale golden / straw colored body with a thin off-white head.

S: Well... squash.

T: Has a slight bitterness to it (I'm guessing from the squash itself). It gets slightly spicy toward the end, and has a subtle, underlying malt sweetness.

M: Thin-bodied, with low carbonation. Not very satisfying, but it's a good light beer and palate cleanser.

D: As far as Hair of the Dog goes, they make much better beers.

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Photo of shivtim
3.52/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at Higgins
Interesting beer.
It's clear, with maybe a slight hint of haze. Yellow/straw in color, with just a tiny white head. Nose is very gentle. A slight hint of earth, and what smells mostly like celery. Must be from the squash. Some general sweetness too.
Taste is simple sweet sugars at first. Then some notes of earth and sweet pear. Alcohol oddly comes through on the end. I'm not sure all of the flavors quite work together.
Mouthfeel definitely falls a bit flat. This one is undercarbonated. I guess pretty good drinkability though. Worth a try!

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Photo of Redrover
3.53/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had this one on tap at Higgins in Portland. This is a great place with a very good beer selection - the beer is a hazy gold with off-white head and lacing.

The aroma is grains & something floral.

The taste falls in-line with the smell. It is slightly sweet with some mild malts, and some fruit notes for a bit of balance.

The mouth is soft with low carbonation.

Easy to drink with no flaws or shortcomings. Good for what it is.

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Photo of freed
3.58/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Served on tap the the first annual organic brewing festival, this beer was a surprise. I'd heard that it was possible to switch pumpkin for squash, and this is the first proof the the concept. The sheet at the table listed the ABV as 5%, so maybe this batch differs.

Poured a mild orange, slightly hazy, and a wisp of foam. The aroma and taste are surprisingly nondescript, and the sensation is required to carry the beer. Very smooth aroma, bits of malt, no hops. Taste is also muted, mild malt flavors which are rounded in sensation by the squash, which give it a somewhat fruity, somewhat flat taste. Sensation is almost of a beer lacking carbonation. It was certainly interesting, but the aftertaste affected the flavors of the next two beers I tasted. Maybe the abundance of squash um...squashed too much of the flavor out of it.

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Photo of Rifugium
3.65/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at their brewpub

A very interesting "hopless" brew. A slightly hazy, pale golden liquid with a small layer of white bubbles for a head; a little bit of spotty lacing dotted the glass. Vegetal aroma (makes sense), with scents of squash and pumpkin flesh, distant notes of bready malts. More of the same in the taste--felt like I just ate a plate of steamed vegetables--with flavors of pumpkin and squash, earthy, bready, with mild notes of brown sugar and herbs. Interesting. Somewhat bitter, but overall pretty smooth and easily drinkable, once you realize what exactly is going on.

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Photo of Bierman9
3.67/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Redbones. The following courtesy of another bier site:
"Commercial Description:
This beer is similar to Hair of the Dog's Ruth beer, but instead of hops, several varieties of squash are used. Available only at Higgins, a Portland restaurant. "
Well, that's interesting, to say the least! Bones had it listed as a barleywine (Not!). At first glance, and sniff, I thought I had received a Hefeweizen! It was a dull, somewhat cloudy, golden color, with the bare minimum of a head and lacing. I thought I perceived yeast and banana notes in the nose. Squash? Not to me, though I wasn't looking for it, either. It was medium in both body, and in the smoothness over the tongue. Tasted like a hefe- to me also: yeasty, a bit spicy, hints of banana.... An odd concoction, most definitely!

overall: 3.65
appearance: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | mouthfeel: 4 | drinkability: 3.5


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Photo of Floydster
3.72/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sampled at the brewery about a month ago, reviewed from notes, had been looking forward to trying the no hops and only squash beer, color is a golden orange, thin 1/4 inch creamy white head that does away pretty quickly, no lacing, aroma has squash that is barely detectable, sweet malts, candied sugars, wheat, grains, and other sweetness, taste starts off with a lot of sweetness, malt in the middle that is more sweet than chewy or toasted, finish is a bit creamy with a vegetal flavor, also some earthiness lingering in the finish, only change as it warms up is that it gets sweeter, sweet, vegetal, and slightly earthy mouthfeel, thin to medium bodied, little more carbonation would not hurt probably, taste does not last very long, this stuff is pretty drinkable, sweet overall which hurts a bit but no alcohol in the flavor and it is light to begin with, would go well with food, just have not decided what yet, hopefully I get a chance to find out by having this again in the future, not my favorite from Alan and HOTD but still a good beer, also quite unique, have never had anything like this before, would love to drink again, planned on it shortly after our brewery visit, but Higgin's was out it, recommended

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Photo of DefenCorps
3.74/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

On tap at Higgins last night. What a fantastic food experience.

A mildly hazy yellow-orange with a thin, white head that falls off leaving no lacing, this looks decent. The nose is delicate, having a blend of squash sweetness and flavor (the way it is expressed is unique), a doughy, grainy malt character along with a little earth. The palate opens a little bitter with a mild sweetness from the squash, a moderate earthy, squash flavor, a nice, mellow, grainy sweetness and some honey. Drying on the finish, with a touch of honey and pumpkin, this is very nice. Recommended.

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Photo of HopHead84
3.8/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at the brewery. This beer was brewed for the Higgins Restaurant in Portland and Greg is the name of the chef/owner there. Alan explained to us that this beer is brewed with squash and contains no hops.

The color is pale golden with a small white head. I've never before smelled squash in a beer, but it's not far off from pumpkin. There's some fruitiness and earthiness to the aroma. No alcohol is noticeable.

The flavor is bitter up front, which I mistook for hop bitterness. The bitterness is from the tannins in the skin of the squash. The beer is also spicy with some fruitiness and caramel malt.

The carbonation is low and the mouthfeel is somewhat thin. As with most Hair of the Dog beers, this is very unique and definitely worth a try.

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Photo of msubulldog25
3.8/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I was fortunate enough to get a taste of this beer from the tap at a recent tour of Hair of the Dog, poured by brewer Alan Sprints. It is NOT 'Retired', but is only available in a couple locations (see below)

A: Hazy golden-orange with just a touch of white head. The lighting wasn't the best for truly examining the appearance, but suffice to say it was orange and murky.

S: Subtle herbalness & malt and quite vegetal, probably because there are no hops used in the making of this unusual beer. There are, however, 400 lbs. of harvested squash, which give of a vague earthy aroma.

T: Interesting. Malty and yeasty though not overtly sweet, though there's some notable candi-sugariness. Nicely spiced, with bits of all-spice, and quite earthy. Though there aren't any hops, the flavors are surprisingly balanced. Reminiscent of a handful of funky, oddball Belgians I've enjoyed - a tribute to Alan Sprints' affection for the brewing craft and heritage.

M: Mouthfeel is pretty luscious and velvety. Medium-bodied with a bit of a slightly starchy/pasty aftertaste. No carbonation to speak of so the beer seems flat, though that's really more just a quirk of the style than a negative comment.

D: One I'd get again. As far as I know, this beer has never been bottled and is available only at the brewery and on-draught at Higgins restaurant in Portland (...and is named for chef/owner Greg Higgins...). Easy to drink, light ABV, unusual but likable flavors. Definitely worth a try...

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Photo of tpd975
3.8/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Ah my namesake, huge thanks to fishingnet for bringing it in.

A: Pours a nice brillant orange hue with a thin fizzy head. No retention or lace. This one was from an already open growler so I will not kill it on appearence.

S: Very sweet. Lots of sweet malt, sugar rather simple.

T: Good. Lots of nice sweetness. Candy sugar and brown sugar coated butternut squash. Once again simple but tasty.

M: On the thinner side of medium.

D: Not bad, this is a one of a kind beer for sure.

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Photo of beerguy101
3.82/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tasted at the 2003 Oregon Brewers Fest. Light brown color. Medium head. Aroma is malty and fruity. A medium bodied ale made with squash. Malts are fruity and sweet. Slighlty spicy. Nicely balanced. Very smooth and esy to drink. This would make a great session beer. Mouthfeel is full and round. Finish is clean and smooth. Aftertaste is slightly bitter.

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Photo of ffejherb
3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Hair of the Dog taproom on 6/26/11.

A - Hazy golden wheat liquid with a creamy dollop of white foam on top that reduced to stringy lacing around the glass.

S - Slightly vegetal with a fleshy autumn gourd character and a touch of sweet malt. No hop aroma, but that was expected because it's brewed with no hops.

T - Mild flavor with virtually no bitterness at all. Instead, sweet malt and an autumn vegetable character comprise the bulk of the flavor profile. Kind of seedy with whole grain bread and sunflower seed qualities as well as caramel malt sweetness.

M - Light bodied with a slight syrupy texture and minimal carbonation. Finishes sweet on the palate with virtually no bitterness at all.

D - Refreshing ale for people who don't want any hops at all. Pleasant and sessionable. I love hops, but I found this enjoyable nonetheless.

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Photo of UncleJimbo
3.85/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I also sampled this one on tap at Redbones where it was listed as a barley wine, which confused me when I tasted it. This beer poured a cloudy, golden color with weak, white foam. The smell was modest but was dominated by fruity esters (banana). The taste was fruity, like a belgian ale, with bananas, pears, and floral hops in the flavor, and a touch of hop bitterness at the finish. The mouthfeel was clean and crisp, with some hops in the aftertaste. The drinkability was good. An odd and interesting brew.

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Photo of AgentMunky
3.93/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Beautifully hazy pale, wine-like effervescence. It smells lightly sweet and fruity.

The mouthfeel is sparkly and fun, and the taste is odd. Vaguely tart with a fruity sweetness. Excellently balanced. Fun, good beer!

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Photo of vkv822
3.95/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

On-tap @ Hair of the Dog.
from notes.

Intriguing, very cloudy golden brown with a thin white head and light lacing.

The pilsner malts really shines through nicely, with squash adding a light sweetness.

Medium body, mild fizzy carbonation.

Really enjoyable, I was impressed with the enjoyable flavor profile despite no hops being used. I went into expecting more of a novelty beer and wound up finding something I would gladly drink again.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

from notes

hazy orange tinted amber color and a nice soft off white head that reached a height of around an inch or so before it settled down with some nice lacing on the side that really just surprised me with how well it hung in there to be honest. Really quite the solid look. Nice aroma of pumpkin spice, hints of cinnamon and nutmeg, all the usual characters here with a touch of a west coast hop flair to it, especially as it warms. Crisp and super clean flavor here. Starts with a touch of a light malt note and then swoops in with a big hit of cinnamon and nutmeg which dries out the palate very nicely. Very even consistency I have to admit as it comes together very nice.

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Photo of djbreezy
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

appearance - transparent, golden, light lacing, light head and retention

smell - notes of spice and malts

taste - pilsner malt with spice notes from the squash

mouthfeel - medium carbonation and crisp, light bodied

drinkability - goes down easy, has a nice consistent flavor

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Photo of MisterClean
4.05/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at HOTD.

A - Poured copper with a 1 fingered white head. Dissipated slow and left lttle lacing.

S/T - Honey, clove, coriander, and a spiciniess possibly lent from the zucchini.

M - Moderate bodied and well-balanced.

D - Overall good. Interesting how Alan substituted zucchini for hops.

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Photo of zaphodchak
4.06/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at HotD.

Hazy yellow body with a white trace on the surface but no lace.

Light fruit (squash?) nose.

Kinda bubblegum -squash, sweetish and pleasant. Faint coriander finish. Even better than it looked on paper.

Lightweight feel w. some body.

Pleasant and interesting seasonal, worked really well!

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Photo of purplehops
4.08/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured as a barleywine by Redbones.
Poured a sparkly orange-brown with little to no head and very little lacing on the snifter. The aroma was peaches, caramel, and citrus. On first smell I thought they had poured me a Belgian triple. The taste was candi sugar, caramel malt, apricots, citrus, and lemon grass with hints of biscuit malt and hops. The finish was crisp with some alcohol warmth and spice flavors. Coriander and allspice perhaps. The aftertaste was alcohol warmth and spicy sweetness. The mouthfeel was smooth and refreshing.
Overall an interesting product. I learned afterwards that it was made with squash. Must have been Delicata, Red Kuri, or Sweet Dumpling. Sweet with alcohol warmth and a fruitiness; I enjoyed it. I only wish that it had a little more carbonation to add another layer of complexity.

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Greg from Hair of the Dog Brewing Company / Brewery and Tasting Room
3.67 out of 5 based on 76 ratings.
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