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

Liked This Beer
4.26 w/ 2,480 ratings

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

Style: Old Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A re-creation of an historic beer style originally made in Dortmund, Germany. Adam was the first beer produced by Hair of the Dog.

10% alcohol by volume
50 IBUs.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 09-12-2001

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,480 |  Reviews: 1,031
Photo of mjsheehan08
4.44/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 75. Poured into my Chimay Goblet

Pours a thick, dark murky brown which turns to black as it fills the glass.  Puffy tan head that leaves rather quickly and flunks pieces of head around the top of my glass. No light is coming through the body of this beer, but as it is held to light a very light brown/ruby color pops out along the edges of the glass.

Smell is strong, rum, raisins, smoke, leather figs.  I don't know if i have ever picked up stronger aromas from a beer, really wonderful. 

Taste is leathery and smokey.  Some great dried dark fruit is really present, as well as a very balanced sweetness from the malt. Sweet molasses, brown sugar, mild fusel burn which calms down thanks to some dark chocolate.  Again a lot of complexities that really works well.  As its warms down, a more tinge from the alcohol is present.  

Carbonation is pretty mild, but the slickness of this beer really brings about a mild to full mouthfeel.  The high ABV catches up to you, and this one is definitely a sipper.  

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Photo of inlimbo77
4.44/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Hair of the Dog
12oz, Batch 79
Pinocchio's snifter

A: Pours a murky brown color with ruby red hues showing up through the light.  Basically no head except for a slight tan ring around the edges and some light bits in the middle.  There looks to be some carbonation but can't see through it. Alcohol feet for sure.  Mild lacing.

S: Tons of dark fruits right away.  Prunes, plums, raisins, etc.  Also, getting some toffee hints when I go back in.  And I do get that leather, which is nuts.  Maybe some vanilla too.  Smells BA'ed but it's not.

T: Very complex and amazingly made beer!  Upfront you get some bitterness, either the hops used or some dark bitter chocolate.  Then it blends into that earthy, woody, leathery flavor that you smelled.  It actually coats the sides of the mouth and works it way in.  Also getting that dark fruit character but not as much as the nose.  The toffee is there as well.  The finish on this one is extremely long.  Flavors just keep on meshing together and changing.  The booze is hidden nicely, but there is some throat warming after a while of sipping.

M: It's a full bodied beer.  Very chewy but not as thick as some of the RIS out there.  You can drink it.

O: This is an A beer for sure for me.  Really edging on A+.  Really like this one.  Surprised I hadn't had it before.  Very Barleywine like.

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Photo of kylehay2004
4.44/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of djbreezy
4.44/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured into a snifter at Bailey's Taproom in Portland, OR

appearance - dark brown and thick, decent lacing

smell - unique wood and malty notes

taste - very complex and bold, woody, molasses, malt and raisins become dominant as the temperature increases

mouthfeel - fairly thick and somewhat creamy

drinkability - a very complex and enjoyable beer but quite heavy and not so easy to drink a lot of

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Photo of ivegot3Dvision
4.44/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of abagri
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Justin_Neff
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Batch 86, bottle poured into 50W tulip glass.

A: Very dark brown body. Aggressively pours with what looks like no head, then slowly a rush of carbonation bubbles rise to the top and form a quick, dark tan, latte-like, 2 finger, frothy head that hangs around for a long time. The head finally settles in a nice thick, 1/4 finger ring around the top of the brew, leaving a nice, sticky lacing on the glass. The appearance is fantastic on this one.

S: Nose is noticeably fruity. Smells of figs and licorice are strong. At first pour the nose is smokey, and it gains fruitiness as it warms. Definite wofts of chocolate. Very malty. Hints of raspberries and dark cherries. A little boozy. Without even trying a sip yet, the nose leads me to believe this is super complex.

T: Very sweet. The dark fruits really steal the show in the taste. Black licorice and chocolate are predominant. Smoke taste follows the nose - its faint, but definitely present. Malty and boozy, but its balanced well. There is a definite sense of some bitterness too, which keeps it from being overly sweet. I've heard it described several times in other reviews, but this is the first time I have ever actually felt like I get a tobacco taste. Some definite caramel notes - I'm guessing coming from some specialty grains.

M: Full body. Boozy. Moderate carbonation - any more would be too much IMO. Not quite as creamy as it could be, but still good.

O: This is fantastic. I can't believe how much flavor this 12oz bottle packed. It was truly one of the most complex brews I've had. It was a little bit of a mix between a barleywine and a belgian quad. Would love to try the "from the wood" version at some point.

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Photo of thatoneguymike
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Mauerhan
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

pours a dark brown with slight highlights when held to direct light. amazing tan head that was intimidating. the head retained better than any other beer ive had. the lacing is thick and clings like its on a mission.

good smell, i get heavy roasted malts, chocolate and a touch of dark fruit.

taste is great. i get a touch of bitter up front that dances with the sweetness of the malts. it leaves my mouth watering and begging for more. the figs come through a good amount on the back end. for a beer that has 10 percent abv you cant tell. at all. and it has a great burp flavor to boot.

mouth feel is near perfect. on the thicker side of beers. lots of carbonation. but thats to be expected with a bottle conditioned beer.

i would drink this beer 8 days a week. i cant wait to try some more from hair of the dog.

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Photo of BrownNut
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 89, which I'll guess was brewed around mid-2013. Served just cool in a tulip.

A - 4.25 - First pour, though not aggressive at all, is 95% head and it takes several minutes to dissipate down to a half inch. Second pour, very gentle and close, yields half as much head but still a lot. It's a thick, rich, creamy, uniform, light tan head that looks like custard you could eat with a spoon. Once it settles down, the beer overall looks very nice, though I'd give it a quarter point more if it didn't have a slight lakewater murkiness to it. You have to look close to see it and I'll be careful with the next one in case the fault lies with my sedimenty pour. The beer is so dark brown that it looks black in medium lighting.

S - 4.25 - Smells exactly like...something. Can't put my finger on it. Some kind of fresh smell from my youth almost like some kind of fresh green wood, but more foodlike. That smell fades with the head, leaving something somewhat reminiscent of some of the common aroma notes from cognacs, but leaning notably toward something on the chocolate spectrum, hint of caramel. Some malty coffee.

T - 4.5 - Initially a clean taste with some kind of irresistible fruit that morphs neatly into something sharp, heading towards tart but not quite making it. Then very nice chocolate liqueur notes. Others here have listed notes of smoke and leather like it says on the bottle, but I'm not getting those, nor figs either really. I suppose I get a hint of the kind of black malt char you'd get in an imperial stout, so maybe that's a cousin to smoke. It's less like other old ales I've had. Really comes off closer to a chocolate stout overall.

Ends with a slight puff/hint of some kind of fruit and quickly into bitter dark chocolate that endures and tingles the salivary glands a bit. I get the alcohol presence during and after swallowing but it's very welcome and quickly heats up the ears. The booze fumes are tinged with fruit on the exhale, like a dark chocolate covered strawberry with the barest hint of sour that's there and then gone. Rich chocolatey burps. There is surprising and delicate complexity here amidst the rich flavors.

M - 4.5 - Was expecting a thicker and more viscous body but I'd call it medium. There's a bit of graininess to it, like actual grains of undissolved hot chocolate mix, but I must have handled and poured carelessly becuase I didn't even think about the bottle conditioning until after pouring and I can see sediment granules in there. Ends dry on the tongue leaving a hint of sting like barely-present habanero - not the actual pepper taste, but a faintly similar hint of something hot. Later in the glass my tongue had gotten acclimated to that and I didn't notice it anymore, just a tannic dryness. It's not often that the mouthfeel alone can communicate complexity, but this one does.

O - 4.5 - This is a really fine beer. I actually had higher hopes for this one than I did for Fred, and while this one is really good, Fred is the luscious winner in my book. But it's apples and oranges I guess. And this is still a very interesting beer and its complexity and composition are worthy of the Hair of the Dog name. Pros, those guys, among the very best. While I've had a handful of more delicious beers (though this is delicious), what this beer has is complexity. I mean, things are happening in your mouth, different things at different times, an interplay between flavor elements and mouthfeel elements. It's a journey. That's what I'm looking for in a beer.

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Photo of Jacobob10
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle; Batch Number 86. I believe that puts the bottling date sometime in 2012.

Poured into a snifter glass, it's a dark ruby-brown color and clear around the edges when held up to the light. Very small head that forms a thin film over top of the beer and clings to the edges of the glass. Deep, complex malt aroma centered around figs. Picture biting into a Fig Newton, only without the pastry exterior and just going straight for the fig paste filling. Add in some chocolate, nuts, and caramel for good measure. No sign of oxidation at all. Amazing sweet malt flavor without being cloying at all. So smooth on the palate, full bodied and warming, but the alcohol is well hidden. It's made for sipping but is almost too easy to drink given its strength.

Purchased at Capone's in PA several months ago and enjoyed as a night cap on my birthday. A beautiful beer that is big in flavor while showing great restraint. I paid a premium for this note bottle given its age, but it's the only time I've ever seen it and was totally worth it.

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Photo of flipper2gv
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks a lot to nickd717 for my first HotD brew.

A: Two fingers worth of beige head. Very creamy looking. Retention is very good and lacing is really good. Deep deep brown color, perfectly translucent.

S: Actually, this is much hoppier than expected. There is a definitive amount of piny resins, grapefruit and pineapple. There are molasses, vanilla, toffee, tobacco, peat and licorice. Raisins, dark cherries, plums for the dark fruits. Very fruity, very hoppy and very malty. So good and so complex. Not very strong though.

T: There are again a good amount of hops. It's good that there are there since there is also a very good amount of malty sweetness. Pine, grapefruit and pineapple are there. For the malty sweetness, there are tons of dark toffee, molasses, licorice, vanilla, tobacco (not much peat though). Quite a burnt malt type of taste. Finally, tons of dark fruits like cherries, raisins, plums. Some kind of port quality.

M: Massive massive mouthfeel. Very thick, creamy and sticky. Low carbonation. Perfect.

O: A really nice experience. I'm very happy to try one beer of this malt heavy brewery. Very nice bottle. The beer is quite drinkable (if the scoring was still there it would be 3.5). I really wish I could get more of this.

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Photo of xgrigorix
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Twelve ounce brown bottle, batch #57.

Darkest shade of brown with a rich reddish hue throughout. Intense carbonation. Topped by a voluminous tan coloured head, which retains very well & leaves some lace behind.

Smell is intense & incredibly fruity, with some interesting medicinal notes hiding out on the fringes.

Sweet, fruity, some smokey tobaco leaf flavours. Very complex, & quite tasty with a little bit of dark chocolate.

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Photo of Japerrault
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Opaque Dark chocolate colored with a thick tan head. Nice lacing.

S: Chocolate, caramel, brown sugar, ripe fruit.

T: Complex flavors. Sweet upfront, mild chocolate, roasted malts, ripe fruits. Hops lend a pleasent spiciness. Bitterness is present, but well balanced with the sweet.

M: Excellent. Creamy texture, with nice mild carbonation. Flavors hang on the tongue for a long time. Alcohol warmth in there as well.

D: Even though this is full of big flavors, it is smooth and well balanced. I found this to be a very nice beer and look foreward to another.

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Photo of sisuspeed
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Batch 75

Cracked the cap with a nice hiss. Poured into a Hill Farmstead tasting glass. Adam reveals a nice dark brown body with a red hue under enough light. A huge, creamy, off-white head sits on top, leaving large waves of lacing behind. Looks great.

The Northwest hops hit the nose at first and are followed by light fruits and a touch of alcohol. Caramel and roasted dark malts linger beneath. Figs and cherries mixed with faint dark chocolate. The nose become more and more complex as this one warms.

Dark roasted malts, bittersweet dark chocolate, hints of peat and smoke. A touch of something fruity, almost cherry like in the taste. The alcohol adds some subtle character, but is fairly well masked besides it's warming presence. I can also see how the flavor has been compared to leathery figs. A nice balance between bitter and sweet.

Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy with almost perfect carbonation for the style. Batch 75 still has some hop bitterness to it and the warming alcohol is there as well.

Drinkability is good. This is a very enjoyable sipper. I found the 10% ABV to be well integrated, making this even more enjoyable than I would have expected. Adam is an excellent Old Ale and I'm sad that this is the only bottle I currently have. I will definitely have to pick up a few more for the cellar, since I think this beer will only improve with time. If you enjoy Old Ales or English Barleywines, then seeking this one out is a must. Nice work Hair of the Dog

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Photo of robbrandes
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

batch 82, poured into a tulip.

deep brown pour, same color as the bottle. monstrous head, actually needed a few minutes for it to settle enough to drink. amazing retention, lacing for days.
big alcohol and dark fruit on the nose. it practically warms your belly on smell alone.
wonderful across the tongue - caramel, burnt sugar, figs, raisins, a bit of smoke. outstanding body and mouthfee.
at 10% impossibly easy to drink. HOTD absolutely kills it again.

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Photo of Pahn
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle into Duvel tulip. Batch 77.

Appearance: Free pour yields a one and a half inch, foamy tan head. The head dissipates slowly, leaving a few millimeters of lacing ring that itself falls slowly to the surface of the glass leaving behind wine-like legs. The beer itself pours a solid black, has great legs, and leaves a few swatches of lacing.

Smell: Chocolate cake, brownies, fig, raisin, really malty and rich. Smells somewhere between a great Belgian dark and a great stout. A bit of solvent-like alcohol in the background.

Taste: Lots of chocolate cake, with some faint nut and dark fruit flavors. The hot finish lingers a long time, as do those creamy, beautiful cake flavors that continue to develop and transform to raisin and caramel more than a minute after taking a sip. There's lots of smoke through the middle, and a small bit of the advertised leather early on as well.

This is like a decadent chocolate cake with caramel and a fine spirit poured all over it. Creamy chocolate and smoke are the dominant flavors, but as I slowly make my way through the bottle I'm getting all sorts of new flavors popping up in random sips. Suddenly it's a little sweeter, there's a little more fig and raisin, suddenly it's all smoke and tobacco. This beer doesn't stop.

Mouthfeel: After the first sip I immediately wrote in my notes simply: "5". Perfect. Smooth as silk, with just enough carbonation (not much), a hot but not overwhelming finish. Imagine every time you're drinking something and think, "that's just a bit TOO bitter, just for one sip," or "That chocolate is overboard," or "That alcohol is drowning out the flavor a bit," ...for me this beer has none of that, ever. Perfectly palatable. The mouthfeel couldn't be better.

Drinkability: I'll be returning to this beer. As long as I have a few hours to take my time with it, "ease of consumption" is close to maximum.

This beer kind of makes me want to take up smoking again, and sit around next to campfires drinking it during harsh winters (though maybe it also makes me not want to take smoking back up, since I don't want to miss any of these deep, often subtle flavors). This kind of endless, beautiful, generous supply of flavor is why people seek out and pay premium prices for expertly crafted beer.


edit: Having a batch 76 almost a year after this review (reviewed on 7/26/10, batch 77, drinking batch 76 on 6/9/11). Got the bottle in a trade with generous BA msulinski.

Poured as if flat, but there's definitely enough carbonation. Smells like deep English barleywine and chocolate cake. Tastes like chocolate, tobacco, leather, lots of fig, lots of rum soaked chocolate cake. Seems hot at first, but mellows considerably early on. This is a great, great beer. Smell develops subtly throughout, and the interplay of sweet, rich, smokey, savory, leathery in the flavor is world class.

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Photo of holmesmi
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of ADR
4.42/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Great dark, dark brown color, excellent firm head with rings of "mountains". Murky, with lots of sediment chunks. Burly aroma, with raisin and cherry tones. Deep flavor, like a java with prune liquor and some complex grassy tastes. Taste is somewhat like a better-controlled Bell's Batch 5000 without the smoke. Hops are very flavorful, together with lack of heavy carbonation, add to a long lasting and changing flavor. Just dang interesting in the mouth. Alcohol is notable but the brew is more heavy than sticky. Excellent beer!

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Photo of SammyDavisJrJrJr
4.42/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Dark Body, with good sized head, and great lacing.

S - Chocolate, smoke, leather, and fig, just like the bottle says. I also noted cream, dirt, alcohol and complex herbal notes.

T - Starts out with cherry and fig like tartness and sweetness with a strong smoke quality that stays til the finish. Alcohol starts up around midpalate, and adds a very good spice quality to the beer. The hops balence out the beer well, and leave an interesting sweet tobacco/cherry flavor that lingers for awile. Very nice.

M - Rather full, kinda silky.

D - Complex, interesting, Don't want another one tonight, but tomarrow... and the next day...

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Photo of output01x
4.42/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. capped bottle (no date) into a snifter glass.

A vigorous pour yields absolutely zero head, not even the faintest of dustings. The body is a nearly opaque, nearly black mahogany with very slight traces of crimson when held to light. No lacing can be seen at any point during consumption.

Bourbon, oak, vanilla, toffee, molasses, and indiscernible dark fruit. The nose is incredibly complex and is impossible to completely dissect.

The complexity of the nose is laughable compared to the taste. Flavors of vanilla, caramel, toffee, oak, and butter start each sip. Upon swallowing, the vanilla comes out more along with dark fruit flavors of plum and fig. A very slight but pleasant alcohol warmth is noticeable at the end.

Full bodied with very little carbonation, this beer is practically the definition of silky smooth. While the body is a little sticky and coating, it slides gracefully over the tongue like melted butter. The carbonation is obviously very lacking but doesn't seem necessary.

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Photo of Bierguy5
4.42/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle, 10% ABV. Very cloudy chestnut, chocolate color. Really muddy and murky looking. Thin tan head trickles to a thin layer quickly.

Aroma is smoky, chocolate, fig and dark fruit. Lots of stuff going on here. Almost a meaty smell.

Mouth is full of chocolate, fig and dark fruit. Smoke adds a nice touch without being overwhelming. Not much bitterness but not overly sweet either.

Some warming alcohol, but hidden rather well overall. Full body. Such a complex treat. I could sit and sniff this all day. Very enjoyable.

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Photo of Syracuse12
4.42/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Mikexw
4.42/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Mehinaman
4.42/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Adam from Hair of the Dog Brewing Company / Brewery and Tasting Room
Beer rating: 92.6% out of 100 with 2,480 ratings
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