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

1,021 Reviews

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A re-creation of an historic beer style originally made in Dortmund, Germany.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

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Reviews: 1,021 | Ratings: 2,456
Photo of maximum12
3.64/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to msulinski & Rempo for bottles of this brew, both as extras, woohoo! This bottle is Batch 76, whatever that means.

Popped open & sampled side-by-side with a bottle of Cherry Adam, both poured into smaller tasting glasses & shared with my wife.

Pour is surprisingly lively for a big old ale, & the yeast & last few drips are left in the bottle for the sake of clarity. Darkest dark brown with redhead leaking in around the edges. Aroma is pretty weak; faint chocolate, malts, not much going on.

Adam tastes nothing like it smells, & that's a good thing. A healthy swig & the alcohol & yeasts have the inside track, zing! Some brewers try to hide the booze, this one flaunts it in a low-cut teddy. Leathery is a good descriptor, with a douse of anise, brown sugar, baked malts. On the downward slide there's a strong sherry, port characteristic that brings it to the finish line; great mop-up. As promised by the ABV, this is a big-fished beer that coats the stomach & really weighs one down. I could easily have a whole bottle of this, but six ounces is going to suit me nicely.

Adam, you're a good fellow. Nicely dressed, good taste, easy to take. Now, I'm going to enjoy comparing you to your cherry counterpoint. Be right back.

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Photo of Wisconsinality
3.65/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to kk73 and July2Nov for this beer.

Batch 78 poured into Delerium Tremens tulip.

A- Pours a deep molasses brown with a small head, only a quarter of a finger. Nothing really to recede but leaves some decent lacing.

S- Deep rich malts, caramel and some black licorice. There is actually a pretty good hop presence. As it warms a bit more, the alcohol peaks out as well.

T- Big roasty malts with some bitter coffee and dark chocolate. There seems to be some black licorice and what seems to be a little like soy sauce. The alcohol is pretty subdued but still present.

M- Gets better every time I take a sip. Full bodied that just feels good. Coats the mouth and warms the throat down to the stomach.

D- The high abv is pretty noticeable but this is meant to be a sipper. The mouthfeel of this beer is one of the best I have ever had. That alone is worth drinking this beer. Putting a few of these in the cellar to see how they turn out.

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Photo of TMoney2591
3.65/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served in a Dogfish Head snifter.

Pours a very deep, dark maple, with a bit of light tan head that laces fairly nicely. The smell has a good deal of sweetness, made up of brown sugar, molasses, powdered sugar, figs; on top of that is a general booziness and a decided undercurrent of oily leather, almost a WD-40 scent. Though that may sound at least a bit off-putting, they all combine to create an overall pleasant aroma. The taste is ostensibly bitter, in terms of hops, herbs (something akin to wormwood), and leather. There are also hints of anise and raisins. The body sits a bit heavily on the tongue, and the alcohol is not exactly subtle, making this brew more ripe for sipping than straight drinking.

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Photo of DrJay
3.65/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch 62. Very dark brown with some cloudiness and a dense, light brown head. Clumpy lace. Malty aroma with milk chocolate notes, some cherry, slightly vinous alcohol and a hint of charcoal. Moderate malt sweetness with chocolate, licorice, and cherry rounding out the flavour. It ends with a big dose of malt and lots of warmth. There's a heavy alcohol character throughout that covers up the other flavours, especially in the finish. Carbonation was a little high, but the texture was still decent and the body full. It's a little rough right now and it seems to need to rest for a while before it hits its prime. Thanks Viggo!

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Photo of Treebs
3.65/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch #77, poured from 12oz. bottle into Founders snifter.

A: Pours a very deep purple with a 1 finger light tan head. Slowly dissipates leaving a thick ring around edge. The ring reveals a wonderful splatter pattern lace as the beer disappears into my belly.

S: I'm picking up some very earthy and woody notes at the front. This gives way to some light smells dark fruits. Little raisins and ripe dates. A little boozy on the backend with some sweet malts.

T: Not as impressed with the taste as I was with the nose. A watered down woodiness gives way to some light sweetness from the fruits and the oat malts. The backend actually provides more flavor for me. There is a little sweet booze kick with a nice smooth oak finish.

M: Medium bodied with a very oily touch. Medium carbonation. Leaves a sweetened oaky taste over the palate.

O: This beer had some ups and downs. The nose was great, but the initial tasting fell flat. The backend picked it back up however and turned a decent brew.

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Photo of sinistersteve
3.66/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

*Batch 54*

Way too much head with this beer, even with a gentle pour. Albeit a thick head; I do hate having to wait to drink my beer. The beautiful lace in the glass was the only reward from this foam Bitter sweet aroma. Bitter, yet smooth flavor. As with most Hair of the Dog brews, this as a very unique taste to it. At 10% abv, I'll definately get rewarded for my patience.

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Photo of Bendurgin
3.66/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

I got this one in a trade a while back from the super awesome Gogriz. Thanks again! This one is batch 76. Poured into a tulilp. Pours dark brown but sits black in the glass. No head, but what do you expect from a beer pushing ten percent.

Lots of dark fruit in the aroma. Figs, plumbs and dates. Rich toffee and caramel in the aroma with a little bit of smoke. More of the same from the flavor. Very fruity with a lot of butterscotch flavor. Sweet caramel and a little bit of grain alcohol in the finish.

This on is flat. Plain and simple. I've heard about some bottles of Adam being flat but I didn't think it was this batch. Otherwise it has a nice full chewy body but obviously some carbonation would be nice. Overall with all things considered this is tasty. I'd love to give this another go sometime. Hopefully not a flat bottle. Everything else is pretty solid but a flat beer is a flat beer.

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Photo of isubsmith
3.66/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

"Batch #62"
Wasn't sure what to expect from this so I poured it into a pint glass. Probably would do better in a challice....

There was plenty of residue in the bottom of the bottle so I poured rather slowly but still got a massive amount of head. Very dark opaque black body. Good lacing.

Nose: Serious alcohol smell. Lots of earthy/yeasty smells as well. Once you get past that, there is some malt and a hint of smoke. Reminds me a bit of an Islay single malt though it is buried under the alcohol.

Taste: Lots of alcohol in the initial taste. Some roasted malt as well as perhaps a woody character. A minor hop bitterness in the finish, mixed with a bit of something sweet.

Mouthfeel: Pretty carbonated. Creamy. Very full body.

Drinkability: Something about the nose made this less drinkable than other high-alcohol beers. I have a feeling this beer will do very well if allowed to mellow out for a year or two in the cellar.

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Photo of Scotchboy
3.66/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Hair of the Dog Adam

Slightly chilled, served in a wine glass Minimal carbonation and no head, just a few large bubbles. Color is an almost black brown with red highlights, and the oily lacing reminds me of a viscous wine or whisky.

Smell is dominant dark fruit (plum and fig) with just hints of chocolate cake, cherries, and that leather smell. Very complex. There is a dark smooth malt character and some caramel as well. I could smell this all day.

Taste is the nose, followed by a whiff of smoke and finishing like a rich deep red wine. My brother commented that he picked up on Dr. Pepper like qualities. Caramel malt.

Mouthfeel was oily and clingy.

Drinkability: I know it's a great beer but for me Drinkability was just ok. I think the sweetness and complexity will mellow this beer out in a year.

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Photo of veinless
3.66/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark maroon, almost having the consistency and color of cough syrup. Head is half a finger at most, and is entirely back generated after the pour is completed. Appeared very flat while pouring, as aggressive pouring yielded pretty much no results. What minimal head there is is a light tan and looks like coffee topper.

Dominant scent to my nose is licorice and a buttery flavor I got from Kalamazoo Stout by Bell's earlier today. Has a distinct leather smell as well to go with dark fruit in the back. Don't get much of the chocolate that the label says the beer has, perhaps it will show in the taste. Booze

I was not impressed by the appearance or smell, but the taste is incredibly full and decadent. The licorice and butter are all over the place along with dark fruits like figs or plums. The finish is smoky and smoothly spiced. Chocolate appears briefly to bridge the gap between the licorice/fruit and smoke. Booze pops up from time to time too, adding an uneven edge to the beer. The malt is so smooth and rich; this would be better with some carbonation though.

Mouthfeel is smooth and rich as I said the malt was, but once again, the flatness of this beer is detrimental to it. I want the flavors to pop, and usually a bit of liveliness helps. Other than that, it is fantastic in terms of taste and mouthfeel which makes it all the more frustrating. Drinkability is hurt by the flatness, but the balance of the beer and flavors is pretty good. Tastes are strong, but well done, keeping this from getting out of control.

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Photo of kbub6f
3.67/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Batch #53.
Small, dense, tan head. A ruddy brown-black beer, hazy blood against strong light. Some swoops of lacing. Sweet, bready, toffee, molasses, tangy, pruney nose. Buttery, tangy, spicy, rotten fruit front. It's almost salty. Flat, oily middle. Almost overpowering in salty, rotten fruit. Spicy, sour fruit and alcohol in the finish; almost smoky aftertaste. This is interesting. It's a tasty, intense, spirit beer.

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Photo of cjacobsen
3.68/5  rDev -13%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to sweemzander for sharing this one.

(A) Poured a dark, almost black color. Some ruby hints around the edges and at the bottom of the glass when held up to the light. Relatively nice stone colored head.

(S) Had notes of plum and darker fruit. Had a bit of an earthy smell to it. Some dark sugars and mild hops.

(T) A lot like the nose. Sweet and slightly nutty. Had a bit of a smoke linger to it. The sugar fruitness from the nose manifested itself in almost like a raisin mid taste.

(M) The carbonation subsided decently enough. This beer was pretty smooth but didn't taste flat.

(O) This was the HotD that I've experienced and it was pretty good. It kind of had a barleywine meets porter sort of feel to it.

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Photo of leschkie
3.69/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Batch 79. 12 oz bottle poured into a tulip.

Appearance: Pours a dark maple brown syrup in color and viscosity with absolutely no head. No lace. Nothing to get excited about.

Smell: Huge blast of brown sugar, caramel, coffee, and burnt malt. Slight chocolate perhaps. All elements point to this one most likely being quite sweet on the taste buds.

Taste: Not as intense as the nose, and a little thin. Similar flavors present: brown sugar, caramel malt, coffee. Flavors do not linger at the back of the throat long after the swallow. Instead, you get quite the burn from the alcohol.

Mouthfeel: Pours deceiving viscous, but it actually rolls of the tongue quite thin. The burn from the alcohol can be quite annoying at times.

Overall: It was good, but a little bit of a disappointment. I was hoping for something more complex to stimulate the taste buds, and felt like I got robbed instead. I've heard nothing but good things about Adam, and have actually traded it out on several occasions before I decided to actually try it myself. So for all you that have received this beer from me via trade, please accept my sincerest apology and I promise that I will make it up to you.

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Photo of ShanePB
3.7/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle poured into a snifter glass, reviewed from notes.

A: Evidence of bottle conditioning due to the massive foamy tan head rising from the gentlest of pours. Underneath is a dark brown/ruby colored body that is cloudy and opaque. Nice retention and lace are left behind, too.

S: Worn leather, smoke, ash and charred oak wood are discernible. Dark fruits enter the picture to tie in these smokey flavors with plum and fig. A caramelized sugary malt base is the centerfold of this quite aromatic profile, and does a good job of tying everything together.

T: Smokey ash and fresh split oak wood. More char comes through along with roasted cocoa beans. Mid-palate brings in some raisins and toasted almonds, finishing with more smoke that lasts well into the linger.

M: Medium-bodied with strong effervescence. A bit more dry than I would have liked in the finish, probably from the smokiness left on the palate.

I must admit, this was a quite different Old Ale for me. The drinkability of this beer weighed heavily on my scoring, as the flavor profile does leave a bit to be desired. While I appreciate the smokiness of the beer, it was rather confusing on what this beer wants to be. The base of an Old Ale is there but, in my honest opinion, the flavor needs to focus less on the smoke and more on blending it all together, as a whole.

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Photo of blincoln
3.7/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Huge three-finger coffee colored thick bubbled head (thats a mouthful – literally). Good head retention with some lacing. Real dark brownish black color letting no light through.

Aroma: Strong smell of fruits, malts, and roasted smell – almost like a hint of campfire.

Taste: Roasted malt taste. Bitter chocolate finish that lessens as it warms. Minimal hops.

Palette: medium carbonation, heavy, but goes down smooth. A little sticky after.

Overall: I wasn’t really sure what to expect on this one as it is a “Old World Beer”. Whatever it was, it wasn’t my favorite type of beer – almost stout like. I had higher hope given the talk I’ve hear surrounding Adam, but it definitely wasn’t bad. Overall I found it to just be so-so.

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Photo of Wadsey
3.7/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Adam, batch 75

Served in New Belgium tulip

A: Pours opaque deep brown with rocky, Belgian-looking head. When it recedes, nice lacing is left behind. 

S: Aromas are subdued. Nonetheless, I detect caramel and dark fruits indicative of crystal malts.  Smoke is prevalent.  Some earthy, tea-like hops and damp wood. 

T: Sweet malts lead off, followed by caramel and raisin, then smoke and damp wood that reads almost like oak. A little leather, chocolate and salt. Medium bitterness.  The smoke is well integrated and adds a nice layer of complexity. Some cocoa and weediness in finish. Astringent. 

M: Medium-heavy body with medium carbonation. Full, creamy mouthfeel. Some warming. 

O: Adam is another beer that skirts categorization. It is a well-executed sipper, despite its harsh and astringent finish. 

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Photo of xnicknj
3.71/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5


12oz bottle poured into snifter - batch 76

Pours an opaque brown, almost black color. No head, retention, or lacing to speak of. A few bubbles around the color.

Multi-layered nose with burnt sugar, candied fruit, dates and raisins. Roasted malts and nuttiness, a hit of alcohol warmth.

A bit sweet up front with candied dark fruit and caramelized sugar. Dates and raisins with some roasted malt tones. Caramel and syrupy tones throughout. A light touch of licorice, still a decent amount of alcohol towards the finish.

Fuller body, lower carbonation, sticky but kind of flat on the tongue. Plenty of delicious flavor, but the appearance and feel is lacking on this batch - I'd like to try a fresher one again.

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Photo of tpd975
3.71/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another one from Joey at SouthBay Drug and Liquor.

A: Pours a dark black hue with tinges of red. A huge rocky off white head builds up to 3 fingers high and seems to last and last. Sheets of lacing are left behind.

S: Nice aromas off this one. Smoked oak with hints of leather. Some chocolate, black cherries, and a bit of hops.

T: Nicely smoked. Smoked wood and leather up front. Hints of peat and chocolate. A tinge of booze and some fig. Cherries and a bit of hops in the finish.

M: Full bodied and rather smooth.

D: Pretty drinkable.

Overall: Pretty good brew with lots of smoke. I had Fred recently which I liked a bit better. This is a rather tasty beer though. I have one to share with BeerTruth, and the other to age for a bit. I look forward to seeing what a little age may do to this one.

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Photo of JoeySchlitz
3.72/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Batch #72

A: Pours a massive mocha-colored head (uh-oh.... hoping that this isn't infected). After about 5 minutes the head receded to resemble the shape of a baked pie crust. The beer itself is a dark mahogany brown at the center and burnt umber at the edges (pulling from the days of using prisma colors).

S: While waiting for the head to calm down and with the glass about 4' from me I can begin to smell the smoky sweet aroma. Ripe fruit with just a bit of funkiness in the nose.

T: Again very smoky taste followed by sweet malt and caramelized sugar. After a few sips getting more of a roasted malt taste with some chocolaty brownies and a slight hop bitterness at the finish.

M: Not sure if it is infected with the super-carbonation but if that's intended it is too much for the style of the beer. Medium to light mouthfeel overall.

O: A pretty good beer that impressively lived up to the description on the side of the bottle - although the price seems a bit steep. Could stand to decarbonate a bit and sit in dark room for a year or two.

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Photo of bylerteck
3.72/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 2.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

2010 bottle from pushkinwow. Thanks!

A - Black pour with barely any head. Very minimal carbonation. No retention and no lace. Expected for the ABV and age, but still unimpressive.

S - Huge aroma. Smoke, leather is definitely there, raisins, dark fruit and sugar. Cool aromas playing together.

T - Smoke, earth, dark fruit, lot's of brown sugar. More smoke than I typically like, but still decent. Rich malty flavours and some booze.

M - Almost no carbonation, full syrupy body, dry smokey finish.

O/D - Pretty hardcore. Age has probably mellowed this out a bit but the smoke is a touch too much for me. It's quite a complex adventure though, and quite rich. A decent example, but nothing too wild.

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Photo of blackie
3.73/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Batch #62

Very dark brown in color with a dark head that just doesn't quit, very meringue like.

Smell is dark malts with pletny of hops to back them up. Hints of bitter chocolate and some fruitiness.

Carbonation medium with a medium body.

Taste is again of dark malts with a big hop backbone. The malts lent dark chocolate and coffee flavors to the beer. There was also a light smokiness and some slight fruit notes present. Finishes with a coffee hint and a considerable hop bitterness.

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Photo of claspada
3.73/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Batch 82.

Pours a dark mahogany color with a voluminous off-white head which sticks nicely to the sides of the glass.

The aromas begin with notes of toffee, caramel and a hint of chocolate for the sweetness. There is an emerging smokiness as it warms. I wish there was some fruitiness or something else to balance the dark roasted maltiness.

The tastes begin with dark roasted malts and bitter chocolate that is more pronounced than the nose. There is plenty of brown sugar sweetness. There is a mild woody, tannic feel to the beer. The finish is mildly fruity with a bit of alcohol warmth. The smokiness emerges more as it warms which is unfortunate. My least favorite flavor in beer.

The mouthfeel is quite full and chewy with a moderate carbonation. The alcohol provides a bit of warmth and as with the flavor, there is a bit of a tannic feel in the finish.

Overall Old Ales are definitely my favorite style of beer so I was slightly disappointed by this. I enjoyed the complexity of this beer but this fresh version was just not my cup of tea. I'm hoping the older bottles I have are more mellow in the smoke/ acrid roast and more fruity. We'll find out down the road I guess...

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Photo of kasper
3.73/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Batch #68 purchased for $4.99 a 12oz.

A: Pours darkest of browns, with a nice frothy two-finger tan head with good retention and nice patches of lacing on the glass.

S: Aromas of dark ripe fruits, in particular plums and prunes. There's some leather there too. But as it warms, a notable candied smell...sweet. Not much chocolate in the nose.

T: However, there's an intense rush of smooth creamy chocolate in the taste followed by a slightly bitter and boozy dark fruit finish. It tastes like a chocolate covered raisin! Little dry on the finish, though with a punch of some kind of really ripe reddish fruit I can't exactly pinpoint. Raspberries?

M: This a thick -- but not overly thick -- creamy, full bodied brew with considerable carbonation, which I think really helps it along. Not its strongest point.

D: Overall, this is a tasty brew akin to an fruity imperial stout. It's somewhat boozy so you are aware of the 10%ABV. Wouldn't really want to drink more than one of these in a setting.

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Photo of Sammy
3.75/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Looks like a top English old ale, even a Belgian, good aroma. Smooth, malted and some dark fruit mouthfeel and drinkable, but without the spice and good taste I would expect from the UK or Belgian ales. Nice, but not one I would seek out again. Alcohol hammer and drying finish.
4.5 years later, a vintage 2006 is brought out by Jonah. Looks lik a cask ale, with the small amount of light brown bubbles. The best part us the aroma of spices. The taste, malty, some chocolate, even cloying sweet.

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Photo of mkotsayfan
3.75/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a Stone Double Bastard glass. Pours a cola-like black and brown with a finger of off-white head. The aroma is very complex, dark fruits and chocolate dominate, along with some caramel. The taste has those same dark fruits, lots of raisin and fig, along with some roasted malts. The mouthfeel is medium carbonation with a decent creaminess to it.

A solid old ale, but something in the taste didn't quite work for me, one of the dark fruits gave it a kind of funk that I wasn't a fan of. Overall though, a good beer that I wouldn't mind revisiting again.

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Adam from Hair of the Dog Brewing Company / Brewery and Tasting Room
4.23 out of 5 based on 2,456 ratings.
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