Horn Dog Barley Wine Style Ale | Flying Dog Brewery

very good
1,306 Ratings
Horn Dog Barley Wine Style AleHorn Dog Barley Wine Style Ale

Brewed by:
Flying Dog Brewery
Maryland, United States

Style: English Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.20%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 03-06-2002

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Ratings: 1,306 |  Reviews: 832
Photo of viperpiper522
4.7/5  rDev +22.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had this one on hand-pull at the brewery.

A- Murky Brown with an off white head. a little lacing and little carb.

S- Toffee, Stone Fruit, Fruitcake, and malty sweetness.

T- Extrodinary stonefruits, with some sherry like notes. Very Malty with a little hops to balance.

M- Creamy and smooth with no signs of alcohol.

D- Dangerously quaffable.

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Photo of saintwarrick
4.12/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This was one of the first high-grav brews to make it here after the cap was popped, but I am only now getting to it. Burgundy and brownish brew pours with a slow developing white head. Malts jump out in the aroma, sweet muffins, caramel and whiskey are strong in the aroma. Taste is very sweet, caramelly, fudge and very dark bitter chocolate. Alcohol begins to shine through as it warms, but the sweetness keeps it at bay and makes this barley wine particularly drinkable in my book.

The best brew I can remember having from this brewery. Very solid.

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Photo of stcules
3.94/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown color, very dark. Almost no foam.
The smell is absolutely interesting. Malt, barrique, woody notes. Dry fruit. Vanilla, liquorice, dry plums, raisins.
Full taste, again dark malt, raisins, note of vanilla, and lightly tannc notes. Cocoa, and liquorice again.
Bitterness in the end, with liquorice and roots, and tannic and woody notes.
Good, very good.
Light alcoholic note (cherry in alcohol).
Drinkable, despite the strength.

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Photo of mhaws000
3.78/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A-poured a deep hazy brown with a good two fingers of light tan head that really stuck around for a good while.

S-Definite caramel sweetness with big hoppy finish that came across as a bit astringent for my taste.

T-Nice malty foundation of caramel and toasted marshmellow (stole that from another review but it is a great comparison) with a great strong hoppy bite that reminds me of orange rind, maybe grapefruit.

M-A little light bodied for a barley wine style beer in my opinion. The body fell a touch flat in holding up to the heavy hops.

D-This is a good beer. Obviously it is a bit strong to drink more than 1 or 2 at a time, but a solid offering especially for the price.

I am really impressed with the offerings that Flying Dog is putting out lately. As one of the few breweries that distribute a large selection of beers to Oklahoma, I am pretty impressed with most of their stuff. This was the most affordable Barleywine I have come across as of yet and it was just os good if not better than many more expensive offerings.

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Photo of sopclod
4.32/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a real smooth, easy drinking barley wine. Or, barley wine - style ale as we say in the states.

Of course, easy drinking is a relative term. The beer has the characteristic malty sweetness, which I love, but you definitely feel that alcohol as it's going down. It's not a bad thing though... it almost forces you to savor it more; you don't really WANT to chug it.

Good stuff; just the thing for evenings in colder weather.

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Photo of LittleBreeze
4.34/5  rDev +13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Deep brown. About 1/2 inch head that turned to a creamy foam rather quickly.

Smells of vanilla and caramel. A little spice. Not to sweet and has an outstanding sort of hoppy finish.

Good mouth feel - Malty. Creamy. Outstanding.

Nice to have this one in 12 oz bottles. Good "everyday" barley wine to relax with. I'll buy more!

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Photo of MMAJYK
3.9/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Dark brown/black with thick beige head. Head for me, did not stick around very long.

S- Smells sweet of marshmallows, cream and candy sugar.

T- Tastes of spices and sugary sweetness. In the middle is the strong alcohol taste. Hidden at first, but slams you in the middle. On the end, you catch the coffee with the alcohol.

M- Mouthfeel is great with this one. Tremendous malt and creamy. Very chewy.

D- Not a very drinkable beer. I like it for sure, but one or two and you are toast!!!

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Photo of AndyCapp
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This BW comes in a nicely packaged 12oz brown bottle. I poured mine into a small highball style glass of about 7 oz. Which meant, with the creamy head and a little space, I got three 4oz pours over a very pleasant 3/4 hour drinky-poohs session.

What a lovely auburn this came out as along with a light tan, and very creamy, layer of foam atop of it. The head lasted quite a while and settled into a lovely thin layer of soft bubbles atop of the brew. Lacing on the glass oozed down the side and in places stuck to the sides nicely. This English style Barleywine is a delight to see.

The aromas are equally delightful. With the usual expectations of an American Brew I was pleased to note this BW had a wonderfuly sweet malty "nose". The interesting esters gave off a slight tang reminiscent of a cherry-chocolate-fig undertone of scents.

On the opening this little booger can hit you with authority. For myself, the English styling of this BW, was wonderful. The hopiness was well mellowed by the malt flavors. After a little breathing things mellowed out very nicely on the palette. With some slow savoring, there is a wide range of flavors to enjoy. By the third pour some great fruity caramel undertones came out. I think that next time I won't open the bottle until maybe half an hour after it comes out of the refrigerator.

Wow, the texture on the tongue was wonderfully creamy. There was plenty of carbonation, but it was very soft. Someone here said that they could "eat" this BW. I agree, this is one of those drinks that has very good body and little harshness. The flavors stuck around for a while too. Liquid chocolate silk.

This BW was very drinkable for me. But then again, I savored it. This is not a chug-a-lug brewski. Plenty of "belt" to allow one time to enjoy it. At about 10%ABV, there is no need to rush to the buzz. Given an evening of about three, or four, hours I could enjoy a four pack. But, one was plenty for fulfilling nightcap. Sight, nose, and taste made for a very pleasant and mellowing experience.

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Photo of Floydster
3.77/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle purchased from Hi-Time Wines about a year ago, this one probably would have gotten even better with age

Poured into a small glass with a medium brown color and 3/4 inch foamy head that stuck around for a while

Surprising amount of carbonation for how old this brew is

Smell was pretty dang good, lots of chocolate and vanilla, with sweet caramel malt

Good balance of hops and sweetness, a little dry, but smooth at the same time

Could definitely taste the alcohol in this one, but still very drinkable, probably could drinka 4 pack if you wanted to, that is what they are usually sold for, about 8.99 a peice

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Photo of GClarkage
4.08/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

10/02/07- Purchased at John's Marketplace in Portland, OR.

Presentation- 12oz bottle with a vintage spot, but nothing listed. Possibly 2006, maybe 2005? Poured into my Duvel tulip.

Appearance- Deep brown with ruby highlights. 3/4 inch head on pour which settles at a slight creamy rim. Good lacing streaks and patches.

Smell- Semi-sweet caramel malt nose. Notes of cola, light perfume and pine hop aroma. At first sniff a slight metallic scent came out, but after 10 minutes or so, the scent was totally gone.

Taste- Large perfume-like flavor as in the nose. Chocolate-vanilla caramel malted taste combines with pine sap hop flavors. Maybe a touch bready as well.

Mouthfeel- Very smooth, somewhat thick and creamy that leaves a light mouthcoating layer of goodness. Very low carbonation level. About perfection with a nice added hop bitter aftertaste.

Drinkability- Very easy drinking and a very well balanced barleywine. A steal at the $1.49 I paid for the bottle.

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Photo of domtronzero
4.32/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured into my Tripel Karmeliet tulip a deep clear chestnut brown with a shortlived tan head that recedes leaving a small ring of lacing around the glass.

S - Caramel and sweet malty notes. Citrus and over-ripened fruits. A slight usk in the background. Alcohol is definitely present.

T - Sweet up front with a nice malty caramel flavor. As it moves back, fruity notes are observed: citrus, figs, raisons, with a little earthyness. Hoppy bitterness is very well balanced. Alcohol flavors in the finish.

M - Oily, thick and very tongue coating. So thick I could eat it with a fork.

D - For a barleywine, this is very easy drinking. Too easy drinking. I can feel myself get drunker as I write this review. Not for the lite beer fan. Definitely NOT.

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Photo of bort11
3.57/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into an iperial pint glass. Thin head that quickly recedes to a filmy lace. Only the spottiest of lacing left on the glass. color is a dark orange mahogany.
Smell is pretty potent with the alcohol up front. There is a blold caramel malt, dark fruit, figs, and piney hops notes int the back. taste follows smell, but seems more mellow. Hops are more noticable.
The mouthfeel is a bit too thin for what I like in a barleywine. It has a medium/light body that isn't as satisfying as a heavy/chewy BW.

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Photo of HardTarget
4.09/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review #800

Bottle Inspection: Great Steadman art of what must be a rabid naked mole rat-acorn. There’s a white box that says “Vintage”, but no year after it.

Aroma: Rich malt mingles with a decidedly American hop profile (it must be the Cascade I smell) that is perfumed with strong alcohol. Dark fruit notes, fig, black cherry, this one means business.

Appearance: Deep brown with clarity when back lit. Tan head struggles to hold but retreats to a collar which laces.

Flavor: Wham! Hits like a freight train loaded with sacks of toasted barley and fresh leafy hops. Firm alcohol note edges on hot, but is held in check by all the other flavors.

Mouthfeel: Light medium body, thin texture (alcohol is thinning it out), low carbonation.

Overall Impression: Mild papery note in the finish is a tad disappointing, but it’s nitpicking on a great beer. Alcohol is very potent, I’d better type quickly before mother funktons becoom impaared.

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Photo of ElGordo
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the 12oz bottle into a Maudite snifter. Body is a deep reddish brown, accompanied by a thin ring of creamy, off-white head. Aroma of sweet, bready malt, a touch of brown sugar, and mild fruit (plum?). Palate is sweet up front, with caramel and a bit of dark malt accompanied by a mild bready character. Some fruity flavors emerge mid-palate, before the warm, almost buttery finish. Body is substantial and a bit thick, but not very sticky. Overall, an approachable barleywine, and a decent representation of the English style. I prefer the hoppier American style barleywines, but this is indeed an enjoyable beer.

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Photo of JudgeRoughneck
3.36/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This is the third entry in my Horn-Dog cellar experiment. I reviewed the beer fresh, then again at 6 months, and planned to do it every six months but got seperated from the beer for awhile so this is the third entery at... roughly 20 months since purchased fresh off shelves in December 2005.

App- The beer has continued to brown, and is now the color of very dark, strong, ice tea. It is turbid and has begun to get floaties. Still has a nice, thin, parchment colored head with some lace. Carbonation is still alive and healthy.

Nose- Has faded considerably and begun to take on a little more medicinal vapor, smells, I dunno, just old. A little like cranberry juice, still some yeast scent but that has really faded. Extremely muted berries and dark fruit. Honestly, it would be a little off-putting if it were stronger.

Taste- The beer has really lightened with age, which I find suprising. High-pitched sugar sweetness has definately toned it down, transforming into a pretty solid malt backbone. Spicy alcohol sits closest to the tounge, but isn't strong. Herbal hops are still working, rounding things out. Flavor profile is still dark fruit, but is nowhere near as in-your-face as I remember. The prune taste has backed off alot, really only coming out toward the finish now. While I wouldn't say the beer is "round" in character, the edges are definately being smoothed out, and a yeasty character seems to be helping it toward softer aspirations.

The beer seems to be coming together again. It is less complex that at 6 months, and almost seems to be leaning toward what I call a "stacked" flavor profile, one where you kind of taste several things at once, rather than one after another.

Mouthfeel is lighter, still a little grippy, and I hate to say it, but starting to lean toward watery. We seem to have lost that lovely 6 month carbonation.

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Photo of Stoneman78
4.44/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a clear brown hue with creamy, brown head that is mostly diminishing, fair lacing on the glass
S- Nose is dominated by dark fruit (raisins, plums), and tones of maple syrup, vanilla, cinnamon, strong alcohol presence
T- Initial taste is of cherries and molasses, followed by chocolate/oatmeal/caramel malts, finish has tones of walnuts, vanilla, raspberries in the brief, light finish
M- Full-bodied and watery, slightly under carbonated
D- Limited drinkability like most Barleywines, the abv is significant and does not lend to extended drinking, but this is definitely a flavorful and complex barleywine that would be a great after-dinner quaff, I would pick this up again if I were in the mood for this genre

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.35/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Murky chestnut with cranberry and gold edges. The beer falls just short of opacity, but then most barleywines aren't light sinks. The toasted ecru crown was on the small side (allowing me to get the entire bottle into the glass in one pour) and has maintained one finger of thick creaminess. The color is a bit unusual, but I like it just fine.

The nose is 'brown' as well. I smell figs and dates and cherries macerated in port wine and brown sugar syrup, along with a not-so-subtle shot of creme de cacao. The aroma isn't exactly chocolate-like, but it's close. Most importantly, HDBWSA smells like good beer.

I wish I had some idea what the dating code means, because I'd love to know how old this bottle is. My best guess is closer to one year than two. I don't know what it was like fresh, but right now Horn Dog is a gloriously smooth, surpremely sippable, fantastically delicious version of the style. Unless my mind changes by the time I've drained all twelve ounces (highly doubtful), this is my favorite Flying Dog beer.

If you like your barleywines to be sweet and malty rather than hop-filled, this puppy is just what you've been looking for. I love hoppy beer of all styles, but can still appreciate one as well-brewed as this. Like the nose, I'm still getting much more chocolate than is typical for the style. It works very well, though.

The flavor profile is dominated by dark caramel, dark brown sugar, mild molasses, date paste, cherries and chocolate fudge. This might just be the darkest barleywine that I've ever had (the color should have been a tip-off). It's also one of the most complex. I can taste a little spiciness as well, but seriously doubt that spices were added.

The mouthfeel is full and chewy without being overly thick and sticky. A fraction more heft would be good, but it's hard to argue when the beer goes down like winter-weight silk. A restrained amount of carbonation gives it a lush creaminess that becomes even lusher and creamier with warming.

If I had known how good Horn Dog is, I would have cracked the crown on this pooch long before now. I remember seeing 4-packs at a local beer store recently. Looks like I'll have to stop in and buy a few for the cellar. This is Flying Dog's best beer... paws down.

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Photo of Jmamay22
3.37/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This one pours a deep ruby brown with minimal head that forms a 360 degree collar. Its a little darker and more opaque than most barley wines.

Smells of tangy hops with a background of sweet malts. Alcohol is also well evident and there are hints of dark berry fruits. The alcohol is a little overwhelming here.

Tastes very sweet and borderline cloying. Definetly and English take on a barley wine. Finishes with a taste of raisins and alcohol warmth. This one is not as complex as I would hope from a barley wine. Too sweet and too boozy for my tastes, but fans of sweet English barley wines may enjoy this one.

Mouthfeel is a bit sticky, but the carbonation is in place and everything is on par for the style. Drinkability even with the style given is a low given the booze taste, overwhelming sweetness and lack of depth in flavor. Its okay, but needs some tightening up.

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Photo of BlindPig
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- About a 1" tan head on a kind of clear reall dark ruby body (mostly looks dark brown until held to light).
S- Sweet caramel malts, toffee, cherries, plums, and maybe just a touch of grapes, all with a dose of citrus hops on top.
T- Nice dry fruits, toffee malt body, hints of dry grapes in the aftertaste, alcohol lightly tingles the tongue, citrus hops come through. Just a very nice well rounded beer that I can see my drinking a ton of.
M- Full body with low/medium carbonation with a dry and chewy finish.
D- I really like this and am pretty mad at myself for not buying it a lot sooner. Just a great cheaper barleywine. Great balance between fruits, hops, and malts.

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Photo of stereosforgeeks
3.89/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Nice clear dark brown with mild red highlights. Mild head quiets to a thin retention. Nice lacing on the glass.

Smell: Rich caramel, mild hops, some woodiness, some anice and lastly something almost plummy.

Taste: Nice caramel backbone on which the dark fruit tastes ride. The anise is present but in the background theres a nice bitterness, but overall it's pretty sweet.

Mouthfeel: Medium/Heavy body. Active carbonation. A little sticky but is a clean feel overall.

Drinkability: You can feel the alcohol but not taste it. A nice example of the style. Ive got one more and 2 aging.

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Photo of Patrick999
3.55/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours dark and cloudy, with a late-arriving and quick-falling head. Smell of alcohol-soaked raisins wafts from my oversized wine glass. We've got a malty one here, folks. 2006 vintage, so this has a little age on it.

Gotta wait for this to warm a bit. Smell is redolent of figs, raisins, tobacco. Kinda reminds me of a Belgian quad.

Taste, mouthfeel, drinkability - don't even bother with this cold. Cold, this tastes and feels like a mouthful of alcohol. Every bit of that 10.5% ABV is out there asserting itself. It's pretty bad. Hang in there, the rewards are coming. You get more sweet raisin bread and vinous overtones and less alcohol with every degree of warming. The alcoholic aspect never really goes away, though. We've all seen 10% concealed much better than this. Sweet and sticky, but not overarchingly so - I'm definitely getting *some* earthy hop bittering action keeping the sweetness of the strong malt bill under relative control. Somewhat odd thin feel for such a substantial beer. Hate to be a broken record, but I concur with others when I want to say that this barleywine skates on the edges of brilliance without ever really crossing the line. Still, hardly a poor way to spend an early evening....an enjoyable sipper that might perhaps benefit from even more aging. Maybe 2-3 years.

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Photo of ultralarry2006
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle. Leaves one finger of a biege head that quickly fades to a foam ring at the edge, and does not leave much lacing. Body is the deepest dark brown with purple highlights.

Smell - figs, plums, raisins, dates, burnt-crust maltbread, apples, and butterscotch. Hint of chocolate and caramel. Hint of spicy alcohol. Mouthwatering.

Taste - like the smell. All the fruit and the dark maltbread, like a fruit studded sweet roll, with more chocolate, especially in the middle, than the nose indicates, and finishing with some spicy alcohol, again more than the nose indicates. Hearty and delicious.

Mouthfeel - fullbodied, smooth, and semi-dry.

Drinkability - this is excellent ale, and only the high abv limits the sessionability.

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Photo of rallison
3.53/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very dark reddish brown with a 1/2 finger off-white head that settles to just a touch of lacing.

Smells of toffee, brandy and alcohol.

Taste is very intense. Caramel and toffee dominate the malts. Of which there is quite a bit. Hops are also present, and offer a sharpness to balance the malts - somewhat. Brandy-like alcohol makes itself quite known as well. The flavors here are strong, but they fail to fully meld. It's a decent BW, but I find it a bit lacking. Without the flavors working together, everything just tastes a bit off.

Mouthfeel is thick and rich. Somewhat syrupy as well. Carbonation is decent.

Drinkability could be better...but it'll do for a 12oz pour.

Overall, semi-recommended. It's not bad - it's just not all that great.

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Photo of Zorro
3.55/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A near clear walnut colored ale with a momentary off white head formation.

The smell is malty boozy and surprisingly chocolate. Fairly strong brandy aroma there is also some grape scent too.

The taste begins sweet and malty with a fairly strong grape and vanilla flavor with a little caramel in it reminds me a bit of brandy. Fairly quickly the hop flavors kick in and in this case it is of the herbal type with a strongly woody taste.

The mouthfeel is thick.

An OK Barley Wine but not a great one. I think I prefer the Double Dog Pale Ale better.

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.57/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

12 oz. bottle, purchased at the Liquor Warehouse.

A: Dark brown with ruby highlights and a thick tan head.

S: Very robust, anise, alcohol, and dark fruit, almost smells like a brandy.

T: Tasty, with raisins, figs, molasses, a lot of alcohol, makes it a little solventy.

M: A little thin for the style, would have liked more robustness, but fair overall.

D: A good stab at the style, the strong alcohol prescence gives it a whiskey-type feel going down, which takes away from its drinkability. Would like to see what a couple years in the cellar would do to this brew, a solid effort.

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Horn Dog Barley Wine Style Ale from Flying Dog Brewery
3.84 out of 5 based on 1,306 ratings.
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