Horn Dog Barley Wine Style Ale | Flying Dog Brewery

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Horn Dog Barley Wine Style AleHorn Dog Barley Wine Style Ale
Very Good
1,313 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

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,313 |  Reviews: 834
Photo of MMansfield
3.31/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Picked up a bottle at Premier Wine & Spirits in Halifax. Vintage 2005.

Appearance: Pours a very murky rust clour with a nice tan head.

Aroma: Very sweet. Hints fresh berries a floral essence.

Taste: Very complex. Very sweet with mild tartness. Caramel and pine in the front palette. Extremely long finish with butter and fruit notes, very warming.

Mouthfeel: Very heavy and creamy. Carbonation is mild.

Final Statement: This was my first barely wine, and it's rather intersting. I wouldn't call myself a barley wine fan just yet. The flavours are very very complex, and will take a lot of getting used to. But this brew is pretty good, I will review it again at later date.

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Photo of pootz
3.35/5  rDev -13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5


Poured a deep chestnut brown with ruby highlights into the glass. Fair sized tan cap that has good retention and laces the glass.

Aroma: nothing overly complex...buttery figs some cocoa almost like a standard doppel bock.

Rich malt spine, thick viscous mouth feel, malty-fruity character.

Big rich caramel/toffee malts in the front, very rich...midways some smoke, dried fruit and cedar, finish is chocolate truffle with liqeur center.

A nice malty barley wine but some harsh edges on this young sample. Needs cellaring a year or so.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.84/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Vintage bottle 2006, Sampled October 2006
Pours with a very dark, brownish amber color. It barely summons forth a wispy tan colored head, that quickly fades to a bare ring around the edges. The aroma is a mix of sweet concentrated fruit notes and alcohol. Notes of prunes, raising and concentrated brown sugar loom large in the aroma profile. The alcohol mixes with caramelized sugar notes and fruit to form a touch of something like rum or brandy. The hops are quite muted, in fact I can't pick out any individual hop contributions in the aroma. While not the typical nose on an American Barleywine, it is not to bad and even enjoyable.

The beer is quite sweet; concentrated notes of prunes and raisins are accentuated. This finishes with a touch of alcohol that adds just a touch of warming to the finish (it is not as detectible as it is in the aroma). A touch of dark grain astringency is found in the finish. The dark malt notes in the finish are also a touch toasty, a bit nutty, a touch burn and even a hint of chocolate. This is definitely thick and chewy, it would even be contemplative except for the fact that it is a bit too sweet and cloying. Some more dark malt notes, or even some ample hop rates would make this much better and would go a long way towards balancing the dominant sweetness.

Purchased: Plaza Liquors, Tucson AZ

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Photo of Iguana
4.47/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've been craving a good barley wine for a few days so thought i would give this one a try. As I poured it I wasnt expecting a beer this dark, a hard pour left only lacing for a head. Smell is a boozey brown sugar similar to dark rum, really interesting. Taste is rich sugary, followed by a blast of alcohol and finishing with pleasent hop bitterness. This is pretty damn good. Mouthfeel is full bodied, coats my mouth well, and leaves me wanting more. Drinkability is high for me for a barley wine, definitly gonna pick a few of these up and maybe lay a couple down for awhile. A really pleasent, easy to drink, affordable barley-wine.

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Photo of kirok1999
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy dark orange/brown. No head and no lacing.

Smells sweet and malty. Toffee and caramel.

Nice sweet caramel taste up front. Alcohol warms in the middle, and slight hop presence and alcohol burn in the end. Very mild carbonation lets the malt come through nicely.

Decent body but could be heavier. I like it but it's not my favorite. A good cool evening brew.

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Photo of Rudgers73
3.7/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle.

A- Fizzy head, settles to a collar. Deep brown. Faint carbonation.

S- Very powerful smell. Strong herbal tones amplified by the high alcohol. Woody, red grapes, nutty.

T- BAM. Assertive, and bold. Starts out slightly bitter with a warm merlot taste. Ends up very oaky and dry, with nutty tones. Leaves an burnt oaky taste in the mouth and a dry tongue.

M- A lot like a merlot. Coats the mouth with a dry wood suction effect. A little thick when it touches your lips but very smooth. A slight alcohol burn.

D- Nice for sipping. Not for pounding. Relax, share with company before/during dinner, maybe a nice coffee or chocolate porter after dinner to balance it out.

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Photo of acrawf6
3.95/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

2005 vintage.

Pours out a dark but clear ruby-brown with a small slightly tan head.

Smell. Immediately i can smell the alcoholic presence. Under that is an almost brandy character to it. Small fruity aromas of alcohol soaked cherries, sweet aroma....Smells as if it will kick me on my ass.

Taste. An interesting little explosion in my mouth containing alcohol, yeast and malts. I do think for the high alcohol percentage, this beer hides it better than others can (but is still quite present). It also has a dry yeasty taste to it as well, accompanied by the malts, sweet with mild dark fruits. Also has a chocolate taste i do not really remember, like a chocolate extract, or a chocolate flavored candy. Aftertaste is surprising light and ok, alcohol goes down like a champ.

Mouthfeel is good. Full body, just slightly chewy. good amount of carbonation. Malts, of course, dominate, but balance is there.

Overall. I am mixed this beer. I like it 50% of the time, the other 50 i respect it. A fine beer, but not one i would want too often.

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Photo of WeisGuy
2.93/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

a - dark brown color with a reddish tinge, some sediment, small head with little retention, not much lacing

s - alcohol dominates but malt is evident as well

t - lots of malt up front with alcohol dominating the finish, fairly harsh taste, perhaps this could be thrown in the cellar to tone down a little

m - medium bodied, little carbonation, definite warming feel from the alcohol

d - not very, the alcohol was pretty intense and not very well masked, very slow drinker, one is enough for me

Fairly one dimensional english barley wine to me. The alcohol overwhelmed all the other flavors. Glad I tried it, but won't be going back here.

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Photo of Drew966
4.08/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Horn Dog Barley Wine pours a very dark brown (but shine a flashlight through it and it's red) with a half inch light brown head that quickly dies down to a ring around the edge. Comes in a twelve ounce brown bottle. The aroma is appropriately malty and vinous. Nice full mouthfeel. Flavor is malty then vinous, supported by a nice balance of hops toward the end. Some chocolate or roasted notes are present in the backgrouond. Nicely balanced, it has a fair amount of alcohol warming that is noticeable too. Fairly dry finish. The bottle says this is a 2006 vintage. Recommended.

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

Aged it a half year which did not hurt. The initial barley and then full malting.Surprisingly high alcohol. Slightly sweet, hey there was a touch of candy, and significant caramel. little bitterness and understated hoppy.
2007 edition on tap at Fallen Rock, great aroma, sherry taste. Understated carbonation.That's my upgrade.

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Photo of cproioi
2.58/5  rDev -33%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

This is one of the two beers that Flying Dog has came out with that I haven't been too crazy about.

The beer was a very dark brownish red color that had a very small head. The smell was way to sweet and malty for my liking. The taste goes hand in hand with the aroma. It was way to sweet with an extremely sweet finish that just sits on your tounge for a couple of hours.

It was a slow drink but I really couldn't tell that the abv is high.

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Photo of Derek
4.08/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Refridgerated at the World of Beer in Clearwater, FL.

A: Copper brown, off-white head, good retention and lace.

S: Sherry (fortified wine), alcohol is apparant, prune, figs, brown sugar.

T: Alcohol is up front, but not overly aggressive. Sherry, prune, fig, dark bread, spicey (like a Christmas cake), brown sugar, pleasant bittersweet balance, warming.

M: Fairly full body (though it's not syrupy, it's well attenuated); creamy. Carbonation is moderate.

D: Quite good.

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Photo of mjc410
4.18/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a La Moneuse tulip...

A strong pour coaxed a luscious one finger head out of this beast, which receded to surface bubbles and a ring in a minute or so. The head's color is parchment tan. The beer's body, when not backlit, appears a mysterious deep ruby-brow. This is a very dark ale, and a light behind penetrates just enough to produce a fiery glow. Deep and rich malt greets the nose, as well as juicy cherries, molasses, and toffee. The taste is somewhat raisiny, with port coming through, and a whole slew of dark fruits, as well. Very sweet, and quite alcoholic. I can't comment on hop flavor or bitterness, but I imagine they are here, keeping the malt from absudity. Somewhat dry at the very start of the sip, but this doesn't last. Carbonation is almost non-existent, and the huge body leads to a syrupy thick mouthfeel. A marvelous, joy-inducing barleywine.

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Photo of Metalmonk
4.19/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Time to give these guys another chance. Very much disliked their bland Tire Bite.

Horn Dog pours a very dark caramel brown, shot through with some ruby tinting. Head doesn't pour out big, nor does it stay anywhere near thick, just a thin layer across the top, and then almost nothing. Par for the style.

Huge, rich, syrupy aroma, lots of molasses, liqueur, vanilla, caramel and alcohol coming through. Mmmm...wonderful.

Flavors mirror the aromas, with bubblegum emerging as it warms. Good balance: not too spiky, not too thick, alcohol is present but not dominant, nice and warming, dessert-y and confectionery. Plenty of hops too, though not astringently piney. Also well-balanced. And you know that cereal Corn Pops, or is it Corn Puffs? This has something that recalls that, but not at all in a bad macro-corny way.

As for drinkability, like many barley wines, it's not an everyday beer, nothing you can kick back a few of without feeling incredibly woozy. So, an occasional treat.

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Photo of Dizzy
3.18/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a pint glass, dark reddish brown with tan head. Smells like alcohol mainly, with malt and some hops behind that. The taste is caramel with significant hop bitterness and alcohol burn going down. I think I will let a few sit awhile and see if that mellows. The mouthfeel is thick and sticky,with little carbonation, as you'd expect with a barleywine. At this time I would rate drinkability pretty low because of the alcohol and the bitterness. Maybe it will get better.

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Photo of rebel1771
3.95/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours an opaque dark reddish brown with a small head.

Aromas of fruit and caramel dominate with a heavy alcohol note.

The flavor is similar to the smell with candied fruit flavors coming through along with a caramel flavor and a pungent alcohol punch in the end.

Pretty good brew would have been better on a cold winter night instead of the middle of summer though.

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Photo of mynie
3.85/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle. Fantabulous artwork. Vintage 2005.

Pours almost flat, dark cherry. I know it's 10.5% and all, but it'd be nice to see at least a few bubbles.

Smells woody. Light hints of fruit from age along with a creeky old hop that gives the nose the electric zing of a good trippel. Still, not very complex or strong.

Big fruit. Lots of yeast, surprisingly. The yeast fades to a dark, belgiany malt that zips and zings all over your tongue. The hops, where are the hops? Tastes more like a dubble than an EBW.

A solid beer, but not a great example of the style and it could have used some more complexity. The bottle has aged about a year, but for a 10.5%er that shouldn't be anything.

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Photo of gnoff
3.94/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled from 12 fl oz bottle courtesy of a friend, traded from the USA.

Red-brown color, tan head.
Lots of alcohol in the scent. Malty and sweet, spicy.
Taste is fresh spicy and a bit fruity, with "classic Barley Wine" taste as well.
Big mouthfeel.
Feeling of warming alcohol.

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Photo of kimcgolf
2/5  rDev -48.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

This crap was really bad. Very malty aroma, which was okay, poured to a brown with hints of red. However, the taste was a mixture of malt and rubbing alcohol, and it left a very bitter, bad aftertaste. The worst thing was, I had it as the third of 3 taste tests of Flying Dog, after a few beers on the golf course, and it still tasted this bad.

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Photo of hoppymeal
3.85/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown in color with hints of red and a cream to tan colored head that fades to a ring around the glass. Smells of sweet fruit, plums, caramel malt, dry red wine, and a litlle boozy. My first impression of the taste is that it is fairly hoppy for an english bw, more an american style imo. There is a medium bodied cola - vanilla sweetness up front followed by a slight peppery and smoky tingle on the tongue which finishes with a nice hop bitterness and a little alcohol. Overall, an enjoyable hoppy strong ale/barleywine that I would drink again.

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Photo of Erdinger2003
2.9/5  rDev -24.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Served in a John's Grocery Tulip glass.

The head is foamy and pillowy with a lacing that sticks nicely to the glass leaving it's footprints behind as you go. The head doesn't stay thick, but still stays.

The smell is very fruity and the hops are slighty mellow and flowery leaving room for the fruit flavors to come through very nicely.

The fruit flavors are abundant, but the hops have become a little dank and wet leaving the coffee flavor behind...not the greatest combination I have ever had...it's very earthy.

The mouthfeel is smooth and wet leaving a good resinence on your tongue that gives you that coffee flavor at the end of the dank hops.

Overall I like the fresh stuff much better for this year.

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Photo of dfried
4.03/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Just the slightest film and ring of head, but an amazing color, deep brown with a slight burgundy tinge. The smell is of a strong malty and fruity character, with noticeable floral and citrus hops. Initially, I couldn't figure out if I liked the taste much for the first part of the beer, but by the end all of the flavors became a bit more noticeable. This is a quite sweet and fruity barley wine, with a lot of deep flavor like plums and wine grapes which helps mask the alcohol like a liquour. Definitely some deep caramel and almost red malt flavor, with some spicy hops in the finish. Decent mouthfeel. Consume with caution, these puppies are good, but strong.

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Photo of Golden2wenty1
4.52/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a single for $2.29 at Woodman's West here in Madison.

Pours a nearly opaque rusty garnet hue beneath a few fingers of capuccino froth, leaving a sheet of soapy lacing trailing down from the gold rim of my Gulden Draak tulip. Nose is fruity up front, with notes of cherry cider, white grape, and fig over sopping grapefruit hops. Taste is cherry yogurt, brandy soaked raisins, over caramel malt with a light herbal hop finish. Mouthfeel is creamy and luxurious yet not chewy enough to bog you down. The alcohol is there, but there's enough complexity in the nose and palate to balance it out. A top notch barley wine here, caught me a little off guard as I had, until now, yet to be impressed by the Flying Dog I've had outside of Gonzo. One of the best barley wines I've had to date.

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Photo of TheLongBeachBum
4.15/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: Funky Flying Dog label artwork is repeated on this offering, the Horn Dog, has well erm a dog with a horn on it. Sealed with a dark blue crown cap which has the Flying Dog logo on it, and the words ‘Cut the Leash’. Not much information on the main label, but it does have the word “Vintage” printed on a small white rectangle in the bottom right hand corner of the label, no year though.

Appearance: Pours with little to no head, what does appear, fizzes like a cheap Cola and quickly disappears. Though finely dissolved, the carbonation is in tune though and it doesn’t seem to contribute anything to the appearance. Dark mahogany body with deep red flashes when backlit but it is clear and portrays a classic Barleywine look. A constant light brown halo ring remains throughout though.

Nose: Baked figs and prunes with a toasty alcohol accent in the caramel background. Sweet malts embalmed with a caramelized raisin edge.

Taste: Maltose feel in the start benefits from deep rich malts which are heavily accentuated with bonfire toffee, parkin and a soft caramel backbone. Mid-way through, my nose picks up the heat from the vaporized brew as I accidentally inhaled with the beer in my mouth, it warms the nose and burns a little. The alcohol is much softer on the tongue though, almost gentle. Ending has some caramelized pears and spicy hops right in the finish. Bitterness in the swallow gives this one a West Coast Barleywine feel. Enjoyable and very attractive!

Mouthfeel: Warming tones are comforting rather than annoying; the temperature is decidedly toasty rather than hot. The alcohol builds and supports the chewy thickness but is never cloying. Sweetness still adds some body and it is the one aspect that will reduce with age I suspect. Nice to go now though. High end feel.

Drinkability: Sips nicely, a warming fireside brew that is great to cuddle up to on a night. The whole 12 ounce tops up the snifter nicely. Went well with a plate of aged Irish cheddar at the end of the night. Incredibly easy to get along with.

Overall: I wanted to get a chance to try this one for a while. Thanks to Gentlemen BA BigHuge I now had the opportunity to do so. Worth waiting for, and one of the better offerings from Flying Dog.

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Photo of VoodooBrew
4.05/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2005 vintage.

Sweet malt on the nose, with moderate hops. Flavors open up with a good dallop of malt and caramel, showing also toasty notes, before finding nice balance with a bitterness that, while adequately firm, resists the temptation to throw things out of whack. Bitterness perks up again in the finish, before things close out sweet and cola-like, but not viscous or cloying.

Not the most adventurous or daring of examples (could it be my bottled has mellowed this much already?) but altogether fairly balanced and pleasant. Some among us (myself included) would like more hops, but there are certainly enough BWs out there to fill that need (see Hog Heaven!).

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Horn Dog Barley Wine Style Ale from Flying Dog Brewery
Beer rating: 3.85 out of 5 with 1,313 ratings