Horn Dog Barley Wine Style Ale | Flying Dog Brewery

very good
828 Reviews
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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Reviews: 828 | Ratings: 1,296
Photo of sulldaddy
3.82/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

I am drinking this brew at room temp in a snifter. The bottle opens with a nice hiss. Pours a rich mahogany color with a light beige colored head foaming up and fading quickly to an edge layer. Aroma is ripe pears, plums and raisin. SOme piney hops and huge alcohol profile. Perhaps a whif of bourbon in there. First sip reveals a syrupy textured brew with mild, almost non-existent carbonation. Flavor is hard candy sweet up front with toffee and ripe fruit mixing in. Slightly astringent alcohol bite dominates the finish and predicts the strong warming sensation in my throat and belly. Not very smooth or easy to drink, but a decent overall beer.

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Photo of Southernbrew
3.43/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours brown with ruby hues and a miniscule head.

Nose is all malt with some sweetness and fruit.

Full bodied and quite smooth. Definitely of the English variety barley wines. Lots of sweet malts as well as caramel and a very apparent alcohol. The alcohol makes a strong appearance mixed with caramel, rum and fruit flavors.

An OK barleywine, it seems the flavors are not mixed especially well and the alcohol is very apparent. I would drink this again but I can think of others that are much better.

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Photo of Tballz420
3.92/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This brew is a dark purple/black colored brew, with a small tan, foam head on top. Big syrupy scent. The taste has a chewy malt base, bitter hop, some alcohol detectable. Got that great barlywine flavor, its just not as well blended or full tasting as the greats. The alcohol is a little too apparent.

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Photo of Gusler
3.67/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer after its release from the 12-ounce brown bottle resides in the glass a murky brown with ruby high lights, the head is generous in size and semi-creamy in texture, the color a winsome light tan and as it slowly dematerializes the resultant lace a thick blanket to conceal the glass. Nose is sweet with malt, hints of fusel alcohol, caramel and a nice crisp clean nose overall. Start is cloyingly sweet, thick with malt and the top medium to full in feel to the palate. Finish has a brisk acidity with the hops pleasing in their spiciness; the aftertaste continues the sweetness with a hint of alcohol bitterness, maybe just a bit too sweet for me.

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Photo of mntlover
4.15/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep dark red with no real head just a half finger of foam that lasts the whole glass. Aroma is malt lots of malt with a dark fruity aroma almost wine like grapes, raisins ect. Taste is big on malt lots of chewy delicious malt, flavored with touch of dark fruits along with a small hop flavor and lightly bitter finish. Mouthfeel is big and full almost a meal. Drinkability is too good could throw back a few of these they are so good and go down so smooth could be dangerous.

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Photo of cbl2
3.53/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Vintage 2003.


Pours mostly still, and predominantly opaque dark ruby brown, with a faint hazy film on top.


Mildly sweet grapey malts predominate the nose.


Mouthfeel is strikingly smooth at first tempered by a tartness due to alcohol as the fluid hits the back of the mouth. Flavors are mainly malt with some wine like aspects. Not that thick, but I feel like wanting to chew this one.

Not the best barley wine I've ever had, and not the worst either. It suffices, but doesn't inspire devotion like some I've sampled.

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Photo of aaronbeach69
4.19/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. vintage: 2003A from sams wine in chicago, served somewhat more chilled than necessary, but I let it slowly warm as I drank from goblet.. just didn't feel right taking it in normal glass.. anways the amazing smell begged for a glass that would trap and amplify the aroma.

appearance, dark .. not brown, but so dark red almost no red without light. Very tempting..

smell: amazing.. very fresh smell of some hops.. but more malty fruit.. choclaty, lotta carmel malt smell, actually an amzing smell, one of the my favorite smelling beers of all... wow.. so fresh smelling

taste: cold it tingles so much on the tip of the tounge, and as it mellows in teh middle into a hearty somewhat roasted flavor.. then the bitterness grabs the back of your tounge to remind what you are dealing with.. leaving a varying landscape of taste across your tounge...

mouthfell: fullness is almost a none issue until you are past the tip of tounge, which is paralyzed by the immidiate bite of this beer.. awesome.. followed by a full but not syrupy feeling.

drinkability: slowly, amazing... but will numb your mouth if you drink too quickly .. great to finish over about 10+ mins.. just enjoy and enjoy with patience

a very good beer... of the two barley wines I have had (horn dog and bigfoot) this is better.. (of course my own opinion, probably based somewhat on my immature understanding of the styles and the difference between english and american styles, also I have found my self to appreciate hoppy bears, but to truly love dark, more malty beers) my love maybe cuz of the great tingling bit on the tip of the tounge or the darker, somewhat roasted attributes

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Photo of ppoitras
4.24/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12ozer purchased as a single from the Spirit Haus, Amherst, MA.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1/2" beige/light tan head above a somewhat cloudy reddish-copper brew. Head hung around for a reasonable amount of time, and laced ok. Aroma is kind of busy with a malty, somewhat fruity, definitely alcohol-y. Makes things interesting for the nose. Taste is sweetly malty, then fades into a boozy warmth that carries through the mouth and down the gullet. Mouthfeel is extremely smooth for a barleywine, which scares me, and drinkability is excellent, from both a multiple serving and interest-piquing viewpoint. The best Flying Dog I've had, by far. Not sure if that's saying much, but this was a good brew.

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Photo of meathookjones
3.62/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Though a lot of their other beers are average I always have a hard time turning down a barley wine I haven’t tried. This on pours a deep brown color with reddish highlights and a slight white head that fell to a collar fairly quickly. Smells of fruit sweetness with a bit of alcohol and a touch of hops, fairly pleasant smelling overall. The sweetness starts the taste out here before a hop bitterness and alcohol kicked in for the finish. This is defiantly a thick barley wine with a great mouthfeel. This is easily my favorite beer from the brewery and a good barley wine in its own right.

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Photo of ark57
3.2/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

It pours a somewhat murky, very dark brown (almost black) with ruby tinges and a thin light tan head. The aroma is yeasty, malty, fruity (cherry), and hoppy (mint and herbal). The very sweet malt is up front in the taste and it has some fruitiness as well. It is a bit harsh from the high ABV. Theer is ample bitterness (herbal, minty, earthy) and then a peppery alcohol punch in the finish. Not a bad beer, but it is a bit harsh for my tastes.

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Photo of Mitchster
4.6/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

OG=26 P, 10.5% ABV.
Pours out to a semi-hazy dark brown, forming a small light-tan head with poor retention and nice lacing. Carbonation is mild to moderate and requires a hefty pour to coax a head out of this. Aroma is what you would expect for a barleywine...lots of hops, lots of sticky roasted malt, vanilla, cocoa, caramelized sugar. Mouthfeel is creamy and soft with a medium-dense body. Taste is better than expected...the aroma is overdone with hops, but they are nicely held in tow by the big malts. There is a nice milk chocolate thing going on in the aftertaste with some interesting notes of licorice and some pleasant lingering cookie-like sweetness with dark fruits. Very nice. The finish is smooth with a touch of bourbon and dates. Bitterness is minimal. Cleanly fermented with no off-flavors. Alcohol is imperceptable. I just love this aftertaste! Sippable or gulpable...you choose.

Not being a fan of their other brews, I give kudos to Flying Dog on this one. It rich, and smoother than most in the style. The balance is well-done and it's spot-on for the style. One of the best Barleywines I've had, believe it or not.

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Photo of Stubbie1
3.83/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Much surprised with this offering. Nice deep dark mahogany color. A thin tan head on top fades away to nothing. Sweet aroma, plums and sugar come to mind along with figs. There is a slight hint of a bitterness in the aroma…hops? The taste is warming and smooth malt start mild bitterness and a sweet finish. Watch that 10.5%, it will sneak up on ya. Other than that, it is easy to drink. This is a very nice offering from the Flying Dog.

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Photo of HappyHourHero
4.13/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Big fat foamy, light brown colored head left a thick coat of lace. Dark brown beer, almost black colored with a ruby glow. Strong roasted barley aroma, a bit of malty alcohol. Smooth, almost creamy mouthfeel, bubbles float across the tongue. Chocolate malt flavor, finishes with a coffee bitterness. The body is middle of the road, not too thick. Lots of fresh barley in the aroma and flavor.

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3.28/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Very typical head on a very typical pour. This stuff has a thick brown color, somewhat like syrup.
There is an initial hop presence which quickly yields to a buttery, bread-ish malt flavor. Very smooth buttery mouthfeel to go with the somewhat diacetyl characteristic of the beer. Aside from this there is a big, sweet malt presence with caramel flavors.
It all adds up to a sweet smooth barleywine that goes down well when it's warm. This would be a good after-dessert brew, methinks. Maybe with carrot cake or something. Mmmm cake.

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Photo of coasterfreak75
3.26/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The pour was very dark chocolate brown with a slight red hue. A very short head that left a wisp of white lace around the pint. The smell is that of very strong alchohol with a hint of malt sweetness. It starts with a light hop kick followed by a quick surge of malt sweetness, then it ends with another hop kick followed by a light alchohol burn. All and all not a bad sipping beer, but I didn't find it refreshing in any way. This would be a great beer to sit with friends and talk about old times.

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Photo of beergeek279
4.05/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in the 12 oz. bottle, into a pint glass. The color is dark brown, darker than any other barleywine I've seen, with a wispy ring of white head. The smell is a strong malt and alcohol with a very slight hop. The taste is very strongly malty sweet with a decent if not overpowering hop balance in the taste, and an alcohol that is just there in the taste that adds a warming quality. Mouthfeel is creamy. As for drinkability, a relatively mellow barleywine and one I could have a few of.

A nice and subtle offering from Flying Dog. Not necessarily a beer that will sledge you over the head, but still enjoyable, and one that I would have again.

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Photo of Billolick
3.8/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle, pours dark almond and cloudy. moderate head, settles into tiny bubble light film, and leaves average lacing. Very malty, with alcohol present. Medium bodied, finish seems abit thin. Hop wallop never really kicks in. What happenend to the hops? This is one reserved BWine, English in style perhaps is a usable excuse.

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Photo of pezoids
3.32/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Vintage 2003 printed on the bottle. This beer poured out thick, syrupy and dark. An extremely deep and dark amber-brown color with a thin film of a head. Alcohol and sweet fruit malt nose, with the presence of molasses and licorice spice. The taste is strong and syrupy sweet, almost sticky. Dry alcohol presence is right along side. Full of flavor and full, as well, in body. This is a tasty sipper with some guts to it. Not great, but a semi-enjoyable strong ale.

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Photo of tavernjef
3.71/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark and sludgy brown; somewhat of a brick-like red edging with a thin tan top of compact cappucchino-like frothyness, fades somewhat feverishly to a thin ring and very minimal spots of lace in a glaring clearish coat. Aroma is of subdued malts rendering some fairly heavy molasses tones mixed with some plum and raisin and bits of smokey-like toffee. Warmth subsides within as some brandy-like alcohol seeps into the nose. Taste has more of the same with a slightly weakened front end but fills up with a dark fruity malty presence across the palate where plum, molasses, and toffee leak into a substraining mix of lightly textured chocolate spices and sugared candy caramel towards the finish. The chocolate tones are light and late with a nice little effective dryness thats favorable and welcomed. Flavors need to be bolder, heavier, richer, what have you, there's not much happening and it's length is tempered. It's feel is comparable with a good medium body and texture and has just enough edge in what could be justified as a hop profile of somekind and its warming of alcohol is sufficiently present within bigger gulps with a slight stinging twinge. A bit tame by my standards, but not bad.

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Photo of Imbiber
3.87/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Deep cherry red, light tan head, lightly carbonated. Aroma is fruity, alcoholic and a bit vinous, quite pleasant. Taste is quite sweet and malty with fruit and caramel notes coming through. Hops are in the minority but try to push through with moderate success. Bitter-sweet finish to an extent, with caramel lingering.

A nice beer, but maybe not quite big enough on flavour (especially hop bitterness) for the style.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.73/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Deep murky brown hue with a nice sized bubbly tan head leaves behind fine specks of even lacing. Aroma: Deep layers of sugary malts just amazing stuff here, leaves not much hops this is a malt monster. Taste: Flavor contains viscous rich tones of sugary mix of pine sap and caramel malts with candi like tasting sugar very big and complex. Mouthfeel: Full bodied so very full great to sip don't try to handle to much big ol' mouthfeel. Drinkability: Beware high abv loads of malts and complexity great tasting barleywine, a bit one sided on the malts for my likings like a bigfoot without all of the hops.

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

Pours a very dark amber with a small off white head. Good lacing sheets the glass.

There are elements of chocolate, carmel and hops in the nose. There is an alcohol presence in the nose that is a little distracting.

The alcohol presence persists in the flavor and dampens what could be a very good barleywine. There are roasted malts, chocolate and plums present in the flavor.

This is a fairly creamy barleywine with a dry alcohol finish. Again, the alcohol detracts a bit from the overall experience.

This is a fairly drinkable beer that could benefit from more aging. The alcohol is too prominent for my liking and diminishes the quality of this beer. I believe a little time in the basement should mellow this into a fine beer.

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Photo of avylover
4.05/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Pours a dark hazed brown with mahogony highlights. Aroma of a sweet somewhat fruity maltiness. Hops prevelant along with tons of malt. Taste starts off with a heavy dose a caramel maltiness, then a good dose of bittering hops takes over, drying out the tongue and balancing out the hefty sweetness. Think of a west coast barleywine on the malty side. The makes for a good mix. Good thick mouthfeel. By style not too drinkable, this is a heavy brew.

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Photo of AtLagerHeads
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Easily the best Flying Dog brew that I've had. The dark mahogany body was too briefly capped by a thin tan head. Very little lacing noted.

The nose is very light but gives off subtle fruit notes along with rich butterscotch and toasted malts. This follows in the very warming flavors that blend nicely to produce a very rich fruity overlay to the rich malt base. Quite sweet and cloying the brew nonetheless satisfies with its richness and high alcohol sense. The alcohol is not buried here but rather celebrated within the barley wine depth.

The mouthfeel is full, creamy and smooth with a bit of bite from the high alcohol finish. Limited drinkability due to the sweet richness and high ABV.

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Photo of marc77
3.63/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Cloudy dark chestnut. Thin, but persistent beige head leaves loose lace. Pronounced butterscotch along with burnt toffee hit the nose upfront, then are ensued by pungent, earthy hop and searing ethanol heat. Mellow cocoa notes and bubblegum esters surface as the beer breathes. Buttery brittle and caramelized flavors are the dominant malt components. Permeating alcohol presence melds with residual sweetness to lend a black licorice and pepper undertone. Mild hop bitterness and singed biscuit surface mid palate and attempt dryness, but are readily overrun by rich, sugary caramel. Understated earthy, woody hop combines with static alcohol lending a burning, ozone like sensation. Full bodied, with a viscous, creamy, luscious mouthfeel. Sour plum esters arise late and add a sublt tart contrast. Finishes with palate enveloping ethanol heat, buttery and oaky bourbon notes and dryish unsweetened baker's chocolate. A unique, raw barleywine with assertive sweetness and marginal hop bitterness. Heavy on the palate and a true belly warmer. Tasty and rough, but not offensive like their K-9 Cruiser.

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Horn Dog Barley Wine Style Ale from Flying Dog Brewery
3.84 out of 5 based on 1,296 ratings.
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