Garde Dog
Flying Dog Brewery

Garde DogGarde Dog
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Farmhouse Ale - Bière de Garde
3.46 | pDev: 14.45%
Flying Dog Brewery
Maryland, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Garde DogGarde Dog
Reviews: 352 | Ratings: 497 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of pat61
pat61 from Minnesota

4/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours brilliant gold to amber under a rich 2” off white head that dclings to the glass leaving sheets of lace.
S: Spicy nose with a touch of very ripe fruit.
T: Fruit, malt and a touch of sour.
F: Very good medium to medium full body, highly carbonated.
O: Very drinkable Biere de Gaarde that would go very well with a sausage.

Apr 08, 2015
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woodychandler from Pennsylvania

3.49/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.5

I have been curious about both this beer in particular and its style in general ever since my local, in-person trader, tone77, dropped it off for me. I would hope that by the end of today's tasting session that I will have become smarter since that is the underlying idea.

From the bottle: "Wee wee (insert dirty French laugh here). Biere de Garde is a traditional French farmhouse ale brewed in March for drinking during the spring and summer months. Like another great French tradition, surrender your taste buds to Garde Dog's toasted aroma and spicy, malty sweetness. Wee wee. Haw haw haw."; "Good people drink good beer. - Hunter S. Thompson".

My initial, heavy-handed and wrong-headed, pour caused it to overflow the top of the glass. I recommend a gentle extended pour with this beer as a result. Crisis averted, I was left with two foamy fingers of tawny head with moderate retention. Color was a cloudy orangish-yellow. Nose was sweet, fruity, almost vinous. There was an underlying earthiness to it, but that was not prevalent. Mouthfeel had the same thin wateriness as its saison brethren, but here the emphasis was clearly on the malt and its interaction with the yeast. It had a very fruity, berry-like, grape-y flavor in the mouth along with a slight mustiness on the tongue. Finish was semi-sweet with the yeast leaving a lingering dryness in the back of the throat while the fruity sweetness remained in the mouth. A very different drink from what I am used to and I am very glad that I asked for clarification on the style before I began.

Jun 11, 2013
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CFHMagnet from Ohio

3.63/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A nice slow pour into my over-sized wine glass delivered two fingers of very noisy foamy head. Body is a muted gold color, with a lot of fizz going on.

Yeast and spice scream at the nose. Smells of very earthy and gardeny hops, with slight breadiness and pepper.

Wheat, yeast and peppery spice start her off. This transitions with a spiced bread flavor into a grassy hop taste that ends with a bit of clove. Dry but has just a hint of sweet in between flavors.

This one is very drying, and leaves a bit of film on the tongue.

Mar 16, 2013
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rangerred from Tennessee

3.17/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle into a tulip.

Pours a hazy dark gold with a one finger white head. Tons of carbonation leads to good head retention but the lacing is pretty poor.

Aroma of yeasty spiciness with a little bit of toasted malt and a somewhat earthy note.

Flavor has some clove and pepper up front along with banana. Just a very small amount of toasted malt but it all fades away too quickly. The finish is dry but all in all, the flavors are just bland.

Overall, a nice attempt at the style but I feel that it falls short. A very refreshing beer and the champagne-like carbonation is nice but I would have preferred bolder flavors.

Aug 30, 2012
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TheBrewo from New York

3.8/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

We pour a hearty, golden brew. On even a relatively easy pour it puts up a massive three finger head of foamy, creamy tan bubbles. This retains for ages, leaving patterned lacing all around the glass. Carbonation appears champagne-like, and no sediment or haze is noted. The nose is heavy with wet wheat and toasted pale malts. This is very warming, with plenty of clove, grassiness, licorice, kiwi fruit, and airy banana esters. There is a bit of stinging booze on the back, and some cooling minerals. The nose is wonderfully fresh!! Our first impression is that the flavoring is nice and light, with a fat metallic bite on the back. As we sip, bittering and souring pale malts hit first. These are down and dirty, with big metallics, but it never quite reaches the threshold of being an adjuncty mess. Through the middle things sweeten with light lemon and orange fruitiness, while that wet wheat from the nose helps to soften the initial bittering blow. The finish shows a return of the bitterness in the form of clovey phenols, with more of that same souring grain from the onset. The last drops are sweeter of grain, distant grassy hops, and a curious soy sauce saltiness, leaving the palate on a good note. The aftertaste breathes of fusel alcohols, mineral, honey sweetness, light musk, and faint grassy hops. The body is lighter, and the carbonation is higher end, as it conjures a thick foam as we swirl the beer, trying to split the flavors. There is nice slurp and smack with each sip, and a huge frothy-mustache finish. The abv is fair, and the beer drinks easily.

Overall, what we enjoyed most about this brew was the aroma. The notes were crisp yet soft, and robust yet smooth. The nose was cooled by the refreshing scents. The flavor followed nicely, but it didn’t seem to possess the balance we were hoping for from that nose. Otherwise, everything was nice for the style, and it was certainly invigorating in this heat.

Aug 16, 2012
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Jugs_McGhee from Colorado

2.9/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a Uinta pilsner glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are average.

Served straight from the refrigerator and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Not paired with food. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

Liquid surged out of the bottle and spilled on me floor upon opening. Bleh.

A: Pours a four finger beige head of fair cream and thickness and good retention. Colour is a semitransparent yellow. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show.

Sm: Biscuity yeast, background floral hopping, clean malts, some lemon peel, and must. A fairly strong aroma.

T: Biscuity yeast is somewhat restrained. Floral hopping and clean malts add body. There's herbal and lemony notes about the body and climax. Simple but enjoyable. Lacks complexity and subtlety. Decently balanced. There's just not enough going on here.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Good thickness. Good carbonation - though it might be overcarbonated judging by the opening earlier.

Dr: Drinkable and enjoyable, but far from ideal. Not unique or special. I might try it on draught, but elsewise I wouldn't get it again.


Jul 27, 2012
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Treyliff from West Virginia

3.23/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

My first of this style.

A- Pours a light to golden color with a hazy chill, huge foamy head that reduces to a constant white layer on top with evidence of lacing after the head subdues.

S- sweet malts with a bit of musk, earthy and a bit funky, just a bit of noble hops and fruity esters.

T- Sweet malts up front and earthy, quickly followed by a biting sourness, almost like a cider. Finishes sour, but dry. Im not sure what to make of this!

M- medium-light body, spritzy carbonation and a bit foamy.

O- this is an interesting style, I like the sweet maltiness of it but the balance seems just a bit off for me.

Jul 14, 2012
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Onenote81 from North Carolina

3.16/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle. Had this back in April. Reviewed from notes. This is my first of the style. I know this isn’t the best representation, but it sure is the most accessible. Poured into a white wine glass.

Pours a translucent dark gold. A large inch-thick white head tops it off and retains extremely well, as it is constantly fed by the ever-rising bubbles. The nose is ripe with floral tones, buttery bread, yeast, subtle spice. Really lively mouth. Bubbly pop at each sip. The flavor profile really reminds me of a mild Saison, which I guess is sort of the point. Yeast-y, but not overly so. Actually, there’s some nice pale fruit flavors pulling through, mixing well with the husky dry back end. This is a decent drink right here. My interest is only piqued now. I enjoy a Saison here and there, and I will add this to the list of a style I will revisit time and again.

Jun 11, 2012
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schoolboy from Ohio

4.1/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I have had this style a few times so I think I know it. This one has a near perfect appearance but he head is to foamy, and this detracts from the experience on the aftertaste.

The taste is the right combination of yeasty and hoppy goodness for the style. And the
aroma is very full too.

I would recommend this as a good example of the style, but others might be better examples.

Jun 03, 2012
Photo of DoubleJ
DoubleJ from Wisconsin

3.92/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

French-styled beer for lunchtime, brought to you by the folks of Flying Dog. On to the beer:

Bless thy chalice with a beer that is cloudy, washed out orange colored, and topped with a small creamy head that retains more than decently. Pleasant nose, dry yasty aromas, peach, rustic, balanced and not over the top.

The bière de garde style isn't one of my favorites, but I do like the way Garde Dog is going. It's relaxed, dry but not too dry, and offers a little sweetness. Apples, bread, touch of white pepper, rye. All with a medium mouthfeel and a texture that's is almost like velvet....with a few springs of carboantion.

This was a pleasant surprise out of Flying Dog. And as a bonus, is less expensive than others of the style.

May 25, 2012
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Zachtheporter from Wisconsin

4.12/5  rDev +19.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Duvel glass.

A- Pours a rich golden yellow with a fat bubbly white head. Ample light penetration and very visibly carbonated.

S- yeasty and sour with a strong aroma of green apple and pear.

T- Sweet like a saison but with more of a sour finish and body. Has a biting candy sweetness and first that almost immideatly morphs into a sour "attack" so to speak. Tastes of apple as well as sour fruit blend well with a yeasty and grainy malty body.

M- Crisp with a biting carbonation.

O- A good beer and a delicious sipper for a hot summer day. Would definitely buy again.

May 20, 2012
Photo of flagmantho
flagmantho from Washington

3.88/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into a tulip.

Appearance: moderately hazy light-gold hue paired with a very active effervescence. Head is two fingers of pillowy ivory foam. I think it looks great.

Smell: lightly spicy, funky aroma; overall, it's pretty darn light in intensity, but I do rather like the composition.

Taste: nice malt character with the right amount of farmhouse funk; there's a bit of buttery diacetyl here, which is normally not my favorite at all but seems to work damn well with the rest of the composition here. Bitterness is low but is present; it creeps up slowly toward the end. I rather like this beer.

Mouthfeel: medium-light body with a great big carbonation yielding a very big creaminess. A hint more body would do wonders here, but even so I find it highly satisfying.

Overall: this is a very tasty farmhouse beer. I'm glad a brewer like Flying Dog bothers to make a Biere de Garde that you can buy in a sixpack.

May 19, 2012
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UnknownKoger from California

3.5/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I think this may be my first biere de garde. Bottle poured into Bruery tulip. Appearance is nice. Hazy golden straw color. Very well carbonated. Smells like champagne. Some white grape and apple notes on the nose. A little bit of lemon zest. Taste is pretty nice! Similar to the nose but with a very faint hop presence. It reminds me of a saison (obviously).

Mouthfeel is really nice due to the carbonation and light abv. Overall this is a very drinkable beer that is quite pleasing. I would definitely buy it again.

Apr 12, 2012
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BeardedBoffin from New Mexico

3.5/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Biere de Garde is one of my favorite styles. Garde Dog, a seasonal from Flying Dog, pours a clear dark yellow color with a lively cap of white creamy foam. The nose is fruity, which is fine, but there is a distinct graininess that I find a little off. Some spice mixes with green apple in the aroma. Some earthiness from the yeast is present on the palate, mixed with fruit and grain. Some cellared earthy notes are present, but not enough for my tastes.

Apr 09, 2012
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Cylinsier from Pennsylvania

4.47/5  rDev +29.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz.

Pours a light honey gold with a two inch white head, dissipates to a film quickly but holds there indefinitely.

Smells of lemon citrus, coriander, and light fresh cut grass malts, maybe some orange zest as well, and bretty yeast.

Tastes of mildly bitter fresh citrusy malts, a bit wheaty, with some coriander and orange sweetness.

Medium to fuller body with light stings of carbonation.

A really decent farmhouse-like ale, would definitely have this again and would love to session this. Great warm weather or beach beer of you still want something that feels a little heavier in that category.

Apr 06, 2012
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HardTarget from Texas

2.15/5  rDev -37.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Appearance: Bright yellow glass with painful clarity; lazy bubble streams. Holds spotty cover and a trace of halo.

Smell: Mild corn (DMS) on a sugary base.

Taste: An earthy style appropriate flavor gets jumped on by a malt liquor with a sour twang. It's not pretty.

Mouthfeel: Bit fizzy, light body, oily finish.

Overall: Comes at you like a junky with a knife. Weak and ineffective, but still a bit dangerous. The basic goodness of the style comes across as under supported and thin. Needs more grain base, and possibly a different yeast and this is a bit over-attenuated.

Apr 06, 2012
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BirdsandHops from Oregon

4.05/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: pours a hazy yellow-gold with three fingers of white head that fades into a dense cap with some lacing.

S: some light spice notes up front along with candy sugar and bubblegum. There are tart and sour citrus notes toward the finish.

T: spices up front again with some faint candy sugar flavors. Funky and slightly bitter flavors along with tart and slightly sour citrus notes bring up the finish.

M: medium-light body with highish carbonation, this beer is light and crisp.

O: a good beer, overall. I'm not very familiar with the style, but this beer is light, crisp, and tasty.

Apr 03, 2012
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tdm168 from Pennsylvania

3.16/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a hazy orangish yellow with a mountain of fizzy, soft, loose, white head that has decent retention. The nose is yeasty with some faint spices coming through. The flavor is identical to the nose; very yeasty, mildly spicy, a bit tart, lightly citrusy, and a hint of white grapes. The mouthfeel is light, crisp, warm, and smooth.

This isn't bad, but I'm not impressed at all. The flavor profile is light and rather simple. This is neither intriguing nor memorable.

Apr 03, 2012
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BerkeleyBeerMan from California

3.58/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Hazy yellow amber to copper color with fizzy long lasting 2 finger head. Bath bubbles lace the glass. Strong head retention. Looks like a heferweizen. Lots of good natural carbonation.

Smell: Toasted malts. Floral. Range of esters including grapes, green apple, and lychee. Notably present malt alcohol smell.

Taste: Sweet Toasted malts. Almond. Grassy and fruity hops. Somewhat spicy and funky. Light german bitterness. Good clean refreshing. Somewhat grape-like funky wine barrel finish. Some trace of medicine and bandaid.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium. Slightly chewy and pleasant upon warming in mouth. Flavor palate is light but goes down crisp and smooth. A nice daytime alternative to most in it's style because it is light in ABV

Overall: Worth having once. Maybe I'd drink it again, in the least it has inspired me to seek out more biere de garde.

Mar 22, 2012
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notchucknorris from California

3.61/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Slightly hazy golden color with a great looking one finger tan colored head. Nice retention as well.

S: Lots of earthy yeast, funk, a bit of almond meal and clove as well.

T: Haven't had a ton of beers done in this style, but this definitely feels more like a saison. Taste is light and shows a bit of citrus and spice with a touch of grassy hops hidden in the background. Finish is pretty dry and leaves a subtle bitter funk in the mouth. Pretty well done, but not sure if it fits the style.

Mar 21, 2012
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troysoy2 from Pennsylvania

3.91/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2012 bottle poured into a goblet. Seems that this beer is a love it or hate it kind've deal, based on recent reviews.

Maybe I served it at a slightly higher temp than some people, but I got 2 fingers of cascading, fluffy, active head. Great retention, and a great deal of carbonation rising from the bottom of the glass. Dense, cloudy effervescent orange body. I'd say this is a good looking beer.

The smell is, well, funky. Some farmhouse-smelling yeast is initially apparent, along with the slightest hint of a metallic smell that I'm not the most fond of. Bit of clove.

The taste is less questionable. It's got the funk you might expect from a saison, as well as some lighter sweetness, and a bit of clove and pepper. The hops don't stick out, but they do dry the finish and quell the sweetness, which would otherwise be just too much for me. Could use a little more malt, maybe.

The mouthfeel is nice and frothy, light like a hefeweizen, yet it's got some body to it. Chewy, even.

There is something about the smell I could do without, but otherwise, it's an enjoyable beer. Time to get in the mood for spring!

Mar 13, 2012
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NoLeafClover44 from Delaware

3.3/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a pint glass.

A - Translucent gold with a two finger head. The head remains at about one finger for a long time. The carbonation is very evident in the rapidly ascending bubbles throughout the body. Despite the long lasting head, not much lacing.

S - Smell is of cloves, lemon zest, wheat, toasted malt, and some funky yeast. This is my first beer of the style, but the nose immediately indicates a maltier saison.

T - The taste follows the nose with some added black pepper spiciness. The more I drink, the more get malt and corn adjuncts. There is a definite citrus and funk finish which saves the other underwhelming flavors. I get an alcohol (or something unpleasantly similar to alcohol) flavor on the back of the tongue, despite the low ABV of this beer.

M - Medium bodied with a tingly effervescence. Very dry finish.

O - I just recently learned about the style, as it seems to be the season when many of the seasonal Biere de Garde start popping up on the shelves. This was my pick because it was available in the mix-a-six. I liked the look, smell, and mouthfeel but the flavors and aftertaste weren't good. I really enjoy saisons, which from what I can tell are a close relative of this style, so I will continue to try more, but probably not this particular beer.

Mar 08, 2012
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CowsCanBark from Pennsylvania

3.8/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into Samuel Adams pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a hazy orange gold with a three-finger sudsy white head. Nice lacing lines the glass as I drink.

Smell: Sweet floral notes, bananas, slight clove, earthy

Taste: Spicy yeast, cloves and banana, mild hops and not really any hop bitterness. Really reminds me of a more watery version of Lagunita's Bavarian-Styled Doppel Weizen.

Mouthfeel: Moderate body with high carbonation, a pretty easy drinker.

Overall: A really good beer that reminds me of a session drinking Lagunita's Bavarian Styled Doppel Weizen. Avoid if you dislike banana or clove flavors, as these are dominant to me.

Mar 07, 2012
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NuclearDolphin from Minnesota

3.34/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Tulip Glass

Appearance - Dark Orange with a very hazy look to it with tons of carbonaation going on inside. Pours a 2 finger head which disappears quickly. For an unfiltered beer, it finishes very cleanly.

Smell - Very Grassy/Earthy Scent embodies the fairly fruity notes and malty scents. It smells a bit on the sour side, which I'm not really digging....

Taste - The taste on the other hand is very tolerable, in fact it reminds me of a Hefeweizen. You got the sweet banana and clove notes, but it's got a maltier and more yeasty taste, almost like a Pale Ale sans the hops. Aftertaste is dry and consists mainly of yeasts and sweet banana notes.

Mouthfeel - It feels light in body and pretty crisp. Carbonation is a bit more on the intense side, not to the point where to distracts you from the overall taste but it doesn't add to the flavor either.

Overall - The smell left a bad first impression on me, but the flavor manages to be very good. Overall, I think it's worth checking out!

Mar 07, 2012
Photo of h00kwurm

2.26/5  rDev -34.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Flying Dog - Seasonal - Biere De Garde

Bottled: Unknown (bought a single bottle)
Opened: 03-05-2012

Poured into a standard pint glass.

A: hazy light apricot color with a quick forming and well sustaining

S: the smell is malty and flat. A very bread-y quality is present.

T: slightly overcarbonated, bready and flat. Tastes even a bit
stale/metallic. I suspect its the flavor of the carbonation that is just overcoming any/all flavor of the brew itself. It does clear the palette well, though.

M: the carbonation is a bit too much for the lightness of the beer. the feel is nice, but it isn't consistent with the flavor.

O: this beer is OK. A good brewery like Flying Dog can do much better. Maybe it's just my predilection towards hoppier braus but this really is just OK.

Mar 06, 2012
Garde Dog from Flying Dog Brewery
Beer rating: 79 out of 100 with 497 ratings