K-9 Winter Ale | Flying Dog Brewery

K-9 Winter AleK-9 Winter Ale
809 Ratings
K-9 Winter AleK-9 Winter Ale

Brewed by:
Flying Dog Brewery
Maryland, United States

Style: Winter Warmer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.40%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Formerly K-9 Cruiser Winter Ale

Added by kbub6f on 10-30-2001

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 809 |  Reviews: 368
Photo of phattysbox
2.34/5  rDev -30.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Sampled this brew from the Pony Bar in NYC.

Pours a deep brown color with a rather small head, lacing keep however throughout the glass.

Smell is non-existent. Strange since it is labeled as a winter warmer I was expecting some sort of spice. Just blah - nothing... Do I have a cold?

Taste: Heeellllooo.... Winter warmer??? Where are you? This brew is NOT a winter warmer, but rather a hoppy brown ale. resiny hops dominate throughout the brew followed by sticky malt profile. Diacetyl notes are clearly noticable in the beer and seems as if they did not give the yeast enough time to clear up by-products. Just a messy taste profile. Mouthfeel is on the full side and carbonation is decent.

Overall, this beer doesn't know what it is... Brown ale? American brown ale? Pale ale? Definitely not a winter warmer and shame on Flying Dog for labeling it as such.

I'll pass on this one... You should too...

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Photo of bump8628
2.79/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

Copper colored with an inch of thick head that has nice retention.

Aroma is, well, mild. Not a lot going on. Some herbal hops and maybe a touch of grainy, caramel sweetness.

Taste has a big helping of coarse hop bitterness that could be described as mostly herbal with some pine notes. There's some light caramel-type malt, but it's mostly masked by the rough bitterness. Finish is rather dry and clean.

Well, the bottle bills this thing as malty...pretty far from a malt-forward beer. It's more similar to an APA than anything else, but with a boosted ABV. Not necessarily a bad beer, but this does NOT say winter to me. Why go to all the trouble of brewing a seasonal and turn out such a mundane ale? Probably my least favorite Flying Dog beer yet, which is saying quite a bit.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
3.13/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Flying Dog's K-9 Cruiser, poured on tap into a pint glass. A rich brown in color with a decent head and some lace.

Aroma is primarily malty with a hint of some fruit.

Flavor follows the nose with a very malty brew. Hops are there adding an earthy bitterness. Grapefruit and citrus flavors actually overpower the malt. Buttery diacetyl riddles the brew.

Mouthfeel is full bodied and fairly smooth.

A drinkable winter warmer without a whole lot of frills or complexity.

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Photo of Rayek
3.38/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Perfect Pint glass.

A: Deep amber, with nice clarity and mild carbonation. A rocky and firm amber tinged cap has great retention and leaves good lace. The beer's strong suit, to be honest.

S: Fairly standard APA fare. A caramel sweetness and citrus hop aroma balance out nicely.

T: Again, fairly standard APA fair. Sweet malts are very mild, but there nonetheless. Bitterness is low, but hop flavor still dominates. Grapefruit is predominant. Lemon is also along for the ride. Finishes with a lingering grapefruit flavor.

M: The body is slightly oily and a bit too fizzy.

D: This is an OK beer that really seems like a basic APA rather than a Winter Warmer. Good for what it is, but nothing special.

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Photo of OldSchoolGamer
3.33/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Having tried two of Flying Dog's seasonal beers, (Woody Creek Wit and the Dogtoberfest) they were hit and miss thus far. Lets see how their Winter Ale holds up.

A: Pours a deep amber, almost reddish color. Head and lacing are okay. Nice and clear. No sediment or haze to speak of.

S/T: The aroma is very subtle. Not a whole lot going on execpt for a bit of malt and fruityness. This has a macro brew taste. Maybe something along the lines of a stronger tasting Bass. Its just very watery and bland overall. The flavor is grainy with some caramel sweetness going on. Maybe a touch of fruit and hop bitterness in the finish. Its really hard to pick anything out when the flavors are this bland. Overall, a very mediocre Winter Ale.

M/D: Mouthfeel is probably one of the stronger points. Its a medium bodied beer and finishes very clean and crisp. Quite refreshing actually. Probably be a good session beer for the winter. I would drink another, but the lackluster flavors leave you wishing for more.

Not a bad beer from Flying Dog. Just needed more flavor character. I would buy it again, but it definetly isn't even close to a lot of other excellent winter seasonals out there.

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Photo of bonsreeb85
3.55/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep dark copper with decently develpoing crown as it flows into my snifter.

Smells malt heavy. Lots of rolling sweetness on the palate. Fruity with notes of nuts, I would say english ingredients were used. Very smooth and malty, mildly sweet with a spicy and earthy kiss of hops on the clean finish.

Medium to medium full bodied and a nice rolling smoothness. A decent amount of c02 helps this one roll down without becomeing to heavy.

Definately one of the better malt forward WWs(not the best, but definately worth a try) this season, quite sessionable.

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Photo of AgentZero
3/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Brownish red with yellow tinge at the edges. Big, bubbly head that left the sides of the glass clean.

S - Caramel malts with a bitter touch, can actually smell some alcohol in this. Supposed to be very malty and that's exactly what I smell.

T - Roasted malts, caramel, little burnt bitter taste at the end. Touch of chocolate.

M - Medium bodied, low on carbonation for something that bubbled that much.

D - Not good enough to drink a ton of, and the bitterness starts to feedback too much.

Real average brew that earns the ultimate average grade in all categories.

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Photo of GordonQuid
3.4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass.

Clear copper with a wisp of white head and lace.

Smells of malts and honey with a hint of dark fruits.

Taste is scottish in style but not enough to classify. Sweet malty caramel and dark fruity esters on burnt toast. Bitter in the finish and a bit cloying.

I wish Flying Dog would spend less money on there marketing and more money on their brewing.
This brew is not bad by any means; just could be alot better.

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Photo of OneDropSoup
3.06/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Got this in a case swap with some friends.

Poured into a pint glass a clear copper with lots of bubbliness, a half-finger of off-white head, cavernous lacing.

Smell is lightly fruity, some sweetly floral hops, toasty malt, a little flinty, a little mineral. I'm a novice with rye, but I smell what I associate with rye. It actually smells a lot like the Scottish ale I just brewed, not that that has significance to anyone but myself.

Starts with a cross of fruity & biscuity flavors, quickly turns pretty bitter & dries out, turns piney, woody. A teeny bit of honey & cherry flavor remain in the aftertaste. Further into the beer a kind of peppermint emerges very subtly -- it's like the malt & hops bump into each other & every once in a while create peppermint. Interesting, but I'm really not a fan of that huge dryness in the middle.

The mouthfeel starts smooth, then becomes sharp as the hops gain momentum, then flattens out & kind of deadens the tastebuds.

Drinkability = eh. Can't say I was real into it, the hops didn't add so much as flatten everything. Much better winter warmers out there.

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Photo of njmoons
2.76/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Not bad, but there are better Winter Warmers out there.

Apperance was nice, poured a reddish brown with a figer or so of foam. The head lasted for some time. Looked tasty

Aroma, ale yeast was present, along with some fruit, cherry and current.

Initially the taste is fruity with the cherry and current flavors coming through, a nice balanced hop flavor is clear throughout the taste (I would assume Northern Brewer or Bullion hops). The balance of the initial flavors is overshawdowed on the back in by strong ale yeast flavors.

Mouthfeel is normal, and the drinkability is somewhat lower than expected.

Avery Old Jubilation is a very similar beer in flavor, but much better in my opinion.

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Photo of GoalieRon33
2.83/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A- Looked nice, with a medium to dark brown tint. White head, that hung around for a while

s- smelled malty, a little strong. Sweet smelling.

t- some maltiness, with a little molasses mixed in. Almost a buttery taste, which from other reviews I have found is due to a by-product of the yeast. The buttery flavor does make it a little much.

m- medium body, somewhat light for what I expected considering the abv. I feel that it could use a little more carbonation

d- not an easy beer to drink. While I didn't hate it, I did get tired of it about 3/4 of the way through the beer.

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Photo of thespaceman
3.95/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Flying Dog pint glass:

Appearance: Nice deep amber in color, big rocky head emerges off this one, nice head retention, lacing is soapy and follows this beer all the way down the glass.

Smell: Hints of bread like malts, some citrus and hop oil are also present here, a nice passionfruit overtakes this one and quickly hands off to a spicy malt backbone. Aromatic from the glass to say the least.

Taste: I think the balance on this one is actually perfect, some decent back and forth jabs of some caramel malt and some resinous hops, the bite from the hops leaves a citrus-like aftertaste, some grapefruit and orange. The maltiness holds up sturdy, very toasty. I also get some grassy and a bit of metallic aftertaste which isn't too bad.

Mouthfeel: Nicely carbonated, holds up balanced on the tongue, maltiness is rich and leaves a nice, bold richness in the mouth. Good bitterness from the hops.

Drinkability: After previous reviews, I thought this beer was going to be horrible, although I actually enjoyed it. I love that this beer has a decent hop profile, since it's nice to have a good, bitter hop profile in the cold weather. Not only that, but the balance with the malt is perfect in my opinion, just enough to keep me interested. I like Flying Dog's effort, and as this is not the best winter warmer out there, it's a notably good one, pick this up if you see it.

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Photo of brentk56
2.97/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Pours a clear amber color with a big, rocky head that leaves thick patterns of lace

Smell: Very unusual, almost sweaty aroma distracts from the the caramel, bitter chocolate and spruce elements

Taste: Caramel, up front, with a growing dark chocolate, spruce and burnt butterscotch character; the beer sweetens up considerably just before the swallow, though the diacetyl is off-putting; afterwards the spruce and butterscotch dominate the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation and and a slight warmth in the gullet

Drinkability: Too many distractions going on here to make this one a keeper

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Photo of John_M
3.23/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

On tap at Mahaffey's (and not impressed).

The beer pours an amber copper color with pretty good head retention and lacing. The beer doesn't look all that bad. On the nose I get almost nothing. I kept on going back to this beer and, well, nearly nothing. There is some light spice and bit of sweetness, but otherwise that's it. On the palate, this beer is no better. There is some very light underlying sweet malt with some spice, and there's some hoppiness in the finish, but this beer really doesn't have much flavor. It has a fairly dry finish, and has a pretty light mouthfeel. Drinkability would probably be OK, except there's really very little enjoyable about this beer. Really, not very impressed with this one.

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Photo of magine
3.75/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured into a Duvel glass.

Pours a dark amber brew with off white head that settles to a lace island head. Some lacing.

Smells of sweet caramel, maple, yeasts.

Taste is malty; caramel (maple maybe) has a yeast presence as well. Can pick up the hops in the end as you drink. Is a tad bit light to the palate; a bit on the watery side. Has a carbonated mouthfeel and a dry finish. I expected more of a thicker bodied brew, in the flavor and the texture.

This brew isnt going to make you take notice in its bold flavor by any means. But this isnt a bad thing, it is very drinkable. A brew that goes down very easy and comes in at over 6% alcohol is pretty good, and a welcome thing in the cold nights of the winter season. Hey if you are sitting in the house and want to tie one on this will do the trick and tastes decent. Good brew that will not offend anyone.

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Photo of PapaEugene
3.03/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Shared this bottle with rvdoorn.

A: Amber color and a very lightbrown head.

S: Some maple syrup,cascade hops and slight alcohol.

T: Grains, maple syrup and grapefruit. Slightly bitter aftertaste.

M: Low carbonation and a thin body.

D: Too watery for my taste. Nice to try once.

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Photo of rvdoorn
3.45/5  rDev +3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thnx PapaEugene for sharing this bottle with me.

Beer pours an amber color, with a very light brown head, which disappear while blinking the eye.

Smell: Quite weak. Maple syrup, cascade hops (grapefruit) and light alcohol.

Taste: Maple syrup again, grains, grapefruit. Taste is short. The aftertaste is bitter (cascade hops), slightly alcoholic. While most beers with cascade hops have a very dry finish, this beer is not very dry.

Mouthfeel: Medium-thin bodied, med-low carbonation which tingles the tongue.

Overall: Too watery and too flat in taste, too low in smell. Average brew.

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Photo of Frosty80
3.88/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Color: clear reddish-copper

Smell: malty, bready with some earthy and spicy hop aromas to balance

Taste: translates well from nose. malt sweetness balanced with earthy hops and some breadiness and a solid spicy bitterness that lingers in the somewhat dry finish.

Mouthfeel: smooth, full-med body. moderate carbonation but remains creamy

Notes: originally when i reviewd this beer i wasnt impressed. the first FD brew that let me down. well i got intelligenter. solid beer. solid malt body with BIG hop flavor and bitterness. would like to have seen the bitterness a little more subdued but fits in well with its brothers

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Photo of thebeerdoctor
4.35/5  rDev +29.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

There was a time when K9 said: "when in doubt go flat out", but that was before the troubles in New York back in 2001. This version from Maryland is an incredible delicious ale, where malt sweetness combines with a crunchy biscuit flavor note in the finish. This is even better than I remember of the first version I sampled from Colorado.

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Photo of Brad007
4.08/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bit early for a winter warmer, eh? Not quite as snow fell in parts of Vermont this week.

Pours a nice reddish-copper color with a two-finger head into my fluted glass. Nice hue that reminds me of christmas colors.

Aroma is full of sweet malt with a hint of spice and smokiness out of all the things.

Taste is sweet and yet, flavorful. Chewy and full of a bit of smoke. Alcohol warmth is unwanted but it's there. Otherwise, the smokiness and chewiness helps it stand out.

Mouthfeel is full of lingering smokiness and chewiness of the malt. Very nice. Not bogged down or overly-carbonated.

I like this. It's not a typical winter warmer and you could drink it whenever the night was full of cold.

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Photo of BierFan
3.11/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: 1 finger of tan foam sitting on top of a dark reddish orange body. The lacing was pretty good.

Smell: Malty with some faded hop aroma.

Taste: Malty with diacetyl giving a little bit of a butter flavor. Has a little bit of a bitter hop bite on the finish.

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Photo of jbphoto88
3.88/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A beautiful caramel red with blood orange highlights. A tan colored head rises up fast but fades to a sudsy nothing before I even take my first sip.

The smell is dominated by sweet malts. Toasted but not burnt. Hints of toffee and caramel and even an inkling of coffee and chocolate. Not much in the way of spice or hop.

Taste is smooth, refined and full of malt. There is a nice complexity to the grain profile. It starts with a caramel influenced sweetness, then segues to a more roasty, toasty, robust malt flavor. The finish is a lingering sweetness with a mild bitterness from some hops. A nice flavor and feeling addition that accents the fullness of the sweet malt.

Clean and creamy mouthfeel that lasts well into the finish. This one doesn't have much bite only some slight metallic bitterness and a lack of spice for the style that frankly I don't miss. Damn fine beer.

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Photo of hoplover82
4.82/5  rDev +43.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A-Pours a dark hazy ruby red with a tan creamy medium head that sticks around until the fat lady sings and leaves great lacing.

S-Wow! Lots of hops! Wonderful suprize! Earthy, floral and piney hops. Lots of very aromatic malt too. Caramel and toffee shining through with biscuits too. Very complex.

T-Wow! It's a five! Very impressed. Very creamy malty with lots of hops flavor and bold but clean bitterness. Caramel and biscuits also come through. There is soft lingering bitterness in the end.

M-Very creamy and full bodied.

D-My goodness, I could sip these all night, I wish this could last forever. Very impressed. I think the beer has been improved over time, I had the 2008 one and it seems the reviews of the past years are not as good as it is now. I think everyone that has had this should go back and revisit this one.

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Photo of webbcreative
3.12/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a copper color. nice head from this one, frothy that sticks around. smell malt. taste more hops then i expected. bit more bitter then i prefer from a winter warmer. not bad, but i want more from a winter time ale. waould prefer a bit more sweetness.

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Photo of corby112
2.48/5  rDev -26%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Pours a dark chicory amber color with a think yellowish head. Malty aroma with hints of dark cherry, bitter hops and a spicy pepper presence. Syrupy and medicinal with hints of robitussin, spicy pepper and alcohol. I was looking forward to drinking this after the way it poured, but have to say that I was dissapointed by it's flat medicinal taste.

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K-9 Winter Ale from Flying Dog Brewery
Beer rating: 3.35 out of 5 with 809 ratings
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