Flying Dog Brewery
Here we have an Aspen brewpub conceived in Rawalpindi that became a Denver brewery which moved to Frederick, MD for mysterious reasons, presumably reasons not connected to Barbara Fritchie.* It must be one of–if not the only–brewery founded by an astrophysicist. Carnegie-Mellon can be proud.
“Ale brewed with agave nectar with lime zest added.” Clear gold in the glass with a brief white head. It leads with a citrusy lager nose where lime is clear and there’s flour-like malt and a hint of spice. The flavor is malty, citrusy, crisp and refreshing, with an underlying sweetness that grows with subsequent sips. This is what Corona would be if it grew up. The finish is light, brief, and beckons the next round. 4.9% ABV
“Two inflammatory words…one wild drink.” Pours clear amber with a foamy yellowish head that laces the glass. The aroma starts with Belgian yeast, then spicy hops then bready malt. Slightly heavy mouthfeel, slightly silky. The flavor is really spicy and fruity like a cloved orange, then a wave of malt arrives with spiced edges. This gives a rich balance of hops and malt, and the spicy note is intriguing. This would go well with spicy–not hot–food like creamier Indian dishes or Mexican dishes. The finish brings in a dark caramel note and lingering hops. As it warms, a note like fermented dark fruit sneaks in. Perhaps better a little colder. 8.3%ABV
This shows slightly hazy pale amber with a cream head, quite persistent. It has a pine and spice nose with full bready malt and a bit of yeast. This isn’t their Belgian IPA but suggests the style. A hoppy slightly honeyed flavor follows, again with lots of malt and medium body. The finish continues the hops with a metallic note, then malt spreads back across as another wave of flavor This ebbs leaving a nice lingering bitterness. This isn’t a hop bomb, just a good solid IPA. 7.1%ABV
Pours straight amber with a brief head that laces the glass. There is a strong cat pee nose with a hint of fruitiness. If you can get past the aroma, the flavor is totally different with lots of malt leading to blood orange peel and very little hops. The finish is smooth and resiny hops come in, drying things out.
Dark amber in the glass with a medium off-white head. The aroma is of rich deep caramel malt with spicy hops, earthy. The flavor gives heavy malt with fermented fruit like plums, and toffee notes. The finish is the lingering flavor but it gets drier as hops assert themselves. 5.5% ABV
Amber with a copper tinge and a brief white head. Gives a rich malty nose with caramel sweetness beneath spicy hops. It has medium body with almost no effervescence. The flavor strikes a good balance between caramel malt and hops with a little shot of crisp cracker coming through. The finish is long and gentle, mostly caramel with a hint of spice-pine hops. Very good, and you can tell it’s a flagship because it’s the only one in this set where the name is simply the style. 5.5% ABV.
The bottle copy is trite, but in this case quite accurate: “The classics transcend time and place . . . definitive in nature, molded by nurture, and the epitome of taste.”
* Speaking of classics, and not of beer:
“Shoot, if you must, this old gray head,
But spare your country’s flag,” she said.
A shade of sadness, a blush of shame,
Over the face of the leader came;
The nobler nature within him stirred
To life at that woman’s deed and word;
“Who touches a hair of yon gray head
Dies like a [Flying?] dog! March on!” he said…..
– John Greenleaf Whittier