Drawing the line at mindless guzzling
Posted on 10/29/2011 (1088 days ago, 171 of 657 reviews)
7/10 Appearance | 8/10 Aroma | 7/10 Mouthfeel | 8/10 Flavor
As the Oktoberfest season continues, I keep scanning the beer store for new versions I have yet to try. I recently got my hands on Flying Dog's interpretation, the Dogtoberfest. I always love to see what Flying Dog has to say about a style because I know it's going to be edgy. For better or for worse, I can rely on them for a unique experience.
In the glass, Dogtoberfest has a much darker coloration than your standard oktoberfest. It leans more towards a darker amber or an Irish red rather than the classic golden-orange appearance. It has the standard toasted malt character in the aroma along with some spicy notes that give the beer a tangy quality. I also found a muted hop presence that nicely rounds out the vibe.
Not surprisingly with a Flying Dog brew, the first sip is full of hoppy goodness. The hop bite here is quite sharp and dominates the traditional malty characters. But to be fair, Dogtoberfest has a solid malty backbone that carries through the entire flavor train. The malt flavors consist of mostly rich caramels, which help to balance the strong hop profile. The hop sting is significantly tamed on the finish, leaving a sweet malty flavor with mild bitterness.
Overall, Flying Dog's Dogtoberfest is a nice interpretation of the oktoberfest style. It might be a bit edgy for some, but fans of hoppier beers will certainly enjoy it. I can recommend this beer to pretty much any level of beer fan, but novices should proceed with caution. While the oktoberfest style overall does provide a high level of drinkability, Dogtoberfest's hop profile does prevent it from being a no-thinker drinker. It quickly reminds you that not all oktoberfest brews are meant for mindless guzzling.