Tuesday, January 15, 2013

BD in a Flying Dog: Doggie Style Pale Ale

type: american pale ale
origin: Frederick, MD
price: $11/6-pack 12oz
ABV: 5.5
NSP: 9.8
website

Pale ales and I have a long history.  Since my beginnings here at the Non Snobbery, I've always claimed the pale ale style is an excellent glimpse into the brewery's methodology.  Let's face it: if you can't make a delicious pale ale, don't bother making a "double IPA".  Or rather, why should I even consider your double IPA after a failed pale ale?  The ABV is low enough that if you can't pull off a flavorful, malty ale with slight hop presence, you probably shouldn't be in the fermented-grain procurement business.

Doggie Style summarizes how, I think, Flying Dog operates: straightforward.  No bones.  They say it's a classic pale ale--and it is completely--but it's so tasty I could've thrown back the entire 6-pack had I not been sharing.  And the "double" version of this--Double Dog--will knock you on your ass.  I don't think Doggie Style usurps Pale 31 or XP, but it's so perfectly done I'll put it at spot number three on the speed dial (upsetting the recently crowned #3, Ska's Euphoria).

To finish off, there's an aspect of Flying Dog beers that I really love: the labels.  Each bottle is adorned with a Ralph Steadman original. (If you don't know who that is, but you've read and seen anything by Hunter S. Thompson, please leave now.)  To top it the paper that makes the label is high quality, and makes it feels like the actual original drawing (it's not, of course). So for the rest of this FD-BD series, I'll provide a close up of what I think are fantastic hand drawn cartoons, which have been on the labels since as early as 1996.
Steadman's rendition of ale-thirsty hound.
From the previous link, I also found this piece of badassery about Road Dog, a porter, and the first FD beer Steadman added illustration to:
Hunter wrote an essay, “Ale According to Hunter,” for Flying Dog to celebrate the launch of Road Dog:  
 Ale has long been the drink of thugs, convicts, rowdies, rakes and other depraved outlaws who thrive on the quick bursts of night-energy that ale brings. In the 17th century England gangs of ale-crazed fops would often fight to the death in all-night brawls on public greenswards, which terrified the citizenry and left many of the infamous "youngblood horseman" chopped up with grievous sword and dagger wounds… These were the Wild Boys of Olde English story and song, rich sots on horseback who amused themselves in London by riding out at night, ripped to the tits on strong ale, and "popped old ladies into empty booze-barrels and rolled them down steep, cobblestone hills with crazy screams and shouts." If you must roll old ladies down hills and you don't want to pay the bills, try to be nice and clean off their lice with a powerful Road Dog Ale.
And speaking of fantastic cartoon images, and being nice by cleaning off lice, I took the opportunity to listen to an old classic during the writing of this review.  Cheers, to letting the homies have some; otherwise, it wouldn't be any fun.
Peace to the streets.




No comments:

Post a Comment