Flying Dog has a unique history in that they completely picked up and moved their production brewery across the country from Aspen, Colorado to Frederick, Maryland in 2008. As often occurs with breweries, the demand drove a need to increase production, but as doesn’t occur that often, the increased production came in a cross-country relocation, not just a brewery expansion. For Flying Dog, the rest is history. Until very recently, Flying Dog was the most local beer for the DC Metro Area, and while it isn’t brewed in DC proper, Frederick isn’t too far and they’re still a force in our craft beer scene. Widely known for their “good beer, no shit” mantra, Flying Dog consistently produces fine ales and seasonal releases that are widely anticipated.
Location: Frederick, Maryland
Type: Production brewery
Available in DC Market: Yes
Beer #1: Single Hop Simcoe (IPA, 10%)
Beer Advocate: A- (12 Reviews)
Rate Beer: 95 Overall, 50 Style
Notes: I’m not a fan of Simcoe hops. Let’s get that out of the way. It’s not a horrible hop by any means, but it is not one of my favorites in the realm of bittering hops. In fact, as far as I’m concerned, Centennial slaps Simcoe around on the playground after school. Rant over. What I do love about this beer is the single hop aspect and how it can be an educational tool to help beer drinkers refine their pallets. An entire vertical of these with twelve or so different hop varieties would an amazing tasting. Perhaps a “Presented by DCBEER.Com“ event for the future…? Hint Hint
Beer #2: Raging Bitch (Belgian IPA / 8.3 %)
Beer Advocate: A- (785 Reviews)
Rate Beer: 98 Overall, 97 Style
Notes: Raging Bitch is like that favorite album from college you forget about and then always smile when you randomly hear a song from it. I always forget how aggressive the bitterness is, but then I see how well that bitterness plays with the Diablo yeast. This balance is tough to achieve; believe me. If you ever want to try a second-rate Belgian IPA homebrew, come find me. Don’t pass on this beer just because it’s popular and widely available. I think it will pair great with the crawfish fritters and sweet corn.
When Flying Dog comes to mind, I tend to immediately think of how Raging Bitch was the first Belgian IPA to really perfect the style. At the forefront of this trend, Flying Dog seemed to get there first among American breweries. It’s no secret that Flying Dog has been avid supporters of what we do here at DCBeer.com. Their love for all things beer and local community involvement is something that resonates strongly with us. We tend to jump on the various hype wagons and rage over out of market beer, but at the end of the day local craft beer is king. Flying Dog was king for a long time for DC and still maintains a strong presence here even with DC’s own production breweries opening up.
This profile is a part of the DCBEER.COM SAVOR Brewery Profile series. For more information, follow the link to see profiles of all 2011 SAVOR participants.
Beer Review Disclaimer: The beer reviews found on Beer Advocate and Rate Beer do not represent the opinions of this site. We provide these in the hope that they will serve as a resource showing what some craft beer fans have thought of the beers. These reviews can be a helpful guideline, but are not the be-all end-all about a beer’s strengths or weaknesses.