HAIR OF THE DOG
Hair of the Dog focuses on a number of consumer-drawing specialties. The most note-worthy being their spotlight on high-alcohol content beers. With over half of their beers pushing 10% ABV, it's something to at least be aware of, and in a city of breweries, it sets Hair of the Dog apart. Not only that, but its optimal location just off I-5 exit 300, has had me Pavlov-ing to check it out for months.
The overall vibe of the place isn't something that will attract an instagram post-worthy generation, with electric blue and green walls decorated both sparse and sporadic, the welcoming 'breweries of the 90's' aesthetic is something worth visiting.
But Hair of the Dog has me wondering - how can we take old school breweries, and make them relevant? What can we do to draw the vast majority of Portland beer drinkers - millennials - and bring them to places like Hair of the Dog and keep the roots of Portland breweries deep?
In my ongoing search for these answers, I found several things Hair of the Dog is doing right. It features comfortable staff, with a seemingly consistent crowd of regulars, amongst old wood and bright menus. Their list of beers included ‘Adam’ a leathery German beer that felt like it matched the aging decor, and which seems to be experimented with a lot through various barrel aging processes. They have mastered the beers they have, and aren’t making any failed attempts at new beers, which can happen with newer breweries.
They also make a point to use only ingredients that come from within a 350 mile radius, which is something everyone can get behind. For example, their pilsner malts come from our friendly neighbors up in British Columbia, and their hops all come from within Washington and Oregon.
Hair of the Dog is unapologetically old school, and they’re not aiming to be anything they’re not, which, for now, seems to be my best answer in keeping older breweries thriving.
Take Away Vibe: Bold
Beer: 3/5, although what I tasted was great, the small beer list made me feel limited