Las Vegas' Original Brewery

Seasonal Brew Spotlight: Moon Dog Barleywine

Moon Dog English Barleywine: The Beer for the Hoppiest of Holidays

At 12.5% ABV, Moon Dog English Barleywine takes your taste buds on a journey with its layers of flavors, fruity character, lingering caramel malt sweetness, and hints of hoppiness that give it a balancing slight bitterness and earthy notes.

Moon Dog is a beloved traditional brew that’s been crafted with imported malts (including pale ale and a spectrum of crystal malts) and traditional English yeast. 

This rich, dark amber colored, and full bodied beer not only tastes but also smells like a mouthwatering holiday dessert — pure fruity, caramely, malty goodness. Its distinctive malty backbone balances its high ABV, and it’s at its best when enjoyed cool and not cold.

The perfect brew to kick off a month of cheer, even Scrooge wouldn’t be able to resist the holiday spirit that’s imparted in every scrumptious and warming sip. 

The King of Winter Beers

English barleywines are beer lovers’ dreams incarnate — remarkably rich and strong and packed with malty, rich, and complex flavors that leave beer drinkers feeling warm, toasty, and just plain wonderful. Pretty much, they’re the perfect cold weather beers. 

Although this Moon Dog English Barleywine isn’t barrel aged, when barleywines are barrel aged it takes them to a whole new level of flavor, and they often take on flavors that resemble ports. 

Ranging from rich gold to dark amber and brown colors, English barleywine hits the spot for beer drinkers who have a sweet tooth. One of these Moon Dogs will send them (that’s right, ‘tis the season to be punny) over the moon! 

English barleywines contain varying levels of malty, caramelly, sweet, fruity, and hoppy flavors that result in unique beers that taste like everything from toffee and caramel to toasty and bready to nutty and fruity, and sometimes notes of molasses even peek through! 

But seriously — if you’re into tantalizingly delicious things and love a strong and velvety beer that makes you feel like a Christmas tree that was just lit up, this beer was made specifically for you. 

Drink This With These Big Dog’s Desserts

Like most robust beers with higher ABV and big flavors, Moon Dog can overpower a lot of food if the flavors of what you’re pairing it with are also bold. 

English barleywine, like port, is often paired up with rich desserts and strong cheeses.

When it comes to the right bites for your barleywine, here at the Draft House we’ve got your back — especially when it comes to sweet treats.

For some serious English barleywine and food magic, try pairing the Moon Dog with:

  • Our Crème Brûlée Cheesecake (topped with our decadent hand-fired burnt caramel) 
  • Our Big Dog’s Brownie Sundae (topped with a silky hot fudge) 
  • Our Black Lab Bread Pudding (containing dark bittersweet chocolate our intense Dulce de Leche caramel sauce) 

The caramel notes in the Moon Dog will be out of this world with any of these, and let’s just say that your life will never be quite the same again. 

The Beer That Was The New Wine

The creation of the modern barleywine is credited to the English (did you already get that from the word “English” in the beer name?). 

Although English barleywine hasn’t existed for a super long time as a distinctive beer style, it’s been around in England as a brew for quite a bit. It officially became a style and a labeled commercial product in 1903 when Bass Brewing labeled their Burton Ale as an English barleywine as a marketing tactic. 

Although it’s difficult to say when the exact date of the first creation of delicious beer came about, mentions of it began to pop up a lot in history when English aristocrats discovered it and couldn’t get enough of it. 

Barleywine was a luxury in England back in the day. It was aged for a year at least before being drunk, and, although expensive, it was an ideal alternative for wine, especially because Britain found itself in the midst of disputes with multiple wine-making countries. 

However, the term barleywine was used long before this and throughout history. When various cultures would first experience beer, the only thing they had to compare it to was wine. Pretty much, over history many stronger beers that have an ABV that’s equal to wine were referred to as barleywine. 

These strong beers of legends probably first came about in the 1400s — a time when people started using hops a lot more. Hops became a lot more popular because it was discovered that they imparted delicious flavors to brews and that they worked wonders for preserving beer. 

Nonetheless, the barleywine of today gets credited to the English, as they came up with the most similar brew to the modern barleywine that we can’t get enough of at Big Dog’s, and thank goodness they did (what would we do without it?).

Everything You Need for a Hoppy Holiday

You can find our Moon Dog English-style Barleywine on draft at our Big Dog’s Draft House on N. Rancho and at select accounts throughout the Silver State in 16 oz. cans around town, but it’s only here for a season!

Check out our annual gift card sale, find out how to snag our Christmas gift set, and be sure to find out the details for our swiftly approaching Christmas party here!

If you’re wanting to know about our other limited seasonal brews, you can find them here.  

We’re here to ensure one thing — that you have the hoppiest season of all.