This past summer, we inked a partnership with the University of Maryland to work hand-in-hand on the future of beer-centric agriculture. To start, the focus is on hops.

Knowing that hops grown locally need to meet the same quality standards achieved in traditional hop-growing regions — like the Pacific Northwest, Germany and New Zealand — UMD’s College of Agriculture and Natural Resources is studying 24 varieties over the next three to five years in Maryland’s unique climate. The first year’s crop was harvested in September.

And because there’s no better way to evaluate hops than putting them in a beer, we did exactly that. 

Field Notes Pale Ale will premiere Thursday exclusively in our tasting room. All of the ingredients used were grown at UMD’s Western Maryland Research and Education Center, which is the site of these hop trials. Syngery and Scala malt is alongside Zeus, Glacier, Southern Brewer, Southern Cross and Vojvodina hops. 

Out of 24 hop varieties, how did we land on those five? 

First off, it was important that the hops be representative of what craft brewers would typically buy, so the hops were harvested and pelletized.

Then, our Brewmaster Ben Clark made “hop teas” with all 24 varieties, steeping the pellets in a base light lager for at least two days to evaluate the aroma they would impart on a beer. We used the same ratio of hops to beer that we would use in a massive dry hop (similar to what we do for The Truth). The five hops we chose for Field Notes had the best aromatics and were also the most agriculturally viable. Here are the profiles observed from each:

  • Zeus: Herbal, grassy, dill
  • Glacier: Strong resin with mild fruit
  • Southern Brewer: Tangerine and resin
  • Southern Cross: Sweet tropical fruits
  • Vojvodina: Floral followed by melon

While you can get an idea of aromatics from both rubbing just-harvested hops and making hop teas, we won’t know the exact flavor profile of any new hop until we brew with it, which is why experimental projects like Field Notes are so important for our work with UMD. And, it’s only the beginning.

Field Notes is on draft only, but limited-edition Crowlers are available while they last. 



This afternoon, two bills that will inexplicably affect the future of craft beer in Maryland will be heard by the state’s House Economic Matters Committee: House Bill 518 and House Bill 1052. Here is a statement from Ben Savage, our chief marketing officer and former president of the Brewers Association of Maryland:

House Bill 518 is a comprehensive revision of many of Maryland’s antiquated regulations on the beer industry that restrict both consumer choice and the growth of the craft beer industry. Flying Dog supports HB 518 for reasons outlined in both the Reform on Tap Task Force’s report, lead by Comptroller Peter Franchot, and the policy analysis completed by Maryland’s Department of Legislative Services.

The Maryland General Assembly has been clear in its opposition to reforming outdated beer laws and to the growth of Maryland’s craft beer industry. This was reflected by House Bill 1283 in 2017 and House Bill 1052 this current legislative session. The General Assembly seemingly (and schizophrenically) revised laws during one session and then voted to repeal those same revisions in a subsequent session. That back-and-forth approach to legislation creates unacceptable political risk for entrepreneurs and prevents Flying Dog from investing confidently in expansion in the state of Maryland.

Additionally, the General Assembly passed legislation in 2017 that provides benefits and privileges to Guinness (owned by Diageo, a $20 billion foreign company) that are not available to any new breweries that open in Maryland. This is a clear signal to Maryland’s existing 70+ breweries and others considering opening a brewery in the state that Maryland is not open for business when it comes to craft beer.

As a result, Flying Dog has permanently cancelled plans for a new, $55-million brewery on 32 acres of land that we acquired for that purpose. However, we remain unabashedly pro-free enterprise and pro-consumer choice and continue to support HB 518’s legislative reforms.

Flying Dog also supports the following bills that would reform other aspects of Maryland’s beer laws:

Furthermore, HB 518 would not be in existence if it weren’t for Comptroller Franchot’s 2017 Reform on Tap Task Force. The Task Force brought together representatives from all sectors of Maryland’s beer industry to discuss the complexities of Maryland’s antiquated beer laws and to develop a proposal to modernize those laws to reflect both the explosive growth in craft breweries and changes in consumer preferences. The Task Force’s report effectively summarizes the revisions that need to be made to Maryland’s beer laws so that both economic growth and consumer choice are no longer restricted.

Flying Dog appreciates the opportunity to have served on the Task Force, supports the Task Force’s recommendations, and applauds Comptroller Franchot’s leadership in the development of pro-free enterprise, pro-consumer choice proposals to reform Maryland’s outdated alcoholic beverage laws. The future of Maryland beer depends on HB 518, which will not only benefit breweries, retailers and wholesalers, but will also – and more importantly – benefit craft beer consumers and the Maryland economy as a whole.

What else do you, fervent supporter of craft beer and rabid fan of Flying Dog, need to know? 

1. By doing things like reducing how much beer we can sell out of our tasting room and restricting sampling, House Bill 1052 will send Maryland craft beer back into the Dark Ages. 

2. Even if House Bill 518 passes, Flying Dog will not pursue a new brewery in Maryland. After back-and-forth reform and repeal, it will take years for the state to prove that Maryland is willing to commit to craft beer. You wouldn’t build a deck if you thought the zoning department would decide to ban decks next summer, would you? We didn’t think so. Nevertheless, we support the reform in HB 518 and what it will do for Maryland craft beer as a whole. 

3. If you also stand for free enterprise, consumer choice and the growth of Maryland beer, you need to contact your local state representative.

4. It’s time to drink a Snake Dog. Because God knows we’re going to. 



We’re going to take our talents to South Beach and join The Heat. From fruity spice to four-alarm fire, our hotheaded Brewmaster Ben Clark presents four new releases exclusive to our 2018 Heat Series Pepper Pack:

Honeydew Jalapeño Wheat, 5.5% ABV

Finally, someone found a use for that goddamn melon baller. Bright honeydew melon and green, fresh-cut jalapeño meet subtle tartness from the beer’s wheat base. 

Bird’s Eye Rye, 5.3% ABV

The reason why Eye of the Tiger will be stuck in your head for the rest of the day. Spicy notes of rye and dried chili peppers meet citrus hop character and a touch of bready malt sweetness. 

Bloody Mary Ale, 6.8% ABV

Brewed with George’s Bloody Mary Mix, habanero peppers and lime, predominant tomato and savory spice are complimented by habanero heat and a subtle smoky finish. Garnishes may include (but are not limited to): OLD BAY, lemon wedge, line wedge, celery stalk, green olives, mini gherkin, full-size gherkin, cheddar cheese cubes, jalapeños, jalapeño poppers, bacon, pigs in a blanket, cocktail shrimp, crab cake, brisket slider, bacon quarter pounder with cheese.

Scorpion Pepper Fruited IPA, 7.7%

The Scorpion Pepper may be dethroned as the hottest pepper on the planet, but it’s not disgraced. It will still rock you like a hurricane. Here it brings the heat alongside pear, blood orange peel and citrus hop bitterness. 

On Saturday in our tasting room, we’ve got all four beers on tap alongside hot sauce pairings from local Voodoo Chili Sauces, hot pepper eating competitions, leather branding and fire dancers. (BYOAntiacids.)

Want more? Join us for brunch at Stan and Joe’s Saloon on Sunday, March 4 or check our Beer Finder to track down a Pepper Pack near you. 



For years, she’s gone walking. When she passes, she lures you in. And time after glorious time, she never disappoints. Tall and tan and young and lovely. You smile. With a swing so cool and a sway so gentle, you’ll give your heart gladly. 

Bright pineapple with a pop of bubblegum. Peppery phenolics quickly dominated by bold orange citrus. This year’s Tropical Bitch, an annual twist on Raging Bitch, is brewed with pineapple and orange. The only thing not included is sand in places you never thought possible. 

How can you tell her you love her? Tropical Bitch premieres on tap at Roasthouse Pub on Thursday, February 8 and in our tasting room on Friday, February 9.



Three months in whiskey barrels from A. Smith Bowman Distillery of Fredericksburg, Virginia infuses our Gonzo Imperial Porter with vanilla notes from the oak and soft whiskey warmth, adding layers of complexity to its already-robust chocolate, coffee and roast character.

It’s released only once a year. And this year, it’s got company. 

Introducing Barrel-Aged St. EADman. A beautiful blend of dark fruit, toffee, caramel and clove and cinnamon spice, our Abbey Ale – which pays homage to the last of the original Gonzo visionaries – was aged for three months in French Oak red wine barrels.

Our tasting room is the only place you can get 750 ml bottles of each. Quantities are limited and will sell out. So on Monday, February 5, we’ll see you at noon…because you already know you’re calling out sick anyway.



The second Friday of December means one thing to the fine people who work day in and day out within our brewery walls: Our annual holiday party. There have been mariachi bands. There have been fire dancers. There have been freak shows. There’s even been a guy who let us staple money to his bare body. (The larger the denomination, the larger the area of choice…if you catch our drift.)

The entertainment always changes, but one thing remains the same. Our brewmaster and genius team of brewers unleash beers that have flown under the radar until that fateful Friday. Experimental ingredients, never-before-used yeast strains, extreme aging — nothing is off limits. 

We keep these beers to ourselves, putting them on tap for one night and one night only. But this year, we’re sharing the wealth. This Saturday, we’re releasing a Flander’s Red, a Foeder-Aged Orchard Ale (a collaboration with Distillery Lane Ciderworks), an experimental Chestnut Ale and a Smoked Sour Wheat during what aptly dubbed Brewmaster’s Christmas. 

Allow the man himself, our Brewmaster Ben Clark, to explain:

Flander’s Red 5.8% ABV
What is the history of Flander’s Red? It’s a Belgian red/brown ale that is aged in barrels or foeders for extended periods, 6 months to 2 years or so, and often blended with younger versions of itself to make up for a lack of body, as the bacteria and yeast consume almost all sugars in the wort, leaving a thin, dry beer. The specific blend of yeast and bacteria is important, and the profile can be influenced by the balance of these organisms.

How long has ours been in the Foeder? Around 2 years

What happens to the flavor as it ages? Acetic acid notes increase (vinegar flavor) and beer dries out. The acids produced create a complexity that help add character where the lack of body (from long aging/sugar reduction) leaves a gap. The best Flander’s are dry and complex.

What should be expect from our release? Subtle notes of acetic acid with hints of dark fruit and cherry and a dry finish.

Foeder-Aged Orchard Ale 8.5%
What is a foeder and what does it do to beer? A foeder is a wooden vessel utilized to age beer long-term. It allows a slow uptake of O2, which acts as an inoculation source as the wood holds the yeast and/or bacteria in the vessel. When it’s refilled or topped off, the resulting beer is very similar to the previous version.

How are we incorporating the cider into our beer? It is added at start of fermentation and comprises 50 percent of the actual beer.

Ciders are also becoming very popular – why Distillery Lane? We have had a long-time working relationship with DLC, and we love their focus on traditional English cider varieties grown locally.

Flavor profile? Apples, phenolics, barnyard notes. The younger it is consumed, the more apple character and sweetness/roundness should be expected.

Does this beer age well? Absolutely. A pronounced barnyard character will develop, and beer will dry out over time.

Chestnut Ale, 6.6% ABV
How did this concept come about? It’s a local partnership with a teacher in West Virginia who has a chestnut grove on his property and happened to reach out.

Why did we decide to give chestnuts a try? It was our first time really diving into using a product like this in a beer. It seemed interesting on the surface, and after some research we found it was a common malt substitute for individuals with gluten allergies. They have a surprisingly similar flavor to base malt.

Compared to other ingredients, what percentage of chestnuts are we using? 5%
This is our second year brewing this beer. What are we finding chestnuts do most – flavor, aroma, texture? They add a subtle flavor, mild buttery sweetness added to palette.

What should we expect flavor wise from this year’s release? This beer will be more dominated by the fruits added, plums and black currants. You will get dark fruit notes alongside sweeter and fuller body in part from the chestnuts.

Smoked Sour Wheat, 5.6%
How was this brewed? We used a kettle souring process. 

Special ingredients? We used a beechwood smoked malt from Copper Fox, a distillery and maltster in southwest Virginia.

Flavor profile? Slight smoke both in the nose and finish. A distinct tartness combined with prominent hop character (all coming from Simcoe). Believe me when I say it is surprisingly refreshing, despite so many things going on. It all works really well together.

All four will be on tap in our tasting room starting at noon this Saturday. You can thank us then for sharing. 



The Bushwhackers? The British Bulldogs? The Road Warriors? While all iconic, none of these duos could hope to take on the one-two punch of our newest releases, Idaho 7 Single Hop Imperial IPA and Thunderpeel New England IPA. Let’s break down the stats:


Like the name states, this is a variety that originated on a small test plot in Idaho.  Hop ‘test plots’ start out small, and expand each year as more plants can be planted from the original stock.  This process can take up to 7 years.  This has nothing to do with the 7 in the name Idaho 7, just a coincidence. As with the entire roster of our Single Hop Imperial IPA releases, this bad boy uses the same grain bill and yeast profile you are accustomed to coming in at the 8.0% ABV you’ve come to love. So what does the Idaho 7 hop bring to the table? How about a combination of tropical and citrus fruit notes (notably apricot, orange, papaya, grapefruit), complimented by big notes of resiny pine. Totally worth the wait. Get your grubby little mitts all over Idaho 7 when it hits shelves beginning Monday, October 9.


Because what else do you call a juicy, citrusy New England IPA that gives off a green hoppy aroma with notes of mango? Exactly. Between that description and the manageable 6.2% ABV we don’t anticipate any of these cans making it far from the point of purchase.  This extremely-limited release will only be available at the Baltimore Craft Beer Festival on Saturday, October 7 and at the brewery on Sunday, October 8.

Get in the ring with these two if you dare. You won’t go home with a belt, but it’ll be the beat down of a lifetime you can one day tell your grandkids about.



The movement to support local creativity continues with our annual Local RIOT on Saturday, October 14, at the brewery. It’s free and open to those 21 and up and it’s also dog friendly (and that pesky age limit doesn’t apply to our four-legged friends).

In addition to your favorite Roasthouse Pub Food Truck, we’ll have local vendors and artists on the lawn where you’re never more than a few steps away from all the beer we’ve got lined up for you.

Help Santa out and get a little early shopping done with our friends including:

Goodloe Byron
Element Shrub
J. Dickey Sauces
Key City Tattoo – On site tattoos, walk-ups welcome
Otterbein’s Cookies
Silver Diner 
Vigilante Coffee

Admission is free. If you choose to throw $5 into the donation box at the door the money will go towards helping our friends at Lonely Hearts Animal Shelter who are bringing your newest best friend to the event with them as well. All beer, food, and other goods will be sold a la carte. 

If anyone asks, the only plans you have on Saturday October 14 from Noon to 6PM involve Flying Dog. Right?




In the summer of 2016, flooding devastated our neighbors in Ellicott City – a haven for artisans and independent businesses. Alongside the good people at Jailbreak Brewing Company, we released Watershed Moment Belgian IPA with 100% of profits benefitting flood relief in Ellitcott City. One year later, the work continues and to show our support for these efforts, we have decided to re-release Watershed Moment with the crew at Jailbreak once more.

If it’s been too long since you had a taste, the beer is a hybrid of Jailbreak’s Poor Righteous IPA and our Raging Bitch Belgian-Style IPA. The malt bill is from Poor Righteous, the hops are a blend of those used in both beers and the yeast is the El Diablo Belgian strain used in Raging Bitch.

Watershed Moment will once again be available on draft and in cans exclusively in the Howard County and Baltimore area markets for a limited time. Beginning Friday, September 22 at noon, The Wine Bin will be selling 6-packs of cans and the draft release will kick off the following morning when the Main Street Music Festival returns to Old Ellicott City. Below you’ll find some of the accounts you’ll be able to track down Watershed Moment at. Keep in mind, this list is subject to change, we always recommend calling ahead and we never recommend complaining to us:

Allview Liquors
Jason’s Liquors
Kelly’s Liquors
Kings Contrivance Liquors
Maple Lawn Liquors
Perfect Pour
Petite Cellar 
Pine Orchard
Twisted Cork
Village Green

EW Beck’s
Judge’s Bench
La Palapa
Market Tavern
Phoenix Emporium



This fall the Brewers Association of Maryland corralled a gang of Maryland Breweries together for four beer festivals that will elevate your palate and allow you to show off all your new sensory perception skills to your friends. We’ll be at each of these parties, so look for the batwings and stop by our booth to tell us about any typos you find in this post.

Here’s the rundown of our schedule:

Hyattsville Arts & Ales Festival
September 23, 12PM – 6PM

It’s the 10th Annual Hyattsville Arts & Ales Festival, longer than any of our best attempts at trying to not get kicked out of a fantasy league. Stop by and support local creativity with over 100 exhibiting artists and artisans, tons of local breweries & craft producers, food trucks and vendors, and live entertainment, block by block in Downtown Hyattsville. This event is free to the public. Beer will be available for purchase by the pint in the Beer Garden. Don’t forget to BYO GROWLER. We’ll be selling pints of our greatest hits including Snake Dog IPA, Raging Bitch Belgian-Style IPA, Bloodline Blood Orange Ale, and Dogtoberfest Märzen.

12th Maryland Microbrewery Festival 2017
September 30, 11AM – 6PM

The Union Mills Homestead, a national historic landmark, will host the twelfth annual Maryland Microbrewery Festival on September 30, 2017 from 11AM – 6PM. This jelly and jam-packed festival celebrates and promotes the best of Marylands handcrafted and distinctive microbrews and included food vendors, other craft vendors, live music, seminars, ample parking and a shuttle service. Proceeds of the Festival support the Union Mills Homestead Foundation’s ongoing interpretation and preservation of the historic Union Mills site.

Speaking of historic, we’ll be bringing some of the greatest beers of all time including Dead Rise OLD BAY Summer Ale, Dogtoberfest Märzen, Snake Dog IPA, Bloodline Blood Orange Ale, Raging Bitch Belgian-Style IPA, and The Fear Imperial Pumpkin Ale.

Hops & Harvest Festival
September 30, 12PM – 9PM

Choose from one of two time slots, or make a day of it. We’ll be out for the Midday 12-4pm crew as well as the Twilight 5-9pm group and you know we’re #TeamEdward. Your ticket includes event entry, unlimited tastings, a custom event cup, live entertainment, oxygen and unlimited trips to the bathroom. We’ll be set up with samples of the following beers: Snake Dog IPA, Bloodline Blood Orange Ale, Numero Uno Agave Cerveza, Doggie Style Pale Ale, The Truth Imperial Pale Ale, St. EADman Abbey Ale, Dogtoberfest Märzen, Dead Rise OLD BAY Summer Ale, Brewhouse Rarities Peach Cobbler Ale and our of our latest in-house releases, Negroni IPA.

Baltimore Craft Beer Festival
October 7, 12PM – 5PM

Presented by the Brewers Association of Maryland Held in the beautiful Canton Waterfront Park in downtown Baltimore, the festival will feature the widest selection of MD craft breweries in the state and a homebrew competition, where attendees have the opportunity to judge their favorites. Boasting all of the best parts of Baltimore, the event includes live bands, craft vendors, local food trucks, trivia, corn hole, and you. See for yourself: We’ll be showing up fashionably early with old friends and new favorites including Thunderpeel, Single Hop Idaho 7, Negroni IPA, Drogtoberfest Marzen, Brewhouse Rarities Peach Cobbler Ale, Barrel-Aged Gonzo, Double Dog, St. EADman Abbey Ale, Barrel-Aged Fear, Snake Dog IPA, Bloodline Blood Orange Ale, and Numero Uno Agave Cerveza.

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