From bottle it’s hazed amber-orange topped by a fine off-white head. Hops manifest as nectarine, wood resin, green leaf vegetables, raw pellets. Malt manifests as honey and sugar-glazed pastries, but there’s also some wet cardboard oxidation notes (bottled July 2015 so 9+ months before hitting the shelves).
While it actually does smell somewhat like HOTD Fred, it’s affected by oxidation as well as some quiet yeasty-musty BO notes, and the hop character is kind of crude. After 10 minutes of breathing (and approaching 60 F), the spoiled fruit character becomes overbearing, taking on a harsh malt liquor ethanol and rotting fruit quality (I’ve never had Pruno but there are certain smells that trigger the thought).
In the mouth it’s medium-full bodied, sweet, malty, and chewy, with relatively quiet finishing bitterness. Carbonation is low and as a consequence the texture is flabby and limp, where a lush burst of CO2 would do well to balance the sugar. Overall a pretty crude beer.