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Dragonhead Stout - Orkney Brewery

Not Rated.
Dragonhead StoutDragonhead Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

266 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 266
Reviews: 174
rAvg: 3.84
pDev: 12.5%
Wants: 20
Gots: 10 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Orkney Brewery visit their website
United Kingdom (Scotland)

Style | ABV
English Stout |  4.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Dragonhead is a legendary stout: dark, intense and fully-flavoured it is our tribute to the Vikings and their cultural legacy in Orkney. On the nose, this black stout has a smooth roasted malt aroma giving bitter chocolate, dark roasted coffee and smoky notes balanced by hints of spicy Goldings Hops. On the palate, the dark roasted malts combine to give a rich, rounded palate of chocolate, toast and nut, with a satisfying spicy hop finish.

(Beer added by: xlperro on 09-01-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 266 | Reviews: 174 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of mytifred
5/5  rDev +30.2%

Photo of Donutos
5/5  rDev +30.2%

Photo of hippoballetdancer
5/5  rDev +30.2%

Photo of OzmanBey
5/5  rDev +30.2%

Photo of gfreed
4.85/5  rDev +26.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Perhaps it's coincidental that the two best UK breweries in my opinion are in Scotland: Harviestoun and Orkney. And with the truly exceptional Dragonhead stout, Orkney may have pulled ever so slightly ahead of Harviestoun. If it weren't so expensive here in the USA I'd drink this with every meal-- well, that's a bit of hyperbole, but you get the point. From the opaque, clarinet-black color to the aromas of coffee, chocolate, rope (?) and lemons; from the roasty front end to the citrus tail end, this is a UK stout without peer. I'm now on a quest to drink the entire Orkney line.

Photo of BobbyBeerman
4.83/5  rDev +25.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Deep dark brown/black - no light penetrates it. Dark beige head that faded quickly leaving not much lacing.

S: Robust nose: chocolate and coffee notes.

T: Well balanced yet powerfully flavored shout in a 4.0% ABV. Chocolate/coffee flavor have a nice malt start with smoky finish.

M: Medium body with a smooth mouth feel and balanced carbonation.

D: Very drinkable. I would drink another but limit it to one per session.

Photo of PackersRGreat
4.75/5  rDev +23.7%

Photo of claytri
4.75/5  rDev +23.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

The beer poured a rich black with 2 fingers of light brown head that slowly receeded leaving a good lace on the glass. The aroma was of good dark malt and just a bit smokey. The taste is simply a wonderful smokieness. This isn't the harsh overpowering smoke you get with some beers, just a good pleasant taste like you'd have with good BBQ. Underlying it is a nice bit of maltiness, no real sign of any hops, but they're not needed here. The feel is excellent for a Stout. I usually find Stouts a little watery, but his is just smooth with a nice dry finish that leaves a very pleasant smokey aftertaste. Almost like a good bowl of pipe tobaco, which would probably go well with this beer as well. I would have to say this is best Stout I have ever had. This will be a beer I will look for and want to keep on hand alongside the Schneiders and the Old Nick

Photo of JamesS
4.72/5  rDev +22.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is a wonderful stout, one of the best I've ever had.

It came to the table with a wonderfully opaque, black look with a tan head (bubbly) and had great lacing. It had an outstanding burnt grain scent, very deep and strong, a great aromatic sensation. There was an excellent burnt grain flavor with great coffee overtones and even an excellent bitterness for a stout. One of the smoothest stouts I've had as well. Outstanding!

Photo of therica
4.65/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

AMAZING stuff. Throw out your Guinness Stout's!

I saw some complaints about high-price per bottle for this, but keep in mind-- it's a HALF-LITER bottle, ie 16.9 ounces, ie "a Pint," unlike the standard 12-ounce beer.

A= like pouring melted licorice-- even the dark-brown foamy head. Gorgeously different.

S= potently exciting. Up-front liquor-odor but not nostril-burning. Chocolate, coffee, licorice, anise/hyssop, very strong scent but inviting rather than offensive.

T= Dark roasted malts, licorice, anise/hyssop, light sweet-water aftertaste (rather than bitterness). All sorts of other intriguing subtilities, including strong black-coffee. Some hoppy bitterness when first poured, which gradually seems to dissipate after setting for not too long, into a nice blend. When it's first poured and there's a slight foam on the head, a few quick sips will taste like a good oldfashioned early/mid 20th-Century Chocolate Phosphate Soda.

M= like I just ate some nutty licorice coffee snacks or something?

D= very drinkable bottle, maybe a few, would love to see how many I could take, on-tap.

Photo of Atamu
4.64/5  rDev +20.8%

Photo of Caveworm
4.63/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Dragonhead Stout - Orkney Brewery. Poured from the bottle into a a glass seidel , this brew's got a one finger thick brown head, lateral lacing, and a black body.

I smell banana esters along with the rich dark chocolate and dark coffee notes. All of these elements are richer in character, as one would expect with a stout of this historical depth and magnitude.

Tastes like ,yes, banana esters with dark chocolate and dark roast black coffee. Nothing is offensive in this category. A very smooth sipper of a stout, indeed!

The mouthfeel I'm getting with this brew is slightly thicker, as expected with any stout. Nothing chewy or sticky, its got a very clean finish for having such profound characteristics. Wow!

Overall, I'll give Dragonhead Stout - Orkney Brewery a 4.75. I thought it would have a slight astringency due to the brewery's home nation take on most beers, but this was smooth the whole way through. As a huge fan of viking/folk metal, this certainly caught my eyes at the local bottle shop. I am quite impressed with this offering by Orkney Brewery and plan on purchasing and reviewing more of their products in the near future.

Photo of Brad007
4.53/5  rDev +18%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a pitch-black color with a thick brown head. Looks about right.

Aroma is rich and creamy with roasted coffee and chocolate notes in the nose.

Taste is full of roasted coffee, creaminess and chocolate. Seems smooth and drinkable.

Mouthfeel is creaminess followed by roasted coffee. Feels just a wee bit thin at the back of the throat but otherwise, a very nice example.

At 4%, this is a highly drinkable English Stout. It has all the classic hallmarks of the style. I wonder if it would taste even better on tap or even from a draught-style can? If you love stouts, this is a good choice.

Photo of Rshersnow
4.52/5  rDev +17.7%

Photo of Zhenya
4.52/5  rDev +17.7%

Photo of LJWalker
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%

Photo of Arborescence
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%

Photo of lackenhauser
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Jet black with a pale, coffee colored head. Nice, low roasted aroma. Somewhat burnt and resiny. Good dose of roasted malt flavor without being harsh. Toasted malt and oats. Just a hint of bitterness with a mild lingering sweetness. Great body-not too thin and leaves a slick finish on the tongue. Hard to believe the low abv. A great all around beer. I love a dark beer with this much flavor and a low abv. I could do this all night. Really exceptional. Might replace Dark Island as my favorite Orkney brew.

Photo of metalhead_001
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%

Photo of mcsquint
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 500ml bottle purchased at Gomer's in Lee's Summit into a large dimpled mug.
A - Opaque black in color with creamy, dark tan head. Head dissipates a bit quickly leaving nice lacing.
S - Rich chocolate malt aroma with dark roasted coffee notes.
T - Tastes of rich chocolate malt with notes of coffee on the finish.
M - Full mouthfeel. Perfectly carbonated.
D - This is an excellent version of a dry stout produced by a small brewery. While the cost, $5.00ottle, might limit drinking several, it's certainly worth saving up for!

Photo of SetarconeX
4.47/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

What a nice little brew. Surprisingly dark. In fact, it's probably the darkest beer I've seen in recent memory. A real black hole of a stout. Lovely brown lacing around the top that hangs around for a good amount of time.

Tastes just the way a stout should, and then just a little bit. Weighty and quite toasty, with a good clean finish. Perhaps nothing too unusual, but certainly a fine example of this beer's style.

Oh, and despite not being allowed in as a scoring factor, the bottle is one of the coolest looking I've ever seen. Drink this one if you can find it.

Photo of Vvall
4.45/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I loved this !! But alas,at 5 bucks a bottle it is too expensive to drink on a regular basis.It poured black as coal,with not much head or carbonation and smelled divine.The taste was exceptional,and went down nicely.I will treat myself to this again...soon.

Photo of stcules
4.45/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Chocolate, burnt coffee, nuts and dry fruits. Full and round body. iIf you consider the low alcoholic level (4 ABV), this beer has a perfect body, a complet mouthfeel with a freshing flavour. Herbal notes. If you drink one of this beer, you are tempted to drink another one (and you'll do it, if you just have it...), and you'll be an happy man!. Very satisfating.

Photo of SpruceMoose
4.43/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Being an accustomed stout fan, I revelled in the opportunity to try Orkney Brewery's addition to the scene. Although it sports an ABV of only 4% (remarkably low for a stout of its taste and calibre), Dragonhead promises a warm treat on a winter's night with its bold taste and enticing appearance.

Appearance: A mildly aggressive pour leaves a beige-brown head that retains its size for a few minutes. The body is completely black and characteristically opaque, informing the drinker that it is a full-bodied stout.

Smell: Hints of coffee, chocolate, toast and other bitter aromas are instantly noticeable upon the first whiff. The beer's odour is as deep and bold as its taste, not dissimilar to Samuel Smiths stouts.

Taste: A strong and cohesive combination of bitter and smoky flavours is instantly pleasing. An aftertaste of coffee and chocolate flavours remains on the senses long after this beer.

Mouthfeel: Thick and bold yet not overly carbonated. Classic stout mouthfeel, heavier than Guinness yet smoother than other English stouts.

Overall: A brilliant stout that is to be tried by anybody even vaguely interested in darker beer. However, the intensity of its flavours means that such people should perhaps warm themselves up with contemporary stouts such as Guinness or Murphy's before abandoning the sweetness and nitro-carbonation for the rich smokiness and experience of Dragonhead. Another fine brew by the lads at Orkney!

Photo of leokbelo
4.43/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a rich, dense, blackest of all blackness into a Pint Glass. Creamy mocha head fades into a coffee like lacing.
Rich roasted malts on the nose, chocolate and coffee.
Bitter chocolate with more coffee on the tongue, roasted nuts and very mild hops.
Extremely drinkable, with the low ABV (4%).
An excellent English (Scottish) Stout, though I was hoping for a bigger punch on the hops.
Highly recommended!

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Dragonhead Stout from Orkney Brewery
87 out of 100 based on 266 ratings.