1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Draco - Birrificio Montegioco

Not Rated.
DracoDraco

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
81
good

45 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 45
Reviews: 30
rAvg: 3.52
pDev: 13.64%
Wants: 5
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Birrificio Montegioco visit their website
Italy

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Belgian-inspired ale brewed with fresh blueberries.

(Beer added by: Todd on 10-11-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | next › last »
Ratings: 45 | Reviews: 30 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of brentk56
3.33/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a cloudy caramel color tinged with the color of blueberry flash; the slim head drops to a ringlet very quickly and fails to leave any lace

Smell: Herbacious aroma with clove and tobacco elements; if there is blueberry in here it is pretty hard to identify

Taste: Sweet but herbacious caramel at the outset, with an alcohol laden honey character arriving by mid-palate, along with a subtle hint of blueberries; rather bitter, in an earthy, herbacious manner after the swallow; tastes a bit like Chinotto

Mouthfeel: Full bodied, almost syrupy, with very low carbonation

Drinkability: I can't say I'm a big fan; interesting and worth trying but not something to which I would return

brentk56, Jan 17, 2009
Photo of BEERchitect
3.93/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A delicate and fruity beer that, besides being brewed with blueberries, has more of a non-descript fruit character.

Hazy and rust colored, the beer carries a dainty head that struggles to hold on. No lacing and lots of sediment in the glass.

Mostly fruity, the beer has a yeasty-briney aroma of bruised berries, apples, dates, and figs. Light winey elements rise as the beer warms.

Fruit dominant in taste as well, but with the signature cotton-candy sweetness and seamless malt quality of well melded Dubbels. Spicy with white pepper and orange zest, the beer hides its alcohols well.

Medium to the mouth, the textures are thinned from the low-lying carbonation and warming alcohols- this emphasizes the wine-like character even more.

Overall, this is a nice beer that puts on a great display of fruity esters and confectionate malts. The alcoholic punch is hardly noticable in flavor... but in effect, that's a different story.

BEERchitect, Sep 12, 2010
Photo of Knapp85
3.2/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured out as a hazy orange color, I was expecting something more red or purple due to the fruit that it was brewed with. The head was good and then it settles down to just a white film over the beer. The smell of the beer had a very subtle fruit aroma to it. The other aromas were of yeast and some herbal notes. The taste didn't really bring too much blueberry to the beer either. There was just a little bit of fruity flavors in the mix but the malts and hops seem to drown it out. The mouthfeel is pretty smooth feeling, not overly complex like American barley wines. Overall it was good but a little too pricey for what I got out of it.

Knapp85, Jun 24, 2011
Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.68/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a hazed, simple-looking, light brown body with a sudsy, frothy, off-white head.

Smell: Dark, bready, caramel malts in the nose with no more than a modest touch of blueberries and some light background notes of savory, bitterish herbs.

Taste: Malty tastes of sweet caramel and toasted bread crusts. Of course, there's the blueberries (still comparatively mild), as well as some marinated raisins for a little addition boost of fruitiness. An herbaceousness arrives midway along with some peppery alcohol hints. Finishes sweetish and fruity.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium carbonation. Fairly soft mouthfeel.

Drinkability: Not bad (it's not exactly worth those exorbitant Italian beer prices, but still)! It definitely goes down fairly easy considering the listed ABV percentage.

ChainGangGuy, Dec 13, 2009
Photo of JAHMUR
4/5  rDev +13.6%

JAHMUR, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of RblWthACoz
3.58/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazed ruby with a sizeable tan head. Nose is mild with some yeast there and an overall musty tone. Flavor is pungently sweet with an almost wheat beer tail end to it. Alcohol peeks out a little bit. There are blueberries in this? How many? Like...one?? Feel is with a good level of bubble. Standard for the style. Definitely drinkable. But like I said. Blueberries. Where are the bloody blueberries man? I am on a quest to find a good blueberry beer.

RblWthACoz, Dec 30, 2007
Photo of oline73
3.15/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from the bottle into a goblet.

Appearance: Pours a reddish color with some floaties. There is a half finger of red tinted head that fades to a ring around the glass.

Smell: Malt and some fruit. I'm not sure I would have picked out blueberries if I didn't know they were there. There is a slight buttery smell here as well.

Taste: Fruity malt with a slight bitterness. This isn't overly sweet like many fruit beers out there. The buttery note carries over from the smell and detracts from the taste just a bit.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with aggressive carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: I thought this was a weird beer. The buttery quality wasn't totally pleasing. I don't think I would have this one again.

oline73, Mar 23, 2012
Photo of GClarkage
3.88/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

10/30/08- Purchased at a beer store in Portland, ME. $20.99 price tag.

Presentation- 750ml bottle, wrapped in paper. Did not note any freshness info. Poured into my Duvel tulip.

Appearance- Light purple colored pour..somewhat murky. but no large chunks of yeast. About a 1/2 inch head on the pour. Lacing is light and streaky.

Smell- Definite blueberry notes in the nose. Smells fresh and also lightly sugary. Not really any alcohol noted in the nose.

Taste- Semi-thick blueberry elixer. Not quite cough syrup thick, but getting to that range. All blueberry with a hint of alcohol and a hefty amount of sugar. Seems to be some other herbal notes as well, but I couldn't really pick them out.

Mouthfeel- Thick, viscous with a lower to mid-range carbonation level. Sugar laced fruit aftertaste.

Drinkability- I did like this beer, but it's quite sweet and robust to drink a whole bottle by yourself. I shared mine and was satisfied with half. Would go really good with something like a slice of berry cheesecake.

GClarkage, Nov 01, 2008
Photo of corby112
3.13/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a hazy coppery amber color with slight golden amber hues when held to a light source and a huge frothy, pillowy tan head that has good retention, slowly fading into a lasting cap. Sporadic spots of lacing left behind. There is also a good bit of yeast chunks floating around that hurt the appearance score. This is surprising considering it's the first pour from a 750ml bottle.

Spicy hoppy aroma with some leathery malt, dark fruit, blueberry and dark chocolate. The blueberries are there but not dominant and it smells organic rather than like artificial syrup. The chocolate/caramel maltiness is more prominent than expected. Although this is considered a barleywine, it doesn't smell much like one. The alcohol aroma is masked nicely by the other scents.

Earthy spicy flavor with some nice strong alcohol warmth up front with a strong dark fruit presence. There is some nice blueberry flavor but again, it is not overly sweet or overpowering and is accompanied by some plum, raisin and fig notes. Slightly sweet but this is balanced nicely by the spice and malt character. Slightly hoppy with some sweet alcohol and more dark berries in the slightly dry finish.

corby112, Nov 02, 2009
Photo of KAF
3.5/5  rDev -0.6%

KAF, Jul 23, 2014
Photo of beerthulhu
3.88/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

An Mirtilla ale brewed with blueberries 11%abv. Belgian strong dark ale.

A: Pours a dark ruby/cranberry color with a soft tan and moderately diminishing head. There is ample carbonation.

S: fresh and fruity aroma of blueberries on the nose. There is also some spicy rum alcohol notes lingering in the background.

T: The beer starts out with a touch of honey caramel sweetness and a noticeable alcohol presence. There is some spicy cider, apples, ripe fruit (plums), licorice and port/cask notes coming through. There is a noticeable spicy rum alcohol, and caramel bite for a finish with the hops being mostly non-detectable from the alcohol content.

M: slick, and warming, with a medium body and vinous palate. There is a slight sourness with the blueberry flavor being masked by the high alcohol content.

D: Overall this is a nicely crafted Belgian style beer, especially by an Italian brewery, with a good spicy alcohol bite at 11%abv. The beer is meant to be drunk slowly and savored like a fine wine. An outstanding dark Belgian style beer with a noticeable warming alcohol presence and definitely worth a try.

beerthulhu, Jul 03, 2008
Photo of harpus
3.5/5  rDev -0.6%

harpus, Jul 24, 2012
Photo of scruffwhor
3.48/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance-Pours a juicey-juice amber red with a very light tan head. Light bubbling and ends a thin ring of foam that is asymetrical.

Aroma- Hints of Jonathan Apples and cider in an alcoholic punch with a shot of blueberry syrup thrown in for effect. A litte vinous even.

Taste- Reminds a bit of spiked fruit punch with a lot of focus on apples and a little on blueberries. If the bottle didn't say it was brewed with blueberries, I wouldn't be able to tell.

Mouthfeel- Punchy on the alcohol, but good with the fruit flavors. Not too "Belgian" in flavor though.

scruffwhor, Feb 12, 2007
Photo of mrfrancis
4/5  rDev +13.6%

mrfrancis, Jun 19, 2013
Photo of drpimento
3.4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

pretty decent. First Italian in quite a while that was not a gusher. Poured a nice off white head and a little lace. Color is a bit hazy medium amber. Aroma malty yeast and surprisingly nice a subtle natural blueberry. Flavor's the same. Body and carbonation fit. Finish is like flavor. Drinkable. Not great but not bad.

drpimento, Jun 09, 2010
Photo of TheLongBeachBum
3.5/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: Tall 750ml brown glass bottle sealed with a large crown cap. The main label is split vertically in half; the left hand side has a mottled pale green background with a very colorful picture of a dragon warming a goblet of ale with some fire-breathing antics. This side of the label lists the beer in a red scripted font as ‘Birra Artigianale Draco’. Described as a ‘Beertilla Ale Brewed with Blueberries’ and the Product of Italy, if you had not guessed by now. Listed at a whopping 11% Alc./Vol. The right hand side of the label has a white background and is dedicated to the Nanny state Government Warning and lots of other useless bollocks. All this is nicely wrapped in a highly decorated paper wrapper that looks just like the one in the BA Avatar.

Appearance: Horse chestnut brown body, light haze with a somewhat murky look, but it clears with some stagnant rest. A gentle hint of feint purple buffs the tanned head. Formed into a streamlined 3mm thick cap when at rest, blotchy smattered lacing. Conditioning is super fine and highly attenuated.

Nose: A strange affliction of pugnacious sour caramel toffee, rotting apples, damp wicker baskets, pale malts and yeah….Blueberries, but they seem to be fleeting in their contribution to the overall nasal experience.

Taste: Dark Ale with a spiced Malt base that seems to be accentuated with a grainy middle. The Bouncers let the fruits out to play once in a while but they are in the fenced off Kindergarten for most of the time until the Bell rings and it Schools Out….the finish has a signature bitter blueberry trail which barely raises a goodbye. Diluted Ribena-esque trickles into a warming but stern alcohol malt base. As the fruits die quickly the bitterness lingers and steals the show here.

Mouthfeel: Heavy feel with a honey malt texture. Smooth with a lightly rough around the edges acidic malt base which resonates with a tame fruit ending, this in turn never seems to exhibit anything more than a flash of blueberries though.

Drinkability: Quenching dark ale with a spiced nature. A hint of blueberry helps to edge the 11% alcohol and drop the heat a little. Hard to sweep the alcohol below the carpet or stick it underneath the cupboard beneath the staircase, yet the warming dark ale tones dominate, as does the lingering bitterness. Thought I would have polished this one off a long time ago though….drags a bit.

Overall: Well I have to confess to not noticing the “price” on this one until it was too late, but what the heck it’s only money right? So yeah, it is not cheap, in fact, to put it mildly, this one is fucking expensive, as they say in Milano over Cappuccino. Aside from its cost, and focused on the brew, it is a barely above average effort - throw in the cost into the holistic appraisal (lets face it you can’t ignore it) and it is one to avoid, unless you have more Benjamin’s than sense, erm like me...I'm so dumb.

TheLongBeachBum, Nov 30, 2006
Photo of woosterbill
4.03/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle into a tasting glass. Big thanks to Jahmur for contributing this, the final beer of an epic afternoon/evening of tasting.

A: Cloudy, deep persimmon body under an inch of creamy, frothy foam. Good retention and sticky lace. Lovely.

S: Rich blueberry sweetness, sweet caramel malt, and some lightly tart dark fruits. Pleasant.

T: Sweet, syrupy blueberry; caramel, toffee, port wine. Long, sweet finish. Tasty, if a bit overly sweet.

M: Thick, sweet, sticky; low carbonation. Intense, and effective for this beer.

O: I was impressed by how well the booze was kept in check, although I have to admit that by this point in the tasting I probably wasn't picking up on my alcohol. What I was picking up on was the background goings-on to enjoying this beer, which included listening to Goblin and discussing the finer points of Troll II. It was quite the fitting combination for drinking the Dragon.

Cheers!

woosterbill, Jun 29, 2011
Photo of lordofthewiens
3.9/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I really don't like fruit beers, but this one is pretty good. It is a hazy pink/orange color with a medium sized, quickly dissipating tan head. I couldn't get much in the aroma, just some sweet fruit. The taste is blueberry, and is initially very sweet, but the alcohol takes over, and there's a nice hoppy finish. The alcohol is not intrusive. I might even try this again sometime.

lordofthewiens, Aug 06, 2008
Photo of st9647v3
4/5  rDev +13.6%

st9647v3, Feb 01, 2013
Photo of brewdlyhooked13
3.53/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Draco uncaps with a surprising 'pop'. There's a plastic pseudo-cork attached to the cap, which this beer apparently needs. The bottle cap is a standard metal, but there is a mini plastic stopper somehow fixed on the under side that extends into the bottle maybe a quarter inch. I kept it for posterity, if anyone wants it, beermail me.

Appearance - a reddish amber pour. Thick, soapy head of two fingers on top. Cream colored, slow to fade, with some nice ropy lacing.

Aroma - a vague fruit sweetness. A mild yeast and Belgian funkiness. Not sure what to make of this from the smell. As it warms, blueberry becomes easily detectable, so let this one acclimate.

Taste - pleasant flavors of Belgian candi sugar, grainy sweetness, and light yeast. No blueberries yet, but I don't mind. There is a nice little tartness on the swallow that may be the fruit. Some smooth warming alcohol on the finish but mostly the abv is quite well hidden. As the beer warms, blueberry eventually works its way into the palate, well into the aftertaste. Better late than never.

Mouthfeel - smooth, carbonated almost like champagne.

Drinkability - tasty, but despite an impressively artistic label and the inclusion of blueberries, I probably wouldn't revisit this one again.

brewdlyhooked13, Oct 24, 2007
Photo of FLima
3.91/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Mahogany color with a one finger head with short retention, but leaving laces and a constant plate.
Aroma of cognac, dry fruits, caramels, vanilla and strawberries.
Very original flavor with notes of blueberries, you could even say a blueberry muffin, hints of cherries, raisins, booze, licorice, herbal and earthy hops, mild vinous, figs and butterscotch.
Dry, bitter and alcoholic aftertaste.
Medium to full body with medium carbonation. Alcohol of 11% abv is definitely everywhere, but doesn’t burn your palate.
Fruity complexity plays a major role here. But it is a hard to judge beer; it could have lower or higher scores. It definitely improved after it warmed up with alcohol more tamed and showing great complexity.

FLima, Apr 05, 2014
Photo of mcallister
2.93/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Rediculously expensive bottle of Italian beer (18.99). But hell everything is worth trying once.

If I were to guess what was in the glass I would say apple cider. It looks much like apple cider. Opaque, thick cloudy, dirty muddy water brown with an off white seperated head that is large bubbles and less than a half inch on a hard pour. This one is highly carbonated as well. Upon swirling a trailed comet of bubbles sing in tune with one another.

I definitely get blueberry in the nose. Not immense amounts but sufficient enough to recognize what your smelling. Dried blueberries in fact. Blackberry as well as other berry fruit and some figgy hints. Belgian yeasty qualities as well as some other dried fruits and slight malt.

Medium mouthfeel feel, yet somewhat watery. Blueberry flavors as well as other dried berry. Spicy belgian qualities with a malt backbone. Otherwise not much going on.

Will try again if they lower the price too 3.99

mcallister, Feb 10, 2007
Photo of ktrillionaire
2.45/5  rDev -30.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A - Pours a somewhat murky brown with a small, short-lived tan head. Looks a bit fizzy.

S - This beer strangely smells like pork, as well as having a strange berry-ish and leafy aroma.

T - The beer is very strange and scattershot; I get some mead-y yeast (reminiscent of De Dolle's yeast), strange blueberry flavors, it is bread-y, and I am also getting some melon rind. I really think this is haphazard.

M - This beer is somewhat fizzy, on top of all the other mess.

D - Especially considering the considerable price, this is not at all drinkable. It would perhaps make a nice marinade, albeit expensive.

ktrillionaire, Jul 21, 2010
Photo of MikeCactusGordon
3/5  rDev -14.8%

MikeCactusGordon, Oct 02, 2014
Photo of dogfishandi
3.88/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml. bottle at about fridge temp split with friends poured into a snifter.

pours out a murky brownish reddish color with a 1 finger off light tan head faded to a ring and some patchy foam. just some very small lacing. chunks visible.

initially very vinious and wine like. mostly bready and yeasty in the aroma. not huge, but whats there is there. hints of blueberry.

initial reaction was blueberry muffin. bready, a light winey blueberry with a spicey cookie like flavored yeast. unique. alcohol is a little noticable towards the finish.

pretty big body with some lingering flavors. goes down very smooth, nice smooth carbonation. just slightly tart as it warms.

overall, a fairly decent and definatly unique beer. blueberry wasnt extremely noticable, but added a nice complexity. i would never drop the huge price tag on this (a friend brought it over) but im definatly gald i tried it.

dogfishandi, Aug 13, 2011
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | next › last »
Draco from Birrificio Montegioco
81 out of 100 based on 45 ratings.