Dragon's Milk - New Holland Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Dragon's MilkDragon's Milk

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BA SCORE
88
very good

1,259 Reviews
THE BROS
86
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,259
Hads: 4,638
rAvg: 3.93
pDev: 13.23%
Wants: 271
Gots: 1,202 | FT: 40
Brewed by:
New Holland Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: beernut7 on 08-12-2002

A barrel aged Imperial Stout with roasty malt character intermingled with deep vanilla tones, all dancing in an oak bath.

2014 Bottles are 11% ABV
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,259 | Hads: 4,638
Photo of PreacherBrewer
3.3/5  rDev -16%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A - Pours motor oil black and sports a thick brown head that dissipates fairly quickly. Lacing is minimal (could be do to the poor quality glassware available to me right now).

S - Smells of vanilla, oak, chocolate, and alcohol.

T - Notes of vanilla, milk chocolate, lactose, heavy oaky presence, pepper, and a slight alcohol burn.

M - Full bodied and slightly syrupy. Not overboard, but significant.

O - A par big-ass american stout. It's good, but doesn't stand out from the rest. If you come across it and are in the mood for a big ass stout, this will do the job quite well. (582 characters)

Photo of ZebraCakez
4.5/5  rDev +14.5%

A: Deep brown (almost black) with almost no head, save for a small layer of tan froth on the surface.

S: Big coffee notes, and a strong barrel presence. There is a chocolate aroma as well, it is not as strong.

T: This is a big beer. It makes no jokes about its barrel aspect, and the alcohol is always present, but super strong coffee and chocolate notes return quickly. There is a light vanilla aspect on the finish. A fantastic stout.

F: Medium to heavy body, very smooth creamy feel, almost no carbonation.

O: This is a fantastic beer. It may not be on par with a few of the other heavy - hitters in the same category (which are often near-impossible to find), but it is certainly worthy of a spot on the shelf in my fridge. (733 characters)

Photo of carlborch
4.5/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a beautiful, thick, dark brown, developing a tan-colored creamy-frothy head. The head settled down to 1/4 inch and persisted. The initial and subsequent nose is full of vanilla, chocolate, coffee, nuts and anticipation. Well-formed Belgian lace. Very rich, chocolaty, caramel, and vanilla bean on the palate. Delicious malt with perfectly balanced bitter notes. Lingers long and very pleasantly. The alcohol and wood is evident, but in a round, gentle, yet full way. Warmth - yet not too potent for a summer day. Definitely moreish. If you favor large, tannic red wines with your food, this would be an excellent ale alternative. Use some in your marinade/sauce. The ale has enough body and flavor to accompany rich foods and food off the grill. Port wine comes to mind, but it doesn't taste like Port - rather this is a reflection on the complexity of the ale. I will definitely return to this ale throughout the year. Pours a beautiful, thick, dark brown, developing a tan-colored creamy-frothy head. The head settled down to 1/4 inch and persisted. The initial and subsequent nose is full of vanilla, chocolate, coffee, nuts and anticipation. Well-formed Belgian lace. Very rich, chocolaty, caramel, and vanilla bean on the palate. Delicious malt with perfectly balanced bitter notes. Lingers long and very pleasantly. The alcohol and wood is evident, but in a round, gentle, yet full way. Warmth - yet not too potent for a summer day. Definitely moreish. If you favor large, tannic red wines with your food, this would be an excellent ale alternative. Use some in your marinade/sauce. The ale has enough body and flavor to accompany rich foods and food off the grill. Port wine comes to mind, but it doesn't taste like Port - rather this is a reflection on the complexity of the ale. I will definitely return to this ale throughout the year. (1,851 characters)

Photo of Tonerelia
4.06/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very well balanced the barrel aging rounds out this whole beer. Not overly hoppy or overly malty. This is a very good beer to start out with, that is easily assessable to everyone and therefore should be a good starter beer because it is a good representation of what the imperial stout should taste like. (305 characters)

Photo of irs
2.68/5  rDev -31.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

head is decent. color is good, but some light is getting through. nose is cardboard and molasses. Unfortunately, that is the taste, too. not worth the price. disappointing, given I've been looking forward to trying this. Based on reviews, I will be much happier with Night Tripper. Looking forward to it.
At this ABV, why is this classified as an american stout, versus a double? though I guess it does taste like a fairly weak american stout with some Old Crow mixed in. or maybe just crystal palace vodka.
It is still Way better than Boak's monster mash. That is my number one worst Impy experience. Still looking forward to Night Tripper. If that is so good, why is New Holland still marketing this? (702 characters)

Photo of TheDTrain
3.62/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Recently the D Train has been trying a lot of New Holland's brew. Per usual, Dragon's Milk was good but not great....certainly can't justify the $4.00 I paid. Pretty creamy yet quite dry on taste. Some good vanilla tones and a very pleasant oak/booze blend on the back end.

I feel this is a brew that tried to be complex, but everything gets too muddled together. The higher the price tag, the higher the D Train's expectations. The Force is strong in this one, but Dragon's Milk is not a Jedi yet... (503 characters)

Photo of NickTheGreat
4.16/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L (4) – This beer is DARK.

S (4.25) – You get a little bit of the bourbon smell. Not a lot, but you can tell it’s there.

T (4.25) – This beer is solid. It has the bourbon taste, but not too much. I’ve never had any of their other stuff, so I don’t know how to compare. It is not quite BCBS, but an acceptable alternative.

F (4) – It isn’t as thick as BCBS, but it is pleasantly think. About the right level of carb, and not a whole lot of alcohol burn. It’s nice.

O (4) – Overall I was wanting to see how it compared to BCBS. It’s not quite there, but if you couldn’t find BCBS and had this, you’d be happy. I had this at the end of the night, but I tried not to let that cloud the score. (734 characters)

Photo of bman13
4.68/5  rDev +19.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

A dang good beer overall! Just had it for the first time, purchased at a Giant Eagle in a 22oz bottle, purchased last month just poured April 1.

A - can you say black? Very black, no see through light with this beer. Just plain out black.. looks deep and strong with a very minimal head and good lacing.

S - sweet and divine. Almost like dark dark fudge chocolate brownies with a hint of bourbon and a lot of vanilla. Yum

T - follows the smell with more chocolate than vanilla or Bourbon. Although they are still present. Semi sweet but not overly sweet at all. Has some nice tones of vanilla and Bourbon going on here

M - heavy and not light or soapy at all. Nice and you can taste this for about 5 mins after your last drink. Nice mouth feel.

O - awesome, one of the best stouts in a long time I've tasted. Overall 4.75, near perfect . Also tastes minimally boozy for being 11% alcohol.
( this particular stout varys from batch to batch) I luckily managed to snag the 11% alcohol batch woohoo ;) (1,005 characters)

Photo of HopHeadKen
2.78/5  rDev -29.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pours dark amber brown, porter like in appearance with a thick creamy head of fine, medium and large bubles.

First taste is TART, What is this an oak aged lambic porter ?
The tartness lingers and seems to overwhelm the malt and hops.

Thanks DonO for this one; I am glad I tried it, but it doesn't excite me. (314 characters)

Photo of Contagion
4.87/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

It comes in a 1 pint, 6 fluid ounce bottle. That's a total of 22 ounces for those of you that don't want to do the math themselves. It comes in a brown bottle with the name on it and the picture of a dragon over a barrel, very eye catching. There is also some informative writings about the beer on it.

The beer is a dark coffee color that light doesn't pass through. Very much like Guinness or Murphy's Irish Stout. When poured into the glass it forms a nice firm half-inch head tan in color. I've been drinking on this beer for 20 minutes and the residue of the head is still along the edge where the beer and glass meet.

The smell is heavenly. You can smell the oak of the barrel, a hint of bourbon and a hint of vanilla, coffee and malt. The smell itself was enough to make Ktreva want to take a sip, and she doesn't like dark beers. I don't think words can describe the taste, but that won't stop me from trying. The taste is like happiness. Roasted malts with a hint of vanilla and bourbon entice the tongue and mouth. There is a very slight bitterness to it that enhances the flavor. Even Ktreva liked the taste, and she doesn't like many beers. This is a beer to be savored and appreciated, not gulped down to get another. What is even more surprising is that it is High Gravity ale with 9% alcohol by volume. Tasting this beer you would not suspect that at all.

The texture in the mouth is very much like milk. It's extremely smooth and doesn't leave a bad aftertaste. It coats the mouth and throat as it easily passes by in a pleasant way.

I've never had a beer like this before. When I say it's unique, I truly mean it is a one of a kind. This is the type of beer that beer lovers hope to find, and then are disappointed, when after sampling it, they can't find it anymore. It is a bit pricey at $6.99 a bottle, but well worth the price. If you ever get a chance to sample one, you'd be a fool to pass it up. There are only a handful of beers that I've had the pleasure of tasting that goes into my, "Special guest" category, but this is one of them. If I know I'm going to have an avid beer drinker over, I'll make sure to have a couple of bottles of this fine elixir in the house. This would be the 30-year single malt of beers. (2,245 characters)

Photo of dowen17
4.31/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a dark brown with a big cream colored head. Great retention

The nose is dark chocolate, cream, vanilla, oak, and some alcohol. Very good smelling beer.

This beer tastes great. Milky vanilla taste on the first sip. The oak really doesn't present itself until mid-sip but its very good. On the sweeter side as well.

Mouthfeel is big, chewy stout. Great.

This is a great beer. Will definitely drink again any chance I get. (432 characters)

Photo of imagineiii
2.76/5  rDev -29.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Aggresive pour yeilds a dark brown, almost porter-like appearance. Good inch of off white, large bubbled head. dissipates slowly, leaving decent lace behind. no complaints here.

Smells like a chocolate porter. dry, very faint bourbon notes. nothing spectacular at all.

This is where it falls apart. Initial taste is a strange and uncomforting astrigency on the tongue. Followed by dryness of a porter that doesnt hold much of a bourbon flavor. After taste is chemically. Alcohol is well hidden tho.

Aside from astringent taste, the beer has a nice weight to it. It isnt too bad in the mouth but it falls apart after.

Drinkable, I dont think so. Im wondering if I can finish it. (681 characters)

Photo of Dave_in_GR
4.26/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Served from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass, date on bottle says aged 2012.

Appearance - poured a really nice dark brown color with just a small layer of light brown head. Completely opaque in the glass.

Smell - seems to be dominated by the oak from the barrel aging. No alcohol smell whatsoever. The aroma is relatively mild.

Taste - the taste is dominated by oak and a creamy vanilla flavor. As with the aroma, the alcohol is hardly noticeable. There is a bit of a bitter aftertaste, perhaps from the roasted malts. Definitely a beer to drink slowly.

Mouthfeel - definitely some astringency in the mouth while drinking, and it is a strange mix with the sweet and creamy vanilla flavors. Otherwise very pleasant, very lightly carbonated.

Overall - lovely dessert stout with sweet and distinctive flavors. (811 characters)

Photo of moonboogie_n8
4.6/5  rDev +17%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

one of my fav BB stouts available as a year-round. creamy, chocolate, bourbon with vanilla blended very well.
tried 2014
and 2015 vintage
subtle difference, the alcohol is more hidden. smoother chocolate, more roasted malts coming out in the aged bottle.
gotta try if you haven't. lives up to the hype.
dynamic &complex full-bodied stout. yum. (343 characters)

Photo of Dansting
4.1/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle. Poured a dark, purplish brown color with a nice brown head and strong lacing. Aroma was very pleasant, with a nice blend of roasted malts and oak. Mouthfeel was okay. Flavor wasn't as bold as I had expected, especially for the ABV. Hints of chocolate, oak, alcohol, toffee, and coffee. This was a nice big offering from New Holland. (340 characters)

Photo of unclederby
3.58/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

The case box was stamped March, 2006. This ale sits an opaque ebony in my tulip and despite a vigorous pour leaves very little cap. I'm picking up black cherry, cola and just a whiff of bourbon in the nose and very little else: kinda smells like a Dr. Pepper. I give it a few swirls and briefly i can detect a bit of currant and perhaps molasses. I really have to work (agitate) to get this though, and the beer doesn't draw me in on it's own accord. The flavors are off-dry and reveal the bourbon and some cocoa powder, with a slightly sour, somewhat "metallic" alcoholic finish...

Mouthfeel is medium/thin and lacking something in my opinion. I can drink this beer because it's nothing too offensive, but i don't know that i'd choose it over another strong ale - especially given that Arrogant Bastard (a much better brew even without the oak-aging) is three bucks cheaper than this offering. Final analysis: a notch above mediocre since i'm feeling generous. (964 characters)

Photo of stouty1
4.55/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Dragon's Milk poured a dark black with a deep ruby tint. Poured from a 750mL bottle into my snifter created a 1 inch head caramel in color. Leaves a nice creamy film along the side of the glass as it's inbibed.

Dark choclatey flavor with a hint of Bourbon. You can definitely taste the alcohol but, definitely not over powering. Leaves a nice malty aftertaste on the back of your tongue with a hint of something sweet. I am definitely enjoying this Stout and will get back to the store for more! (498 characters)

Photo of RocPorterFanatic
4.33/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a dark brown almost black with very little head. Moderate lacing clings to the 20oz. glass. The smell is very sweet. There is a definite scent of cocoa and coffee present. The 1st sip is very chocolaty. The oak presents itself very nicely by mid glass and finishes with a nice alcohol warmth. This was my first experience with New Holland but was not disappointed. I wasn't sure what to expect from either the brewery or the beer, but based on this, I'll be looking more closely at the line. (498 characters)

Photo of darkmartin
3.97/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours to a opaque black with literally no head. An aggressive pour yielded a miniscule tan head that dissapeared instantly.

Smell: Smells instantly of toffee and vanilla, with some fig maybe?

Taste: First up is the obvious vanilla and toffee, however they quickly fade to accommodate the obvious alcohol presence. Finishes with subtle fruity hops.

Mouthfeel: Definitely full-bodied and chewy. Very little carbonation.

Drinkability: The flavors are really very good in this beer, however the high alcohol content is quite present. Very good nightcap. (566 characters)

Photo of clint1019
4.15/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Black in color with a thick creamy head.

S - Roasty malt, Oakyness, bourbon, & chocolate.

T - Rich Malt flavor with chocolate and a big bourbon flavor.

M - Full Bodied.

O - Would be a great beer on a cold winter day. Maybe with a hot bowl of chili. (256 characters)

Photo of matt_duthie
4.07/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Pours with a thin khaki head, reduces to an even thinner cap, some lacing. Not quite black, letting some light in around the edges and a little pocket of deep dark red you can see through when held to the light.

S: Bourbon, vanilla, sweet dark fruits, bit of chocolate, roasted malts. Nice.

T: Follows the nose, big bourbon and vanilla, almost more like a BBA porter than big imperial stout. Finishes dry and slightly bitter. Quite good but not incredible.

F: A little lighter body than I expected/remembered, silky smooth and coats the palate. Light-medium carbonation is just about right, could use to be a little more full-bodied.

O: I really like this beer, a solid but different take on a bourbon-barrel stout than you'll find elsewhere, pretty approachable for 11% with good barrel character, and easy to find anywhere in MI. Also sweet name and cool bottle art. (879 characters)

Photo of trumick
3.08/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a deep dark amber with little to no head and some lacing.

Scent is of sweet dark roasted malts with dark fruits and spices also noted some alcohol.

Taste follows the nose with sweet, sweet malts and dark fruits with some pepper hints. Finishes sweet with alcohol at the end. I didn't notice much of a balance, too sweet.

Mouthfeel is thick, almost unpleasant, carbination is on the low side.

Drinkability for me is below average. This beer is too sweet with little to no balance, it needs something.

This almost reminds me of an Imperial Stout, but much too sweet, again not enough to balance it out. (623 characters)

Photo of thydarkprevails
4.01/5  rDev +2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From a 22 oz bomber poured into my duvel tulip. Served at 55 degrees F. Pours a dark dark brown with a finger length beige head that shrinks to near nothingness. Aroma is toasted dark malt, bourbon, vanilla, and coffee. Flavor is as complex as the aroma. Vanilla, chocolate, mild bourbon, oak wood, cream, and roasted barley. Mouthfeel is medium and quite sticky. Pretty good beer. (381 characters)

Photo of Spiekerbox
4.3/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A- Dark reddish-black with a small, quickly receding, off-white head. No lacing on the edges of the glass

S- Malty and chocolaty scent with an oak backbone.

T- Chocolate is the first thing that comes with vanilla and oak flavors also appearing. The oak was also there but not quite as strong as others have suggested, this may be because the beer was not very cold when I poured it, and I would not suggest drinking it cold either as the flavors come out well with a cellar-temperature pour. Alcohol presence is there but not powerful.

M- Low carbonation that kind of tingles the throat as you drink, but otherwise is absent. Big body that is thick and creamy, almost "chewy". The mouthfeel is as close to milk as I think I have ever experienced in a brew, maybe this is how the milk of a dragon is?

D- Enjoyable beer that demands respect as you drink it, could definitely not have more than one of these at a time, but would love to have one from time to time. As with most of New Holland's offerings this is a very unique beer that makes itself something different, but still very tasty.

Side not that the listed ABV on the bottle is 10.0% and not 9% as listed by BA, most likely a difference in the 2010 batch from previous. (1,232 characters)

Photo of Beerdanza
4.53/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This is the perfect sipping beer. The oak barrel aging gives it an amazing heart and soul. You will taste the sweet malt, and a nice touch of hop bitterness. But the oak resins really come through, and mix with the high ABV to make a beer that has all the sipping satisfaction of a fine bourbon. This is probably my favorite beer so far. Try it if you can! (356 characters)

Dragon's Milk from New Holland Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 1,259 ratings.