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New Holland Dragon's Milk (Bourbon Barrel Stout) - New Holland Brewing Company

Not Rated.
New Holland Dragon's Milk (Bourbon Barrel Stout)New Holland Dragon's Milk (Bourbon Barrel Stout)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
89
very good

3,589 Ratings
THE BROS
86
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,589
Reviews: 1,153
rAvg: 3.98
pDev: 13.82%
Wants: 182
Gots: 616 | FT: 36
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:
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 added by: beernut7 on 08-12-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of New Holland Dragon's Milk (Bourbon Barrel Stout) Alström Bros
Ratings: 3,589 | Reviews: 1,153 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of mcorwin
4/5  rDev +0.5%

mcorwin, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of rjacobs6
4/5  rDev +0.5%

rjacobs6, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of hefehead12
3/5  rDev -24.6%

hefehead12, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of tat2dhllblly
5/5  rDev +25.6%

tat2dhllblly, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of bpfrush
4.5/5  rDev +13.1%

bpfrush, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of Adamostella
4/5  rDev +0.5%

Adamostella, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of thebouch01
4/5  rDev +0.5%

thebouch01, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of sbricker
4/5  rDev +0.5%

sbricker, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of Exiled
4/5  rDev +0.5%

Exiled, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of JRod1969
4.25/5  rDev +6.8%

JRod1969, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of dnh2
4/5  rDev +0.5%

dnh2, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of nanobrew
4.5/5  rDev +13.1%

nanobrew, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of shuajw
4/5  rDev +0.5%

shuajw, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of russwbeck
4/5  rDev +0.5%

russwbeck, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of DavoleBomb
3.18/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a snifter. 2011 vintage.

2.5 A: Dark brown, close to black color. Pour didn't really yield a head.

4.0 S: Bourbon is the strongest component of the nose. Leathery, earthy, and mildly fruity with a touch of astringency. Booze is nearly hidden, but what isn't is almost rubbing alcohol like. Underneath, there is chocolate, molasses, and a moderate roastiness.

3.0 T: The taste, as compared to the nose, is bland. There isn't really anything that sticks out above the baseline of flavor intensity. Bourbon is light in flavor, but does add a pleasant warming. The base beer is even lighter and the chocolate and molasses in the nose are nearly gone completely. This tastes more like watered down bourbon rather than a stout aged in bourbon barrels.

3.0 M: Lighter medium body. Good moderate carbonation. Lacking in creaminess and body. Seems almost watery.

3.0 D: There's too many great barrel aged stouts to consider this one again.

DavoleBomb, Nov 13, 2011
Photo of demuzik
2.35/5  rDev -41%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

I had been anticipating this one for a while, finally got to try some on tap. My local tappery called this one a "American Strong Ale"; I think American Stout - as classified here - is a closer category. Definitely not enough hop backbone to balance out the overbearing sweetness of this brew.

The color is fine - a dark, opaque, stout-ish brown.
By the aroma alone you can already tell this is going to be one sweet beer - literally, sweet. The taste is not bad and somewhat interesting on first sip; tons of malt, caramel, sticky sweetness - but as you may have gathered from my tone, this sticky sweetness quickly caught up with me and left me reaching for water, not enthused about finishing the glass.

I guess this could classify best as a "dessert beer", served in small quantities when you want overly-sweet, imbalanced beer, but otherwise, I'd avoid it.

demuzik, Nov 12, 2011
Photo of jegross2
3.78/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewing the Dragon's Milk Ale from New Holland Brewing Company. This is one of the few year-round, always available, easy-to-get-a-hold-of beers that is aged in oak barrels.
Score: 88

2011 vintage 12 oz bottle served in a snifter glass.

Appearance: Dark brown color, a faint hint of light slices through the beer to reveal small patches of translucent dark red/brown. Pours a thin tan lacing that dissipates into nothing. 4/5

Smell: Very bourbon-forward. An oak/vanilla-mocha aroma dominates the nose, with faint cherry/maple and black licorice notes. Lots of sweet bourbon and chocolate too. 4/5

Taste: Very sweet dark fruit and maple front that subsides into vanilla and chocolate flavors. Lingering finish of dark chocolate, sweet vanilla, maple and bourbon. Some fusel/alcohol flavor. When chilled, this beer is decently balanced for a beer that has such a pronounced bourbon and vanilla flavor, but it gets real hot when it warms. 3.5/5

Mouthfeel: Medium body, light carbonation. Interestingly oily, slightly sticky finish. A little alcohol warmth. 4/5

Overall: This beer is surprisingly delicious. I tend to stray from most heavier oak aged beers because I do not love the "brown liquor" flavors of oak and vanilla, but this beer is very balanced. For a 10% ABV beer, this one is surprisingly drinkable. Definitely a sipper, though.

Recommendation: If you are looking to try your first oak aged beers, this is a great starting point. Dragon's Milk is very accessible and not too costly for what it is. More seasoned beer drinkers should enjoy this one's complex flavors as well.

Pairings: BBQ meats. Would go well with dinner at the Brickhouse or Famous Daves.

Cost: $15.99 for a four pack, $8.99 for a 22 oz (bomber) bottle.

jegross2, Nov 12, 2011
Photo of iadler
4.13/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bottle split into two tulip glasses.

A- Pours a very dark brown with a two finger mocha head that leaves lines of lacing behind.

S- Cream, coffee grounds, oak, dark chocolate, subtle bourbon and roasted malt.

T- A nice blend of coffee with cream and drizzled with some dark chocolate syrup. Dark fruits and mellow bourbon are noticeable in the background. Finishes with some roasted malt.

M- Medium carbonation and body. The carbonation is too high for my liking and the body is a tad thin. Has a slight roasted finish.

O- Haven't had this for years and really enjoyed it. There didn't seem to be as much oak presence as I remember. Definitely one of my favorite offerings from New Holland.

iadler, Nov 04, 2011
Photo of madeofsteel
3.8/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This is my first formal review of any beer, beyond jabbering on about how great or horrid it is, so I decided to pick something familiar. So please, bear with me.

A - Poured into a mug, dark reddish-brown with a thin tan head that disspates quickly, leaving a ringlet behind. Some lacing.

S - Smells like roasted malt, and faint smokiness, probably from the oak. Moderate booze smell sort of detracts from it, however.

T - Almost tastes more like a rauchbier at first, with the oak lending a smoky flavor, with strong hints of whiskey. Finishes beautifully with a more basic stout flavor that is nicely complimented by notes of vanilla. Many of this beer's flavors start show through and balance out as it warms.

M - Light carbonation, with a rather buttery, dry finish. Some heat from the alcohol kind of takes away from it.

O - There's a reason I go back to this beer. Being fond of stouts and most rauchbiers, it's nice to have something with that smoky flavor that has the subtleties that this beer does. I would recommend it to anybody that enjoys stouts or smoked flavors.

madeofsteel, Nov 03, 2011
Photo of AlexanderCsamaj
4.47/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I love this beer. It is the most exciting beverage I have enjoyed in some time. One of my professors, Dr. Crandall, brought me to the light and now I can see in the dark.

It is complex, smooth, and potent. It opens with a velvet oaky wave of flavor and finishes with a profound mouthful of vanilla butter.

Each sip offers something new. Even if you don't appreciate this style, this beer is worth sampling. Cheers!

AlexanderCsamaj, Nov 01, 2011
Photo of jtingue
3.55/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2011 Vintage. Poured into a snifter.

Appearance. Very dark with a brown color around the edges where only some light penetrates. Pours with a finger of head that dissipates to a nice thin layer around the side of the glass. Lacing is great, just clinging to the side of the glass.

Smell. Very complex with many layers hitting the nose. The most distinct is that of bourbon as well as a very sweet vanilla. There is a strange, but pleasant honey-like sweetness that fills your nostrils.

Taste. Starts out with a quick burst of sweetness that is quickly taken over by a flavor that is similar to bourbon in both its flavor and its alcoholic presence. This is followed by a milky and vanilla-like sweetness. This is once again takne over by the bourbon flavor which slowly transitions to a dark fruit flavor. The finish is quite dry and reminiscent of whiskey.

Mouthfeel. Nice creamy body. Some carbonation, but not too much for the style.

Unfortunately the worst part of this beer is its taste. Everything else is spot on for me. There is just too much bourbon and not enough complexity.

jtingue, Oct 31, 2011
Photo of Suds
4.2/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice Beer! Much better than I expected. It pours a dark, reddish-brown that's nearly black. The head is a medium-tan, although it falls somewhat quickly. The aroma is what makes this beer so enticing. It's woody, smokey, and has a huge, intense vanilla note. Wow. Strong malt, and a roasted-nut scent behind the wood, this is complex and very rewarding to sniff. Alcohol is folded into the aroma as well, with a brandy-like boozy-ness. The taste is drier than expected with a lot of warmth and malt. Roasted notes, and a bit of grain. Medium in body. This is good stuff.

Suds, Oct 29, 2011
Photo of MsRif
4.28/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. Black in color with almost no head that dissipated completely. Very, very minimal lacing...almost none. Aroma of vanilla, whiskey, oak and malty sweetness. Smells very good. Tastes of whiskey, light notes of vanilla...definite oak taste with some roasty malt flavor. Very balanced and good even though it isn't as complex as I like for the style.

Medium-full bodied with light carbonation. Very smooth and it does NOT seem like a 10%ABV brew! I would definitely drink this again.

MsRif, Oct 27, 2011
Photo of Valmor88
4.75/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Brown to black pour with a two fingered caramel head. Reduces to a creamy foam and leaves excellent lacing down the sides of the glass.

S: Oak and vanilla aroma with hints of alcohol and semi-sweet chocolate. Lots of roasted malts and caramel sweetness. Can't wait for this one.

T: The flavor is full of oak and vanilla. Roasted malts and an almost cola-ish flavor. Has an oak-y/alcohol finish that pleasantly lingers.

M: Medium-full bodied with moderate carbonation. Dry finish.

O: Dangerously smooth for 10% ABV. I'm a sucker for anything oak aged, or anything vanilla. Pair the two together and I'm in beer heaven.

Valmor88, Oct 27, 2011
Photo of Scotchboy
3.9/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz capped bottle from a trade with MarcatGSB, poured into a New Belgium globe.

A: Pours a dark rich brown, fairly opaque and black in the glass with ruby, purple and chestnut hues where the light strikes the glass. There is about half a fingers worth of roasted hazelnut colored head, which laces the glass fairly well.

S: Prominent oak, vanilla, roasted malt, and caramel sweetness on the nose, followed by some alcohol phenols. Very strong barrel character, but pleasant and not cloying.

T: Very oak and vanilla forward, with a good amount of alcohol burn, but like the sweetness it's not too distracting. Buried under the wood and booze there is some decent malt complexity in the form of roast, chocolate and caramel.

MF: Medium bodied, good carbonation, and a dry finish. Maybe a touch thin for a big stout, but I expected that with the abv.

O: An enjoyable brew, almost exactly what I thought it'd be. For my palette, the oak and booze aren't overwhelming, but I can see where that might be an 'acquired' taste...plus the barrel aging seems to cover up a lot of the other nice parts of the beer. Maybe a year in the cellar would mellow this beer and cause it to gel.

Scotchboy, Oct 24, 2011
New Holland Dragon's Milk (Bourbon Barrel Stout) from New Holland Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 3,589 ratings.