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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)

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very good

3,457 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,457
Reviews: 1,136
rAvg: 3.97
pDev: 13.85%
Wants: 165
Gots: 558 | FT: 35
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: 3,457 | Reviews: 1,136 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of MNJR


4.6/5  rDev +15.9%

Delicious brew. The color is black with a lush tan head with good retention. The smell is rich and fantastic: vanilla, oak, coconut, cream, with a hint of alcohol lurking in the back. The taste is also rich and fantastic. All of the scents above come out fully in the flavor. Maybe it's the name, but the beer does seem to have a milky or creamy texture. It is thick, but not syrupy. Nice sharp, extra fine carbonation, not wishy-washy and somewhat flat like some dark/stout-ish beers. It is not a stout, but the similarities are obvious. The 9% ABV is noticeable, but not overdone. It's an added bonus that the beer is so good and with the ABV being so high just one or two is a full serving of this stuff (it is expensive). If you have access to this, it is a must try. It won't be for everyone, but if you like stouts and rich specialty beers, this is one you won't soon forget. This is, I think, the best thing to come out of New Holland Brewing, besides their whisky which is stupendously good.

10-17-2010 15:06:48 | More by MNJR
Photo of DoubleSimcoe

New York

4.63/5  rDev +16.6%

Dragon's Milk on tap at Bob's Bar in Columbus, Ohio. Served in a snifter glass.

Appearance: Beautiful black, huge fluffy head.

Smell: Oaky for sure. Some vanilla. Roasty aromas. Smells like a barrel!

Taste: Very rich and complex. It hits you with sugars, dark chocolate, milk.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, somewhat creamy. Right carbonation and great body.

Drinkability: Very good. A sipper, but a great one. Easy to drink.

10-15-2010 21:30:30 | More by DoubleSimcoe
Photo of BuckyFresh


3.73/5  rDev -6%

Appearance: Poured from a 12oz bottle into a large wine glass. Pours a fairly black color with a dark tan one-finger head. Not as oily as a thought the pour would be; there's still some light finding its way through the glass. Where there is light, the color is dark brown to blood-red around the edges.

Smell: Toasted malt, chocolate, molasses, and vanilla. There are also some nice dark fruit undertones. There's not as much oak discernible as I expected there to be; it seems like it might be getting lost among the sweeter aromas of the beer.

Taste: Lots of bitterness and warm undertones from the oak. The oak is definitely more of a player than in the aroma and offsets the toasted malt and dark chocolate notes nicely. I feel like the balance could be a bit better though, as it seems like some of the more complex flavors are being concealed by the stronger ones.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full-bodied, pretty bitter, with a fairly dry finish. 10% ABV is concealed well.

Drinkability: This is a pretty decent brew, but the bitterness and lack of flavor complexity might prevent me from having too many.

10-14-2010 23:57:13 | More by BuckyFresh
Photo of TheKingofWichita

North Carolina

3.93/5  rDev -1%

Pours a deep black color with a off white head and generous lacing. Smells of vanilla and roasted malts. Tastes of sweet malt, chocolate, coffee, vanilla, and subdued hops. Mouthfeel is very smooth with medium body. Drinkability is good. Really a nice beer. Would drink again. Much better on draft than in a bottle.

10-14-2010 18:30:12 | More by TheKingofWichita
Photo of Lauthaha


2.53/5  rDev -36.3%

Poured from a deuce-deuce into a wine glass for maximum enjoyment.

Appearance: Opaque and black, with soft hints of red and/or mahongany. Thin tan head which does not stick around very long. Doesn't look overly thick or too thin, I like the look of this brew.

Smell: Immediately smell the oak. It's woody to the point of being perhaps just a touch over the top. Very little hop action, but the malt is prevalent in a strange way. Upon further review, it definitely smellls like merlot or cabernet sauvignon. I don't want my beer to smell like wine, so I'm not impressed.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Simply put, much like red wine poured into a stout. Gentle carbonation allows the oak flavor combined with some chocolate/vanilla candy taste to envelop the palate. Strange grape attribute is not welcome here. Aftertaste is all wine.

Drinkability: I don't think I would purposely buy this beer again. If somebody else were to buy it and offer a taste, I would not decline, but only because we sometimes need to be reminded that price does not always equal quality.

Bought this after forty-five minutes at the store, staring at an endless supply of beer. Kinda wish I would have opted for my first decision, but then again, without moving forward, I can never refine my taste. *Shrug* No go, New Holland.

10-11-2010 23:10:53 | More by Lauthaha
Photo of CHADMC3


4.2/5  rDev +5.8%

Pours a very dark brown with chocolate hues and a thin tan head that sits atop the body with just a thin layering.

Aroma consists of roasted malt, vanilla, and oak just as advertised, as well as a developing sweetness as the beer warms.

The flavor is similar to the aroma with a much greater concentration on the oak notes, perhaps a touch of bourbon like maple sweetness, again vanilla, and more roasted malt.

Very little carbonation exists in this beer with a medium body and the traditional woodnote bite I have come to expect from this type of brew.

Considering the serious body, flavor, and abv attached to this beer, it is quite drinkable and tasty. I enjoyed this beer.

09-30-2010 00:31:45 | More by CHADMC3
Photo of Anthony1


3.3/5  rDev -16.9%

A clear but very dark brown colored ale with a wispy light brown head. This is easily as dark as a porter.

The smell is sweet and boozy with lots of oak and malt and a trace of Bourbon whiskey. Vanilla, oak and caramel are all in here, so pretty much bourbon.

The taste starts semi sweet and malty with a strong vanilla flavor with a bit of a chocolate after taste. A bit malty but the oak barrel dominates the taste of this beer and it is mostly vanilla and caramel. This could be more complex.

09-28-2010 16:24:47 | More by Anthony1
Photo of JLeege


4.43/5  rDev +11.6%

2010 vintage, into a snifter

Appearance- pours a very deep brown, with hints of ruby when held to the light. One finger tan head

Smell- vanilla, sweet chocolate, oak

Taste- lots of chocolate and coffee notes. vanilla and im getting some bourbon as well(though its aged in oak). Some dark fruits mixed in there as well. Sweet up front, with a fairly dry finish.

Mouthfeel- low carbonation and medium body, pretty good for the style. Some alcohol warming too.

Overall- I always thought this was a stout, guess not, but its very similar. Fairly complex, but not to over the top like some beers seem to be getting, everything works well together. Some slight alcohol is noticed, which is expected at the 10% this years weighs in at. Got to pick up a few more and age them for a year or two, I think they would get even better.

Its a sipper, but you could make 2 or 3 of these last a long long time.

09-24-2010 02:08:00 | More by JLeege
Photo of zoso1967


4.35/5  rDev +9.6%

Dragon's milk pours a very dark mahogany tinged brown. It has almost no head. Even an aggressive pour leaves only a thin layer of large tan bubbles on top of the inky surface. It deposits only a cursory splashing of lace on the sides of the glass.

As I take a deep whiff I am greeted with bourbon right off the bat, but it is not too overbearing. There is a large amount of deep caramel sweetness in this beer that is accented by just a hint of roasty coffee and chocolate. Sweet vanilla and earthy wood aromas round out this beers delightful nose.

This is one of those beers where every sip takes your taste buds on a little journey. First stop is the candy shop, full of rich chocolate covered caramel goodness. It then whisks them off to an ice cream parlor for vanilla ice cream with some toffee bits on top. Then it's over to get some coffee spiked with bourbon. I could not think of a place that would serve something that tastes like oak, but that is definitely in there as well.

The mouthfeel might be the weakest part of this beer. It is medium, and much thinner than expected. The carbonation is subdued, but that is a good thing in this beer since it is definitely a sipper. The finish is very nice and leaves just enough of a coating in the mouth, and some earthiness on the palate.

This is a beer to be savored and a great one at that. They did a wonderful job bringing together all the flavors in this beer and more importantly my non beer drinking wife even seems to like it! Highly recommended.

09-24-2010 01:45:25 | More by zoso1967
Photo of deereless


3.68/5  rDev -7.3%

A: Thin head which dropped relatively quick, a little spotting lacing along the interior of the glass, dark brown to black in color - 4.00, S: Oak and vanilla really dominate the aroma profile, there is also a strong sweetness to the nose that reminds me of fudge brownies, within the depths I also pick up some dates or dark raisins - 4.25, T: Significant alcohol burn to the point of almost being harsh, lots of dark chocolates and pureed dates, a little bit acidic and kind of reminds me of a very mild soy sauce, the vanilla that was present on the nose comes through on the palate - 3.50, M: Mouth feel is somewhat thick and creamy - 4.00, D: A good beer that is quite drinkable but there was something that didn't click with me, I generally like the use of oak barrels but I'm not sure that was a benefit to Dragon's Milk - 3.75

09-18-2010 22:04:08 | More by deereless
Photo of scottyshades


3.78/5  rDev -4.8%

2010 batch for $3 a bottle

A: Pours a pitch black color with a small foamy khaki color cap. Retention is minimal.

S: Right off the bat you get the barrel aromas - wet wood/oak, bourbon in the nose (despite the fact that there is no bourbon), lots of vanilla, caramel, toffee.

T: The flavor is pretty interesting...its similar to BCS, but much thinner and with less bourbon/vanilla/richness. Actually pretty good. Alcohol is extremely warming (not unlike BCS), vanilla, chocolate, lots of oak, a touch of lactose, and maple syrup. Pretty complex, but not really balanced, and a little thin.

MF/D: Viscous body, smooth and creamy feel. Finish consists of vanilla and oak with a touch of bitterness/sourness.

Notes: This is like BCSs ugly cousin...a little thinner, sloppier, and less complex, but still good.

09-18-2010 20:05:52 | More by scottyshades
Photo of glid02


4/5  rDev +0.8%


Pours one shade from black with a half-finger tan head. The head recedes into a thin layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of large amounts of vanilla and butterscotch. Also present are sweet caramel malt undertones with slight amounts of roasted malt flavors.

Tastes good. A combination of sweet caramel malt and roasted malt flavors kick things off and are joined quickly by sweet butterscotch flavors. Midway through the sip hints of light chocolate flavors make an appearance before being crowded out by smooth vanilla. Finally, hints of earthy oak come into play and carry through to a mildly bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a smooth thickness with nice carbonation.

Drinkability is OK. I finished my glass without a problem however I'm not sure about another.

Overall this was a very nice beer however the sweetness from the barrels was just a bit over the top and hurt the drinkabililty for me. Still, a good beer that should be on par with Crème Brulee as far as love-hate relationships.

09-16-2010 20:36:32 | More by glid02
Photo of FSUplumber


3.9/5  rDev -1.8%

Nice change of pace. The first few sips, I don't know and half way through the bottle iwas thinking this is good.
A- dark brown to black thin tan head that faded quickly
S- Dryed fruit, burbon and water
T- Lots of burbon, a little roasted malt and dryed fruit Prune raisons and fig
M- Thick from all the malt
D- Like I said on top. At first maybe than in the middle on this is good.

09-15-2010 01:55:31 | More by FSUplumber
Photo of jones3aj


4.75/5  rDev +19.6%

Dragon's Milk (2010)
New Holland Brewing Co.
Price: $13.95 / 4 pk.
Overall Rating: [4.5 out of 5]

Appearance: A dark and syrupy pour. Looks like a roiling boil as it fills the glass. Completely opaque, with the appearance of REALLY dirty motor oil. The only way you'll get light through it is when you tipping you glass to the sky! 1 Finger's worth of a tight head of tannish-ruby color. [4 out of 5]

Smell: Strong and malty. Chocolate, smoke (oak), and vanilla really come out of this one. Nice sweet smell. You can tell there's a significant ABV. [4 out of 5]

Taste: Uber dark chocolate taste. Fantastically sweet with just the right amount of maltiness. There is a presence of bourbon (oak barrels), but it doesn't assault the taste buds as much as a Founders KBS, or Goose Island's Bourbon County Brand Stout. For as significant as the vanilla aroma is, I'm not getting nearly as much vanilla as I had expected (and hoped for!). Stronger flavors just simply overpower it, I think. The taste coats for a few seconds, but the bitterness hangs for the duration of the glass. [5 out of 5]

Mouthfeel: Being a HUGE fan of thick, syrupy stouts, this one is right up there with Founders Breakfast Stout, and Great Divide's Yetti. This is the type of beer that you "take a pull from", instead of sip or drink. The full bodied feel as you pull it into your mouth is quite satisfying. Just the right amount of carbonation meets your tongue and bubbles accompany your "pull" all the way down. A quick swish before swallowing swells it into a frothy beast that coats all the way down. (Stop it, you're a pervert!) [5 out of 5]

Drinkability: (Yes, that was a word before Budwiser snatched it for a marketing ploy). I knew when I poured a glass of what looked like motor oil that I was in love. If you're a fan of the dark side, the bittersweet nature of this beer is sure to please. The high ABV and full bodied nature of this beer makes it a perfect choice to sip during conversation, movies, or as I prefer, while editing video. If you like the darkest of the dark, give this a try. You probably ought to keep it to just one or two at a time, though! [5 out of 5]

09-13-2010 22:58:41 | More by jones3aj
Photo of Ryan011235


3.93/5  rDev -1%

Poured into a snifter on 9/8/10

2010 Vintage

Pours a dark cola-brown; settles dark. Brown around the edges. The head is alternately tight foam & loose bubbles; starting off at 1/2 inch, the foam skims out but the bubbles remain. Minimal, spotty lace.

The aroma is rather bold; notes of oak & vanilla abound. Roasted dark malts, bakers chocolate & faint earthy undertones. Some appreciable bourbon heat. The wood notes impart a musty aroma. Nice, straightforward nose.

Dry, roasted dark malts are first to cross the palate, as distinct oak & vanilla flavors manifest on the peripheries. As with the nose, bourbon makes no attempt at disguise. Swaths of chocolate make for a mildly sweet offset. Hints of earthy hops. Maybe a hint of brown sugar & molasses. Very faint burnt notions.

Full bodied, though at times it seems a tad thin; possibly a result of a being cleanly-crafted. Carbonation is low enough it doesn't get in the way. Indeed, this is a rather smooth drinking beer. Finishes with a spot of alcohol heat; vanilla, oak & roastiness linger.

Sure, Dragon's Milk is a sipper, but drinkability is pretty good considering. I've been known to enjoy a bottle from time to time & I'll continue to do so. Though not mind-blowing, it's well-structured, tasty & enjoyable. Worth a shot.

09-12-2010 01:43:37 | More by Ryan011235
Photo of mondegreen


3.95/5  rDev -0.5%

12oz into a New Holland Tulip

Pours dark black with red brown highlights. Not much head or lacing to tell of.

Aroma shows strong vanilla/oak. Subtle malt sweetness lurks in the background. Nice.

Taste is very nice. Brings together elements of old ale, baltic porter, an oak aged stout nicely. Quite similar to Founder's Black Biscuit.

Mouth and drinkability both are high on the charts. Very nice brew.

09-04-2010 19:32:29 | More by mondegreen
Photo of unibrew

New Hampshire

4.08/5  rDev +2.8%

I didn't know what to expect from this beer, but, I did get a LOT of flavor! Poured into a Sam Adams glass from a bomber, I got a lot of Jack Daniels in the nose. Taste was pretty much the same. I was hoping for oak, but, got more whiskey than expected. I didn't sense much vanilla. If you're in the mood for whiskey with a beer chaser, just go for this! It's nice to sip anytime of the year.

09-02-2010 01:01:08 | More by unibrew
Photo of GavDomDadGH


3.75/5  rDev -5.5%

A - A nice dark brown fading to darker brown. Small head that sticks and laces very nicely

S - A nice mixture of bourbon, vanilla and molasses

T - The taste does it for me. An awesome blend of molasses and vanilla. Not to be confused with a sweet beer! There is a mild bitterness to this beer

Overall I really enjoy one or two of these after a hard day of work.

08-29-2010 00:20:01 | More by GavDomDadGH
Photo of cetherid


3.5/5  rDev -11.8%

poured into a pint glass.

an extremely dark brown brew. minimal head.


The first thing you smell on this beer is bourbon. an "oaky" bourbon with a little vanilla.


very malty with a hint of vanilla. then the big bourbon kick at the very end.


a smooth drink, but packs some heat w/ the alcohol. a little burn on the lips and tongue.


IMO, one and you're done. This is a very strong brew. one can understand why you only get a 4 pack. would almost be a chore to have another.

08-28-2010 02:47:38 | More by cetherid
Photo of Figgy


4.22/5  rDev +6.3%

It had a weak head but with a good dark color. The smell didn't really come through for me. It showed some chocolate and a bourbon taste, but not overpowering. It definitely is a beer with strong taste. It leans a little to a porter, instead of an ale, with a thick chewy taste.

08-27-2010 01:24:11 | More by Figgy
Photo of jonvan04


4.68/5  rDev +17.9%

I've had this multiple times and am reviewing this purely from memory. This is just an amazing combination of roasted malts, vanilla, and bourbon. I can drink this at anytime whether it's on a cold winter night or outside in the heat (I ordered it while sitting outside on a 90 degree day, just because I saw it on tap), which is saying something for a beer this type of beer. This beer was my first of New Holland's and I've been aggresively seeking out anything in their high gravity series ever since.

08-26-2010 19:15:41 | More by jonvan04
Photo of mtstatebeer

West Virginia

3.73/5  rDev -6%

22 oz bottle. Pours a dark brown with a red hue, thin fizzy tan head that quickly diminishes, good lacing. Aroma is caramel, vanilla, dark fruits, and wood. Flavor is caramel and roasted malts, vanilla, wood, chocolate, a hint of alcohol, slightly herbal, and dark fruits. Mouthfeel is medium, lots of roasted bitterness with a slight alcohol burn, and fairly carbonated. Good beer.

08-25-2010 01:26:26 | More by mtstatebeer
Photo of bamojr


2.65/5  rDev -33.2%

Great deep color with a fluffy caramel colored head. Very Oakey smell with some lovely toffee notes.
The taste is quite potent with a strong alcohol flavor that almost overpowers the other flavors. The oak flavors give it a very nice whiskey feel, which i do enjoy. It isn't terribly drinkable due to its potency.
This brew is good for a whiskey lover and has some good qualities but also has some room for some improvements.

08-20-2010 06:02:55 | More by bamojr
Photo of darkmartin


3.98/5  rDev +0.3%

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.

08-19-2010 07:34:31 | More by darkmartin
Photo of Brez07


3.7/5  rDev -6.8%

12oz bottle poured into a snifter

A: Dark, dark brown pour that starts with a small off white head. Quickly disappears to a ring around the glass

S: Starts with vanilla, but is quickly met with some fruit (cherry, raisin). Rounds out with some oak, caramel and a touch of smoke

T: Definitely a let down from the nose. Mostly one dimensional with smoke, although more of a roasted smoke. There are traces of vanilla, bourbon and oak, but they don't last long. Has a pretty off putting aftertaste

M: Full bodied. Light carbonation, which seems appropriate for the style. Leaves an aftertaste of alcohol and metal?

D: Smells so much better then it tastes. Alcohol is mostly hidden, but it's still a slow sipper. I've got a bomber cellared in hopes that some age cleans up the taste. In it's current form, I'd pass

08-19-2010 00:56:38 | More by Brez07
New Holland Dragon's Milk (Bourbon Barrel Stout) from New Holland Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 3,457 ratings.