Dragon's Milk - New Holland Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Dragon's MilkDragon's Milk

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

4,604 Ratings
THE BROS
86
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,604
Reviews: 1,319
rAvg: 4.01
pDev: 13.47%
Wants: 272
Gots: 1,181 | FT: 41
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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,604 | Reviews: 1,319
Photo of Jensen83
4.36/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Very good stout. A little too strong but as dessert perfect. Smell and taste are beautiful together! You can clearly smell that this stout is brewed in a bourbon barrel as the smell clearly provides some strong bourbon flavor which is great. This beer is definitely brewed to enjoy slowly. I agree with some people who can taste some chocolate taste (ties back into dessert).

Photo of morimech
4.37/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz. bomber.

Pours a dark brown with some reddish hints. Forms a one-fingered head that lingers around and finally settles to a nice cap. Leaves moderate amounts of lacing.

When cold the smell is mostly of chocolate malt. As it warms the smells of vanilla and oak come through.

As with the smell the flavor charactor changes as it warms. Starts off with a heavy dose of chocolate malt and coffee. As it warms the alcohol becomes more prevalent but doesn't dominate. That is when the vanilla shines. It has a heavy, smooth feel to it and with the light carbonation it makes a great combination. This is a sipper but more approachable than a barleywine.

Photo of DrDemento456
4.37/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got a 32oz fill at my local place for 8 bucks

A - Poured a nice deep amber with a nice bounty of fluffy head. Very carbonated for a bourbon oak beer.

S - Very light bourbon and oak tones with an underlying sweetness of caramel and candies

T - Hands down one of the smoothest bourbon barrel beers I ever had the privilege of drinking. I swear it drinks like an IPA. Well hidden bourbon with light yet playful notes of oak and vanilla with a finish of sweet caramel and vanilla flavoring.

M - Surprisingly it drinks like a medium body stout. Smooth and creamy.

Overall after the half fill was gone I wished I had more then the ABV hits you. Dangerously drinkable. When I think of New Holland Dragons milk will always be the beer I associate it with as the best I ever had.

Photo of lightindarkness
4.37/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz served very near room temp in a tall tulip.

Pours dark, a foamy khaki head rising from somewhere within. Elusive highlights can be found, but aren't prevalent. Head fizzles down more quickly than I'd like, but isn't lacking otherwise. Some stringing lace.

Nose is filled with rich dark malts, deep and murky, but not too thick. Somewhat mysterious, with dank wood and a mossy dark character, surrounded by deep overripe fruits such as prune, raisin, and date. Some leather and firm old characteristic to it. A little chalky yet still soft and full. Not overwhelming, but nice and strong. A very mild alcohol present. Nice aroma overall.

Nice full flavor, characteristically strong on dark roasted malts, but not too dry or overly roasty. Retains a lot of subtle sweetness in dark fruits, pronouncedly some dates, fig, and slight raisin, then lingering with softer vanilla and worn leather. Very round and full, but soft and mild at the same time. Becomes slightly dusty toward the finish, and the only real detraction is its thinning out to a somewhat empty flavor at the end with mild metallic hints. Grains linger and overcome the negative aspects, leaving it subtle and dusky on the palate.

Drinks full, with mild carbonation, and a decidedly clean character overall. Washes through the palate with a thin lingering film, but mostly gone in the swallow. Firm, but nowhere near overwhelming, actually rather nicely balanced.

This drinks remarkably well, and boasts of its relatively mild alcohol-to-deep character balance. Full and yet drinking with a clean and deceivingly mild feel, the flavor keeps satisfying and calling for another sip to add to the complexity. Not overwhelmingly full in complexity, yet keeping up with the best of its style, ages decently and holds up its own.

Photo of grub
4.37/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle purchased at merchant's in dearborn sept 27/08. sampled oct 4/08.

pours deep dark brown, not quite opaque with just a hint of red at the very edge of the glass when held to light. a small fairly dense mocha head forms, slowly dropping to a ring around the glass and leaving spotty lace.

aroma is great. hint of alcohol. light caramel and toffee. milk chocolate and a bit of dark chocolate. lightly toasty. nice raw oak character - slightly woody and earthy, with a hint of vanilla in the background. the wood is by no means taking center stage, more hanging back in the shadows. hints of english porter and milk stout. great malty base - whole wheat bread, biscuit, bit of cracker.

taste is great. the first thing i notice upon swallowing is the quickly spreading alcoholic warmth. milk and dark chocolate again. bit of coffee. toasty and slightly roasty. caramel. big chewy malt - biscuit and multi-grain bread. when describing the barrel character the first word that comes to mind is "soft". there's a nice woody and slightly earthy component and a light vanilla note, but completely unobtrusive. well integrated and perfectly complimentary. i keep going back for more and enjoying it more with each sip. fairly low bitterness level that seems to come more from chocolate, coffee, and roasty character than from hops - though some of that earthy character could be hops too.

mouthfeel is good. silky smooth well integrated medium-low carbonation level. big chewy body.

drinkability is good. the warming alcohol is the only real detractor to the drinkability - and even that seems to fade by mid-glass. great balance otherwise, with no real alcoholic taste noticeable. as i said above, the barrel character is pretty excellent in this one - complimentary without trying to steal the show. a great beer that i've considered buying so many times before, and now that i have i'm sure it'll be a regular purchase.

Photo of KarlHungus
4.37/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This brew pours a dark brown color. The head is small and recedes very quickly into a this ring around the glass, and leaves no lacing. The aroma is of chocolate with a hint of sourness, then some graham crackers. The taste is amazing. It is like drinking liquid chocolate with a nice sourness in the aftertaste. The mouthfeel is one of a kind. It is possibly the fullest bodied beer I have ever drank, and quite smooth too. Overall, this beer is pretty darn good.

Photo of jsbrendle
4.37/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours quite dark. Looks very much like a good porter or stout with a glance at that dark color & head. The smell likewise gives that impression. Chocolate-dark caramel-vanilla-toast. The taste echoes, although I would strongly suggest giving things a moment to warm slightly and open up. My initial impression with the beer somewhat cold was that this beer was thin & bland. The bourbon-oak is hidden for the most part, giving a background flavor at most. But for my taste, that's fine ... I don't like some of these bourbon/oak-aged things that are more akin to drinking a mixed bourbon-beer boilermaker. Overall, I was quite fond of the beer. I thought it'd make a pleasant "sipper", not too heavy & alcohol disguised well, that is, if it weren't for the high price/bottle.

Photo of birchstick
4.37/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This poured a very dark with a minimal head. It smelled delicious, with vanilla, caramel, and cocoa scents coming through. Dragon's Milk tasted as delicious as it smelled. It started out with a vanilla and dark chocolate. The aftertaste consisted of the burnt oak that was advertised, with a hint of bourbon. All in all, this was delicious. It was sweeter than I was expecting and all of the flavors mixed very well to create a very enjoyable tasting experience, however it is not one that I can drink in large quantities.

Photo of Zetcha7x
4.37/5  rDev +9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

4-Pack purchased from Whole Foods in Plymouth Meeting, PA.

A-very dark cola-colored pour. half inch tan head that quickly faded.

S-vanilla. strong bourbon notes. roasted malts. sweet.

T-huge vanilla and bourbon up front. very creamy. some coffee. chocolate as the beer warms. kind of a smoky flavor.

M-full bodied. nice carbonation. smooth and creamy. warming alcohol near the finish.

O-I don't drink a ton of stouts, but this was nice. good to sip as the night winds down. you can definitely pick up on the wood aging from the bourbon barrels. I look forward to cellaring a couple of these and trying again somewhere down the road.

Photo of woosterbill
4.37/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Sheffield's into a goblet.

A: As black as black gets with a thin tan head. Decent retention and very light lace on its way to a sold ring. Pretty good-looking for a strong beer.

S: Bourbon is apparent at first, but isn't allowed to dominate. Rich vanilla and caramelized dark fruit (prunes and raisins) follow up with great intensity. Butterscotch and the cinnamon rolls from River Street Restaurant in Spooner, WI are also apparent. Awesome.

T: Follows the nose amazingly precisely. Huge wood, bourbon, malt, caramel, vanilla, fruit, and only the lightest bit of alcohol on the finish. Outstanding.

M: Surprisingly light body that absolutely explodes into pure ultra-=fine effervescence. Interesting, but not necessarily what I want from the style.

D: Excellent for being so strong and sweet.

Notes: Great beer. Stands up to the best of all strong ales, Angel's Share. Stands up quite well, in fact. Delicious, decadent brew.

Cheers!

Photo of Hachiman
4.37/5  rDev +9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours very dark, almost black red. Short-lived grease slick head. Negligible lacing.

On the nose has an alcoholic top note, molasses, caramel and roasted malt aromas.

The flavor is uncommonly well balanced for an imperial stout. Vanilla notes tie together caramel and acidic roasted malt. Hops not much evident: nutty/herbal tastes, not very bitter.

Carbonation was low, mouth feel medium, left a sticky residue on the lips. Warming alcohol in the back of the throat.

Photo of Gehrig
4.37/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Deep, nearly impenetrable black body with a thin patch of tan foam; little lacing left, not surprisingly. Splendid nose, flush with molasses, chocolate, caramel, moderate oak/whiskey though I expected more, and a bit of vanilla.

Same with the taste, in which molasses is most prevalent, but vanilla and chocolate and caramel intertwine in terrific fashion. As with the smell, I expected more oak in the taste. It certainly isn't Oak Aged Yeti, in which the oak is unmistakable. However, it's there and finely blended into the ale, at times potent like stout but really, and ultimately, smoother as ale. Caramel is in the taste more than I expected also. Very impressed. The mouthfeel does so much for Dragon's Milk, smooth and delicious while masking the high ABV.

Excellent stuff, yet another fine product from New Holland that I'd strongly recommend.

Photo of feloniousmonk
4.37/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: frightfully dark, deep plum color, with a generous, frothy, creamy, light tan head above, lace-leaving, slowly subsiding.
Aroma: chocolate, cream, vanilla...interesting...buttery, with a whiskeyish tinge, as well.
Taste: unusual, the vanilla lingers, a woody, chocolatey character dominates. Small hops, rich malt, and the 10% Abv is sneaky, not kicking into the flavor in the least. Oh, here it comes...fruitiness comes in toward the end, raisiny, plummy, ...such a nice little brew, a great buttress against this ridiculous sub-zero January chill.
I've had this on-tap before, at the Autumn Brew Review lat fall, and wasn't so charmed...this bottle changed my mind. Were I a Michiganite, Dragon's Milk would have a coveted spot in the icebox.

9-11-2006
2 1/2 years later, it's finally available in MN, in bombers, and is as good as ever. Wonderful nightcap on a very bad day, the day my 5-year old cat died. Helpful in providing some relaxation and a small amount of liquid comfort.

Photo of Wasatch
4.38/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks goes to stouty1 for the brew.

Pour into a chalice a nice clear dark ruby color, nice carbonation, huge creamy tan head which lasts forever, tons of lacing throughout the drink. The nose is of nice sweet/oaked malts, some dark fruits (plums, figs), slight vanilla, and caramel. The taste is very nice of sweet malts, vanilla, oak, plums, and caramel. Medium body, highly carbonated feel, well rounded complex brew. Very drinkable, I'm really enjoying this one, thanks again Dan. Highly recommended.

Photo of nickapalooza86
4.38/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

I like to consider this my fall back when I dont want to drink any of my BCBS or I am out of CW BBS... But the fact is, this one can stand on its own and is no fall back, really good considering the year round easy to obtain status,

Pours about the darkest brown that it could be, almost black, finger of light tan head.

Smell is vanilla, toffee, caramel, oak

taste is much sweeter then most BA stouts, vanilla all over the place, bourbon, chocolate, oak, caramel and finishes with a almost milk stout lactose sweetness.

Mouthfeel is medium full and creamy, finishes a little dry for the style, but not offensively so.

This is one I buy 6 months before I plan on drinking, it is almost always hot right away, but at about 6 months to a year it can run with the big boys, New Holland deserves more credit for this one!

Fresh I would give it a solid 4.15, but with a little age I land quite a bit higher!

Photo of lovesoutherntier
4.38/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

my buddy picked this up on a trip to new jersey because we don't get new holland where i live, very unfortanite i know.
apperance: dark, very dark. if you do the skin test though you can tell its just very opaque, not absolutly night black like it appears.
smell: oh a very good smelling beer. smell of dark malts, with the expected touchs of vanilla from the bourban and oak.
taste: so very smooth with nice touchs of the dark malt, that accent the bourban barrel oaky and vanilla flavors, with jus a nice little touch of hops in the back end of this for balance.
drinkability: you can't by no means chunge this one down, yet it is smooth for 9 percent and aged in bourban barrels
if you love oak aged beers, like i do than a must try

Photo of ffejherb
4.38/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Brass Rail Deli on 7/2/09.

A - Dark brown body with mahogany highlights and solid two-finger creamy tan cap at its summit, which deposited lots of sticky foam around the glass.

S - Chocolate and caramel blended with vanilla and bourbon notes. Sweet aroma with a hint of alcohol heat. Minimal woody/oaky character, although there is a touch of nuttiness.

T - Flavor possesses a bold bourbon presence with a sweet, cooling vanilla character. Some chocolate fudge notes emerge in the backend with a subtle alcohol kick. While there is not much of an oaky or woody presence, the flavor is sweet overall with virtually no astringency.

M - Medium bodied with a slick, smooth mouthfeel and super creamy texture. Carbonation is minimal and quite soft of the tongue. Alcohol warmth is quite restrained, especially for a high ABV Strong Ale.

D - Dragon's Milk boasts exceptional drinkability for a bourbon barrel aged Strong Ale. This one definitely exceeded my expectations. My first encounter with New Holland was certainly a memorable one. I will be seeking out more from this brewery in the future.

Photo of alarmclock314
4.39/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

This is a smooth beer and tastes mostly of bourbon, vanilla, and oak.

Photo of jsurfs82
4.39/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I figured since this is a year round beer and I'm a huge fan of bourbon barreled beers that I needed to revisit. This beer is the 2014 Vintage and 11% abv

I must say I'm thoroughly enjoying this brew. I do not believe it should be classified as a stout however, and this isn't necessarily a bad thing. My opinion is Wee Heavy, Old Ale, Barleywine, and Stouts are all amazing in bourbon barrels. I believe the Wee Heavy and Old Ales are overshadowed many times by the giant stouts and barleywines.

This beer to me drinks alot more like a Scotch Ale (Wee Heavy) aged in BB. Almost more like a Backwoods Bastard. The color is pretty light (for a stout) and the body is lacking that roasted malt character of an Imperial Stout. Again this isn't a bad thing as I love the Vanilla and Maple flavors that non-heavy roasted malt grains do when aged in bourbon barrels.

This is a great beer but might get dinged a little in style points. Otherwise a top notch beer in my opinion and I might be keeping this stocked in my fridge until can get more BW Bastard and damn Wulver is too expensive!

Photo of Stunner97
4.39/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance- dark black with no light coming through at all with tan head that quickly fades away, little to low carbonation

Smell- the smell on this beer was probably its strongest point of all was smelling this one at the bar for quite sometime before I even took my sip, just nice oak and roasted malts and chocolate/vanilla, really solid nose

Taste- very nice stout flavor that is nicely mixed with the naunces and flavors of oak, its not a bourbon flavor but purely oak which give its sweetness and vanilla, thats mixed in with also roasted notes and chocolate tones good flavor

Mouthfeel- very heavy and smooth with little to no carbonation

DRinkability/overall- this beer is heavy and has very rich flavor and is certainly not a beer you would go at just slamming down, in terms of drinkability its probably around a four but in its overall it gets boosted up to me to a 4.5 because i just generally enjoyed the flavor and it hit me right on tap at the bar, the smell alone made me happy, maybe not absolute best stout i have ever had but pretty damn good

Photo of BeerandWhiskeyHQ
4.39/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Appearance
Black with a small mocha head, looks dangerously enticing, good lacing
Smell
Smells strong of roasted malt, coffee, sugary and has slight bourbon barrel notes
Taste
Oh wow! Medium/heavy mouthfeel, rich and abundant in roasted malt and coffee. There is also mild vanilla and a slight hint of that 10% ABV in the finish
Overall
This is a very good stout and I like it an great deal. And it’s a really good price in my area at least which sweetens the deal. I don’t think this beer gets enough credit, to be honest, if it had the name “Stone” on it people would probably think much higher of it. Anyways, I really like it and always recommend it- and so should you!

-BeerandWHiskeyHQ.com

Photo of lilsmizzul1225
4.4/5  rDev +9.7%

Appearance: Very dark (almost black) brown color. Faint head that disappears relatively quickly--not a huge deal with a stout or other beer that concentrates of malts instead of hops. Carbonation seems light. (4.25)

Smell: Roasted coffee and cocoa at the start but faint notes of vanilla, bourbon, and caramel that is pleasantly intoxicating. (4.5)

Taste: Very sweet in the beginning, very caramel, vanilla and milk-like. Tastes almost like this started as a milk stout but aged into an Imperial Stout. Quickly the sweetness dilutes and a rich deep body of flavor comes out. Almost like a burnt sugar flavor: similar to what sweetness comes from a dark caramel, caramelized onions, or roasted garlic (by similarities, not exact taste). Slight boozy taste as well but not overbearing. (4.5)

Mouthfeel: Heavy body, high gravity. Great weight on the tongue and the high gravity takes away much of the booziness. (4.25)

Overall: Great beer, like a desert in a bottler. Tried from a fresh bottle but I have a second bottle that I am cellaring for an amount of time to experiences a further aged taste. (4.5)

Final Score: 4.4/5

Photo of tetonka4kzoo
4.4/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Has a dark brown hue and pours a swirly tan head. It quickly becomes a thin lace along snifter.

Dragon's Milk has a complex nose. Strong hints of malt, vanilla, and bourbon are noticeable. The oak barrel gives it a smokey aroma.

Officially listed as strong ale but tastes like a milk stout. It has a malty and chocolate taste. The barrel aging gives it the obvious oak and vanilla taste. It also has a pleasant caramel presence.

This ale is well-carbonated and creamy. The sweetness masks the high 10% ABV/ Not brewed for heavy drinking but perfect for brunch at Food Dance Cafe or swirling in your snifter.

Photo of sulldaddy
4.4/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

In my secret santa from Mentor. Thanks man!
I am drinking a room temp bottle in a snifter. The beer pours pitch black with some ruby tints at the edges of the glass when held up to the light. A small beige to tan head foams up about 1 cm and fades to a thick edge layer quickly. Aroma is all malt with chocolate, molasses, some oak and maple syrup hints. Also a bit of alcohol.
First sip reveals a fairly thick body and very milky in flavor and texture. Smooth and silky with lots of chocolate on the flavor end. No hop presence I can detect in this overall very sweet beer. No hint of the 10 % abv on the mouth either. A rich smooth brew that I find very enjoyable. If you want hops dont look here.

Photo of martyl1000
4.4/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've had this on tap a number of times at Jacs (Madison). And while my wife loves it, I've always felt overwhelmed by its bourbon-barrel booziness. But somehow now that I'm having it from a 12 oz. bottle, I find it enchanting. Seems counter-intuitive that the alcohol would be better hidden coming from a bottle than from a tap. But the vanilla roundness and lactose sweetness play front and center, and I now love it.

Dragon's Milk from New Holland Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 4,604 ratings.