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Dragon's Milk - New Holland Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Dragon's MilkDragon's Milk

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

1,287 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,287
Hads: 4,796
Avg: 3.95
pDev: 26.08%
Wants: 282
Gots: 1,351 | FT: 42
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
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Dragon's Milk Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,287 | Hads: 4,796
Photo of bryanbullock
4.4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Dramatically underrated stout, beautiful cascade of foam from the effervescent center for chocolaty aroma. The mild undertones of chocolate and coffee pair effortlessly in the taste utopia that is dragons milk. The finish is smooth as the teet of a playboy bunny on your 18th birthday. This beer is a homerun!

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Photo of cmannes
4.4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml Bottle poured into a Paulaner Stien.

Appearance: Very dark, red tinge. Tan head, slow to fade, but little lacing.

Aroma: Dark, hints of chocolate & carmel. Very sweet smell.

Taste: Very sweet, malty. More of the carmel & chocolate. Maybe just a hint of toffee & coffee. Yummy.

Mouthfeel: Slightly syrupy. But it fits the sweetness.

Overall: Very yummy. If it wasn't for the ABV I'd drink more. Definitely one of my favorite beers.

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Photo of alkemy
4.4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Very dark brown with ruby highlights and a very thin tan head from the tap. It's neither here nor there, but the bartender and New Holland's website say the ABV on this is 10%.
Scent is dominated by butterscotch. There's also vanilla, bourbon, and a touch of bitter chocolate. The taste is much of the same...lots of butterscotch. Also woody vanilla and a chocolaty finish. You can taste that there is a bit of alcohol in this, but it's not over the top. Creamy feel and the carbonation was just right. I was really impressed with this one.

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Photo of ef88
4.4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured 12 oz. bottle into snifter.

A: Dark--very dark. It looks like I'm drinking a Coke (ok, a porter might be a more fitting comparison) out of a snifter. Beige head, about one-and-a-half fingers. Very little lacing.

S: Licorice, toffee, and caramel. Maybe even some raisins. An interesting and satisfying smell to this one.

T: I'm getting toasted malts, cream, dark chocolate, and alcohol. I'm a fan.

M: Good body; after each sip, the creaminess of this ale hangs out on the roof of my mouth for a bit, which I like. Pretty chewy, too.

D: I could definitely sip on a couple of these, which is more than I would first assume for a dark strong ale of 9%.

Very glad I tried this one after hearing rave reviews about it for so long.

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Photo of krustster
4.41/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

UUuuuaaahhh god man. This was my first of the New Holland High Gravity series, and the reason why I ended up trying the full lineup. Coming back to it now after several months and it's actually quite a bit better than I remembered.

Appearance is good, dark brown/mostly black with a light colored head that leaved a thick sheet of foam around my glass. It's more translucent than most of this style, so it looks slightly "weak" but oh well. This is really not a very important category to me.

Smell is nice. Very sweet, bordering on too sweet. As far as aroma, this may be the sweetest non-flavored beer I can think of, even more than Sweet Repute. Tons and tons of fruity smells like ripe sweet cherries, prunes, raisin, with loads of vanilla, candied nuts and baked sugar(?). It's obvious that this is a bourbon barreled beer, but the bourbon and oak itself is very hard to pick up on the nose.

The taste is similar to the nose. How often is that not the case? There's a lot of candied nuts up front, like those peanuts with the bumpy red stuff on them, with overripe (in a good way) fruits on the side, soaked in vanilla. Again I can't really taste much bourbon, but the influence of the barrel aging is obvious. I get a bit of brown sugar and molasses as well. Hints of coffee and bitterness on the finish, just enough to balance things and keep it from being grossly sweet. Like someone else said, I can't believe this one only has an 88 average. It's very well put-together.

Mouthfeel is very smooth. A little thinner than some comparable offerings at "only" 10% ABV but still quite substantial and has that decadent, dessert-like coating feeling on the palate. The first time I tried this I remember it being way too boozy, but at the time it was also straight from the fridge and tonight it's closer to room temperature & has calmed down considerably.

Overall, Dragon's Milk is an amazingly tasty beer for a relatively low price. I feel that some people are overlooking it because it's easily available and the price is fair ($7 a bomber/$14 a four pack) and as we all know, the only barrel-aged stouts worth drinking are brewed once in ultra-limited quantities for $30 a serving.

Seriously though, making this a year-round offering was a fantastic move on New Holland's part. It's pretty phenomenal for the price, and extremely tasty regardless of value.

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Photo of tomfitz18
4.42/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

L: Dark brown, almost black, small creamy tan head, inviting
S: Smells strong, boozy, like bourbon. Also chocolatey, nutty, and sweet.
T: Malty, strong alcoholic taste, sweet, chocolatey, hints of vanilla and nuttiness.
F: well carbonated, smooth, slightly heavy, burns as it goes down throat like bourbon.
O: a strong after tasted, could see it pairing well with ice cream. I liked this beer and thought it was very tasty. Would definitely recommend.

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Photo of foggymountainman
4.42/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

just hanging out at work, (wine bar), tasting for a possible on-tap brew. 22 oz brown bomber and good people. the pour was smooth but little head, a little lacing on the glass, a brew-tiful brown. the taste is nice and malty, a hint of raisin? yum. i could drink the whole 22 oz, but not with heidi about.

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Photo of KickbacksSteve
4.42/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Trappeze. Poured into a chalice. Frothy, beige head, soapy lacing. Black body. Aroma is mild coffee, vanilla, coconut, mild malt sweetness, slight booze. Pretty nice amalgam of flavors, complex. Very easy drinking for the high abv, very. Flavors really start popping upon warming. Excellent.

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Photo of JLeege
4.42/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

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.

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Photo of plaztikjezuz
4.42/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

pours a deep dark brown with a light brown head.
aroma of figs, oak, and chocolate, with a hint of oak and vanilla.
flavor is rich with carmel malt, chocolate, vanilla, hint of burbon and oak.
wounderfully drinkable goes down with ease and the mouthfeel is medium.
let it warm up a little and the flavor and aroma shines through.

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Photo of tmitch75
4.42/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber from Sam's in Highland Park. Cool silkscreened bottle.

Deep dark brown color is almost black, with crimson highlights when backlit. Head is pretty thin but it has very good staying power.

A lot going on in the nose... chocolate, vanilla, coffee, oak, cherries, and some alcohol. Very complex but well-blended.

Remarkably smooth flavor, especially considering the 8.5% ABV. No alcohol bite but tons of complexity. Chocolate and coffee dominate with light bourbon and cherry notes.

Over-medium body, very well to style and incredibly smooth.

Deceptively smooth and very drinkable. Complex, well-blended, and simply excellent.

Tasted on 6/25/08.

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Photo of mikeg67
4.42/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle. Pours dark brown with tall, long lasting, creamy, beige head and nice lacing. Aroma is of bourbon, roasted malt, dark fruit, wood and coffee. Body is full, creamy and smooth. Taste is of bourbon, roasted malt, coffee, vanilla, brown sugar, dark fruit and herbal hops. Finish is long and boozy, which I like. It will be my favorite RIS.

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Photo of smalenberg
4.42/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Very dark with a slim coffee-with-cream colored foam ring that persists through the whole glass. Light doesn't pass through it.

S - Bourbon! Chocolate, port wine, and rich malty nose.

T - Malty sweetness with the rich complexity coming from the oak that brings along the bourbon character. Deceptively smooth for 10% ABV.

M - Smooth as silk. Slight tingling from the carbonation, but otherwise rich and thick and very smooth.

O - This was a 12 oz serving, which is a good size of a big beer like this. A 22 would be fine to share, but I think it would be "too much of a good thing" and too filling for me. This is a great beer for a cool fall day.

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Photo of beer2day
4.42/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours black with a redish tint. Slight tan head with little retention. Stong chocolate, vanilla aroma with hints of coffee. Oakiness varies bottle-to-bottle. Mouthfeel brings memories of milkshakes. A very, very good beer. Would love to try this on draft.

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Photo of Agold
4.42/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2011 Vintage poured into a duvel tulip. Pours very dark, but not pitch black. It has a medium amount of head which recedes to a ring with a thin film of bubbles on top. Pretty nice, especially considering it is 10%. The aroma is extremely oaky, with vanilla, chocolate, and a very mild dark fruit presence. The oak does a very good job complementing the rest of the beer. It does not overpower the beer, it adds to everything else the beer has to offer. The taste is very nice as well. The oak is at a very good level, and if it was just a touch less sweet, it would be perfect. Oak, coco, vanilla, roast, but all playing very well with eachother. The mouthfeel is a bit light with a good amount of carbonation. Overall, a very pleasant surprise.

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Photo of Blakaeris
4.42/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours opaque black with very little ruby highlight. Very little head to speak of, just a thin tan ring with slight lacing.

Smell is balanced bitter chocolate with the sweetness of vanilla and carmel malt. Light wood and bourbon notes.

Taste is creamy chocolate, caramel and vanilla. Bitterness appears late and in the clean finish. I can't believe how concealed the alcohol is in this brew. Bourbon appears in the finish with nice lingering feel. Oak flavoring brings a nice complexity.

Mouthfeel is extremely smooth and light. Carbonation is slight and controlled.

At 10% this brew is dangerously drinkable. Very smooth and unusual. Mouthfeel is a little light, but still intersting. This is a well worth a try. I'm sure I will have another.

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Photo of jnn4v
4.42/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Appears to be black until you hold it to the light, when it reveals a dark brown color with a slight reddish hue. Minor tan colored head. Fine carbonation.

S: Wonderful, joyous sultry oak scents. Alcohol layered upon alcohol (ie. the scent of the bourbon or whatever used to be in the oak barrels + the scent of the 9% ABV in this beer). Sweet caramel and vanilla malt tones.

T: Toasted oats, caramel, coffee, vanilla and oak. My buddy insists it's "vanilla coke + oak flavored beer" which I can't really rationalize, but I suppose maybe some kola nut taste could be hidden in there.

M: Good, thick body with moderate carbonation. I could swirl it, sip it or gulp it and the texture works for any of the above.

D: See above note on swirling, sipping or gulping. Mmmgood.

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Photo of RonfromJersey
4.42/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Very very dark brown/black body with ruby highlights. One finger of light tan super dense foam.

Great nose of coffee, and a mix of vanilla/oak/bourbon. Extremely enticing.

Taste runs a rapid gamut, from coffee, a rapid flash of hop bitterness which is then pierced by vanilla, oak, and finally bourbon. All the while there is a sensation of melted dark chocolate oozing about. Tingly warming belly glow.

Full mouthfeel, rich but not lush.

Drinkability for this is not only dangerous, but downright astonishing. It tempts for an immediate follow up bottle.

To me this seems like an American Double Stout barrell aged more than the miscellaneous American Strong Ale, but I bow to those more experienced than I.

What it is for sure though, is a damn good big night capper of a beer. Highly recommended.

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Photo of StoneTSR
4.43/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

APPEARANCE: Coming out of the bottle the liquid is a very dark brown and once it is in the glass it appears nearly black. Shining a light through the back of the glass results in some very pretty, ruby red highlights standing out against the black backdrop. The head fizzles up to about a quarter-inch before fading into some patchy wisps that stick around on the surface of the beer for nearly the entire glass. Lacing is minimal.

SMELL: There is a ton going on here, with big vanilla, chocolate and caramel aromas. The combination smells a lot like fresh baked brownies. A hint of oak and a touch of roasted coffee beans is also present.

TASTE: In the nose, the vanilla, chocolate and caramel were all pretty equally represented, but in the taste the chocolate wins and comes through strongest. Vanilla and caramel tie for second as a hefty dose of coffee and oak bring up the rear of the field. Hints of anise and dark fruit also dance around the palate, especially towards the finish.

MOUTHFEEL: Of course the body is big, but not as big as you might expect. The Dragon’s Milk goes down silky and smooth with a strong, but not overwhelming sweetness. The balance is actually quite nice with a subtle bitterness coming from the coffee notes.

OVERALL: Since New Holland’s arrival in Colorado this has quickly become a go-to for me. I love big, imperial stouts and I love bourbon barrel-aged beers…it’s a treat to be able to have both any time of year now.

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Photo of Fugazme
4.43/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22oz. picked up in Chicago
from notes:

Largely black... near opaque... smallish, off-white head at first... with second pour it produced a beautiful, tight-white, creamy head. Slight ruby highlights throughout the glass when tilted.

Aroma is big on chocolate with strong vanilla and a bit of woody/boozy overtones. Licorice and anise hard candy... a tiny touch of burnt rubber.

Creamy smooth mouthfeel... silky and inviting.

Chocolatey, sweet finish that lingers and lingers... whiskey, vanilla, caramel...

I wish this were available in Nebraska... I'd buy it quite a bit.

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Photo of violanojblues
4.43/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - very dark, blackish. not a lot of head when poored from my growler. little lacing.

S - roasted malty, you can smell the booze, but it's not overpowering. you don't drink this without knowing that it's potent. i could smell the "oak-age-edness" (maybe it's just my brain telling me that because they've been aged in oak barrels which tells my nose that it's there)

T - Amazing! there's a lot of character in this once it warms up a little. strong bourbon/oaky flavor. lots of roasted malts, slighty smokey & creamy too. lot of things going on in here without being an over-complex hodge-podge of ingredients.

M - medium body. lightly carbonated (what you'd expect for this type of beer).

D - very smooth. an excellent after-dinner beer. i've enjoyed this one everytime i've had it with every sip.

This is a home-town favorite, with good reason.

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Photo of TastyTaste
4.44/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Screened 22 oz. bomber. Pours a dark, nearly stoutish color, but allowing a little mroe light through. Head fades quickly to a small layer on the beer.

Smell: Oh yeah, there is the oak aging. Lots of bourbon smell in this one, a little carmel, some more vanilla.

Taste: An oaked barrel, salty affair, punctuated by some vanilla. Flavors go from woody and earthy, to fairly sweet and sharp at the end. Smooth, yet strong.

Moughtfeel: Not heavy, but still full, pretty good.

Drinkability: What style this beer is going for may be a mystery, but this is a good beer. I always enjoy oak aged offerings, and this one does not dissapoint.

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Photo of WakeandBake
4.44/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black pour with ruby edges,one finger tan head.Aroma of vanilla,chocolate,burbon,oak,and dark roasted barly very nice. Flavor is complex and changes as it warms,sweet boozy vanilla creamy oaky honey burbon goodness. Full creamy mouthfeel,chewy and sticky.This came highly reccomended, I now agree.... Good stuff !

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Photo of Zach136
4.44/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pitch black solid light brown head, good lacing.

Aroma: Intense levels of bourbon, chocolate, oak, and vanilla. Roast is mostly covered by the aforementioned.

Flavor: Sweet chocolate covered caramel, with a kick of bourbon and booze with and nice background of oak.

Mouthfeel: Thick, chewy, with a pretty noticable boozyness, which is basically all I can knock this beer for.

Overall: As delicious or better than most of the highly sought after BA beers, at half the cost (at least) and 700 times the availability.

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Photo of sinistrsam
4.44/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This poured an absolute opaque creamy brown/black, with a hufe foamy tan head which lasted several minutes. There was lacing all throughout the tasting.The aroma, was one of the best I've ever had. It smelled like an old-time chocolate malt; the creaminess of ice cream, the bitter and roasted cocoa, mild coffee, mild caramel. It was incredible and very complex.
The taste was also complex; a bitting dry bitter chocolate, maybe sour fruits? Malts and very mild hops.
It was slightly thinner than the HUGE head and creamy aroma led me to believe. However, the 10% abv was well-disguised.
I was well impressed with the beer's drinkability also, quite good for something that seems to heavy at first. Buy this if just for the incredible aroma.

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Dragon's Milk from New Holland Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 1,287 ratings.