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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

3,738 Ratings
THE BROS
86
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,738
Reviews: 1,162
rAvg: 3.98
pDev: 13.82%
Wants: 194
Gots: 681 | FT: 38
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: 3,738 | Reviews: 1,162 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of farrago
3.55/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Thin tan head of mixed bubbles, just covers the surface before fading into islands across the surface, light lacing albeit with some stickiness. The liquid is dark enough brown to suggest black, opaque although at the rims and glass bottom you can see it's an orangish brown as well as very clear. In the nose oak barrels is no lie, explosive coconut custard, butterscotch, caramel, chocolate covered raisins, maple syrup and just about anything else bearing a familial resemblance to the aforementioned, plums, prunes and maraschino cherries to boot. Medium-bodied, the low carbonation does little to fend off it soaking in like an anchor. Boozy, here you get another blast of vanilla fudge, butterscotch, caramel, coconut, licorice, etc. The cherry fruit has a cola edge to it like Cherry Coke, then slides you date, raisin, prune flavors. Brush of orange citrus. Relentlessly monochrome, if you are not totally into it from the start would need some kind of food to add contrast.

farrago, Mar 01, 2010
Photo of MarkFy
3.93/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz. bottle

L: dark reddish brown, little foamy head disappears quickly, makes sense for a barrel aged ale.

Smell: bourbon and vanilla with a little brown sugar.

Taste: I love a good bourbon ale or stout and for me this one delivers. Same as smell, with bourbon and vanilla up front with a sweet but dryer finish.

Mouthfeel: Quite boozy, which I can't decide if that is a good or bad thing, guess it depends on my mood!

Drinkability: I like to knock back a few of these on occasion and always keep a few on hand, but not something I would drink all night.

MarkFy, Feb 26, 2010
Photo of BeerGodz
3.63/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Look: Deep ruby/dark brown color, thick head that dissipates quickly, with good lacing

Smell: Bourbon, roasted malt, molasses, coffee, vanilla, brown sugar

Taste: Up Front: Bourbon, vanilla, and raisins
Finish: Dark brown sugar, lot's of booze. Finish is also dry

Mouthfeel: Rich, almost syrupy

Drinkability: Relatively easy to drink, but it's a "one and done" kind of beer for me

Overall Impression: When I bought it, I was under the impression it was an Imperial Stout, but I realized right away that it was too thin for the style. It was a slightly imbalanced - a little heavy on the sweetness, but it is a good (borderline Very Good) beer nonetheless, and certainly worth trying, especially if you like barrel aged beers like I do.

BeerGodz, Feb 25, 2010
Photo of Ego
3.45/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

eyes...
2 full fingers of mildly cocoa head, fairly fluffy, light can barely navigate through this brew, lacing is good and the retention is admirable, your average to good looking brew.

nose...
wet wood, a little alcohol, subtle cocoa hints but mostly boozy wood tone

taste etc...
nice medium plus mouth feel, creamy, kind of a mild bitter chocolate flavor, the alcohol is pretty well hidden considering the ABV. This just doesn't "wow"...

verdict?
good beer, nothing great, packs a pretty good punch and it isn't crazy money.

Ego, Feb 22, 2010
Photo of Traquairlover
3.6/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

12-oz bottle poured into a tulip.

A = Very dense, mahogany liquid when viewed without light behind it, but showing dark ruby colors at edges when held up. Has a very small light tan head that recedes very quickly leaving light tracery on the surface.

S & T = Scents of vanilla, cocoa powder, sweet treacle. Most of the smells also show up in the taste but there is also a plastic taste and a certain thinness up front, by mid-palate though there are good tastes of cream moderated by slight bitterness of oak, vanilla and cafe latte without any sugar added.

M = Medium to medium-heavy body, very good mouthcoating, creamy full soft feel.

D = I do like this beer, but somehow it just doesn't draw me to each sip like I would prefer. I find after half a bottle I've really had enough. Good, but not good enough.

Traquairlover, Feb 21, 2010
Photo of tko741
4.22/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours an oil-black with some dark ruby around the bottom and edges of the glass. Busy-looking tan/vanilla head that dissipates to nearly nothing with little in the way of lacing.

Smells of rich roasted malts, slight alcohol bite, and wonderful dark chocolate. I could sit and smell this for 45 minutes before actually drinking it.

Wow. Tastes like a beautiful rush of complex, sweet malts, rich vanilla mousse, decadent roasted toffee and raisin. A tad of alcohol which never gets in the way. Additional notes of dry sherry and maple syrup linger in the aftertaste. All of these flavors are balanced and are never overpowering. The mouthfeel turns from slightly loose to creamy and spongy, like biting into a piece of bread pudding.

One of these would be fine. I can't imagine going much farther than two or three of these, as it will destroy your palate for both other beers and food. Additionally, the 9% alcohol by volume will leave you reeling after a couple.

tko741, Feb 19, 2010
Photo of foggymountainman
4.43/5  rDev +11.3%
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.

foggymountainman, Feb 16, 2010
Photo of jakeyb
3.6/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The Dragon's Milk Oak Barrel Stout from New Holland definitely lives up to it's name: it's intense creamy flavor blends beautifully with the mocha/vanilla aroma and nutty finish. Very smooth for a stout, probably due in no small part to its oak-barrel aging. Though it carries a worthy ABV of 8.5%, it's presence is barely perceptible. Heavy mouthfeel, with a slight sticky-sweet taste left lingering on your lips. My only complaint is that I got almost no head with very little lacing even with a vigorous pour. Not an incredibly complex beer, but a pleasant desert-like drink that pairs nicely with these cold Michigan winters.

jakeyb, Feb 15, 2010
Photo of ne0m00re
3.18/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 5 | overall: 2.5

Served on-tap in a brandy snifter at Betty's in Columbus.

A: Black with an amber hue. The soft, big tan head disappears after your first sip and you're left with a thin lace.
S: Heavy fruity bourbon and vanilla.
T: More of the same with some roasted malts. I'm not a big fan of these one-note stouts.
M: It has a full body but it's a crisp beer with an alcoholic bite. The mouthfeel is in-balance and really is this beer's saving grace.
D: If I stuck around, I'd order a different beer. This definitely is a brandy-snifter beer.

Overall, the intense vanilla bourbon flavor overwhelms the beer. I would order a local brewpub's stout over this anyday.

ne0m00re, Feb 12, 2010
Photo of drpimento
4.1/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served with a fine foamy tan head and good lace. Color is a very dark, almost opaque cherry wood. Aroma is heavy malt, whiskey, caramel, vanilla, toffee, and leather. Flavor is like that, but much more intense and quite sweet. Wonder if they're using lactose... Has a smoothness to the body. Good carbonation. Finish is like flavor and long. Not a session beer. Might work good with ice cream.

drpimento, Feb 09, 2010
Photo of stakem
4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark brown; nearly black in color. Around the edges, where light can shine through, it has some red/brown hues. Less than a finger of tanned head produced despite a fairly aggressive pour. Spotty amounts of lacing cling to the glass and it has fair retension for just a thin layer on top of this beer supported by rising bubbles of carbination. Nose is a big bold slap of woodsy oak character that is a little musty with alcohol, dark sugary sweetness and vanilla all coming into play before the usual toasty grain character of stout. Taste is really no surprise after taking in everything the aroma as to offer. Flavors include literally everything that the aroma presented: oak, alcohol (more in warmth factor than in taste but the taste is clearly there as well) bitter chocolate, and slight dark fruity sweetness like plum. Finishes bitter, but more like a burnt grain kind of bitter than a hop bitter. It has a chewy mouthfeel that clings to the palette and doesn't let go. Overall I really enjoyed this beer. It has a very enjoyable and complex nose and taste. The only thing I found a little distracting was the musty character in the aroma. Other than that I really enjoyed everything about this beer and would highly recommend it.

stakem, Feb 09, 2010
Photo of Florida9
4.1/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Appears black, but it reveals itself to be a very dark brown when held to the light. Served with a minimal 1/8" of light tan, very creamy head, that has little retention. Light lacing.

S: Heavy scent of oak and vanilla. Sweet dark malts. Molasses.

T: Vanilla and oak and a bit on the boozy side, leading to the inevitable scent of bourbon. Slightly sweet, caramel. Long, hot finish.

M: Medium heavy with medium carbonation level. High alcohol content gives a cooling feeling to the mouth.

D: I've seen this beer around, but have been passing this one up for a very long time. However, I found it to be a very good ale, much better than expected. The high alcohol content gives the beers a lighter feeling and encourages another sip. Enjoyed it.

Florida9, Feb 05, 2010
Photo of mopargoof
4.85/5  rDev +21.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I heard about this beer at the Blues and Brews festival in Akron last summer but by the time I got to the distributor they were just handing out the last one. I finally saw it in a store over the weekend and bought a couple. This beer is most excellent - probably moved into one of my top five faves so far. Creamy and delicious in a milky kind of way. The only mistake you can make with this beer is only leaving the store with 1.

mopargoof, Feb 04, 2010
Photo of manahansf
4.4/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark brown with glowing ruby highlights. The head is very light and lacy with a light brown color. The thin head gives off a strong sweet vinous aroma. The drink is slow and viscous with low levels of carbonation with sweet roasted malt flavors supported by vanilla flavors from the barrel. The flavor fades slowly and gracefully with just a hint of the sweet vanilla lingering with the warming alcohol.

manahansf, Feb 02, 2010
Photo of onthefarside
3.88/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Got this beer from my buddy in Ohio. I'm not the biggest fan of oaked beers but I do love me some stouts. So here goes.

Poured out of a 12 oz bottle into my DFH snifter with a rough pour produced a thick ebony body with a creamy white head about 1 finger thick.

Smell is predominated by vanilla but a few dark fruit flavours come through along with a bit of alcohol spice.

Taste upfront is of a strong roasted malt and then the oak hits me like a barrel (hahaha). It's a very smooth taste, nothing really stands out at once, but flows nicely over my tounge. the fruit flavours and alcohol round out the finish nicely letting you know that you're drinking a higher abv beer.

Mouthfeel is pleasant, perhaps a little thinner than I expected. Decent carbonation and over all it slides around and coats my tounge nicely.

drinkablity is soso, I wouldn't want to drink too many of these in a sitting but I dont think I would refuse it if offered or on the tap list. Definately a great parring for a desert or similar type food.

Thanks again bud for this beer!

onthefarside, Feb 02, 2010
Photo of lightindarkness
4.38/5  rDev +10.1%
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.

lightindarkness, Feb 01, 2010
Photo of rye726
4.6/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I was quite impressed by this beer. A nice stout with a nicely balanced barrel presence. Good price at $15 four pack as well.

Pours a dark brown with a silky tan head.

Nose has bourbon, vanilla, oak, chocolate, roasty malts, coffee and dark pitted fruits.

Taste also has a nice whiskey presence along with wood, vanilla, cocoa, espresso, plums and cherries.

Full body is well carbonated. Nice bourbon presence through the finish.

Tasty stuff. Should age well.

rye726, Jan 25, 2010
Photo of Richardberg
3.8/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A - mahogany color, small layer of cream head on top doesn't last long, but foam is fairly sticky.

S - rich caramel malts, bourbon, oaky vanilla, raisin

T - just what the smell predicted. In equal strength, too, if not more. Some booze in the finish.

M - medium body, doesn't have much sticky/coating quality, but carbonation keeps it interesting

D - enjoyable in many ways, but pretty strong ABV is noticeable. Adding the aged oaky flavors on top makes it fairly rough going.

Richardberg, Jan 25, 2010
Photo of mdfb79
3.85/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz. Bottle into a pint glass.

a - A very dark black, letting in absolutely no light. It has a small amount of carbonation, and almost no head whatsoever. The smallest ring of white head appears around the edges.

s - Smells of roasted malts, vanilla, oak, also a little chocolate and coffee.

t - The taste that first jumps out at me is again the roasted malts, followed by the vanilla. It has a milky taste to it and also small hints of chocolate and bourbon, though nothing overpowering.

m - Moderate carbonation and a full body, it's actually kind of smooth.

d - Overall I think it's a decent strong ale, but nothing to write home about. It does have a creamy, smooth milk/vanilla flavor, but the alcohol comes through in it.

mdfb79, Jan 24, 2010
Photo of RonfromJersey
4.43/5  rDev +11.3%
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.

RonfromJersey, Jan 20, 2010
Photo of rpstevens
3.13/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thanks again to maximum12 for this beer, another gift from secret santa 09. Poured into a smuttynose tulip. The beer pours a deep dark brown, almost black, with a ruby glow around the edges. There is a one finger off white head that quickly fades to a tight ring and leaves very little lacing.

The smell is sweet dark fruits, dark chocolate, bourbon, vanilla and oak barrel. The smell is pretty simple and straight forward, but true to the style.

The taste is overly sweet. Too much vanilla, bourbon and malt. There are hints of dark chocolate, but they never get bitter and the barrel is almost non-existent in the flavor.

The beer is well carbonated for the style, but the mouthfeel is a bit harsh. The alcohol is a little overpowering for only being 8.5%, and the drinkability suffers.

rpstevens, Jan 20, 2010
Photo of VaTechHopHead
3.68/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours your typical dark chocolate black that is barely transparent. Had a nice dark brown head on it but dissipated very quickly and leaves about an average amount of lace.

S - Still a bit too cold so the aroma is a bit constricted but it mainly consists of roasted malts for the backbone in the smell and a light chocolate aroma to accompany it. Quite simple in aroma but it works.

T - It has a very nice creamy/milky flavor which I like but an alcohol flavor kicks in pretty quick. It is matched with a oak/woody taste but the sweet alcohol is more predominant. It finishes with roasted malt sugars and the aftertaste is a mix between subtle chocolate notes and wooded flavors.

M/D - Very smooth and velvety on the plate with a medium body. Low volumes of carbonation work very well with this style. The presence of alcohol make it a sipper but nothing you can't enjoy.

VaTechHopHead, Jan 19, 2010
Photo of Freethyhops
3.93/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle split between a friend

A- pours a dark opaque brown almost black color. less than a finger of cream head.

S- smells of sweet malts and oak barrel. a little boozy fruit like aromas in there as well.

T- a nice mix of chocolate and oak vanilla. a good bit of the boozy fruits come through. a lot like a strong belgian. not the hoppiest of American strong ales. definitely more on the sweet side.

M/D- a nice silky mouthfeel. creamy with subtle carbonation. despite the nice feel. the booziness makes this one a bit of a sipper.

Freethyhops, Jan 16, 2010
Photo of sweemzander
3.85/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle poured into a snifter. No bottled date.

(A)- Pours a dark black color with just the tiniest bit of dark brown highlights. Absolutely no head formation even after a rather vigorous pour.

(S)- A general roastedness of malts. A bit of raisin & molasses-like coffee. Finishes with a touch of vanilla & brown sugar sweetness.

(T)- Basically, just like the smell foretold, only with an obviously present warmth. Rather sweet.

(M)- A good carbonation level for the style. A relatively good balance to it. Just has a small level of boozy warmth going down.

(D)- Definitely New Holland's best offering and perhaps their most popular too. Still a little sweet like most of New Hollands offerings, but not overly so. I wouldnt mind having this once and awhile.

sweemzander, Jan 16, 2010
Photo of mgbickel
4.35/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a Perfect Pint glass. Formed paper thin eggshell head that left no signs of it's quick existence behind after a few seconds. The body is thick and solid looking..dark brown...only allowing light in at the edges when help up.

Very complex aromas...heavy cream, vanilla beans and a nutty/coffee like aroma. Reminiscent of Bailey's Irish Cream actually...

Wow...the taste is just as complex as the nose. Sweet and malty up front followed by a combination of molasses and vanilla. Finishes with a nice, oaky, warming alcohol burn. Please note: the flavors change as the beer comes to temperature. The alcohol calms down and the flavors intensify.

Mouth feel is medium to thick (on the thicker side), oily with no carbonation.

What a great after dinner beer. Should be sipped not gulped. Takes some getting used to, but once acclimated, a very nice, unique brew. Will keep a few around for sure!

mgbickel, Jan 15, 2010
New Holland Dragon's Milk (Bourbon Barrel Stout) from New Holland Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 3,738 ratings.