Dragon's Milk - New Holland Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Dragon's MilkDragon's Milk

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

4,595 Ratings
THE BROS
86
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,595
Reviews: 1,318
rAvg: 4.01
pDev: 13.47%
Wants: 272
Gots: 1,169 | FT: 39
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: 4,595 | Reviews: 1,318
Photo of SIRIUS2
4.02/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a chalice style glass.

A: Pours dark translucent brown. No head. No Lacing. At first couldn't spot any bubbles at all but managed to see a few breaking the surface every few seconds.

S: Mellow chocolate is immediate on the nose, with faint notes of vanilla. Even though the aromas are relatively light, they are certainly interesting.

T: Wow! "Dragon's Milk" is an apt name for this brew. It has a very complex set of flavors that include chocolate malt, vanilla, and just a hint of oaky goodness. It tends to the sweeter side, but is not too sweet. Nice.

M&D: Mouthfeel is heavy and smooth, nice and chewy. This is classified as an American Strong Ale but I find the texture and mouthfeel closer to a good Milk Stout. The only criticism that I really have on this is that the carbonation was practically non-existent. A few bubbles would have been great. That aside, the drinkability is still good and I very much enjoyed it. Recommended.

Photo of Floydster
3.88/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22 ounce bottle received as a gift from metallitone1, thank you very much for this beer, bottle looks different than the one pictured, poured into my New Belgium snifter, currently drinking it

A-Dark brown and nearly black with only some light shining through, 3/4 inch soapy light tan head that stuck around for close to two minutes, some retention and lacing at the beginning

S-Borubon, milk, sweet cream, some tartness, roasted malt, dark fruit, coffee, dark chocolate, toffee, vanilla, caramel, and some booze

T-Started off with a big bourbon taste, some burned malt in the middle, then some spiciness in the finish, did not taste chocolate and vanilla until a little later, as it warmed I began tasting some different fruits, not as much hot alcohol that was in the aroma, no hops present at all, could taste a weird funky sourness towards the end that had some booze in the aftertaste, quite enjoyable overall

M-Spicy, sweet, and dry mouthfeel, medium to full bodied, not much carbonation, taste lingered for about a minute, weird sensation on the tongue at times

D-Could not finish this bottle, only could drink about fourteen ounces, somewhat smooth and pretty easy to drink, ABV is high at nine percent though, alcohol is pretty much hidden

Had never even heard of this brewery let alone this beer, always excited to try a barrel aged beer though, nice surprise and a generous addition to my package, would drink again, recommended to anybody that has not tried it as well

Photo of Monkeyknife
4.2/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle a very dark brown/almost black with a bubbley but sparse tan head. Not much lacing.

Aroma is malty with coffee, chocolate and toffee.

Tastes of sweet oak, roasted malts, dark ripe fruits, coffee, and dark chocolate. The finish is clean. The alcohol well-hidden.

Medium to full mouthfeel, creamy and smooth, and mildly carbonated.

This is an enjoyable sipping beer. I just finished it sitting out on my deck on the first Spring-like day.

Photo of neenerzig
4.25/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this on tap 2 days ago at La Cav Du Vin. Shortly after I got mine, my friend Passow (imaguitargod) killed the keg! Drawn into a goblet. This beer is a dark brown color. Tan head maybe 1/4 inch when first drawn into the glass. Settles fairly quickly to a thin surface layer with a medium sized ring lining the inside of the glass. Sweet malty aromas of chocolate, some coffee and perhaps a bit of vanilla or dark fruit of some type is present here. The taste is also sweet, sort of biscuity and malty with all the aforementioned chocolate, vanilla, and coffee flavors. Very little to no hop bitterness here. Definitely the least hoppy beer of this style I have ever had. This beer reminded me of a lot of milk/sweet stouts I have had. Has a crisp, frothy, and full bodied mouthfeel with moderate to heavy carbonation. Excellent drinkability! A great beer! Too bad it is all tapped out, at least for now, at La Cav Du Vin.

Eric

Photo of imaguitargod
4.59/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pour from the tap to a medium head that lingers for a bit then mellows to a white cream around the rim of the glass. Dark, blood red in color. One can easily confuse this for a sweet stout or porter if not careful. It has a sweetness that can only be described as "aged". High in alcohol which when combined with the sweetness makes it kinda like as fine liquor. Only about 2% bitter and extremely smooth. I want the dragon that makes this milk!

~Jonathan Passow

Photo of donteatpoop
4.22/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Very dark. Pours with a nice tan head and leaves an eye of lace. Smells and tastes of vanilla and chocolate. Nice and creamy, heavy in the mouth. I wasn't sure what to expect when I purchased this, but I'm glad I did. I'd definately drink this again.

Photo of steelcutoats
3.8/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Here is another prime example of the High Gravity Series from New Holland Brewery. I first sampled this beer at Fathead's down in the Burgh', and wasn't sure if I'd ever get the chance to see it appear in my native Greensburg. A few months later it showed up along with "The Black Tulip" in the beer cooler down at The Headkeeper.

I poured about half of the 22 oz. "bomber" into my trusty tasting snifter. It poured with little head, which quickly vanished. The color was a clear, dark brown....not opaque like a stout. The smell was full of dark roasted malts and chocolates. The taste was a mixture of the same. This beer boasts a 9% ABV, but does an awesome job of hiding it. Another classic example of what the addition of wood to beer can do. The oak aging imparts a nice dryness in the finished products with hints of vanilla and other subtle flavors. Definitely worth a try.

Photo of dreadnatty08
3.97/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

No date, but bottle cellared for at least a year.
Pours a dark brown, slightly translucent color with a bit of ruby highlights. Plenty of big bubbled tan head and decent tracing. The aroma is a rush of bourbon, oak, vanilla, finishing with high alcohol laced chocolate and roasted malts. It is quite complex, but I don't know if I'm totally hung on it. I love bourbon and I love oak flavor, but I don't know if both necessarily need to be in beer. On the palate, it is vaguely familiar of their wheatwine I sampled nearly a year ago. Underneath all the wood, I picture a medium bodied stout, relatively smooth, but not as smooth as a cream stout should be. It finishes like a bourbon and coke with the light caramel and spices dancing with the oak. The oak brings quite a bit of body but the stout itself is lacking, it needs more of a roasted character and perhaps more lactose. Overall, and interesting brew definitely, but not up there with brews like OA Yeti.

Photo of brewandbbq
4.25/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours mostly opaque, but when held directly to light, a luminous dark ruby sheen becomes apparent. A good inch of off-white froth welled up to the brim, and receded slowly to a partial skim-coat on the surface. Lacework aplenty.
Aromatics are nice blend of caramel, roasted malts, bourbon, and oak. Vanilla follows through with some warming alcohol.
The mouthfeel is medium and creamy. Pretty smooth and somewhat lush.
The pallet has a great balance of chocolate, caramel, nougat, bourbon, oaky tannins, and vanilla. Nicely melded with not one of the layers overbearing the others.
Finishes with a hint of residuals and warming bourbon and vanilla.

Not the biggest, baddest dark beer on the planet, but impeccably balanced and highly drinkable.
A "session" barrel aged beer. True that.

Props to Joe1510 for hooking up an east-coaster...Proper!

Photo of quad07
3.62/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I picked this up at UFS, $5.99 for a 22oz dark brown bottle with a pry off cap. No bottled date or freshness date that I could find. 9%ABV.

I poured it into my large 23oz beer glass and did not produce much of a head at all. The head was a light tan color that did not leave much lacing behind. When held up to the light it appeared a very dark brown almost a motor oil color with slight reddish highlights around the edges. You could see the very tiny bubbles struggling to the top like most high gravity beers.

I like the smell! You could smell oak barrel ageing with some smoke and raison. I could not smell any hops or floral aromas.

Now when I tasted this first thing I noticed was liquorish and anise and a small amount of carbonation on my tongue. It was surprisingly sweet with creamy liquorish texture. Very little hop taste. After the third or fourth sip some slight bourbon like flavors were present and a very notable warming affect.

I could not finish the whole glass because after it warmed up it was to sweet or rich and I had enough. I felt very hot and was ready to open a window. Would be great to share or needs to be in smaller bottles.

I really liked this ale but it was too much for me at one sitting without a meal.

Cheers

Photo of Steaks
4.63/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

i had this on draft at the nachbar last week and it was awesome. it tastes, looks, and feels far superior on draft than from the bottle. the beer is dark as hell but masks the alcohol pretty well. it has some chocolate/coffe scents, and a bit of a taste, but not too much. $5 pints are some good news, man.

Photo of SaCkErZ9
3.6/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks go out to SPLITGRIN for this one.

Pours from a 22oz bottle into a pint glass. Appears to be very dark mahogony in color. Tan head that is minimal in size and dissipates at an abrupt pace. Remains as large bubble on the surface.

Aroma is sweet, alcoholic, nutty, caramel. Plenty of malt in this one. Not a whole lot in the hops department. Plums, raisins, black cherries, and slight, smokeless tobacco aroma.

Big tasting. Brown sugar and raisins really seem to be the dominant flavors here. Toffee, chocolate as well. Quite complex. As the beer warms, the complexity deepens. Really, kind of sweet; a little too sweet for my liking. No real bitterness of any kind except for a slight tinge toward the end of the sip. The bourbons flavor really starts to leach out as the beer warms. I started this one out too cold but as it warmed, it turned out pretty good.

Not a bad beer. This one is definitely a sipper. Thick and creamy on mouthfeel. Alcoholic in taste, aroma, mouthfeel, etc. A bit much for me. I would easily share 22oz with two other people, leaving 9oz, plenty enough, for three people.

Photo of LeftyBWS
3.73/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 oz. brown bomber into a Sam Adams pint glass.
A: Deep brown/mahogany color. Thin but smooth and creamy beige head. Slippery lacing down the glass.
S: Deep, rich chocolate malts, notes of coffee and vanilla. Oaky scents too, with some strong whiskey-like alcohol smells. Genrally good, but swirling the glass really helps release some of the more pleasant vanilla and malt smells. Without that, the smell is kinda off-key.
T: Chocolate malts and vanilla up front. Leads into a bready, oaky, earthy taste, and a chocolatey sweet finish that is suprisingly smooth.
M: Rich and full, for sure. Kinda creamy almost, but the finish is quite bitter and full of alcohol.
D: Okay. Enjoyable, but high ABV, and it's noticeable.

Photo of BeerBelcher
3.64/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

I've had this beer a handful of times, and it seemed a bit different each time. I can't believe I've not reviewed it until now!

It poured a dark brown with reddish hues. It had a medium bit of head composed of tiny bubbles. Aroma was a creamy smell...like a cream soda (I guess that's vanilla) and some chocolate. Flavor was of bourbon notes which were over-powered by vanilla. There were also watery chocolate notes (think Yoohoo). Mouthfeel was both a bit watery and a bit rough feeling, and probably the weakest element of this beer.

I would recommend this beer. I've previously had it on tap at Roman's Pub (St. Francis, WI), I bought a bottle from Gary's (Oak Creek), and I had it most recently at Comet.

Photo of skizziks
4.25/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep brown with garnet highlights. A mocha tan head rises maybe an inch before falling to a thin sheet.

Aroma is well noticeable on the pour. Cocoa, oak, vanilla. Some hints of figs and molasses down in there. A little coffee as well.

Hits the tongue rich and complex. A ton of malt with bourbon and its related oak and vanilla flavors. Brown sugar. Hints of dark fruit. Just enough bittering to keep the sugary malt from being cloying. Finishes long and lingering with oak and vanilla.

Medium full body with medium low carbonation makes for a very nice creamy rich mouthfeel which is perfectly appropriate for this beer. Beautiful. Somehow evades getting too cloying and heavy. I really don't want to set this one down. Rich, rewarding, delicious.

Photo of joe1510
4.13/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz Bomber
$6.99
Binny's Orland

Dragon's Milk pours dark chocolate into my goblet. Deep ruby hues light up the glass when backlit. A one+ finger dirty white head grew one the pour before falling to a thick ring and skimming. Good looking beer.

While the aroma is without a doubt good it just seems a little too subdued for such a beer. The most pronounced aromas are from the barrel aging although they're subtle as well; bourbon whiskey, oak, and a touch of vanilla. There's an intermingling of molasses and scorched brown sugar.

The flavor starts off sweet upfront with the vanilla coming through but is quickly subdued by a smorgasbord of flavors. Oak and bourbon take over the vanilla before being joined by molasses and that lightly scorched brown sugar. The barrel aging is spot on. Any more would have created an overpowering bourbon flavor and any less just wouldn't have stood up.

The mouthfeel, while being on the lighter side of heavy, fits the flavor profile really well. The lack of carbonation lets this beer gracefully glide through and the carbonation that is there creates a creaminess that's perfectly appropriate. Enough alcohol presents to give the cheeks that warming sensation.

Dragon's Milk is surely as sipper but one that goes down incredibly easy. This is a perfect nightcap for a cool evening.

It's nice to find a high quality barrel aged beer that's, although a seasonal, readily available and doesn't cost an arm and a leg to acquire. Keep pumping out the Dragon's Milk New Holland.

Photo of Georgiabeer
4.12/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours very dark brown with almost no head. No lacing either. The aromas are a heady mix of bourbon, light malt, oak, and cream. Doesn't smell rich, more like a bourbon and cream. The malty notes are subdued. Lots of flavor, but a little thin in the mouthfeel department. Could use a little more backbone. The flavors themselves are very nice, though with some chocolate up front followed by a hit of bourbon and brandy, a long warming development of alcohol, and finally some malted milk on the finish. Quite a nice sipper and doesn't fill you up as much as Bourbon County Stout, but doesn't satisy as much either. If you don't like Bourrbon flavors stay away from this one. If you do, you'll probably enjoy it as I did.

Photo of GRPunk
4.09/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap poured into a snifter.

A- Deep brown color with a thin head and lacing.

S- Nice malty aroma. Sweet caramel malts with a molasses/maple syrup scent accompanied by light hops and a bit of alcohol.

T- More caramel in the flavor with a hint of toffee and light hops.

M- Solid feel. Slightly thick with light carbonation.

D- A definite sipper, but not so overpowering that you can't drink more than one.

Photo of akorsak
4.2/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 650 mL bottle purchased at Joseph's in Toledo, OH en route to Dark Lord Day.

A: The ale is darker than I expected, not amber but rather a full-bodied black color. The more I look at it, the more it resembles cola with a dark brown color and some ruby highlights throughout.

S: The nose is stout-like, this with caramel and graham grain aromas. There is no indication of any oak barrel aging, as readily suggested by the name.

T: The nose had me expecting something subpar, luckily the first sip delivered a malty blast of goodness. Thick grains with caramel and toffee flavors abound, overwhelming the tastebuds with a sickly sweet profile. The oak barrel adds a deliciously soft touch to the thick malts, with vanilla and buttery oak flavors reducing the bite of the grains. Having been less than impressed by most of the other New Holland beers, this one really pleases me. The finish is a nice blend of chocolate and caramel malts and oaky flourish. This is what a drinkable barrel aged beer should aspire to be.

M: The mouthfeel is a restrained work of art, full of big flavors without a knock-out punch.

D: I wish that I had picked up a bottle or two more of this brew, the flavors are full and the oak aging adds a wonderful blast of flavor.

Photo of jdoncbus
3.62/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured beer in tulip glass: small head, little carbonation, decent lacing, and very dark brown; cannot see through.

Nose is mocha, oak, and hint of bourbon. Not much hop presence, can also make out vanilla & brown sugar.

Taste is of malt, mocha, and that sweet bourbon finish. The bitter oak lingers for quite some time and leaves the mouth dry. Very creamy mouthfeel and chewy as well.

You certainly need to be in the mood for one of these. My last experience with a similar beer lead to a day of upset stomach. Not a bad offering but I would certainly not seek it out since the style is not my cup of tea but would recommend to anyone into this style.

Photo of CDBeerDisappear
4.15/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark in color with massive head and tons of lacing. Riverside had just cracked a new keg and it was beautiful. Aroma is of sweet barley with hints of oak. Tastes like sweet toasted mocha with very little hop presence. It seems more like a barley wine than a strong ale. Feels thick and rich in the mouth and has just the right carbonation. Overall a very drinkable beer. Complex and enjoyable. If you can find it on tap try it.

Photo of Zorro
3.6/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

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.

Mouthfeel is OK.

Easy to drink without a doubt but it lacks so zip I think. Tasty but it needs more complexity besides the vanilla and wood.

Photo of CortexBomb
4.03/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The pour is stout-like, extremely dark with a light white head on top. I get the wood from the cask, and light caramel notes on the nose.

The taste on this is good stuff, a stoutish coffee and chocolate roasted malt flavour pairs nicely with the boozy oak and vanilla flavours from the cask. The cask definitely takes over on the back end here.

The mouthfeel is moderately thick and enjoyable, though not remarkable. The drinkability is good though, easy to drink and definitely worth a rebuy.

The bottom line: For the most part I'm not a fan of New Holland's brews, but Dragon's Milk is a nice strong ale product, actually more stouty in flavour, with a solid cask flavour to balance it out. Certainly one of the stand-outs in their portfolio.

Photo of jjayjaye
3.92/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Almost opaque, a small amount of red hued rays make it through this dark brown beverage. A very thin light tan head fades rapidly. Little lacing generated. The faint chocolate, caramel aroma and vanilla notes of alcohol really open up as it warms. Ever so lightly carbonated, the mouth feel is medium bodied yet singular. The alcohol is warming and presents a tingle upon the swallowing breadth. Somewhat less flavor than suggested by the nose, light malty caramel taste is complemented by the barrel aged flavors. A reasonable drinker at 9% ABV.

Photo of marksto
3.97/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a bomber bottle which is now silk screened instead of labeled as portrayed in the picture here.

Pours deep and dark with ruby highlights when held to the light. Thin head dissapates quickly after the pour. Nice aroma with elements of carmel, coffee, and light bourbon. Flavor offers a nice complexity that grows with warmth. Carmel, vanilla, and oak mingle with moderate treacle sweetness and hints of bourbon. A very nice beer to sip by the fire on a cool night

Overall, a pleasant find and a surprisingly good. LIkely will pick this one up again.

Dragon's Milk from New Holland Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 4,595 ratings.