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Dragon's Milk - New Holland Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Dragon's MilkDragon's Milk

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

4,373 Ratings
THE BROS
86
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,373
Reviews: 1,262
rAvg: 4
pDev: 13.5%
Wants: 244
Gots: 969 | 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:
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
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Dragon's Milk Alström Bros
Ratings: 4,373 | Reviews: 1,262 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Whitey_from_Remedy
3.82/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Photo of GrayWolf1766
3.36/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of TheCraftBrewReview
4.46/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – 93: This hard-hitting imperial stout pours with an extremely deep black hue – even when holding up the beer to the light, nothing gets through. The head was rather thin around 1/4 of an inch, but left a thin veil of bubbles that played along the surface. The 750mL bottles come with an impressive label from a marketing perspective – a black dragon curled on top of a bourbon barrel – signifying the defining characteristic of the beer. The foiled bottle top is a nice touch.

Aroma – 93: Perhaps the most impressive attribute of this beer is the smell – roasted malts are immediately present but intermingle nicely with bourbon and vanilla. The smell is distinct, yet very smooth.

Body and Texture – 91: Despite the darker overtones of the beer and the stout characteristics, the initial mouth feel was more moderate than heavy, which I found to be surprising. As with most stouts, initial notes of a coffee/chocolate blend are certainly present, but as the beer warms, the ABV really kicks in, greeting the owner with a warm vanilla presence.

Taste – 94.5: One of the most important characteristics for me when grading taste is how true the beer is to its marketing. Are all the flavors and infusions present that I expect? If so, how do they mix? Dragon’s Milk is described as a barrel-aged stout with roasted malts and deep vanilla tones in an oak bath. This couldn’t be more spot on. Given the double-digit ABV I was expecting a real kick in the mouth while sipping on this, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth. The word that I keep coming back to in my mind is smooth. There are a variety of shortcomings that could have ruined this beer – the bourbon flavor not delivering, not enough vanilla notes, or the malts becoming bitter or overwhelmed by the alcohol content. None of that happened. (The only side effect of me pounding down the entire 750 mL bottle in one sitting was pretending that I was a dragon and thinking I could fly – be forewarned that having more than two glasses of this stuff will knock you on your butt).

Overall – 93.4 (Excellent): Each of the contributors on this site has their own particular niche that they frequent – Ed and Nick are fans of IPAs,Tom will frequently sample double IPAs and strong ales, and while I will drink anything that is cold and unique, I’d consider stouts and porters to be my “areas of expertise”. The bourbon-barrel aged craze of 2014-15 shows no signs of slowing down – yet for all the eye-rolling that one can do regarding the trend, lumping this beer into a broad category does it a great injustice. Although I’d still have to rank Goose Island’s Bourbon County slightly ahead of it in overall taste, this beer is available to a much bigger market at a much more reasonable price. New Holland has combined the perfect combination of roasted malts and sweet vanilla together in a marriage that will have enthusiasts “flying” back to the store for more.

Purchase Value (B) – “Bombers” are typically more expensive than their six or four pack counterparts, and I’ve seen a four pack available for $14.99 locally. This is priced just about right considering the high ABV and fantastic taste. A beer that I would recommend aging and serving close to room temperature.

Photo of pafox
3.65/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Not quite as good as the Goose Island but a nice compromise.

Photo of FogDishHead
3.84/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of quang_dam
4.09/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Garvey
4.46/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Duhast500
4.05/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of gaord
4.62/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

tried this after working 16 out of 24 hours in the fourth biggest snow storm in O'hare history so maybe this review is slanted a little. I thought the balance between bourbon and stout was very good, easy drinking. I usually like more bourbon. After shoveling 14 inches of snow the alcohol soothes the sore muscles. Very good beer

Photo of SD_Beer
5/5  rDev +25%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

very nice to excellent rich flavor

Photo of RyanCrawford
4.4/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of jgeddis
4.34/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Yeheshua
4.72/5  rDev +18%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Like this one a lot. Seems I'm an "outlier," so I need to elaborate. The bourbon flavor does make it a bit harsh, but that's balanced by a smooth creaminess that makes a great combination. The heartiness of the underlying stout itself is top notch as well, but I'm really not one to go into flowery descriptors so this will have to do.

Photo of kaiyote
4.27/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of 98green
4.5/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Keithp3939
4.02/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Really good beer. Bourbon notes are tasty and very smooth. Perfect beer for a cold, winter night

Photo of BSUNyikos31
4.07/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Robdiesel21
4.12/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of woogidyboogidy
4.32/5  rDev +8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Jeffrey84
4.12/5  rDev +3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It's is impressive to me that a brewery can produce a consistent BBA stout available year around. That is the only thing I really like about this beer. I rate it as high as I do because I appreciate the qualities of the beer but just don't enjoy it. The bourbon flavor is overpowering me. Only drinking this in a pinch.

Photo of SWPA_Brew
3.34/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of Jae61
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of s35keith
4.12/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Photo of tillmac62
3.97/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

2014 vintage. Pours almost jet black. Good head volume, excellent retention and lacing.

Rich nose of bourbon (which becomes more pronounced as temperature increases) plus sweet and dark chocolate dominate. Underneath is a light roast, subtle caramel sweetness and notes of vanilla and oak.

Light full body with a nice creamy texture that also has a bit of oiliness to it. Slightly above normal carbonation with a nice burst of effervescence in the finish.

The flavor profile is quite intense, very complex but poorly balanced. Bourbon dominates throughout, resulting in the complex flavors being reduced to subservient roles. It begins with a rush of bourbon that slowly allows a sweet caramel and chocolate to emerge. Towards the middle, a mild roast bitterness comes forward against a slight bite of tannic oak. The middle produces a very nice vanilla note. The finish is dominated by alcohol, with notes of bourbon flavor, and the associated burn at the back of the throat. As these subside, a sweet note of vanilla and oak linger with caramel characteristics. Considering this is 11% ABV, they've done a fair job of covering it. The main drawback is that the amazing complexity is never allowed to truly emerge.

Photo of ifixufly
4.29/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Dragon's Milk from New Holland Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 4,373 ratings.