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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

3,589 Ratings
THE BROS
86
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,589
Reviews: 1,153
rAvg: 3.98
pDev: 13.82%
Wants: 182
Gots: 616 | FT: 36
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: 3,589 | Reviews: 1,153 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Tone
3.73/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a black color. 1/3 inch head of a pale tan color. Slight retention and decent lacing. Smells of barrel alcohol, roasted malt, sweet malt, and yeast. Fits the style of an American Strong Ale. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp with an average carbonation level. Tastes of oatmeal, sweet malt, slight roasted malt, strong barrel alcohol. Overall, strong alcohol flavor and yet still not as overpowering or distracting from the body, as other aged beers.

Tone, Mar 08, 2010
Photo of rolltide8425
4.25/5  rDev +6.8%

rolltide8425, Aug 20, 2012
Photo of glid02
4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap.

Pours one shade from black with a half-finger tan head. The head recedes into a thin layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of large amounts of vanilla and butterscotch. Also present are sweet caramel malt undertones with slight amounts of roasted malt flavors.

Tastes good. A combination of sweet caramel malt and roasted malt flavors kick things off and are joined quickly by sweet butterscotch flavors. Midway through the sip hints of light chocolate flavors make an appearance before being crowded out by smooth vanilla. Finally, hints of earthy oak come into play and carry through to a mildly bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a smooth thickness with nice carbonation.

Drinkability is OK. I finished my glass without a problem however I'm not sure about another.

Overall this was a very nice beer however the sweetness from the barrels was just a bit over the top and hurt the drinkabililty for me. Still, a good beer that should be on par with Crème Brulee as far as love-hate relationships.

glid02, Sep 16, 2010
Photo of harpus
3.75/5  rDev -5.8%

harpus, Jan 29, 2014
Photo of Derek
4.33/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I sampled this at the Michigan Brewers Guild Summer Fest.

A: Cola coloured with an off-white/tan head, very little retention or lace.

S: Alcohol (port?), jaggery & brown sugar (hint's of molases).

T: Chocolate, raisin, malty bread, nut, great bittersweet balance, alcohol is pleasant (not overly assertive).

M: Well attenuated, moderate body is creamy. Carbonation is moderate.

D: Very good. This was one of my favourites at the fest.

Derek, Aug 13, 2006
Photo of GarthDanielson
3.63/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bottle into a snifter, the beer is an oily black coloring with a thin, filmy, ring of chocolate brown head. Aromas of rich bourbon notes, vanilla highlights, boozy highlights, creamy notes, and a subtle bitterness in the backbone. Interesting nose, but very heavy and boozy. Flavors are heavily roasted, with a solid roast coffee bitter backbone, heavy bourbon notes, with vanilla highlights and oak notes, and a building warmth as you drink. The coffee bitter notes build, as well, into the aftertaste, mixing with booze and vanilla/oak. Very dynamic aftertaste on a slick, oily body. Roasted and boozy linger into the slick finish. Good flavors, but a bit out of balance.

GarthDanielson, Oct 25, 2013
Photo of Gusler
4.05/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer piles forth from the brown silk screened bottle a deep brown with a large creamy tan head that slowly fades to nothingness leaving a fine thick sheet of lace to cover the glass. Nose is a hodge-podge of aromas, vanilla, Oak, caramel, toasted malt, hops, very complex to say the least, start is slightly sweet with a tinge of tartness, grain profile decent, and the top light to middling in feel. Finish has a moderate acidity, the hops delightful with the Oak flavor lasting to the very dry end, also a bit of tummy warming from the 9 percent ABV, certainly a beer to age.

Gusler, Jul 15, 2006
Photo of iL0VEbeer
4/5  rDev +0.5%

iL0VEbeer, Apr 06, 2013
Photo of tobelerone
3.85/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Wasn’t expecting too much from this beer and it was a pleasant surprise that I enjoyed it as much as I did. Pours like a good imperial stout should, jet black with a frothy brown head. Head dissipated fairly quickly, some patchy lacing remained on the glass.

Nose is chocolaty will prominent oak, maybe some subtle dark fruit, vanilla, coffee. Decently roasty. In the tasting the oak is there but not as prominent as in the nose, which I felt was a good thing; a little oak barrel is nice but I don’t always want to drink something that tastes like a wood shop. Again there was plentiful chocolate, a hint of vanilla and coffee, some raisins and figs, and a very mild touch of tartness that was a little odd. Thankfully it wasn’t particularly noticeable.

Body is medium-full, with moderate carbonation and a somewhat sticky overall mouthfeel. This is a pretty good beer, certainly not upper echelon, but not bad at all either. Lacks the fullness, heft, and complexity of the best of the style but also the pricetag of most. Worth a shot at least.

edit: more than two years and over a thousand beers later I find much of what I mentioned above still true, but I'd amend things by saying the body is firmly medium and isn't that sticky at all. Carbonation is medium but on the high side for style. Ultimately the feel is a little unsatisfying.

I'll give this beer credit for nicely counterbalancing sweet and roasty elements, but at this point I'm looking for more barrel out of my BA beers and more complexity out of this style in general.

tobelerone, May 11, 2012
Photo of dirtylou
4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've had a couple of these sitting in the "cellar fridge" since the summer, or earlier

appearance: quite dark and creamy, a deep plum color, some creamy white head with ringed lacing

smell: sugary sweet/sour, chocolate covered cherries, creamy vanilla aromas. quite sharp

taste: quite interesting...chocolate covered cherries really stick out, some nice alcohol burn, very sugary...nice oak and vanilla flavors...Im pretty impressed by this one...the flavors are quite explosive

mouthfeel: very much a red wine afteraste, medium bodied, sugar tingles on the tongue

drinkability: pretty drinkable

dirtylou, Oct 19, 2005
Photo of Alieniloquium
3.65/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

650 mL bottle poured into a de Struise chalice.

Appearance - Black, but not quite inky. Nice khaki head. Excellent retention and lacing. Nice.

Smell - Very nice.Oaky and bourbony. Nice deep roast. I detect some sweetness but not sure if it's lingering sugar or lactose.

Taste - Not quite as nice as the smell. Oaky notes and roasted malt. Slightly bitter malts. Vanilla integrates nicely. Very sweet in the back end. Not syrupy, but sugary. Detracts slightly.

Mouthfeel - Very sweet, too sweet. A sipper, but still very pleasant to drink. Medium carbonation and medium bodied.

Overall - It would be really good if it wasn't so sweet. Just too much extra sugar. Nice barrel and roast, though.

Alieniloquium, Oct 20, 2012
Photo of drummermattie02
3.25/5  rDev -18.3%

drummermattie02, Jul 10, 2014
Photo of scruffwhor
4.33/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle with 9% abv.

Appearance- Pours a spritzy, rye bread head. Color is black, the color I always thought dragon's milk should be. No discernable lacing in this dark brew.

Smell- A tart, woody mix of bourbon, roasted malt, ripe purple grapes, and well balanced hops.

Taste- Starts out with some toasted malt flavors that leads to more currant fruitiness. The center brings the tart currant malt to a more of an oak and red wine flavor. The end sees the red wine turning into bourbon with some earthy hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel- An oily yet silky, medium bodied brew. Left the palate a little tart.

I'm not a fan of tart or acidic beers, but Dragon's Milk is very complex, and unlike young Lambics. This beer has tartness blended with so many other flavors,that the tart palate adds to the complexity of this great. Two mugs up.

scruffwhor, Feb 08, 2006
Photo of xnicknj
3.33/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle poured into snifter glass. 2010 vintage.

Pours a fairly thick black color with a thinner crop of tanned head, leaving some spotty film and lacing behind.

Scents of sweet licorice and chocolate, smoky edges, some alcohol heat and earthiness on the back end.

Begins with some syrupy sweetness and roasted earthy malt. Bitter hops coupled with dark chocolate and molasses. Light smoke with some woodiness and soft bourbon notes. Finishes with some additional alcohol heat, understated vanilla, and a bit of anise.

Fuller body, sticky and syrupy, decent carbonation. Drinks pretty decent, although I really would have liked more barrel presence and better meshed flavor. This is one of those beers that I've passed up about 200 times before and now I kinda see why.

xnicknj, Mar 10, 2011
Photo of Rhettroactive
4/5  rDev +0.5%

Rhettroactive, Nov 20, 2013
Photo of ccrida
3.5/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2010 vintage bottle poured into my Delirium snifter, Dragon's Milk is dark brown with a light tan head leaving light, scattered lace.

Smell is not to robust, oak and coconut, with a little roast.

Taste big, there's loads of vanilla, caramel, alcohol, and some wood notes as well. Not the most elegant beer, it's really quite a monster, although not unpleasant.

Mouthfeel is pretty creamy, decent viscosity, very dry on the finish.

Drinkability is pretty good. Even though the 10% ABV is obvious, it's clean. The flavors aren't too well integrated but generally satisfying.

ccrida, Dec 07, 2010
Photo of jrallen34
3.8/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I drank this from a 12oz bottle into an Orval glass.

The beer pours a dark brown with a light tan head that rises only about half a finger and is gone pretty quickly. The lacing is light.

The aroma is medium and very nice. Its very malty lots of sweet chocolate with a nice smooth oak finish.

The taste is a little to sweet and watery for my tasty. The sweetness isn't balanced with much oak or bourbon so its a little offputting.

Overall, good start bad finish. Has some potential.

jrallen34, Mar 09, 2010
Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.6/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle poured into a New Holland imperial pint.
Vintage 2011, 23°P, 10% ABV, Pairings listed, F021 printed on the neck (June 02, 2011).

A - Clear and deep mahogany, ruby brown while pouring, Dragon's Milk relinquishes it's color for a deep, foreboding blackness in the pint. Topped by a thick khaki head with good retention, laces remains caked to the glass.

S - Maybe it's just the name playing tricks on me, but I get a lactose sweetness beside the milk chocolate and smooth roasted malt. Light charred oak accompanies the bourbon aroma so prevalent and sought-after in Dragon's Milk.

T - Robust and flavor-packed, Dragon's Milk features a complex malt profile of roasted notes like coffee, milk chocolate, and cocoa with smooth, more subtle oak and bourbon characteristics than the majority of other similar beers out there.

M - Smooth, supple, and full-bodied, Dragon's Milk has a nice level of carbonation that keeps it from being overbearing. Warm alcohol and mild roast bitterness (to balance) linger on the finish but remain in check so it doesn't become a booze-bomb.

O - New Holland's crowning jewel, Dragon's Milk, is rich and flavorful but not boozy nor potent to the point of being cloying. A perfect balancing act of malt sweetness, bitterness, and smooth alcohol, Dragon's Milk is great fresh and even more complex and deep with extended age. I recommend buying multiple bottles of each vintage to visit this real treat over time!

BeerFMAndy, Dec 11, 2011
Photo of Bitterbill
3.85/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I got this in a trade with joe1510. Thanks Joe!

This pours a very dark brown with reddish highlights and about a 1 finger head of tannis foam. Average head retention but it does have some nice lacing.

The smell is dominated by caramel malt but I also get some roasted malt, vanilla, and wood. Pretty nice nose.

The taste has notes of caramel and roasted malt, toffee, a real oaky flavour, and a bit of dark fruit but mostly caramel and toffee and it's hitting my tastebuds nicely. Oh, now I'm noticing a bit of vanilla; it's stronger in the smell than in the taste.

The body is thinner than I expected though it is quite creamy, carbonation is on the low side, and the abv is hidden pretty well.

Because of it's smoothness, I find it quite drinkable.. a very nice American Strong Ale indeed. I'd drink it again.

Bitterbill, Apr 25, 2008
Photo of chippo33
2.25/5  rDev -43.5%

chippo33, Sep 20, 2013
Photo of TheSevenDuffs
4.13/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured in to Duvel tulip

A - Dark brown/black in colour with a half finger of espresso coloured head.

S - Intense aroma of vanilla and oak up front with dark chocolate and some roasted malt flavours. A very intense nose.

T - Intense vanilla and oak flavours up front with a s light alcohol burn that eventually settled down. Some faint chocoalte notes and a nice sweet vanilla flavour in the finish. The taste of the ale itself is quite subdued and the flaovurs of the barrel aging form the majority of the palate of this beer.

M - Medium body, lightly carbonated.

D - A very nice beer. 10% ABV is somewhat noticeable at first but less and less as I continued to drink this. Would definitely pick this one up again if I come across it.

TheSevenDuffs, Jun 30, 2010
Photo of avalon07
3.85/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: When I poured this beer from a bottle to a pint glass, it had a black color and a thick consistency. There was a quarter inch head and some good lacing.

S: Not exactly an overpowering aroma, but solid. Strong presence of malt, chocolate and a bit of hops.

T: When you drink this, you get a big shot of coffee, then chocolate, then roasted malt. There's also some caramel in there as well. Very tasty and pretty complex.

M: This had a fair amount of carbonation and a smooth finish. It's not quite a full-bodied beer, but not a medium-bodied, either. Something in between.

D: This is a drinkable beer. It's a little on the heavy side, but it has a solid taste and a goes down easy.

avalon07, May 12, 2008
Photo of atrocity
4/5  rDev +0.5%

atrocity, Apr 29, 2014
Photo of Cynic-ale
3.75/5  rDev -5.8%

Cynic-ale, Jul 30, 2013
Photo of KAF
3.5/5  rDev -12.1%

KAF, Aug 03, 2014
New Holland Dragon's Milk (Bourbon Barrel Stout) from New Holland Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 3,589 ratings.