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Dragonslayer | Middle Ages Brewing Co., Ltd.

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507 Ratings

Brewed by:
Middle Ages Brewing Co., Ltd.
New York, United States

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
None provided.

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 507 |  Reviews: 351
Reviews by Douglas14:
Photo of Douglas14
4.83/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours very black, pretty much as black as it can get. Awesome head - dark tan, thick and leaves extraordinary lacing. The smell is heavily of coffee, dark chocolate, something else also that I can't figure out. It tastes absolutely amazing...burnt coffee and bitter chocolate. Surprisingly, there is little alcohol burn, if any, that is noticeable (especially for a Russian imperial stout). The after taste is one of the best I have ever experienced...every flavor comes out even more and it comes on stronger, which is amazing and I wish all beers had this great quality. I am very happy I found this beer as it is now up towards the top of my list...I highly recommend this to everyone, especially fans of Russian Imperial Stouts.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of BadBadger
3.68/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I was more than a bit disappointed, when I finally got around to giving this Russian Imperial Stout a try. It pours a nice dark color from the bottle and into the glass. There is a good deal ofnice tan foamy head. The smell is of a mixture of malts and alcohol. The taste is the weak point of this brew, it is almost deficient in any flavor, it is a very odd damp thickness. The high alcohol is better hidden in the taste compared to the aroma. The after-taste is minimal. Sadly, I must say that I personally feel that this beverage is not worthy of a searching journey. But if readily available and affordable, what the hell, give it a go.

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Photo of DrDemento456
3.93/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Good to see the reviews so high since I was able to pick up an aged bottle of this for 6 bucks at the local House of 1,000 beers.

A - Very thick, dark as viscous the way I like em! The head is a deep dark mocha as well, sticky lacing and seems to stay around for quite a bit.

S - Well I can smell the hops from my computer but up close it kind of reminds me of Samuel Smith's imperial in a way it touches on a mix of hops, licorice, molasses, and slight levels of bittersweet chocolate.

T - Wow it's very hoppy and a touch drying (chalky) which was unexpected since I do like sweeter stouts. It does seem to balance after a while to an enjoyable level of roast and ashy chocolate.

M - Medium to heavy in body. Sipping on it right now.

Overall again I am a huge fan of more balanced sweeter stouts and this one seems more traditional in the heavy handed hops and chalky roast. I am actually not sure if it's even that old since the hops are still kicking hard. I love the style just not this beer.

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Photo of bignick
4.23/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Bomber purchased at Julio's in Westboro 3/3/06 poured into a St. Bernardus glass.

This beer is absurdly smooth and drinkable for a 9% abv RIS. Ii think I consumed the entire bomber in about half an hour, and I wasn't rushing or anything like that. It is actually pretty mellow for the style, but very tasty. It has the classic taste of burnt coffee and chocolate. Overall, it is very nice, and at $4-$5 a bottle, it is one of the best deals there is.

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Photo of bylerteck
4.3/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle from Binghamton Beer Depot. From notes.

A - Poured black with a two finger mocha/brown head. Spotty lace rings and a good half finger of retention.

S - Super chocolatey, really rich, mocha, iced coffee. Such a lovely and inviting aroma.

T - Lot's of roast. Lot's of chocolate. Rich and sweet. A touch of alcohol. Tasty stuff.

M - Nice mild carbonation. Full body and a sweet then dry and bitter finish.

O/D - Pretty nice Imperial Stout. Rich and tasty. Makes you know what you're in for with the alcohol, but makes you want more as well. Nice stuff.

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Photo of woodychandler
4.87/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

The pour created two fingers of mocha-brown head with excellent retention. The color was a deep, inky black allowing no light to penetrate. The nose was smoky with a bit of sweetness underlying the smoke. The mouthfeel was thick and chewy, reminiscent of fudge. There was lots of chocolate and smoke on the tongue, like dark chocolate in liquid form. The finish simply lingered with that chocolaty-smoky quality that I noted throughout. The sticky lacing that it produced will have to be jackhammered off. I would recommend this with a chocolate dessert or as a finish with a maduro cigar. Yum!

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Photo of Exiled
4/5  rDev -1%

Photo of NEhophead
4.33/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thick and frothy chocolate-colored head with good retention. Ringed, spotted, and intricate lacing scattered around the glass' sides with great strength. Opaque black in color.

Roasted chocolate and espresso aromas; semi-sweet yet burnt. Moderate oak and smoked quality masking a whaff of warming alcohol. A few notes of dark fruit as well: cherry, plum.

Big milk and dark chocolate flavors; deep roasted malt character. Velvety smokiness giving a complex blend with the roasted espresso and vinous, ripe fruit. Big, bold flavors with waves of warming alcohol leading to a mouthful of hops and dark bitterness. An aftertaste of chewy, roasted chocolate and rich cafe.

Full bodied; rough and thick on the palate. Not as syrupy as I like, and look for, in an Imperial Stout.

Very drinkable for the style; at 9.2% abv, the alcohol presence is rather mild. The flavor is dead on for the style. A great offering worth searching for.

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Photo of craftaholic
4.1/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Poured a noir swill from a bomber to a snifter that not even a ray of light could fight through. Its opaque abyss has a two finger length frothy tan latte-esque head that leaved behind a bit of bubbly lacing.

Smell: There is a coffee bean aroma with tinges of burnt sugar and roasted grains.

Taste: Has a rich heavily toasted grain with bittersweet mocha dark malt. There is also a roasted hazelnut espresso quality with charred caramel/toffee and cocoa powder lingering behind with subtle raisins and plum and a lick of alcohol.

Mouthfeel: Coats your mouth like a fumigator with a nice coating of malty robustness and a touch of diacetyl that leaves a smooth butteriness. Not very oily but decently thick.

Drinkability: This is a quite drinkable stout, an imperial at that. The medium body and lowered oil consistency allows it to go down smooth and hide the abv like a game of hide and seek. Find it and relish in your findings.

Overall: Don't let the leathery swamp of a hue deter you from enjoying this finely crafted stout. It binds together nice dark complexities and doesn't overdo the coffee to make it more star*bucks and less beer.

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Photo of Hibernator
4.53/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Middle Ages Dragonslayer
22 oz brown bottle
9.5% ABV
Served in a 20 oz tulip pint glass

Pours an amazing looking dark black. Creamy brown colored head floats on the top of the beer. Great head sustain with incredible trails and patterns of lace,

Complex nose with whiffs of dairy, sugars, chocolate chips and hops.

Rich chocolate flavors and juicy raisins with sharp esspresso bean profile. Biting hops and dark fruit with a chocolate syrup blast. The mouthfeel is incredibly smooth and enjoyable.

Without question, this beer is the real deal. A great Russian Imperial Stout. Deceptively drinkable at 9.5%ABV.

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Photo of DoctorB2B
4/5  rDev -1%

Photo of brentk56
3.48/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a "Dark Ages" black with a brown ring; the modest tan head starts out creamy and then fades rather quickly, while leaving a bunch of foamy dots here and there

Smell: More char and peat than the typical RIS, although there are some roasty aromatics as well; lacks the depth of aroma, however

Taste: Opens with a peaty chocolate flavor that turns in a roasty, somewhat bitter direction by mid-palate, when the char takes over; I almost imagine there is some bacon in there, too; after the swallow, the flavors settle down and some coffee joins the fray; still, it lacks the depth of flavor of the great examples of the style

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Sure tastes different than the typical RIS and, while it presents a nice contrast, there is just too much missing in the smell, the taste and the mouthfeel for me to score this higher

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Photo of GregSVT
3.9/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

22oz bomber into a snifter

A: Pours a deep black with a nice dark tan head that fades to a ring leaving some good lacing on the glass.

S: The nose is mostly roasted malt, sweet cocoa, and a chocolate milk aroma. Smells really good.

T: The taste is sweet chocolate milk with a roasty coffee flavor on the finish. Really good and slightly reminds me of Ten Fidy.

M: The feel is a bit thin for the style but the creaminess from the carbonation is the best redeeming quality.

D: I could see myself drinking this all the time if it was available in my area. Great RIS with all the right flavors and aromas.

Thanks to Exhiled for this one.

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Photo of kmpitz2
4.68/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer comes courtesy of shippos and clvand0. Holy darkness batman. This beer pours as black as pitch, with a small tan head that falls to ring the top of the beer. Damn, this looks good. The nose is a bit hoppy and a bit sweet molasses. Not a lot of the chocolate or coffee tones. The flavor is chocolate covered hops that move towards a sweeter molasses, finishing coffee bitter that moves to a nice residual hop bitter. Fantastic balance between all the flavors. Not even a hint of oxidation though the growler is 3 weeks old. Wow. The feel is not quite as thick as I would expect, though it is still nice and full, just not huge thick. For being over 9%, you would never know without trying to find it. This beer is very good. Thanks to all that helped get this beer to my glass.

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Photo of meich75
5/5  rDev +23.8%

Photo of deBeers
4.68/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Oh my! The beer gods have smiled upon me this cold and foreboding night. This pours a black the color of engine oil with a generous two finger creamy head of caramel colored goodnes.

At first very crisp and carbonated but not overly so. This beer grabs holds of your senses the way an experienced tango dancer would lead a novice partner. This is very fresh & superpbly delishous. Not as thick as some but the drinkability is unmatched imho.

As is settles and warms a bit the mouthfeel becomes more creamy although the the slight carbonation never leaves the picture. A hint of dates (or figs?) and raisins but primarily it's the roasted coffee and cocoa that soothes my tastes buds ever so subtley, yet at the same time upfront and forthright.

Decadent, rich and creamy; this is the most exsquisitely drinkable RIS I've had to date. Great for cold winter sessions but just watch the sneaky abv. I smuggled this into an open mic night and everyone was loving it. My smile couldn't be hidden enough and Guiness didn't even stand a chance.

Big thank you goes out to WarriorSoul for this lovely handcrafted brew. Thanks as well to Middle Ages and all who made this possible.


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Photo of MaltistLupulist
4.35/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A colleague fetched this for me whilst visiting family in Rochester; thanx, Indy!

As I pour the contents of the bomber into my trusty oversized snifter a minor but nagging concern befalls me: lack of viscosity. I like my imperial stouts thick, syrupy, and chewy, and while this doesn't appear wimpy, the relative thinness is a bit worrisome. As it settles in the glass my concerns are assuaged: it looks dark as soot and the opaqueness becomes apparent, not a soupcon of light coming through. Initially there is a lot of foam, but this settles quickly into a half-inch of head which sustains itself throughout the imbibition.

The aroma shatters any lingering skepticism I had at the pour. I get Lapsang Souchong by the bushel, with lesser degrees of toasted caramel, chocolate, and dried fruit. Surprisingly, having read many of the previous reviews, I don't detect any coffee. Perhaps this is because, as a drinker of microroasted coffee (Counter Culture, Intelligentsia, &c.) with all its complex and subtle flavor characteristics (and to which much of the same descriptive terminology BAs use could apply), I feel that saying that something smells (or tastes) like coffee is like saying that something smells (") like beer.

The smokiness that dominates the aroma likewise lays its claim to my palate. This is turning out to be largely a one-note beer, but man, what a note! The bacony homogeneity of the flavor is compromised only by hints of fig and anise and a whisper of bourbon. Some warming alcohol lurks on the peripheries of the smoky monolith but is otherwise inconspicuous.

The mouthfeel is dry--not as sticky as I would have expected from a RIS.

I had some trouble adjusting to the smokiness, as it can initially be as much of a repellant as alcohol, especially when not expecting it, but once acclimated, drank this down with gusto. At 9.5% abv, alcohol is well-hidden.

I was pretty wowed by this beer and, as only my second sampling of Middle Ages (I wasn't as impressed with the Druid Fluid), look forward to trying more of their offerings. My biggest qualm is probably with the classification: I know this isn't aged in bourbon barrels or anything but it definitely seems to bear more resemblance to an AD/IS than a RIS.

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Photo of Franchise
3.95/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a onyx color that leaves no chance of seeing through it. It leaves a thick brown lace that sticks to the glass giving you the perception it might have some sweetness. The appearance is so delicious, clear, and smooth.

As I lift this glass to my nose chocolate, nutmeg, brown sugar, roasted nuts all come out. With no smell of alcohal to be found. The taste is spectcular, the bitterness of the hops come out. it tastes like roasted bitter herbs followed by a hint of dark chocolate with only the faintest essence of burnt coffee in the aftertaste. Overall this beer is very crisp, sharp, with no hint of sweetness throughout the beer. A good RIS

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Photo of plowe70
4.11/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 2.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of meathookjones
4.32/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from a growler courtesy of shippos. Pours out an inky black with a good sized tan foamy head. Some scattered lace but not much in the way of head retention. Aroma is big on the roasted malt notes and ripe dark fruits. Alcohol is present but not to strong. I believe the Ringwood yeast also lends to the aroma as I detect a similar scent that I have got from most of their beers. Very full rich scent. Taste starts off with sweet fruits before the big roastiness comes in. Ringwood adds a very interesting layer to the flavor. End on a lightly sweet roasty note. Mouthfeel is slick and pretty full. Goes down quite easy and is definitely a sipper. Tasty stuff that I recommend, pretty unique as well.

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Photo of mikel52588
4.13/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Poured from a bomber into a dogfish head signature glass; its completely black with a tan finger and a half length head; leaves a nice lacing.

Smell: Caramel maltiness with a slight coffee aroma and a strong alcohol scent

Taste: A coffee flavor floods your taste buds on the first sip there are hints of cocoa in there but only slight; the brew has a surprisingly sour aftertaste with the combination of flavors that are present

Mouthfeel: Heavy body with a slight dryness to it; it's almost sticky on the tongue. It has decent carbonation but the thickness subdues a lot of it.

Drinkability: This heavy bodied brew hits hard, but does it pretty stealth-like, since you barely (if at all) taste the high alcohol content that's in it. I don't know if I would session with this beer but if I did I would probably be on the floor.

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Photo of DrJay
4.35/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black with a chocolate coloured head. Great retention and lacing - very pleasing in the glass. Malty and roasted aroma with some acidity and grapefruity hops. Big malt character is balanced well by a solid bitterness. Roast and caramel play nicely with hints of cherries and citrusy hops. Creamy texture with a full body and moderately low carbonation. A tasty and drinkable big stout and another great beer from Middle Ages.

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Photo of ShadesOfGray
4.12/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bomber into my Portsmouth snifter/tulip glass. Pourd pretty dark and fills the glass black solid all the way through. Head is a dark tan in color and is pretty decent in size...frothy with mild retention. A couple legs of lacing slide quickly down the sides of the glass.

Aroma is some-what strong of nice hops mixed with roasted coffee. There's a pleasant sweetness detectable that is making my mouth water...I didn't have high expectaions for this beer...but it's already inviting!

Flavor starts with a mild hop bite, definitely tollerable, and follows quickly by a great roasted coffee. Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy, mild carbonation...malty, yet drinkable! There's a small amount of fruit coming through...possibly cherries, and it gives a another twist in characteristic to this semi-complex stout. A very good beer!

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Photo of Danny2321
4.43/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On Tap at Sunset 11/3

A - Small dark brown head with a blackness so dark it looked like oil, so for fun I held it up to a light. Nothing came through, just how I like my imperial stouts.

S - For a beer so strong, it smelt sweet. I even let one of my roommates take a whif, and to quote him, "wow, this just smells good"

T - Phenomanal. A smooth chcolate undertone is definately there with the upfront roasted barley. Aftertaste lingers nicely and doesn't get too bitter, especially as it warms up a bit.

M - Silky smooth, not too thick, but not too thin. Somewhere in the middle there. Could have been thicker for such a stout, but I feel any more than is there would take away from how smooth it really is.

D - For a 9%+ ABV, this goes down almost too easily. I finished my 13oz glass with a smile on my face. I couldn't sit and pound this, but I definately could have had another.

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Photo of oline73
3.88/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a growler into a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Pours almost black with a half finger of thick, light tan head that fades a a ring around the edge of the glass.

Smell: Sweet and very smooth. Roasted malt with some chocolate and dark fruit. Some warm alcohol at the end.

Taste: A lot like the smell. Very smooth with some mild alcohol. Bitter roast and dark chocolate. Some smoke as well. Just enough sweetness to balance things out.

Mouthfeel: The body is on the thick side with tingly carbonation and a really dry finish.

Overall: Very smooth. I had never heard of this one before, but I'm really happy that I got to try it and would have it again.

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Dragonslayer from Middle Ages Brewing Co., Ltd.
Beer rating: 4.04 out of 5 with 507 ratings