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Devil's Milk | DuClaw Brewing Company

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Devil's MilkDevil's Milk

Brewed by:
DuClaw Brewing Company
Maryland, United States

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.60%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by farHillsBrewer on 11-02-2003

For Trade:
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Reviews: 123 | Ratings: 378
Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.71/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a semi-hazy orange color. The head on this is pretty solid: one finger high, pale yellow shade, good texture, and decent retention. Its smoothness suggests it isn't hopped to high heaven. Plenty of sticky, thick-looking lacing is left on the glass.

S: This has a particularly nutty smell, which seems to be assisted by its piny, floral hop notes. Let it warm up a bit, and the aforementioned piny, floral aroma really comes to the forefront. Let it warm up even more, and the malts return better than ever, bringing slight touches of dark fruit, candy, and even chocolate (!) on occasion. The aroma has some promise, especially for a brewery that doesn't usually pull off hoppy brews well.

T: Its initial flavor is fairly hoppy, bringing primarily a floral quality. These hop notes are supplanted with notes of nuts, dark fruits, and occasional chocolate. The finishing booze is prevalent, but not particularly harsh - in fact, its tart, fruity flavor (continuing where the malts left off) helps give it a bit of depth instead of come off as pure vodka. While it's not the boldest of barleywines, I like it as a more easygoing alternative.

M: It isn't that heavy feeling. It has enough carbonation. It's even faintly crisp. Translation: this beer is dangerous as fuck. Sure, you taste - and occasionally feel - the alcohol, but its integration means you're noticing the actual flavor instead of wincing from the booze. The finish is sweet, but who cares? This is a 10.6% barleywine - that doesn't come across like 10.6% at all.

O: I'm semi-impressed. Half the time I forget about DuClaw as a local option, and when I do remember them, I usually go 'meh' and get something else. But every once in a while, I come to the realization that they can make some really good beer on occasion (X-1 springs instantly to mind.) And honestly, this IS really good - it brings all the good traits of a barleywine while leaving many of qualities I don't like on the back burner. I'd reckon this is their best beer that comes in 6-packs.

Now, if only DuClaw could brew X-1 again...

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.23/5  rDev -15%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Bottle: Poured a murky brown color ale with a small foamy head with minimal retention and not much lacing. Aroma consists of deep caramelized malt with quite a bit of green hoppy notes. Taste is also a mix between some overly sweet caramelized malt with some stalled green hops that don’t really mix that well with the malt backbone. Body is about average with medium-to-low carbonation and light apparent alcohol. There is something off balanced in this beer that I didn’t particularly enjoyed.

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Photo of RandomExile
2.88/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: cloudy, translucent orange, quickly fading head, but impressive persistent lacing.
S: musty, citrusy
T: tangy, metallic, pine, bitter yet sweet
M: sharp bite of citrus and alcohol, yet somehow smooth until the aftertaste, medium-bodied
O: for being a barleywine, I would have pegged it for a smooth IPA. Not terrible, but I'm not sure he palate I'd recommend it for.

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Photo of flagmantho
3.97/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: rich amber hue with a light haze and a moderate effervescence. Head is a thin layer of light tan foam. Decent enough!

Smell: rich, bready malt character with a light fruity undertone. Simple, but enticing.

Taste: sweet, caramelly malt. Bitterness is relatively low for the style. The malt isn't complex, but it's competent and quite tasty. I like it.

Mouthfeel: medium-rich body with a good level of carbonation and a nice, satisfying creaminess. I can dig it!

Overall: I'm really enjoying this beer. It's a bit sweet, and not particularly complex, but it is satisfying in an intangible way. I just kind of hits the spot.

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Photo of facundoCNB
3.62/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

a very clean amber pour, finger of head which dissipated extremely slowly, left behind a slight bit of creamy looking lacing. aroma of sweet barley "juice", caramel, biscuity/nutty. a sweet overall taste with hints of roasted nuts, caramel, a roasty bitterness that lingers, and is a bit off putting. medium in body with a tiny bit of carbonation.. creamy with a sweet finish.

this beer poured phenomenal and smelled great.. but once it hit the palate, it was a bit underwhelming for the style, which happens to be one of my personal favorites.

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Photo of stakem
3.01/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks go to Kegatron for gifting me with a 12oz bottle of this. Poured into a matching Duclaw pint, the brew alpears a slightly hazed copper with an off-white cap more than a finger strong. The cap fades leaving a wall of lacing effect.

The aroma is like candy with an herbal hop inclusion mixed with some mineral/carbonic quality. Overall not a bad smelling beer, just a bit disjointed and lacking any clear direction. The sugary or candy aspect is a bit distracting.

The flavor is sweet with a mineral aspect somewhat like dirty pennies. There is a dusty grain inclusion which while not exaxtly thrilling, is much appreciated over the candy-like sweetness you might expect base off the aroma. The candy sugary quality the brew does display feels somewhat burnt in the aftertaste which is not all that enjoyable.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. It is boozy and awkward and not something I would seek out if looking for a solid barleywine. It saddens me to say it because I am always hoping to see local places do good but this one is rough. I appreciate the chance to try this but would probably not persue again.

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Photo of beerthulhu
3.75/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: Sunset orange with a rich, creamy 1 inch head that was thick and frothy like the topping of a cappucino. The head was antique white with yellowish undertones. Slow rise of carbonation seemed suspended at times. Love the thick whipped cream style head, though its lacing was a little underpar per substance.

S: Tropical fruit, fresh citrus with a bit of grass. Dried honey toasted caramel grains with a touch of pear and apple fruitiness along with some green melon. Nice complexity, an almost fruity ipa quality.

T: Semi-dry citurs, milky flavor, or is it subliminal? Hoppy, dry toasted specialty grains. There is a bit of fruitiness, but is not as dominate or clearly defined as was on the nose. There seems to be a bit of honey substance followed by some oaky alcohol heat on the finish.

M: Medium bodied, some honey, slippery texture and fullness. A warming of citrus and alcohol on the inner cheeks with a spicy bite on the finish.

O: Overall its a triple ipa thinly disguised as an barleywine. Fairly smooth to consume even at 10.6%. Had a few of thier beers previously, this is the first that truely impresses me.

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Photo of DaveBlack
3.58/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

A: A finger's width of off-white head tops this copper colored beer. The head has an almost permanent retention with a lot of lacing.

S: Bready malts backbone holds of a lot of piney hops. Also some honeyed fruits, kind of peachy. Really a nice smelling brew.

T: Honey hits the tongue right off the bat, with caramel and followed by the taste of bread, and pine/grapefruit hops on the finish. The hops bring some bitterness, but not as much as is needed to balance the incredible sweetness up front.

M: Incredibly thick and viscous. Almost has the consistency of honey.

O: A tasty beer, but just a little much. Too much sweetness, too thick, too much alcohol. If they had toned it back a little it could have been a great beer, but I can barely drink a 12 oz bottle.

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Photo of russpowell
3.64/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

2012 vintage pours copper colored with a finger of pearl colored head. Good lacing & average head retention

S: Some breadyness, pears & figs, plus booze; started to open up as this warmed

T: Oaky dryness, boozey pears & a touch of figs & cherry up front. Big-time woody hops as this warms, much dryness as well, plus a touch of caramel & more pear. finishes very dry, woody with pear brandy notes & just a touch of grapefruit & pine at the very end

MF: Fairly chewy with low carbonation, alright balance

Seems more like an English barleywine, just doesn't hop forward enough. Drank fairly easy, but nothing to get excited about, Started to show more American aspects the last third of the bottle, but this was stored & served at 56 degrees, so it had to warm up a ton to really show what it was

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Photo of burdgod
4.72/5  rDev +24.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

I had this served in a snifter.
A: copper colored, relatively tall, thick head that stuck around until I began drinking it.
S: Lots of fruit. I smell mostly apricot. smells beautiful.
T: Almost tastes like a fruit salad. I taste apricot, peach, and maybe even papaya. It's delicious. It's pretty sweet, but has just enough hops to cut the sweetness and prevent a nasty aftertaste. But not too much hops to where it's overly hoppy for a barleywine. Can hardly even taste that 10.6 abv.
M: Heavy body. Thick, almost syrupy. It could be a tiny bit thinner, but not bad.

Overall: This is probably the best barleywine I've ever had. I want more!

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Photo of C20Percent
4.09/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours a clean copper colored with a 1/4 finger's worth of bubbly head. Body is super clean. Minimal amount of bubbles. We'll see what happens with the lacing --> pretty impressive lacing actually.

S: Hops and caramel; sweetness. Some dark fruits.

T: Hops. Dry finish -- slightly bitter. Some sweetness coming from the malts -- caramel or toffee. Butter. Little woody. Really good. Warmness. Alcohol is well managed.

M: Nice carbonation. Smooth and creamy. Medium body -- maybe a tad thin at times. Chewiness brings out some earthiness. Might be the hops. Oily feel. Pretty good here.

O: Really good Barleywine that is somewhat local. Taste a lot like Bigfoot. Might be the hops that do it. But, this is about $5 less for a sixer. Definitely recommend this brew. Good offering from DuClaw.

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Photo of ckollias
4.49/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed this on tap at Duclaw in Bowie, MD – served out of snifter glass.

A: Pours an amber hue with a thin white head that dissolves down the side of the glas clear amber hue with a very thin white head that quickly dissipates and leave no lace.

S: Very sweet aroma followed by a huge whiff of hops.

T: Very sweet caramel malt flavor balanced by the huge amount of hops in this beer.

M: Thick body and minimal carbonation.

O: Awesome barley wine – I grab one or two of these every year.

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Photo of justintcoons
3.31/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a beer mug.

Amber with 1 finger of off-white head. Crystal clear clarity with lively carbonation.

Toffee, grapefruit and pine.

Huge toffee and table sugar notes all over. Very sugary. Some grapefruit pith. Lighter notes of pine in the finish.

Medium-full bodied, oily and well carbonated.

Not very complex, however it is well balanced. The 10.6% abv is well hidden. Not necessarily something I would purchase again though.

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Photo of jmarsh123
3.58/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours hazy light brown with a small white cap fading into a wisp. Decent lacing down the edges.

Aroma is somewhat tame. Some brown sugar, toffee and a bit of piney hop character. Sweet.

Lots of toffee and booze up front. Some pine hops mixed in with burnt sugar in the back. Pretty sweet, but the bitterness and booze kept it in check a bit with the hop profile being earthy and piney.

Medium bodied, perhaps a touch thin for my tastes with lighter carbonation although still present.

A solid barleywine. Nothing about it really wowed me, but it was solid all around if a bit on the sweet side.

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Photo of SolipsismalCat
3.56/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass.

A: Clear red-brown with half-finger, white head that lasted 10 seconds. Almost no lacing.

S: Caramel malt and tropical sweetness. Dark fruits.

T: Moderate sweetness and moderate bitterness. Citrus and pineapple with a biting bitterness.

M: Medium bodied with fizzy carbonation. Kind of watery.

O: Average ale. The taste was kind of flat and it had a sort of watery mouthfeel. Smelled good though.

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Photo of xnicknj
3.53/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

on tap at bierstube - served in pint glass

Pours a lightly hazed copper color with a thicker crop of beige head resting on top. Spotty lacing on the glass while drinking.

Fairly intense hop bitterness in the nose with resinous pine and grapefruit peel. Raisin and caramel with roasted malts and soft sweetness. Alcohol punch combines with the hops to create a formidable scent.

Citrusy and pine hop bitterness right up front with sticky resin, grapefruit and oranges. Biting and slightly harsh with some tempering caramel and raisin sweetness. Roasted malts with bread crust and a creamy dose of brown sugar. Finishes bitter, hoppy and boozy.

Fuller medium body, slightly higher carbonation, sticky and coating on the tongue. Extremely hoppy barleywine that could probably benefit from some time in the cellar, although this isn't exactly in the top tier of the style.

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Photo of alpinebryant
3.7/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2011 bottle

A: Pours a hazy dirty brown water color with white dust on the top and a foamy head that quickly receded. Lacing left on edges of the glass.

S: Aroma of heavily caramelized sugars, dense with piney hop residue. Heavily floral with cotton candied burnt sugars. Very sweet off the bat.

T: A rich and strong tasting barrel aged barleywine. Oak barrel aging is present and the bourbon hints are very subtle. There are plenty of bittering hops mixed with burnt sugars, bittering hops in the back and floral flavor hops in the front. This is extremely sweet, which I usually enjoy in a barleywine. It is not overly hopped either to the point that the sweetness is overshadowed. Both of these are positives but the one area I am not a big fan of that this really has too much of is the burnt sugar ending. It is a mash of burnt sugars vs stale hops that were bittering hops and have gained a more earthy taste.

M: Medium body with a very light carbonation. About right for the style.

O: Overall a good barleywine. This is nothing unbelievable and the barrel aging has not done anything great to the complexity. It is a little deeper, but nothing transforming. Overall the barrel aging has added some oakiness and earthiness but maybe the barrel they chose wasnt as fresh as it could have been.

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Photo of templar316
3.43/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours with a quickly receeding head as a lovely reddish amber. Served fresh the piney hops are muted but present in the nose. The body is surprisingly soft for the ABV. It starts with bready malt, quickly overcome by grapefruit hops, the alcohol warms the finish and it's surprisingly drinkable for the abv.

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Photo of DrDemento456
4.1/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Impressive 1/2 inch of bubbly head lacing is decent. Color is a nice ruby amber brown, very clear,

S - Straight up citrus hops with a balance of caramel and toffee like malts.

T - Fairly close to my other favorite Barley wine "Avery Hog Heaven" Mildly bittering hops in the finish but mostly zippy citrus and pineapple like hops and a sweet malt backing like caramel crackers. Tasty stuff.

M - I don't know where the ABV is but this almost 11% brew drinks like a DIPA. Fantastic!

Overall I would welcome seconds! This is so far the best beer Duclaw has made in a shower of mediocre beers. Recommended!

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Photo of nickfl
3.65/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A poured with a small white head on a clear dark copper body. Good retention and lace.

S spicy yeast and alcohol with caramel and pine hops.

T sweet rich malt with pine and moderate bitterness. Some mustardy notes in the middle with spicy hops and thick caramel in the finish.

M medium body moderate carbonation and a sweet finish..

D a pretty standard barley wine with a nice balance of hops and sweet malt. Not the most complex, but reasonably well done.

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Photo of kylehay2004
4.15/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Single finger head with excellent lacing on a clear amber with straw hues body. Aroma is malty with caramel, candied fruit and light toffee. Very smooth caramel malts, tanginess, candied citrus and light toffee. Moderate carbonation and smooth oily body. This is one of the smoothest and more drinkable barleywines I have had. Very good and highly drinkable for the style.

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Photo of jtierney89
2.5/5  rDev -34.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Semi-clear burnt amber hue with a finger and a half of off white head which doesnt wanna die. No born on date or freshness date so I have no idea of the age on this bottle.

Sweet ripe dark fruits with some citrus and pine on the nose. Raisins and toffee evident as well. Old jam.

Pretty mellow and smooth for the high abv (maybe it's old as hell) Dark fruits and burnt caramel, lightly toasted maltiness, all blend together for a nice concise flavorful sip. Rather subtle though. A bit of alcohol heat on the finish. For a barley wine it's pretty drinkable but it's not complex or presents the drinker with anything unique. Sweet overall with a big chalky mouthfeel. It's alright. I'd take it over a lot of things, but probably wouldn't buy it again.

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Photo of JayQue
3.34/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a bright clear orange/amber color with a big slightly off-white head, good retention and thick lacing. A good looking beer.

Smell is a real drop-off. For a style that usually includes a strong aroma or caramel malt and hoppiness, this beer offers up a mild bready malt aroma. Thats it!!

Flavor is somewhat more robust. There is some caramel malt, bready malt and a mild hoppiness. I also detected some oak.

Mouthfeel is fairly rich and crisp. The bitterness and oak add to the overall mouthfeel.

A fairly good barleywine but nothing close to the top ones I have tried.

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Photo of Hex92
3.78/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is a beer that I am glad I picked up. I am not a big hop fan, but they have balanced the big hop taste with a hefty dose of malt. The sweetness and sticky mouth feel of the malt makes this a drinkable beer.

All that said, this isn't my favorite barleywine . It was worth trying, but not exactly what I am looking for. So I most likely won't buy it again.

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Photo of nhindian
3.53/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle poured until a tulip.

Vintage 2010.

A - Pours a murky orange with streaks of crimson and brown. An active, 1.5-finger head quickly settles on top of the beer, with large, soapy bubbles slowly drifting across. Lots of static lacing sticks like glue to the sides of the glass, forming a sort of lattice pattern.

S - The nose brings an intense amount of toffee, caramel, and hops. The hops are of particular interest to me, as they are more spicy with a touch of floral notes. The alcohol comes across strongly here as well, with a quite astringent tone to it.

T - Wow, this beer hits fast and hard, with the malts delivering a heavy hit of sweetness. It's almost sugary in the way the front-end comes across. The toffee does its part in both curbing and aiding this in its own way, but then the bitterness starts to kick in soon thereafter. There is a slight fruitiness from the hops, but again, they add a more earthy tone with a strong bitter note, which the alcohol also help contribute to. The heat from this is no stranger, and it definitely is a limiting factor in its drinkability.

M - Mouthfeel is moderately heavy with decent carbonation. This is fairly thick and syrupy on the palate, imparting its flavor long after you swallow. A sip goes a long way here.

D/O - Drinkability is moderate. I keep going back and forth on this beer. On one hand, I love the assertiveness of this beer, and it's not afraid to bring the flavor. However, I feel that these intense flavors are not congruent with each other. A strong sweetness is immediately replaced with bitterness, and then an alcohol-filled finish. It's not smooth in its transitions, and by the time you reach the aftertaste you are wishing the sweetness would return.

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Devil's Milk from DuClaw Brewing Company
3.8 out of 5 based on 378 ratings.
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