Dragon's Milk Reserve - Cherry Chocolate
New Holland Brewing Company

Dragon's Milk Reserve - Cherry ChocolateDragon's Milk Reserve - Cherry Chocolate
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American Imperial Stout
Ranked #1,039
Ranked #3,477
4.15 | pDev: 8.67%
New Holland Brewing Company
Michigan, United States
Dragon's Milk Reserve - Cherry ChocolateDragon's Milk Reserve - Cherry Chocolate
Notes: Introducing the next addition to our Dragon’s Milk Reserve series… Cherry Chocolate! We decided to combine these two classic flavors with the rich and creamy taste of Dragon’s Milk to create a delightfully smooth treat.
Reviews: 42 | Ratings: 157 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of chinchill
4.1/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle with an April 2018 bottling date stamp on the label.
Pours with a clear reddish-brown body topped with a thin, weak head.
Boozy, cherry and chocolate aroma.
The high ABV, however, is very well hidden in the flavor and feel. The flavor is very sweet, bordering on cloying, but this is acceptable given the flavor profile and the appearance of hop based bitterness in the aftertaste.

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Photo of stortore
3.99/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into a snifter. Bottled 4/6/18, had 8/2/18.

Pours a dark cola color, somewhat opaque, with a half inch foamy head and some soapy cling. Aromas of roasted malt, chocolate, vanilla, some oak and smoke, light bourbon, faint cherries, light molasses. The flavor follows along- malt, chocolate, some cherries and vanilla, light bourbon, some caramel, a little oak. Smooth, a good but lighter body for the style, well carbonated.

Pretty much standard fare for the series, it’s good enough, but nothing special. The chocolate shows more than the cherries, but the cherries do show. And, it’s time for the standard comment about this series: the bourbon is faint for a barrel- aged beer. Worth a try at a little bit of a high price point.

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Photo of Hopheadjeffery
4.18/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Tasted in a Rastal Teku from a 12 fl oz bottle on January 7, 2019. Dragon's Milk Reserve Cherry Chocolate brings two classic flavors together, chocolate notes paired perfectly with the tartness of cherry.

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Photo of DrDemento456
3.83/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Will have to agree with others the Cherry aspect does come off rather medical like a cherry cordial but slightly tart which mends with the dark chocolate pretty well. Still kind of lacking would rather just have regular dragon's milk over this variant.

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Photo of ThickNStout
3.9/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12oz bottle from Sprayberry Bottle Shop (Marietta, GA). 4.99. Bottled 4/5/18. Served in a New Holland tulip. Enjoyed 5/30/18.

Pours black with about a finger of pale tan head. The light foam recedes to a large central island, a wide crown and a good deal of lacing.

Smells of cherry syrup, bourbon, chocolate and a little roasty character.

A strong cherry cough medicine flavor kicks off and is persistent throughout. Chocolate, faint bourbon, some wet oak, caramel and a mild booze heat.

Smooth, medium full body with fairly light carbonation. Cherry cough syrup and bourbon-tinged chocolate in the finish.

New Holland has a strong enough track record with these variations of their flagship that I attempt to try them all. The medicinal quality prevents Cherry Chocolate from being all I’d hoped for but is still an enjoyable brew in its own right.

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Photo of Franziskaner
3.92/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black in color with fingernail of brown on top. No chance of light penetration with this beer. The aroma is of bourbon, cherries, and dark chocolate. I'm tasting dark chocolate covered bourbon soaked cherries. The mouth is thick, rich, chewy, and decadent.

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Photo of michaelsmith11
3.78/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

This poured a deep black with a small tan head. The smell was nice with a strong bourbon nose. The taste was what you would expect, bourbon with a taste of chocolate and a little bit of cherry but it wasn't very noticeable. The feel was a little thin for me almost watery. It did do a good job of hiding the alcohol but I was hoping for a little more from this beer.

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Photo of jdhilt
4.46/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours a two finger khaki head, that fades slowly leaving traces of lace. Black color, no high lights. Good carbonation and medium bodied. Bourbon nose and taste is similar with bourbon, hints of cherry chocolate. Higher abv, 11.0%, is hidden. 12oz bottle $4.80 from Beverage Warehouse Winooski, VT.

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Photo of MacMalt
4.23/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottled 4/11/2018 and poured into snifter glass. It pours ink black with a finger of fluffy, khaki-colored head and a sheen of creamy lacing. It's a very attractive pour. The nose features black cherry, cocoa, freshly-brewed coffee, and just a whiff of bourbon. This may well be the best cherry-flavored beer I've had (not surprising coming from Michigan). The cherry is bold and tart. While I can taste the chocolate it's subdued. The bourbon is even more delicate; you know it's there but it doesn't distract from the other flavors. The feel is somewhat thin for a "big" stout but the 11% ABV is surprisingly well masked. Overall, this is a fine variant of the original Dragon's Milk, which I've always enjoyed. I was concerned that the cherry would be cloying but it isn't. This is most definitely an after dinner sipper. It would pair very well with vanilla ice cream.

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Photo of dertyd
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

The beer pours out a dark brown/black color with red hues and 1 finger of beige head with beautiful lacing-------------- the aromas are of tart cherries, chocolate covered cherries and amereto------------- the flavors are of tart cherries, bourbon, Carmel and bitter chocolate, the beer has a full mouthfeel with a light bitterness on the finish-------------- overall this beer is world class - what a gem by new Holland, big sweet cherry up front with some alcohol heat and biter chocolate on the finish, making this 11% ale one easy drinking beast of a beer------

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Photo of FriedSlug
4.19/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pretty thick and dark when poured. Raises a finger of light tan head that leaves some globs of lacing behind. The smell is mostly cherries with a healthy dose of chocolate, bourbon and vanilla. The taste is sweet tangy cherries followed by cocoa, bourbon and vanilla. There is a little heat but it is not overpowering. Solid and tasty cherry stout.

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Photo of superspak
4.23/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into snifter, bottled on 4/5/2018. Pours opaque dark brown/black color with a 1 finger dense and rocky light khaki head with awesome retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Nice dense soapy lacing clings on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation. Fantastic appearance. Aromas of big juicy/tart/tangy black cherries, fruit skin/pits, milk chocolate, cocoa, caramel, toffee, vanilla, cream, bourbon, toasted oak, nuts, and dark/brown bread; with light notes of coconut, coffee, raisin, smoke, char, herbal, pepper, and roast/toast/oaky earthiness. Damn nice aromas with great balance and complexity of cherries, chocolate, dark/roast/bready malt, and moderate bourbon barrel notes; with great strength. Taste of big juicy/tart/tangy black cherries, fruit skin/pits, milk chocolate, cocoa, caramel, toffee, vanilla, cream, bourbon, toasted oak, nuts, and dark/brown bread; with light notes of coconut, coffee, raisin, smoke, char, herbal, pepper, and roast/toast/oaky earthiness. Mild roast/char bitterness, bourbon/oak spiciness, and fruit tang/tartness on the finish. Lingering notes of black cherries, fruit skin/pits, milk chocolate, cocoa, caramel, toffee, vanilla, cream, bourbon, toasted oak, nuts, dark/brown bread, light coconut/smoke/char, herbal, pepper, and roast/toast/oaky earthiness on the finish for a while. Incredible complexity, robustness, and balance of cherries, chocolate, dark/roast/bready malt, and moderate bourbon barrel flavors; with a nice roasted bitter/sweet, bourbon/oak spiciness, and tangy fruit balance; with no cloying flavors after the finish. Lightly increasing dryness from bitter, spiciness, and tart/tangy fruit. Medium carbonation and fairly full body; with a very smooth, creamy/silky/bready, fairly velvety, and lightly sticky/chalky/tannic/tangy mouthfeel that is great. Minimal warming 11%, with no barrel booze lingering after the finish. Overall this is a fantastic barrel aged fruited imperial stout! All around outstanding complexity, robustness, and balance of cherries, chocolate, dark/roast/bready malt, and moderate bourbon barrel flavors; very smooth and dangerously easy to sip on for the big ABV, with the mildly bitter/drying finish. Awesome balance of authentic whole cherries, chocolate, and rich malt complexity; perfect barrel integration, with no booze or overly drying tannins. A highly enjoyable offering, and spot on style example as expected. One of the better ones in the series.

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Photo of Cthulhusquid
4.86/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Look: Almost no head, solid black body.

Smell : See below.

Taste: Bourbon, cherries, milk chocolate, mild dark chocolate, mild vanilla, a hint of nuts.

Feel : Full body, medium carbonation, medium alcohol presence. Balanced.

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Photo of jvgoor3786
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a deep brown color with almost no head and minimal lacing.

The smell is strong with chocolate and cherries with very little barrel. It smells like a chocolate covered cherry candy.

The taste follows almost exactly. The cherry is tart with a nice milk chocolate mix. The barrel again has very little presence.

The mouthfeel is medium/thick body with low carbonation.

This is really tasty. I love those chocolate covered cherries at Christmas and this reminds me of those.

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Photo of woodychandler
4.23/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

I just finished a recalibration/refresher with their base Dragon's Milk & now it is time to delve into a couple of their variants as a part of Happy New New Holland/Belgium Beer Sunday (Week 698)! Yes, I am veering into bottles, but only because I ran through my New Holland CANs earlier today. 8=(

From the Bottle: "Dragon's Milk Reserve Cherry Chocolate brings two classic flavors together. Chocolate notes paired perfectly with the tartness of cherry will delight your senses."; "Pairings: Almonds, Chocolate, Blue Cheese".

I began, as I always do, with a Pop! of the cap. What next? The bottle was marked "Bottled 04/06/18" but just three months later, there was already a layer of lees laying atop the punt. 8=O Time for a slow, gentle pour, boys & girls, since I do not want to rouse anything that has developed. Isn't beer fun? I think so! Wow, even/just during the pour, I could fully smell the cherry! 8=O Once the beer was sufficiently decanted, an in-glass swirl raised just under two quick fingers of faomy, fizzy, rocky, light-tan head with modest retention, quickly falling away to wisps. Color was Black/Opaque (SRM = 44), allowing ZERO light penetration. Nose was especially interesting in that it smelled of sweet cherries, not the tart ones for which Michigan is best-known. What a melange of scents - cherry, chocolate & bourbon! 8=O It was like a mash-up of liqour- & cherry-filled chocolates! I have gotten really sick on both as a kid, the former out of ignorance & the latter out of greed, but never both at the same time. Mouthfeel was REALLY big, full & viscous! The taste was amusing, at least to my twisted sense of humor. It was like a Mounds bar with cherries - call it a "Cherry Joy"! Loads of dark chocolate, coconut & cherries. Whoa! On a personal note - 1) it was a bit too sweet for my liking & 2) I'd happily revisit it if they were to try it with tart cherries. Onward. Finish was between sweet & semi-sweet & if that is your thing, so be it. It's not really my bag, hence my disclaimer. Still, it is a brilliant concept & very well executed.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
4.04/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured into a Lucifer snifter. Pours a very dark mahogany brown, appearing nearly opaque black in the glass with a fine, half finger dark khaki head with great retention and nice lacing. Aroma of dark toasted malt, cherry, milk chocolate and mild caramel. Flavor is semi-sweet dark toasted malt, cherry juice faint milk chocolate and and a hint of whiskey. Medium bodied with light to medium creaminess. This definitely delivers on the cherries. The chocolate is rather subdued and the barrel aspect seems to be masked by the cherry flavor. I'm ambivalent about tart fruit in my stouts, but the cherry here is a good mixture of sweet and tart and just enough of the fine Dragon's Milk base shows through to support the flavors. Quite enjoyable, but the cherry kind of dominates the other flavors. However, I had no problem enjoying the whole glass.

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Photo of Phineasco
4.35/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer pours Black with a thin head. It has low carbonation. The beer smells of cherries, chocolate, almonds, and marzipans. It tastes of chocolate covered cherries, almonds, and marzipans. The beer is light and smooth, pretty thin. A tasty stout, but not much Barrel.

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Photo of ovaltine
4.49/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is the prototypical BBA stout with the dark body that absorbs light and a tan head, but it’s the nose that provides the first clue that this is NOT a prototypical BBA stout: rich chocolate notes and tart cherries. OMG

The cherries are the star on the taste, blending magnificently with the chocolate. The barrel is minimally present, and puts the cherry (pun intended) on top of this excellent beer.

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Photo of Lone_Freighter
4.41/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Stamped on bottom of the neck 04/05/2018.
This was poured into a mini-snifter.
The appearance was a pure black color with a film of an off-white foamy head that swiftly slid off. Nice looking semi-intricate legs of lace ended up and separating into a slight spider-web sort of look.
The aroma had a magical blend of sweet red and black cherry meshing with a delicate dark chocolate and milk chocolate rounding out the edges. Subtle tartness through a skin-like fashion.
The flavor yields to the blend of the sweet red and black cherries. Then a slight earthy to woody sweet to spicy character/bourbon sweetness enters here. The chocolate and roasty tones enter in sweetly with an underscore of roast. Light cherry to chocolate aftertaste.
The mouthfeel was about medium bodied with a fair sipping quality about it. Carbonation felt fine. ABV felt on par. Somewhat drying but seemingly only enough. Light cocoa powder to cherry sweetness.
Overall, though not a style I tend to drink this time, I thoroughly enjoyed this one.

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Photo of Wolvmar
4.02/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pour: 12oz bottle poured into a tulip glass. Purchased in May 2018, not sure of bottling date. Dark brown, One finger tan head that lingers then ends ina nice ring. Some bubble lacing throughout.

Nose: cherry upfront. Some chocolate. Smell reminds me of the taste of a chocolate covered cherry. Someone else noted a maraschino cherry smell which I agree with.

Taste: similar to the nose. Cherry is prominent but not overwhelming. Chocolate in the background is very complimentary. Slight dark chocolate or hops bitterness balances the cherry sweetness. Bourbon isn’t very present but some vanilla and oak cones through. Slight aftertaste but not annoying.

Mouthfeel: creamy, moderate carbonation. Not a milkshake feel but substantial enough.

Overall: I always want to like cherrybstouts but usually don’t. This is surprisingly good. Well balanced flavor profile. I would buy it again. But, may not be for everyone.

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Photo of HorseheadsHophead
4.58/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

L: Pitch black with a small tan head. Medium-poor retention, but a thin ring remains, leaving spotty lacing.

S: Bourbon, toasted oak, maraschino cherry, dark chocolate, toasted coconut, vanilla.

T: Dark and milk chocolate, and then tons of cherry. Sweet maraschino cherry as well as tart cherry skins. Bourbon and oak take a back seat, but toasted coconut and tons of vanilla remain. Sweet, but nicely balanced with tartness. Dangerously drinkable.

F: Medium. Moderately carbonated. Feels a little thin for its abv, but it makes up for it in sheer drinkability.

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Photo of rypkr
3.29/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Looks thins, light, fizzy, translucent and unimpressive for a ba stout.

Smells watery, faint and muted. Distant oak and evident cherry; little of any strong stout nose..

Tastes sweet, fruity, watery, and artificial.

Feels thin, watery, fairly high carbed.

Overall this drinks for like a diet cherry flavored carbonated water. That is - it's a highly carbed thin fizzy cherry water with an artificial sweetness taste.

Shame on dragons milk for trying so hard to stay relevant. I defend the original regularly for being under appreciated. But the more "reserve" renditions I drink the less I'm inclined to respect the brewer. Stop spinning off a solid shelf beer into garbage under its name to stay relevant.

New Holland would be better not releasing shit like this under the dragons milk brand unless their only intention is to literally milk the name for all they can.

By the way. There's virtually no detectable chocolate flavors in this beer.

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Photo of zeff80
4.06/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle. Poured out a jet-black color with a small, light brown head of foam. It smelled of dark cherries, rich chocolate, coffee and toffee. Initially, it tasted like a Tootsie Pop. Too sweet but as it warmed up, it became more complex and less candy-like.

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Photo of Dan411
3.83/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Look: Dark brown on pour, and translucent. Dark brown with russet, garnet undertones at edges of glass. Minimal head with small, loosely packed bubbles that dissolve into patchy islands that have staying power. Some loosely hanging curtains of lace.

Smell: Sweet bourbon, chocolate covered maraschino cherries with some cherry cough syrup coming through. Balance wise, the cherry overtakes the chocolate.

Taste: Cherry leads for sure, and it comes across sweet, but finishes slightly tart on the back end. Milk chocolate tries to balance it out. A slight bourbon on the back end with an earthy hop smooch. Fairly sweet beer, that could benefit from a dark chocolate presence.

Feel: Medium thickness and carbonation. Not sticky or coating, with a fairly quick finish that does not linger.

Overall: Smooth and easy drinking for a Dragon's Milk, which is a beer that can be barrel heavy. A good dessert stout making for a nice end of the evening beer. On a side note, cherry and high ABV can be hard to pull off. You're prone to pick up on a cough syrup vibes.

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Photo of emyers
3.75/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle poured into a snifter.

Near black with half inch creamy light brown head. Good head retention.

Nose: somewhat muted. Milk chocolate, cherry, and bourbon are all present, nothing really takes over.

Taste: sweet milk chocolate covered cherry up front. Vanilla and bourbon undertones, but the chocolate cherry character definitely dominates. Very sweet. A touch hot on the finish.

Feel: creamy, smooth. Medium carbonation.

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Dragon's Milk Reserve - Cherry Chocolate from New Holland Brewing Company
Beer rating: 92 out of 100 with 157 ratings