Dragon's Milk | New Holland Brewing Company

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very good
1,441 Reviews
Dragon's MilkDragon's Milk

Brewed by:
New Holland Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

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

Added by beernut7 on 08-12-2002

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Reviews: 1,441 | Ratings: 5,457
Photo of abc123atyourservice
4.01/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours very dark brown. Smells sweet and a little bourbon. Taste is about the same. Sweet maltiness followed by some bourbon. Not too complicated, but great price. Mouthfeel was a bit thin for a BA stout. Overall: I would just buy this to be able to drink cheap BA stout

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Photo of PhillyJ
3.62/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.75

Do you like stout with your bourbon? I get why bourbon junkies would love this it's a smooth shot of bourbon, the stout is so well hidden I can't even find it! It's an unbalanced one trick pony. Kinda expensive to. I'm sure there's a guy reading this calling me a douche but hey bourbon on my friend.

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Photo of Mongrel
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Smells like figs and cocoa.

Flavor-wise, it's sort of thin and one dimensional up front, but then some licorice and subtle roasty notes kick in to make things interesting. Also some cocoa and dark fruit mid palate, which evolves into a really zesty, lively finish (think raspberry and plum). Definitely above average carbonation for the style.

This hits on a lot of the same notes as BCBS, but in a thinner, more subdued fashion. Quite tasty. Worth $17/sixer? Ehh maybe?

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Photo of MizzouBrew
4.49/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle, 11% abv. This bourbon barrel stout is delicious, but is slightly lighter in all areas when compared to Bourbon County Brand Stout. Since I can't find Bourbon County anywhere anymore, this will do just fine.

Using the Begnel formula, the Alcohol Score is 12 oz. x 11% = 132, or 2.6 Bud Lights. For the 22 oz. bomber, the Alcohol Score is 242, or 4.8 Bud Lights!

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Photo of craftbeersweden
4.32/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear, dark brown beer with a one finger high, beige head. A lot of lacing on the glass.

Nose: Bourbon, milk chocolate, vanilla, caramel, fudge, brown sugar, coffee and oak. A lot of sweetness here!
Taste: Milk chocolate, sweet caramel malt, dark syrup, brown sugar, a lot of vanilla, bourbon, oak and black licorice.
Body: Medium body. Light carbonated. Smooth, sweet mouthfeel. Dry and a little bitter ending.

If you are in to sweet things you got to love this! I know I do :)

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Photo of ZacCary
3.94/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The only other Imperial Stout that is better than this gem is Prarie Artisan Ales Bomb. I was very delighted to find this yummy brew at my local liquor store. This is simply a very drinkable Imperial Stout!

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Photo of uvachief
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a solid year round imperial stout. I often use it to mix with too sweet beers like Creme Brulee. It isn't bad by any stretch. It is just a little too thin in the mouth for an imperial stout and just a little too weak on chocolate, toffee and caramel for my liking. Otherwise it is a very solid effort. For the same cost you can get Stone Russian Imperial Stout which is top notch. Still if you offer it to me, I wouldn't turn it down. I usually have at least 1 bottle in the fridge. Nice big ABV but not overly hot. Quite roasty and not sweet.

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Photo of KGilmour
4.5/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Look: Deep black with just a hint of ruby red. Good head, and swirling in the glass could re-create the head after it fell a bit. Not much lacing though.

Smell: Definitely vanilla. Chocolate even, and the bourbon is certainly there.

Taste: I was very impressed with the taste. Full of bourbon and complexity, not too dissimilar to a much pricier Eclipse. Delicious.

Feel: Smooth and bourbon. Rolls over the tongue.

A fantastic stout for the price.

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Photo of HopHunter19
4.48/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

a - dark black brown beer, nice smooth tan head that leaves a nice lacing.
s - oak, vanilla, dark chocolatey malts, coffee, bourbon, really well blended
t - vanilla, creamy, bourbon, chocolate, umami/wholesomeness, oak barrel
m - medium-heavy, a little thin for an 11% BA stout, alc is mostly covered/some bourbon flavor gives you the impression of alcohol but it doesn't have a burn to it at all, aftertaste is bourbon/oak/dark malts
overall - two points to make here from previous reviews I've read:
#1. this is an incredibly well balanced bourbon barrel aged stout that's available year round, in most places. Anyone who gets "too much bourbon" off this beer just doesn't drink BBA stouts, period. For the availability and the length of time this is aged, this is as good as it can possibly get. And I did not age this bottle, this was the 2015 batch bought from the store yesterday, so I'm not biased by drinking an older bottle either.
#2. Any report of dark fruits in this beer is highly likely imagined. This beer has a dry character characteristic of an American ale yeast. I'm not getting figs, plums, cherries, etc, and I shouldn't be. It's not a Belgian stout.
Great beer. Have bought many times and will buy it again many more. I'd recommend it to anyone.

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Photo of ThaneMcC
4.41/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2015 Vintage. Pour a deep dark brown with fair amount of tan head and mild effervescence. Aroma of roasted malts, dark fruit, cocoa, wood and perhaps some bourbon like notes. Tastes roasted malts forward, notes of cocoa, bourbon (mild and sweet), a mid-note twang of oak/vanilla and a very pleasant, mildly sweet finish. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a surprising amount of carbonation that adds to the twang and keeps things from becoming syrupy – a little thinner than others of this style.
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this beer – the availability, price point is good, and I will stock up on this next time I see it – very good.
I’m not a bourbon drinker – but after this – I’ll have to do some research into bourbon and do a little sampling.

update - one of those beers that the more you drink - the more nuance and character. Lovely acidic quality - palate cleansing - solid bourbon notes and vanilla - yum - easily one of my favorites (and at a far more reasonable price point than goose island bourbon barrel stout)

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Photo of Tonyjenlasc
4.12/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look - Black as night. opaque, no head
Smell - bourbon, chocolate, oaky, sweetness. Smells delicious
Taste - bourbon, coffee, tons of roasted malts, chocolate, sweetness
Feel - coats the mouth, warming, was hoping for a thicker body though

Overall - My first BA stout....whoa!! A monster of a beer. Definitely a sipper. Enjoyed.

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Photo of martinfletwood
2.47/5  rDev -37.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.5

I normally love coffee stouts. This one tastes like bourbon was added straight to it rather than aged in the barrel. Way to strong of a bourbon taste. Sorry, this one fails.

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Photo of Atlas1
4.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've been sitting on this bomber of Dragon's Milk for about 2 years. My sister-in-law sent this to me from Grand Rapids a couple years back along with some other stuff. Finally time to uncork.

Poured into a snifter, Dragon's Milk is dark black in color with a thin light brown head on top. Nice enough, but two years sitting in my cupboard may have taken a bit away from it in terms of appearance. The nose on this is quite nice, though. Strong notes of vanilla and bourbon. Subtler aromas banana, plum and maybe clove. Very nice and sweet, but I think much of the oakiness of this has subsided in the bottle over time. Taste follows suit - bourbon and vanilla are heavy up front with distinctly dark fruit sweetness on the back end. Some dark cherry here in the finish. Two years in the bottle also may have allowed the booze to mellow out a bit, because while it's 11% ABV it's hardly noticeable. That might also just be a I let this warm up to room temp as well, to allow for maturation of flavors, and it didn't disappoint. Mouthfeel was a bit thinner than expected, but again that might be a result of the aging process, so I'm not discounting too much here.

Overall a fine beer. Ages nicely and the nose and flavors hold up quite well. Good stuff from New Holland. Cheers.

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Photo of Buck89
3.81/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a snifter. Thick motor oil-like pour with a shy tan head that disappeared quickly. Aromas of smooth bourbon and roasty malt. Taste followed suit, with a strong roasty presence up front followed by oak and bourbon. Thick, sticky finish.

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Photo of Barnoloid
4.27/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is a solid, year round barrel aged stout at a very decent price point. This is a 2014 bottle for review. Pours a deep dark motor oil color with full body and a generous tan head. Plenty of milk chocolate and sweet notes here with a lick of vanilla ice cream. Thick but not syrupy. Balanced well and not overwhelming on the bourbon notes.

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Photo of Henderbeer
4.52/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This beer has a beautiful texture and a heavy, creamy mouth weight. You will certainly taste the bourbon immediately followed by a smooth finish and a little sweet. This beer is not for everyone. If you like something with a lot of body and character, you'll enjoy a couple of these. With the ABV at 11%, you won't need too many nor will you be able to handle too many.

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Photo of BeerEsquire
4.15/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Toasted oat goodness with suprisingly refreshing carbonation for an imperial stout of such elevated alcohol. Smooth backbone with vanilla fairies dusting one's palate with just the right amount of sweetness. Well done NH, well done!

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Photo of Elsuperjefe
4.49/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

2015 Vintage
Pours dark as night w medium fluffy khaki head. Nose is sweet coffee and chocolate. First taste was mostly bourbon w strong dark coffee. As I got into the beer vanilla came through as did a sweet milk chocolate. Body was light to medium. Became easier to drink after each sip getting sweeter and creamier. Excellent stout. Perfect with dark chocolate.

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Photo of ilikebeer03
4.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: pours a dark brown, slightly translucent. lightly tan head, thick with good retention.

S: soft bourbon and vanilla, oak. light chocolate and roasted malts. great nose

T: soft bourbon, vanilla, dark chocolate, roasted malts. coffee. alcohol burn is definitely present, but not overpowering.

M: nice and creamy.

O: good beer.


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Photo of Apellonious
4.34/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2015 vintage - 22 oz poured into a tulip.

A - Solid dark black, with a half finger tan head that moves quickly to slim ring of lace.

S - Milk chocolate, dark fruit (raspberry?), bourbon notes. Vanilla and lightly toasted grains also in the mix.

T - Follows the nose to a T with some heat. The bourbon notes are much more prevalent as it wamrs.

M - Creamy. Carbonation is medium low, the feel is even and full. Gets sticky as it warms.

O - A very tasty beverage, especailly at the price point of 7 per.

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Photo of rorykanderson
4.25/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look: Very dark, coffee like appearance with minimal head.

Nose: Pungent coffee, toffee, slight raisin with appealing complexity

Taste/Feel: Coffee, chocolate, toffee, hint of raisin, minimal sweetness. Interesting variation in taste with temperature change. very smooth with nice finish that is balanced and complex and very drinkable. However, beer is viscous and thick. Not a light refreshing beer for a hot summer afternoon, but a significant visceral experience that demands attention from all senses and respected. Higher ABV, but well managed and not overwhelming.

In General, a near world class experience in bourbon barrel genre worthy of strong consideration.

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Photo of CTbrew32
4.16/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

appearance- Black color with some mahogany hues on the outer edges. Pours a khaki colored one inch head.

aroma- Mild bourbon sweetness, vanilla, molasses, milk chocolate, and roasted malts.

taste- Upfront the consists chewy milk chocolate and mild bourbon flavors. The bourbon is noticeable but blends with the flavors rather than overwhelming them. A mild hit of roasted malt bitterness shows up mid palate. Towards the finish this really lightens up with vanilla really shining through. Some malt bitterness adds balance in the finish, but its leans toward the sweet side.

feel- Chewy and thick at first but the feel lightens towards the finish. Medium carbonation throughout and the finish is balanced and not overly sweet.

overall- Definitely a great barrel aged milk stout. There's great balance between the thick/chewy flavors of milk chocolate, molasses, and bourbon upfront and the lighter finish with sweet vanilla cream finishing things off. This is a standout in the barrellaged style and a great deal in the four pack format.

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Photo of Brad_Ford
4.16/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Jet black, some carbonation, tan head that dissipates quickly into wispy bubbles

Aroma: Oak, bourbon, vanilla, chocolate

Taste: Bourbon throughout which overwhelms the complexity somewhat. tasting mostly bitter chocolate notes as accompaniment, hint of raspberry and vanilla, nice alcohol finish

Mouthfeel: buttery but crisper than most bourbon barrel aged beers

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Photo of bushbeer75
4.22/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

poured from 22 oz. brown bottle - 2015 Vintage

New Holland Dragon's Milk Bourbon Barrel Stout has a black body. A 1 1/2-finger bubbly and creamy khaki color head was produced that dissipated to a collar of foam in my snifter. The nose was dominated by an 'oakie' and roasted malt with just a splash of chocolate in the background. The taste was similar but more complex than the nose. The bourbon makes a nice appearance followed by an addition of caramel and vanilla. A pleasant alcohol warming is also noticed. The mouth feel is to the full side, creamy, and a little sticky with a medium carbonation. Due to its full flavor and its 11% abv it makes for a nice after dinner sipper.

If you are a fan of the American Double/Imperial Stout this is a must try. Well done New Holland.

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Photo of angelmonster
3.91/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This is review of 2013 vintage

Pours a black body with a 1/4th inch tan head. Head retention is above average for style and lacing is average.

Smell is of bourbon, licorice, rye, and some fig and prune. Getting some aromas of a quad or a doppelbock. Alcohol is moderate and hops aren't present.

Taste is similar to smell with more of an emphasis on the bourbon. Decent amount of heat upfront with spice notes and burnt oak throughout. A little vanilla combats the booze, no hops detected.

Mouthfeel is decently carbonated with a thin amount of foam to coat the tongue. Body is full and alcohol leaves an astringent feeling on the roof of my mouth.

Overall beer was good but a little rough around the edges. Alcohol was still very present for being two years old. Thought the flavors were kinda jumbled around, can't say I would buy again.

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Dragon's Milk from New Holland Brewing Company
3.97 out of 5 based on 5,457 ratings.
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