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Dragon's Milk | New Holland Brewing Company

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BA SCORE
89
very good
1,447 Reviews
Dragon's MilkDragon's Milk
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
New Holland Brewing Company
Michigan, United States
newhollandbrew.com

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

BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,447
Ratings:
5,492
Avg:
3.97
pDev:
25.69%
 
 
Wants:
330
Gots:
1,674
For Trade:
47
User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,447 | Ratings: 5,492
Photo of Hyptochrons
3.79/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

dark brown, nice looking brew. nose is pretty weak, touch of chocolate, roastyness, and maybe a hint of vanilla, but mainly getting a harsh alcohol scent as well as an offputing aroma that i cant really describe. taste is okay but only marginally better than nose - theres something unpleasant about it that i cant put into words, but its not something ive experienced in an imperial stout before. not much in terms of bourbon notes, but definitely boozy in a rubbing alcohol kind of way. honestly its not a terrible beer but i would recommend skipping it... drinking bourbon aged imperial stouts that are mediocre just isnt worth it.

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Photo of sisuspeed
3.79/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass, Dragon's Milk has a dark brown body with a slight red tint. A little bit of head forms at first, but quickly fades.

Sweet, oaky, wood drifts up from the glass. Caramel and other sweet malts mix in as well. Almost reminds me of a syrupy candy stored in an oak barrel. Would love to have a stronger aroma of this.

The first couple of sips pull out toffee, alcohol and oak. Vanilla comes out nicely from the barrel aging as well as some tannins. Malts are quite sweet, caramel like. Much like the smell, the flavor is warming malt candy with oak. Pretty good stuff if you like sweeter beers and a good oak presence.

Mouthfeel is a bit on the watery side. I'd like to see a heavier body to pair with the warming alcohol and some of the harsher aspects of the wood. Carbonation is about right.

Drinkability is pretty good. A sweet beer and the ABV is somewhat noticeable, but the oak is well done. One bottle is about the perfect serving size.

Overall, I thought this was an enjoyable brew. New Holland did a really nice job with the barrel aging and brought out some nice vanilla notes from the oak. This beer is probably the closest I've come to liquid toffee. Not something I would drink all the time, but I'll probably pick up another bottle if I see it around.

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Photo of Phelps
3.78/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Read about this one a while back and have been wanting to try it for a while. Finally got a chance this past weekend in Chicago. Here we go...

A rough pour gives birth to a light mocha head with bubbles big and small. It exits after about a minute, leaving a simple ring with a splotch in the center and nice rows of lattice lacing. The liquid seems at first to be an impenetrable black, but a hold up to the light reveals notes of dark amber and cranberry red. Some bubbly effervescence is even visible.

In the nose: sweet mocha, dark chocolate. Notes of cinnamon, granola, and sourdough. Love those breakfast flavors. Pretty noticeable flowery hops adds some interest.

Interesting. I get, at first, soy sauce and raisins. This one's sweet. Very sweet, actually. Almost like a red dessert wine, with a tiny bit of oak. The beer's label says this is a stout with deep roasty flavors -- I disagree. This is definitely more of a strong ale...and I see that's what Beeradvocate's classified it as. Alright. Subtle waves of dark chocolate, espresso and even some vanilla are suggested at the finish; these flavors become more pronounced as the beer warms, but never fully blossom. Alcohol comes through the nostrils, tingling and burning.

I'd call the mouthfeel medium/medium-light. We need to come up with more descriptions for this stuff. It's an interesting swallow; more like juice than beer. Once again, letting the beer warm improves it a touch. The mouthfeel becomes creamier, silkier.

Despite a slight mislabeling by the brewery, Dragon's Milk is a decent beer. A little on the expensive side at the $8 I paid for it, and if you're looking for classic roasted flavors, it's not your thing. But worth seeking out. Curiosity satisfied.

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Photo of ClockworkOrange
3.78/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22ounce bomber bottle into my shaker glass. Shared with brothercannon. The ale appears an opaque dark brown color with about an inch of ecru foam. Notes of oak, vanilla, milk chocolate, caramelized malts, mellow alcohol, slightly nutty/fruity. Medium to full bodied with ample carbonation for an old ale. Tasty stuff. Check it out if you happen upon a bottle.

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Photo of ChrisMon02
3.78/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

22oz bottle poured into a snifter glass.

Good looking deep brown color with a small head that expectedly dissipates quickly. Smells of bourbon, chocolate, burnt toffee and light vanilla. Taste follows the nose with the bourbon dominating. A bit hot and quite warming on the swallow. Very thin body. Watery and in my opinion this is what holds this beer back. Could be so much better if the mouthfeel was thicker. Overall a nice offering but needs refinement.

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Photo of DannyS
3.78/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle, standard pint glass.

A - Opaque pitch black with a very thin head that dissipates into a foam collar quick.

S - a bit of winey aroma in the background, fronted by chocolate, oak, and a bit of vanilla.

T - about the same as the aroma. bright chocolate with some astringent oak, brown sugar, and vanilla.

M - Heavy and silky smooth with very fine carbonation.

overall - Deceptively drinkable for the 10% ABV. The booze is hidden really well. Quite enjoyable, but Be careful with this one!

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Photo of rwdkosak
3.78/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into tulip producing a very dark brown with thin head. Nice notes of coffee/cocoa, very light vanilla, woody nose. Taste followed suit though chocolate present initially and just the slightest smoke hints up front accent the nose. Overall mouthfeel is good, nice, smooth, easy to sip though there is a bit of alcohol taste which, at 9% ABV is understandable though this isn't something that's going to be part a very long session. Good beer though and happy i've got more in the cellar.

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Photo of BuckyFresh
3.77/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Poured from a 12oz bottle into a large wine glass. Pours a fairly black color with a dark tan one-finger head. Not as oily as a thought the pour would be; there's still some light finding its way through the glass. Where there is light, the color is dark brown to blood-red around the edges.

Smell: Toasted malt, chocolate, molasses, and vanilla. There are also some nice dark fruit undertones. There's not as much oak discernible as I expected there to be; it seems like it might be getting lost among the sweeter aromas of the beer.

Taste: Lots of bitterness and warm undertones from the oak. The oak is definitely more of a player than in the aroma and offsets the toasted malt and dark chocolate notes nicely. I feel like the balance could be a bit better though, as it seems like some of the more complex flavors are being concealed by the stronger ones.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full-bodied, pretty bitter, with a fairly dry finish. 10% ABV is concealed well.

Drinkability: This is a pretty decent brew, but the bitterness and lack of flavor complexity might prevent me from having too many.

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Photo of brystmar
3.77/5  rDev -5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

"Vintage 2010" bottle into a tulip.

A: pitch black with minimal head and mild lace. Looks slick and oily.

S: chocolate, oak, and booze all rush forward leaving traces of vanilla behind.

T: mmm, roasted malts! Sweeter than expected up front, then comes the oak, finishes milk chocolatey & dry. Solid for an IS.

M: thin and oily with minimal carbonation, but reasonably well-suited to the style. As always, I prefer thick and creamy...but that's what she said. ;)

D: has about the right amount of alcoholic warmth you'd want/need from a brew of this style; doesn't cut into its drinkability at all. Still quite flavorful and drinkable when warmed to room temperature. Not a favorite of mine, but a respectable offering nonetheless.

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Photo of rawthar
3.77/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A- Pardon me if I mistake this for a stout, in its black slithering body and capaccino head, there's nothing to really distinguish until I hold it to the light and see red rays meander through, betraying its differences from the opaque I'm accustomed to. Not sure how to rate to this style, so I'm comparing to a stout.

S- Caramel, lots of burnt oak (yeah that's practically cheating), sweet hot hints, some toasted marshmallow, a bit of grain, and some dry undertones under all the heavy duty malts. I'm impressed...and yet again, this does nothing to dissuade me from calling this a stout (even an Impy).

T- Not quite as impressed, but still pretty damn good. The sweet burnt sugars and the smoky wood just don't seem to meld together so well as they do in the nose, although separately, they are interesting, to say the least. Maybe some very dark chocolate, or even some very roasted mocha showing up here. I think this guy could have stood some aging, and I plan to get another for that purpose. I would guess that with a few years, this could clean up extremely well.

M- Hot alcohol burn on the way down, otherwise a smooth milky treat that means business.

D- This is where it suffers. A little too much of everything without the nice Imperial balance. Again, I think aging would repair this.

I got no beef with Dragon's Milk that aging couldn't cure.

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Photo of ColdPoncho
3.77/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - pours a red/brown, lots of ruby colored light comes through, not just around the edges, and no head.

S - big smell, booze, vanilla, raisins, and woody notes.

T - Booze, wood, chocolate, warm vanilla. surprisingly little going on here.

M - astringent, dry, and surprisingly thin.

D - I simply don't like this very much. I wouldn't drink more. But it's not bad to drink.

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Photo of agreenman19
3.77/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

2015 vintage. Not the one with "2015 Vintage" splattered all over the label, this is a good old fashioned vintage, one I found in the back of the fridge.

L - pours a disappointingly clear brown coming out of the bottle. I thought this was milk?! Settling opacity is much better but still has copper crimson fringes around the edges that make it look thin. Course bubbles on the outside that stick to the glass, but a more creamy looking quickly-dissipating froth in the center. Bottle cap simply says "how" on the backside. I can dig it.

S - getting wafts of chocolate milk and vanilla as I sit here. Let's dive in. Rich dark chocolate. Fudge. Toffee.

T - not nearly as good as the nose! Lots of booze 'n bourbon up front with oak in the back end. Some chocolate in the middle interspersed with occasional roast. Seems a bit reserved. Wait, isn't that another beer they make?

F - light and silky, bordering on thin. Low carbonation gives it a smoothness that just barely hangs on, stretching the beer very thin. Again, I've had milk that's more creamy and, well, milk-like than this...

O - I always thought this beer held a bit too much back. I love the name and wanted this beer to be something amazing, but it disappoints every time. Not a bad beer, just doesn't follow through on my lofty expectations. Which you're responsible for, New Holland! Can't make your beer sound so amazing and not back it up!

 1,415 characters

Photo of Holland
3.77/5  rDev -5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served on tap at the brewery in Holland, MI.

A: dark brown color, light head and small lacing of an off white color.

S: scotch, oak, malt, some sweetness

T: the scotch taste hits you hard, then you can get to the vanilla and sweetness and malts

M: bit thinner than expected, but still decent body

O: drinkable, but not all the time. I love this beer because it is one that helped turn me on to craft brews. To be fair, though, there are better beers out there. This flavor is very sharp, and I like that it differs from other oak aged stouts in that. Could be aged more to tame it, but then it wouldn't be Dragon's Milk.

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Photo of Dizzle32
3.77/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Heard a lot about this beer so I thought I would give it a go. Overall this beer has a great good oaky aroma. I poured into a goblet to enjoy. A dark pour with nice lacing. First sip was very warm. A nice flavor but the alcohol is the overwhelming characteristic. If you do not mind a truly warming beer this might be for you. I would drink it again but only on a cold night.

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Photo of mchegash
3.77/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance - 4/5
Pours a deep, dark, brown, with maybe a hint of red. A small amount of head.

Smell - 3.75/5
Vanilla, chocolate, roasty, alcohol

Taste - 3.75/5
Very sweet malts, oak, alcohol, vanilla, a bit of roastiness

Mouthfeel - 3.75/5
Medium bodied, light carbonation, a little syrupy, but not too much. In between creamy and crisp.

Overall - 3.75/5
I remember when I was still new to drinking craft beer and I had this for the first time, I was blown away by how good it was. Now revisting it a couple years later, it's not nearly as good as I once thought. But then there have been other beers which I used to not like which I now do. I guess tastes change. Anyway, with my present taste buds, I'd say this is a good beer, but there are tastier beers out there. Especially considering the price of this beer. Still, never a bad option.

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Photo of doughanson78
3.77/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle poured into a snifter. Thanks to bobpack for this.

A: Very, very dark brown, almost black. Has deep red highlights when held to the light. A half finger mocha colored head that fades quickly. Leaves some decent lacing.

S: Lots of sweet milk chocolate and lots of vanilla. Some butterscotch coming through. Light hints of bourbon and oak. A touch of caramel.

T: Sweet chocolate and vanilla upfront, but only for a second until the bourbon takes over. Bourbon and not much else. A light butterscotch coming through and lots of alcohol in the finish. A light oak aftertaste.

M: Medium bodied. Light carbonation. Decent creaminess. Lots of alcohol warming in the back of the mouth and throat.

O: A bit to much bourbon for me. The smell had me excited. But the bourbon and alcohol smash everything that was awesome in the nose. Still a decent stout.

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Photo of prototypic
3.76/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to hoppymeal for the bottle. Much appreciated.

Appearance: It pours a very dark, chestnut color. There's some light getting through around the edges giving it a slight red tint. The head is a light chocolate color and is minimal. Perhaps half a finger deep. It was very quick to disappear and left light lacing.

Smell: The nose is weak and disappointing. There are some dark fruit (raisin and plum) aromas lingering. Chocolate malts emerge and seem to be primary feature. I'm not picking anything that really resembles oak, bourbon, or spices. That's perhaps even more disappointing than the strength shortcoming.

Taste: It definitely picks up here. Chocolate malts are indeed the primary feature, but there's some roasted flavors in there, as well. There is a slight bit of raisin and plum that adds some depth. Surprisingly, there is a nice oak flavor in there that really adds a lot to this beer. You can tell a little bit off whiskey rubbed off on it. It's not a really strong flavor, but it is nice and plays its role well. Alcohol is only faintly noticeable, but has a bit of a warming effect. Finishes sweet and warm.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: This feels really light for what it is. Frankly, it's a little too light. Carbonation is very low. It's actually creamy and smooth, but it could still stand a little thickening. Drinkability is good. It goes down smooth and easy. I can't say I'd drink more than a bomber though. That's plenty in a sitting.

Dragon's Milk is a pretty good beer. Yeah, the nose is too weak and the body a little too thin. Those are my main complaints. But, I enjoyed this beer more than I thought I would after the first sip. It's unique in its flavor, body, and feel. It's certainly worth a try if you run across a bottle.

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Photo of largadeer
3.76/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber shared by chswimmer. Thanks, Craig. Dragon's Milk has a milky, draconic appearance to it. If I didn't know any better, I'd swear that it was, in fact, the milk of a dragon and not a mere strong ale from some mediocre brewery in Michigan. Amazing.

It smells strongly of bourbon and caramel. The label doesn't state the kind of barrel used, but I'm guessing whiskey of some variety. There's an undertone of vanilla and raw grain, and it has an almost chocolate-caramel candy sweetness. It's fairly mild on the whole, lacking the lactic viscosity I'd expect from a pint of real dragon's milk.

The palate is rather boozy, toffee and vanilla flavors running rampant alongside oak tannins and a dash of chocolate. The body is full, but more like 2% milk, definitely not like the milk of a dragon. It finishes with a nice balance of tannins, alcohol and malt, exhibiting some lingering notes of chocolate and caramel candy. Pretty good stuff overall, though the name is a bit misleading.

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Photo of CrazyMacHarris99
3.76/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This one was poured at Smokin' Joes on the Southside - Feb 14th 2009. A dark almost black brew with dark brown highlights and a tan head that quickly dissipated. The smell is light with some oak and vanilla and a slight alcohol. There are dark fruits and some cocoa trying to push through. The taste is very boozy with a dominate vanilla and oak. There is some bourbon and brandy as well as the dark cocoa and a hint of bitter coffee. This one is very creamy and thick. It tastes amazing but is a lot all up front. This one needs to calm down a bit.

 549 characters

Photo of Dwreck
3.76/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

More like a slightly bourbon barrel aged milk stout with flavor, smell, and feel. It's not bad at all, as I like a boozy bbs. Good bargain for the style.

 153 characters

Photo of larryarms847
3.75/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours dark brown and almost black in appearance with a airy finger and a half of light tan foam.

Sweet vanilla, chocolate, roasted malt, oak, and bourbon.

Roasty, chocolate, light bourbon, subtle oak, and some creamy sweet vanilla.

Heavy-bodied, medium carboantion, a bit thin and over carbonated for style.

Overall, nice that it's available year round, but nothing amazing.

 378 characters

Photo of docoman
3.75/5  rDev -5.5%

This was one of my first BA stouts and at the time thought was fantastic, but now that I've sampled many others... it's still good, but like others better. Has a sweet more of a creamer taste compared to others that are more chocolate and coffee flavors.

 255 characters

Photo of SHODriver
3.75/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

2013 edition

A: poured into a snifter to a black beer topped by a finger of dense tan head that fades to a small collar around the edge of the glass
S: smells of whiskey barrel, chocolate and roasted malts
T: Taste is vanilla and caramel from the whiskey barrel with a little coffee and chocolate. Faint roasted malt flavor as well. Swallow is roasted malt, chocolate, a little oxidation and some more barrel.
M: Medium in the mouthfeel with soft carbonation and a dry finish
O: Very approachable and smooth. Flavors play well together but the mouthfeel doesn't really do it for me. Definitely one to try but I'm happy I don't have an entire four pack.

 662 characters

Photo of Flashy
3.75/5  rDev -5.5%

Purchased in Vermont for $14.99 a four pack (when did we start getting New Holland?). Nice stout, nice level of bourbon flavor- but lacks the thicker body that I like in this kind of beer.

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Photo of Mauerhan
3.75/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

this has been sitting in my spare room for about a month.
chilled this afternoon then cracked as the redsox came back to tie a 7-0 lead. way to go tampa bay.

pours a dark brown. not much of a head even on a rather aggressive center pour. nice rich ruby highlights when held up to light.

smell is rich malty, some chocolate, oakie goodness, and a slight hint of vanilla.

taste is satisfying, as in the smell i get a nice amount of malts, a nice woodsy aftertaste with a warmth that leaves me happy. not great, but pretty decent none the less.

a very smooth drink with moderate to low carbonation.

i would most likely grab this beer again if i had the chance.

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Dragon's Milk from New Holland Brewing Company
3.97 out of 5 based on 5,492 ratings.
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