Dragon's Milk | New Holland Brewing Company

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Dragon's MilkDragon's Milk
BA SCORE
4.04/5
Exceptional
6,089 Ratings
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): 11.00%

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
2016 Bottles are 11% ABV

Added by beernut7 on 08-12-2002

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#3,234
Reviews:
1,584
Ratings:
6,089
pDev:
12.62%
Bros Score:
3.82
 
 
Wants:
394
Gots:
2,030
Trade:
45
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 6,089 |  Reviews: 1,584
Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.33/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Darkest mahogany with sparkling ruby trim. The tight-bubbled cap of chocolate milk brown displays a wonderful moonscape surface of pits and bubbles that resembles caramelizing sugar. Thick sheets of tacky lace further affirm the outstanding appearance. I don't think I've ever seen an American strong ale that looks so much like a stout.

The nose, while aromatic enough, isn't what I'd call powerful or commanding. Chocolate is dominant, to the near exclusion of all else. Although there isn't as much complexity as I had hoped, I do appreciate dark fruit (dates) and a wee whiff of vanilla. I'll be disappointed if there's as little bourbon on the palate as there is in the nose.

Dragon's Milk is much more complex in the mouth and is becoming more so with every sip. The flavor profile features plenty of roasted malt flavors; especially dark chocolate and molasses. As it warms, vanilla and oak from the Jack Daniels casks becomes much more evident and the quality of the flavor surges forward as a result.

The final constellation is an intriguing mix of sugared vanilla beans, cocoa, caramel, brown sugar and bourbon whiskey. Vanilla, especially, fairly bursts out of each mouthful as the beer loses its slight chill. Any less than 4 months in the barrel wouldn't have been enough, and any more might have been too much. I started my bottle out at roughly 55 degrees and I can't emphasize enough how much it's improving as it approaches room temperature.

The mouthfeel seemed too light initially. Like the flavor, it comes into its own in smashing fashion in the bottom of the bottle. A notch more full than medium, it's wonderfully smooth with an understated (read: perfect) amount of carbonation. This is amazingly drinkable beer given the close to double-digit ABV.

I had two bottles of Dragon's Milk (thanks deejaydan) and decided to review the 2003 rather than the 2004 due to reports that an infection is threatening the well-being of the latter beer. No such worries with the '03, it has aged beautifully. This is one of New Holland's better offerings and is one that I'll be sure to look for on my semi-yearly trips back to Ohio.

 2,156 characters

Photo of 22Blue
4/5  rDev -1%

Photo of Jason
3.82/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz brown bottle with a vintage date of 2011 on the label.

LOOK: Dark brown, nearly black with ruby edges. Good lacing even if it is a bit thin.

SMELL: Oaky, vanilla, barrel juice, boozy, mild char, toasted bread, burnt raisins, fig jam

TASTE: Very smooth, wood, char, mildly fusel, vanilla, burnt sugar, dark chocolate, chicory, booze soaked raisins, charred drying finish

A really good barrel aged brew that rides the path of a stout, a big beer that you'll need to sip. Very well balanced, had fun drinking this one.

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Photo of drewone
3/5  rDev -25.7%

Photo of Slatetank
4.05/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I picked this up at Brass Rail Deli in Campbelltown. Shared with tenderbranson69 poured chilled in a double walled tumbler.

A - Dark toffee shade w/ translucent appearance. A light tan head forms and falls quickly. The cap is rocky and spotty lace clings

S - Vanilla presence is big in the nose w/ lots of cotton candy, toffee and caramel blend w/ a hint of nuts

M - A Med light body as a result of high abv w/ sweet nutty textures and mild alcohol/sweet presence in the finish

T - A cocoa/caramel taste w/ a gentle almond and cocoa flavor. The taste is sweet and nutty w/ a creamy note and oak barrel taste present in the flavor w/ mild astringency. A strong smooth toffee w/ a light toasted grain note in the finish. The taste is almost like Imperial Porter w/ the sweet less roasty essence. A light example of an American double stout flavor-wise. A mild alcohol/vanilla oak flavor stamps the finish w/ woody yet balanced taste. The malt is the key taste w/ nice mellow dark toasted notes

D - A great drinking wood aged beer, well worth checking out/price of admission. A beer I wish I could have tasted on tap when Brass Rail had it -C'est la vie. A great oaked beer in a bottle I would get 6 or 12 and hold half back -no question.

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Photo of mikesgroove
3.97/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ok, so this one I actually had been looking for the longest time for, only to just now realize that we can get this in SC. I was shocked and very happy so you know I had to immediately pick some up. This is exactly what I did. Poured a nice deep orange brown, pretty translucent, and to be honest did not look too thick. A small off white head formed on the top but quickly evaporated and left behind only a token amount of lace, almost none of what was on the sides of the glass. Some carbonation was visible. The smell was interesting, definitely could detect a touch of wood ageing in here, the aroma of brandy not withheld, some caramel sweetness and a touch of grain in the back. The taste was interesting again, almost had like a Cola taste to it, especially in the finish. Lots of oak tastes and a hint of brandy like. The carbonation was rather decent and it drank a lot lighter then I thought it would. It was a tad hot and would probably benefit from laying down a little. Overall this was pretty decent of a night time sipper, though I was able to drink it a bit faster then that. It was nothing outstanding, but still pretty nice if you are a fan of the barrel aged beers. This was definitely detectable and overall probably a pretty fair representation of a barrel aged brew. Worth a try definitely.

 1,312 characters

Photo of Huhzubendah
4/5  rDev -1%

Photo of orangesol
4/5  rDev -1%

Photo of GreesyFizeek
3.97/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

On tap at The Daily Growler in Upper Arlington, OH.

Pours a dark opaque black with a one inch head and not much lacing.

Smells include dark roasted malt, vanilla, and some oak.

Not much bourbon flavor in this BA stout, it's more of an oak and vanilla story. Some chocolate and roasted malt flavor. I might be spoiled now by other intense versions of this style, but this seems slightly muted. Good flavors, but would prefer a stronger barrel character. Quite sweet, slightly cloying.

Medium bodied, sticky sweet mouthfeel, coats your mouth. Not much alcohol present.

A good beginner's BA stout, I think, but not one of the greats.

 635 characters

Photo of BeerForMuscle
3.86/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A - Definitely not as dark as I had anticipated. It's a deep brown, pretty clear. Some dark amber hues at the bottom of the pint glass. Sturdy two finger head atop.

S - A sweet bouquet of caramel, toffee, and vanilla. Balanced with a certain mineral quality, and earthy oaky notes.

T - Sweetness and warmth up front. Viscous tastes of all of the above. Burnt caramel, brown sugar, sweet malt. The high alcohol is present, and evaporates on the palate sort of like a clean clear liquor. The 10% is present but not cloying. Dry roasted grains and oaky tones in the end.

M - Pretty slick, like a nice milk stout. The carbonation allows the flavor profile and abv to shine through.

O - Not so traditional milk stout in my opinion but tasty. Seems closer to a double bock or a maple porter. Try it out.

 802 characters

Photo of tdm168
3.67/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - pitch black with a thin lacing with brown head that fades fast

S - burnt sugar, oak, roasted malt, faint chocolate

T - roasted malt, burnt sugar, vanilla, chocolate, faint oak, alcohol

M - very warm, smooth, rich, medium to full bodied, well carbonated

This is a decent stout. The oak is more noticeable in the nose than in the flavor. It has a solid flavor overall. It's a bit boozy which takes away from the flavor and overall experience. Since the alcohol is so noticeable it also becomes a slow sipper. I wouldn't seek this out again, but I certainly wouldn't turn it down if I was offered.

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Photo of SadMachine
3.84/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of rab53
4/5  rDev -1%

Photo of womencantsail
3.43/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: The pour is a nice dark brown color with some ruby highlights and a thin tan colored head.

S: The nose is a bit off. Some roasted and sweet malts along with some fruits (perhaps cherries), vanilla, and a slight tinge of tartness.

T: This definitely has a bit of an off flavor. A noticeable tartness which isn't supposed to be there, along with some chocolate, dark fruit, oak, and sweet malts.

M: The body is medium with a low level of carbonation.

D: I'd been interested in trying this one for awhile, but I'm glad I didn't go out of my way. Perhaps this was just an off bottle, but even if that wasn't the case, this just was not that great.

 650 characters

Photo of Lone_Freighter
3.52/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The appearance was a black colored body that yields a one finger white head that concaves into the body after about a half minute with no carbonation seen rising. Some thick foamy lacing graces the sides of the pint glass. The smell had the bourbon up front with some chocolate in the background. The taste was balanced around the bourbon and chocolate, some slight roastiness comes in as the beer warms. On the palate, it was creamy and close to a medium maybe heavy sort of feel. There is a dry and bitter aftertaste. This isn’t exactly a drinkable beer, probably because of the high ABV. Overall, good for what it is, but there's so many Imperial Stouts out there these days.

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Photo of johnnnniee
4/5  rDev -1%

Bottle from Colonial Spirits.
Pours a deep dark brown with faint garnet at the edges and a smallish bubbly beige head that dissipates quickly. Aromas of roast, caramel, vanilla, light wood and bourbon with a faint cardboard. Little to no hop aroma, this one seems a bit sweet based on the nose. The flavor is roasty caramel with hints of toffee, vanilla and light oak. Light fruity notes midway through with a sweet bourbon and brown sugar linger at the end of every sip. Medium body, light level of carbonation. Nice easily assessable barrel aged stout. The oxidation in the nose is a little off putting, but the beer is quite tasty.

 634 characters

Photo of stakem
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark brown; nearly black in color. Around the edges, where light can shine through, it has some red/brown hues. Less than a finger of tanned head produced despite a fairly aggressive pour. Spotty amounts of lacing cling to the glass and it has fair retension for just a thin layer on top of this beer supported by rising bubbles of carbination. Nose is a big bold slap of woodsy oak character that is a little musty with alcohol, dark sugary sweetness and vanilla all coming into play before the usual toasty grain character of stout. Taste is really no surprise after taking in everything the aroma as to offer. Flavors include literally everything that the aroma presented: oak, alcohol (more in warmth factor than in taste but the taste is clearly there as well) bitter chocolate, and slight dark fruity sweetness like plum. Finishes bitter, but more like a burnt grain kind of bitter than a hop bitter. It has a chewy mouthfeel that clings to the palette and doesn't let go. Overall I really enjoyed this beer. It has a very enjoyable and complex nose and taste. The only thing I found a little distracting was the musty character in the aroma. Other than that I really enjoyed everything about this beer and would highly recommend it.

 1,252 characters

Photo of chippo33
2.25/5  rDev -44.3%

Photo of PA-Michigander
3.75/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of VeganUndead
4/5  rDev -1%

Photo of MarkyMOD
4/5  rDev -1%

Photo of Billolick
4.17/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ouncer, new graphics, i didn't see vintage/freshness dating, pours dark, dark mahogany, initially shows a dark mocha head, recedes down to a splotchy film and leaves lightish slippery lace. Nose is of dark bread, licorish and some background woodyness. Notes of rum, dark fruit, figs and raisins, more dark wood, molasses, and an underlying layer of wood. Nice sipper, bold and flavorful. More high test Michigan brew.

 421 characters

Photo of TMoney2591
4.02/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a Dogfish Head snifter.

Vintage 2010. So, if I were to suckle at a dragon's teat, this is what would end up in my mouth? Interesting. It pours a nearly translucent black-brown. No real head is formed, save a single layer of ecru foamy bubbles, and this doesn't hang around for very long at all. The nose comprises oak, vanilla, what seems like bourbon, chocolate, and cheesecake. The taste follows exactly, with the cheesecake nearly dropping out altogether, the oak gaining some strength, and a drying booziness invading the start of the aftertaste. The body is pretty hefty, with a light carbonation and a thick, chewy feel. I've had previous vintages of this and have been underwhelmed. It's nice to see such improvement in a relatively short amount of time. Or maybe it's been me the whole time...

 812 characters

Photo of t2grogan
3.5/5  rDev -13.4%

Photo of thatoneguymike
3.5/5  rDev -13.4%

Dragon's Milk from New Holland Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.04 out of 5 with 6,089 ratings