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Chicagoist's Beer Of The Week: New Holland Dragon's Milk

By Jason Baldacci in Food on Nov 14, 2014 10:05PM

2014_11_14_dragonsmilk.jpgThis week, since it's literally freezing outside, we've turned to an old standby to warm us up.

Dragon's Milk is an Imperial Stout aged in bourbon barrels from Holland, Michigan's New Holland Brewing Co. It pours a thick, incredibly dark brown color in the glass with a light tan foam nestled on top. The barrel aging is immediately apparent on the aroma, as we pick up big notes of oaky vanilla and char before we even take a sip. On the palate, the beer is deceptively light-bodied yet packed with flavor. The complex profile of heavily roasted malts definitely stands up to the dominant barrel-aged flavors, lending a very pleasant roasty component along with a silky texture that leads to a slightly boozy but warm finish. At 11 percent alcohol content, Dragon's Milk is dangerously smooth, but sure to delight anyone who needs to take their mind off of the weather.

A lot of breweries do limited releases on big, barrel aged beers and you might see a lot of those around town at the moment, since the Festival of Wood and Barrel Aged Beers is taking place this weekend. If you have tickets, you're sure to taste some special stuff. If you aren't attending FOBAB, scores of bars around town are featuring some of these beers or doing complimentary events while some of the brewers are visiting. Our favorite thing about a beer like Dragon's Milk is it's as good as anything else out there, but it's also readily available all year long. If you ask us, that's pretty special.

Dragon's Milk is available on draft and in 12- and 22-ounce bottles all over the greater Chicago area. Check to find some near you.