There are certain things in life that make my overactive mind settle down. Johnny Cash can do this, as can the plainly written books of John Steinbeck. For some reason cooking on the grill falls into this category as well. All of these things have a meditative effect on me that blocks out the chaos of the everyday and slows down the wheels long enough for me to reflect on the things that matter.
Well, I have another item to add to this eclectic list; New Holland Brewing’s oak-aged ale, Dragon’s Milk. So what makes this oak aged ale so special? Well it starts with the pour, which inky black with a lovely tan head. One look into the glass and you know you’re dealing with a serious brew.
Then there’s the nose. This is a beer that you hold on to while you drink it, bringing it up to your nose again and again just to enjoy its lovely aroma. There are dates and figs, some malt, and a whole lot of oak barrel there, all dancing together in perfect harmony.
Upon taking the first sip, you are greeted with dried fruit flavors, which give way to a delicious bitter chocolate then a woody oaken finish, with a hint of bourbon trailing behind. The mouthfeel is substantial, as the beer sinks silkily onto your tongue to tickle your taste buds. From start to finish, this beer is pure pleasure to be savored.
This is an awesome beer to curl up with and drink slowly, which at 10% ABV is probably wise. Sometimes I’ll even take a nip or two of Knob Creek whiskey while I enjoy a Dragon’s Milk, which brings out the bourbon qualities in the beer and the sweet flavors in the whiskey.
Learned beer nerds point to the value this brew represents. For about $8.00 per 22oz. bottle, you’re getting a very special beer. It’s a tremendous bargain. I probably shouldn’t be sharing this fact here, as New Holland may get wise to the fact that they could charge a lot more for this delicious brew and sell just as much. Well, at least to me.
You gotta love the Dragon.