Beer 381/365- New Holland Dragon’s Milk

New Holland Dragons Milk

Style: American Stout

ABV: 9.0%

Purchased at: Vintage Estate Wine & Beer – Boardman Ohio

What makes this beer different: Thought this would be considered an imperial stout due to the ABV. Regardless this is one of the best affordable “big stouts” available.

Will I be drinking this again: Yes, this beer is a staple in the cellar.

Grade: A-

3/7/2011: Kind of shocked that I didn’t drink one of these during my 365. Even more shocked that this is my first New Holland beer. I tried to make it there on my Michigan Beer Tour, but ran out of time and energy. I plan on driving through Michigan again in the near future, and I plan on making it to New Holland this time around for sure.

Dragon’s Milk in my opinion isn’t overly complex, but complexity isn’t a must for a good beer. The nose is mostly chocolate, oak, and a bit of dark fruit. The flavor reminds me of a stronger version of one of my favorite beers; Dominion Oak Barrel Stout. A lot of roasty malt, chocolate, some oak, and a hint of vanilla and dark fruit. There is a little alcohol kick that you usually get with a Russian Imperial Stout, but it doesn’t bother me much. This coming from a guy who drinks his Beam ‘n Coke’s at an 80/20 ratio typically. Mouthfeel is a bit light for the ABV, which is probably why the alcohol isn’t hidden extraordinarily well. Overall a great beer for the price.

Picture of the day: Who is up for a staring contest?

Beer 378/365 – Oakshire Overcast Espresso Stout

Oakshire Overcast Espresso Stout

Style: American Stout

ABV: 5.8%

Purchased at: Its been so long I don’t even remember how I got this.

What makes this beer different: Very drinkable, one of the more strongest coffee flavored “regular stouts” I have ever had.

Will I be drinking this again: Would like to but its not distributed here.

Grade: A-

2/9/2011: Wow has it really been over two weeks since I updated? I really have to get back to updating this site. I have about 30 beers backlogged, but my 8-5 job has been insanely busy lately. I have been drinking a lot of good new beer lately though. I feel as if now that I am not obligated to drink a beer everyday, that I actually enjoy drinking beer much much more.

The nose is full of roasted malt, and surprise surprise a shot of espresso. The flavor isn’t overly complex, but much better than I had expected. An even balance of roasted malts, and espresso; neither overpower the other. Also has a bit of a sweet kick to it (maybe a play on sugar in coffee?). Again not too complex, but a very enjoyable drink. Medium body and well carbonated for the style. Pretty good stuff!!

Picture of the day: It pains me to do this as a Steeler fan, but this comic is pretty funny.

Beer 227/365 – Highland’s Black Mocha Stout

Style: American Stout

ABV: 5.6%

Purchased at: Sent as an extra in a trade.

What makes this beer different: Not too much, just a solid drinkable stout.

Will I be drinking this again: I still have two left, so at some point yes.

Grade: B+

6/23/2010: This is my first beer from the great state of North Carolina. Okay honestly I’m not sure if its a great state, because I have never been there other than driving through it. But I do know Sexual Chocolate Stout is made there, and I have a trade in the works to pick up a bottle. I am on a mission to try and get every imperial stout on the top 100 (within reason).

Black Mocha Stout smells as advertised; A good bit of coffee and a good bit of chocolate. Also I am getting some hops, which is odd because I usually am not able to pick hops in up stouts. This beer has a lot of flavor for a standard stout. Almost an even split between chocolate and roasted coffee, with some nice bitter hops to even it out. This is one of the first brews I have had that the smell almost matched the taste exactly. My taste buds are usually good at picking stuff up, but not so much on the nasal end of things. Medium bodied but a little low on the carbonation.

Picture of the day: Lazy or Awesome?

Beer 189/365 – Dominion Oak Barrel Stout

Style: American Stout

ABV: 5.2%

Purchased at: Some place in Robinson PA.

What makes this beer different: Stout with vanilla and oak flavors, no gimmicks.

Will I be drinking this again: Hell yes

Grade: A-

5/16/2010: This beer was my very first stout that I liked; my gateway beer into the dark side if you will. I had this because of a recommendation by Mark Davis, former brew-master at Iron City, and current owner of The Bottleshop Cafe. I used to work at a restaurant right next to the cafe, and would stop in for a beer a couple nights a week after I got off my shift. Back then the place was small and had much better beer. Either way he introduced me to Oak Barrel Stout, and I have been a dark beer addict ever since.

I have a few 2007 bottles sitting around, and this stuff ages beautifully. This bottle is a 2010, and they may have changed the recipe just a bit. The smell is semi-oakey, and a good bit of chocolate. The flavors are straight foward, vanilla, some oak, and a bit of sweet chocolate. This beer is not overly complex which is what makes it great. Vanilla is also one of my favorite flavors which helps. Mouthfeel is a bit light for a stout, which makes it very drinkable. The flavors are a bit less dominant than I remember. Either I have blown out my palette with these big heavy stouts, or they have changed the recipe a bit. Still one of my favorite accessible beers around for sure.

Picture of the day: unemployed with a baby.

Published in: on May 16, 2010 at 3:48 pm  Comments (4)  
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Beer 110/365 – Rogue Chocolate Stout

Style: American Stout

Purchased at: Vintage Estate – Boardman Ohio

What makes this beer different: Perfect balance of hops and chocolate

Will I be drinking this again: Without a Doubt

Grade: A

2/26/2010: Last night I took a beer inventory to see which beers I had that could be aged, and which could not. Well this bad boy fell under the not category so I decided to throw it into the fridge to share with Cara. Sidenote: I plan on popping open my first ever Abyss sometime soon.

Damnit why did it take me so long to try Rogue Chocolate stout, this stuff is awesome. Smell is a lot of sweet chocolate, and some hop presence. Taste is a perfect balance of chocolate and hops. What really makes this chocolate stout different from others, is that the chocolate is more on the sweet side than bitter. There is a nice dose of hops that balance the chocolate. I have been looking for a lighter bodied stout that had a lot of chocolate flavor, and this fits the bill. Awesome beer.

Picture of the day: I knew the japanese were weird, but not this weird. Whats up with this Dan? haha

Published in: on February 26, 2010 at 6:00 pm  Comments (1)  
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Beer 103/365 – Dark Horse Fore Smoked Stout

Style: American Stout

Purchased at: Vintage Estate – Boardman Ohio

What makes this beer different: Not as smokey as I thought it would be

Will I be drinking this again: Mmmm depends what else I have available that day

Grade: B+

2/19/2010: Wonder why there isn’t a “smoked stout” category on Beeradvocate? I guess its because Smoked Porter is a bit more common than Smoked Stouts. Anywho picked this one up a few days ago at Vintage Estate. Actually didn’t see this one in Michigan when we took our trip up there. Had to pick this up because so far Dark Horse might be my favorite brewery I have personally visited. Again how can you hate a place with beers called “Richard in mouth w/cumquat”, and “Smells like weed.”

It seems to me like Dark Horse uses the same stout base for all the beers in this series. The prior ones were One/Oatmeal, Too/Cream, and Tres/Blueberry. The smell is a decent bit of smoke, and a bit of coffee. The smoke taste in this beer comes through as more of a charred type of flavor, and is actually a bit subdued oveall. I am assuming this is because I am used to smoke porters which usually aren’t nearly as bombarded with as much malt as stouts. The other flavors are heavy espresso, and molasses. I wish I knew what the ABV is on this beer because it peeks out just a little bit. I base a lot of my grading of a beer on whether or not the alcohol is hidden well, so its hard for me to give an accurate grade. If its a 6% beer they did a bad job, if its a 9%-10% beer they did an awesome job. Overall very solid, just wish the alcohol was hidden better.

Picture of the day: Mother Nature has a sense of humor..

Published in: on February 19, 2010 at 5:48 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Beer 87/365 – Bell’s Kalamazoo Stout

Style: American Stout

Purchased at: Vintage Estate – Boardman OH

What makes this beer different: Roasty, sweet, and smooth

Will I be drinking this again: Yes

Grade: B+

2/03/2010: Going back to my comfort zone.. Stouts. I spent the last month on a mission trying to be open to more styles of beer, and it has been successful, but time to return to my stronghold. I also notice my grading is becoming a bit more strict as a result.

Kalamazoo stout smells mostly like chocolate to me, which is odd because I don’t get a lot of chocolate in the taste. The taste is mostly roasted malts, then some nice bitter coffee flavor, and a bit of chocolate at the end. It all transitions very smoothly. Pretty creamy for a medium mouthfeel. Overall very solid for a regular old American Stout.

Funny Picture of the day: I know a couple Skier’s/Snowboarders like this.

Published in: on February 3, 2010 at 8:39 am  Leave a Comment  
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Beer 54 – Jolly Pumpkin Tortuga Ale Co. Chocolate Stout

Style: American Stout

Purchased at: Jolly Pumpkin Cafe

What makes this beer different: Chalky Chocolate Water

Will I be drinking this again: No

Grade: B-

1/01/2010: Started off the new year by doing a brewery tour with the girlfriend through Michgan, and Jolly Pumpkin was my first stop. The only beer I have had from them was the Oro De Calabaza and I loved it, so I figured I couldn’t go wrong by making this the first stop.

Ugh, hopefully the first beer of the year is not a sign of things to come. Don’t let the chocolate milk look fool you, this beer is very watery and lacking of flavor. Had little to no smell, and was very very thin for a stout. Had the consistency of an Irish Dry Stout but even less flavor. Light roast flavor, slight chocolate, and very slight oak flavor. It wasn’t a BAD taste, just not enough of it. It just needed cranked up about 5x more. I don’t need in your face flavors, but this one gave me very little to go on. For what its worth I did sample my girlfriends Noel de Calabaza and that was damn tasty.

Published in: on January 1, 2010 at 11:12 pm  Comments (3)  
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Beer 40 – Victory Storm King Stout

Style: American Imperial Stout

Purchased at: Tony from Vision

What makes this beer different: VERY hoppy for a stout

Will I be drinking this again: Maybe

Grade: B+

12/18/2009: Thanks to my coworker Tony for this one. The more I am paying attention to where beers are brewed, the more I am realizing the eastern half of my state has a lot of good breweries. I have had many of the beers from them (Troegs, Victory, Weyerbacher), but never realized they were brewed in PA.

The head on this beer was massive. Once you taste it the first thing that hits you with this beer is undoubtedly hops. It is almost overwhelming at first. Once the beer warms up a little the hops back off a little bit, just enough for you to taste a pretty complex malt flavor. I didn’t really taste a lot of coffee/chocolate flavor that you usually do in stouts. I liked this beer but a little bit too hoppy for me. I am sure if it was aged a little bit it would be awesome.

Published in: on December 18, 2009 at 5:20 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Beer 35 – Hitachino Nest Espresso Stout

Style: American Stout

Purchased at: Vintage Estate

What makes this beer different: Smooth Coffee Flavor

Will I be drinking this again: A bit pricey but this was damn good

Grade: A-

12/13/2009: Oh Herro! Hitachino is brewed by Kim Jong-il at Kiuchi Brewery. Hans Brix was nice enough to penetrate the North Korean border and embezzle all of Kim’s Hitachino stash and bring it to the states. What a patriot. Okay its obviously not brewed by Kim Jong-il. Its brewed in Japan at Kiuchi Brewery, and its damn good.

The price of admission was 5 dollars for this chubby little bottle, but I heard and read good things about it so I decided to give it a shot. As you can see by the picture above the head on this stuff was amazing. There was a lot of coffee flavor, but it was a much smoother than the slightly bitter coffee taste usually associated with most American Coffee Stouts. It also was very creamy and almost had a milk stout quality to it. Everyone should try this one at least once as it was probably the smoothest coffee stout I have ever tasted.

Have you had a Coffee Stout that you think is better? Comment below and let me know so I can try it!

Published in: on December 13, 2009 at 10:56 am  Comments (10)  
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