Weekly Beer Geek: Dragon Stout
- Article by Luke G
- January 12, 2012
Desnoes & Geddes Brewery, Jamaica
$2.49/9.6 oz. Bottle
I have no idea where this came from. I spent New Year’s Eve in Detroit making a steady string of poor decisions. At some point in the evening, there was a bottle of Dragon Stout in my hand. I woke up with an empty bottle near the bed and some cryptic notes scrawled on the back of a cardboard box. After separating the beer notes from the references to secret societies and plans for a hovercraft, I realized I had apparently quite enjoyed it.
The Brewer’s Pitch
Dragon Stout hails from the same Jamaican brewery that produces the more commonly known Red Stripe, Desnoes & Geddes. Frounded in 1918, the brewery began production on Dragon Stout in 1920 and it has since become one of the most popular stouts in the Caribbean Islands. D&G is picky about raw materials, minimizing imports and using high-quality caramel, brown sugar, and dark roast malt. Dragon is produced in Jamaica only, but sees export in the Caribbean and limited availability in the UK, US, and Canada.
Dragon Stout has an overall sweet aroma, like molasses with a bit of spicy kick to it. It is a darkly opaque brown with little to no head. In texture, it is mid-bodied with a very creamy mouth feel- on the heavier side for beer in general but by far one of the lightest feeling stouts I have tried. I once had hot chocolate made by a Filipino man, and the taste is like Dragon Stout. It is sweet and bitter in equal proportion, with notes of baking chocolate that have a bitter note and some sweet honey-like flavor. The finish is very mild, a crystalline sweetness that likely stems from the brown sugar.
This is a damn good beer, and no mistake. The bitterness of a stout is balanced by the chocolate and honey, with a brown-sugar finish that is sharp enough to be clean while still sweet enough to be pleasant. The price point is very high for undersize bottles but it hits pretty hard, even for its higher than average 7.5% ABV. I would guess it could nicely offset heavily spiced Caribbean food, but to be honest I’m not sure I remember it well enough to make that call.
The Bottom Line
The last thing on my note card speaks for itself. “Good enough for A. NO. A+. A F***ing +!!!!!!”