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Left Hand Milk Stout - Left Hand Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Left Hand Milk StoutLeft Hand Milk Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

5,880 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 5,880
Reviews: 1,652
rAvg: 3.98
pDev: 12.56%
Wants: 182
Gots: 664 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Left Hand Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Milk / Sweet Stout |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:

Milk sugar in your stout is like cream in your coffee. Dark and delicious, America’s great milk stout will change your perception about what a stout can be. “Preconceived notions are the blinders on the road to enlightenment.” Udderly delightful.

Collection: Perennial
Style: Sweet Stout
Color: Black, 47 SRM
Body: full
ABV: 6%
IBU's: 25
PLATO: 15.5°
PKG: 6-Pack, Keg
Malt: Pale 2-row, Crystal, Munich, Roasted Barley, Flaked Oats, Flaked Barley and Chocolate
Hops: Magnum and US Goldings
Other: Lactose

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 04-20-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,880 | Reviews: 1,652 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of tlazaroff
3.4/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Its a very very dark red beer, so much that it looks black. The head is a nice tanned bubbly.

S: Roasty sweetness dominates the smell. The thing is, its just not that strong. I expected more.

T: It has that traditional espresso/coffee flavor that stouts are known for. Its a tad sweet, but I don't get a lot of it.

M: This is a full bodied beer, and is very very smooth, even more-so than Guinness. Very good texture.

D: Its sweet enough that it's not very drinkable for me, I'd stick with one.

Photo of rel
3.93/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this on nitro-tap with a burger.

The nitro gave the beer an awesome cascade. Really thick tan head, decent retention and lacing.

A lot of chocolate, sweet malt, and hints of vanilla on the nose.

It's a delicious stout. Very sweet, with nice roasted malts, milk chocolate and vanilla, like an ice cream swirl. Hops are practically non-existent, which suits this beer.

The nitro does wonders for the texture. Silky smooth, somewhat dense, and practically no carbonation.

I've had this beer on tap and out of a bottle, and nitro is the way to go with it!

Photo of bugaboo416
3.95/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: black as midnight, short lived head with lingering legs

S: coffee, roasted malt

T: roasted malt followed by Coffee and bitter chocolate with light cream, lightly sweet.

M: medium body, creamy and very smooth. Bubbles softly flow around your mouth

O: Pretty well balanced stout with an excellent creaminess and mouthfeel.

Photo of Gatch
4.72/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Nitro-tap at Mellow Mushroom in Tempe, AZ. Already one of my favorite Stouts out of a bottle or out of a regular tap line, Left Hand's Milk Stout gets even better from a nitro-tap!

A - Dark as night. A thick, fluffy, deep brown head that is so smooth, it looks like ice cream. It settles like an espresso would settle. Very inviting.

S - Roasted malt, chocolate, some notes of coffee. All the typical characteristics of a Stout, but everything is enhanced. And sweeter because of the nature of this style of beer.

T - Incredible. When I took the first sip, it's how I imagined Guinness might taste over in Ireland. It's like drinking liquid chocolate. Lots of sweet chocolate and delicious malty goodness.

M - Carbonation is nonexistent because of the nitro-tap. So damn smooth. No single characteristic lingers on the palate too long. A perfect sip/gulp every time.

One of the greatest Stouts that I've ever had the pleasure of drinking.

Photo of iDrinknewglarus
3.88/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Really dark brown. Can just slightly see through it if held up to the light, but all in all just about black. Dark tan head that settles a little faster than I would like, but still manages to make for a line of lacing for each swig.

S: Smells damp and slightly musty. A bit sour... like sour milk. A little chocolate accompanied by roasted malts. Not the high point for this beer.

T: This brew won't slap you in the face with flavor, but it does carry a blend of roasted malts, while being quite heavy on the chocolate. The chocolate is like a mix of milk and dark. Quite sweet with just a bit of dark chocolate bitterness, especially in the aftertaste.

M: I really like how this stout feels in my mouth. Medium-full and creamy. Soft carbonation.

This is one smooth, easy drinking brew with the highlight being the mouthfeel. It's nice if you want a sweeter stout.

Photo of olimpia84
3.98/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured the 12oz bottle into my Weizen glass ( my Pint glass was not available at this time). Very dark brown with chocolate milk colored small head that dissipated quickly. Lacing was present at first but as I kept drinking it became absent as the beer went down. A nice aroma came out of the tall glass that gave hints of dark chocolate, milk, and caramel. Nose led to the advertised taste with the dark chocolate flavor as its main component, along with yeast and roasted malt flavors and a sweet aftertaste. Nice mouthfeel with excellent small carbonation that didn't get in the way of tasting the aforementioned flavors.

Overall, a very good stout that I will certainly go back to again.

Photo of rarbring
3.35/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

The beer is black/brown with hints of red, a tan head with little head and lacing but good curtains.

The smell is sweet, dry fruits, burned bread, chocolate bars, and slightly sour dishcloth.

Tasting very much of sweet milk chocolate, raisin marmalade on roasted brown bread.

Little carbonation, a soft slightly sticky feeling a good body but no dryness.

Very much a sweet chocolate dessert, good if you're into that.

Photo of CaptJackHarkness
4.93/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Lactose sugar apparently gives this Sout a wonderfuly full body and taste. Literally Creamy Head that lasts a decent time. Actually a surprising crisp taste especially from a dark beer!
The logo of a Red Left Hand makes me wonder if these brewers are from the O'Neill Clan of Ulster? The recipe could be based on Irish sweet stout!

Photo of elNopalero
4.35/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Personally, I tend to enjoy stouts (and porters, in all their various permutations) as much as ... well, I guess I'll just say that I enjoy them and leave it at that. I think a nice roasty stout on a foggy SF night is a perfect combination, and if it's an imperial stout with some warming alcohol in it, all the better. But Texas in the summer? Eh, not so much. My mind may be thinking cold but the world around me is way too hot! Which brings me to... milk stout. While I wouldn't say it's a summer beer, I think the sweetness of a milk stout makes for a nice beer when you're craving some chocolaty, roasty goodness. And since I don't see Left Hand in SF I thought I'd give it a try.

Poured into my Ranger Creek nonic. Got a couple of fingers of head off of it that gradually dissipated. Nice lacing. It's dark, almost black, and a few shades off from being completely opaque. Smells wonderful. The sweet notes come through in the aroma. I'm ending the night with this beer and it's definitely dessert in a bottle.

From the first sip on, I love the balance. It's sweet, definitely, but not cloyingly so. And the chocolate notes are there, more milk chocolate than bitter/dark chocolate. (note: I'm pairing it with a square of dark chocolate and some Redemption Rye to boot, per a suggestion.) I like my stouts to have a full body and this doesn't disappoint. Makes me curious as to what trying it on nitro does.

Photo of gregshead
4.08/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a thin dark brown with a trace of head that fizzles, pops and then is gone.

S: Sweet sugar and roasted grain smell. Smell makes me think of sugar crystals in a dark roasty stout

T: Lots of creamy sweet taste with pops of roasted malt

M: Light and creamy with some carbonation

O: Usually I'm not impressed by milk stouts but this one definitely made me reconsider that. Well done Left Hand Brewing.

Photo of rrski198
4.43/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: A really deep deep red/brown color when held up to the light, otherwise, pretty black. A nice big fluffy mocha colored head. This really makes the beer above average.

S: Beautiful roasted, smokey, dark chocolate smell.

T: Really sweet up front with a chocolate milk like taste. I'm also getting that smokey flavor again which is a nice surprise.

M: Big, thick and rich. From the look, I thought it was going to be thinner than it actually is. The roasted flavor leaves a slight bitterness at the back of the tongue.

O: The standard for milk stouts. It doesn't get much better than this, for the style. I have had quite a few other lactose/milk/cream stouts that just don't measure up to this masterpiece.

Photo of ZenAgnostic
4.8/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle poured into a Duvel tulip. Bottled on 6/18/11, stamped on neck.

Appearance - Black body, light brown head with low stick and retention.

Smell - Chocolate milk, coffee, cream. Very slight coffee finish.

Taste - Sweet. Chocolate. Nutty. Coffee.

Mouthfeel - Very smooth. No off tinges.

Overall Drinkability - Perfectly smooth and round. Very flavorful but with no off flavors. Absolutely great beer.

Photo of paxchristi
3.7/5  rDev -7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I poured this beer into a chilled glass mug. The head was inconsistent from bottle to bottle. I had six of this particular beer. About three of the bottles form about 3/4-1 inch of very dark brown head that lasted only a minute or two. The other three gave head (giggity) similar to what soda is like whenever it is mixed out of proportion with its syrup. I still do not know whether this is part of the Milk Stout style or if it was just on the shelf for a while. However, whenever there was head left, it always left lacing...which was done beautifully. There was always the opportunity to lick a bit of head off the side before indulging into the creamy body of the beer. It smelled of dark malts, chocolate, and perhaps a bit of coffee (though not strong but accented mos def). At first, the taste was a bit underwhelming, but this is my first “Milk Stout.” The added sugars (lactose) give it a much creamier quality that I am not used to and suspect is more of a cult taste. And so, judging the taste, I must allow it to be what it is; not something that I have a strong affinity for at this time. However, the body of this beer was full, creamy, and has a definite flavor as if it were going for an imperial kick, but the “milk” attempt sort of neuters the necessary risks needed to make this more than a slightly above average beer. At times, it even seemed watery, and so if it is supposed to be “milky” it is skim milky. In my mouth, it seemed to sag and have a heavy sensation on my tongue. If it were going for a milk sensation, it definitely accomplishes this goal (it was quite different for me). Overall, it seems that it is a good stout with excellent flavor (however a bit simple I suspect), but the “milk” thing seemed to underwhelm me; because the bold flavor seemed to be neutered by the attempt to be milky. I don’t take any dairy in my coffee either. So, to be fair, I will give it a slightly better grade than what I think my taste grades it by. If I ever find this on tap, I will probably try it again, but I will probably never seek out a bottled version of this any time soon. I suspect the possibility that the lactose may have compromised some of the beer’s integrity while it was on the shelf. I look forward to trying more Left Hand brews, because I hear that they are incredibly creative.

Photo of jpro
3.6/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On nitro-tap at Closed for Business. Served in a Left Hand Milk Stout pint glass - it was a pretty cool glass -

A: Dark brown / black; creamy, 1 inch, tan head leaves a sheet of lace.

S: Roast malts; some metallic notes; not much aroma (due to nitro perhaps?).

T: Very roasty with some earthy notes, too; sweet without much bitterness; smooth.

M: Full; low-carbonation; a touch dry at the end and a little sticky; not as sweet as some milk stouts (which is nice - for me, at least).

O: A good milk stout; nothing crazy, though... I’d like to give the bottled version again to compare.

Photo of Paincane
3.9/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Very dark brown with thin tan head that leaves little lacing
S: Malt, milk, chocolate aromas all mix together in a pleasant bouquet of beer
T: Malt, chocolate, nutty flavor with a milky quality to it
M: Thick, but reeasonably light on palate. Looks heavier than it truly feels. Medium-bodied without much carbonation. Smooth.
O: Tasty smooth drinkable beer that was quite enjoyable and worth having another.

Photo of eggodoom
4.4/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured the bottle into a pint glass. The beer poured a deep opaque chocolatey brown. The beer had little to no head and what it did have was a light brown and dissapated quickly. As I tasted the beer left rings of lace that stuck to the glass. On the nose I get sweet caramel and chocolate. The stout has the typical mouth feel a milk creamy sensation that coats the mouth like a sticky fatty rib dinner. The mouthfeel doesn't fade I have a constant think feel in my mouth. The taste is just as the smell dictates. Lots of chocolate sweetness, with a caramel note to finish. I have no quarrels with this beer I like it a lot and will have many in the future.

Photo of GlassFreeek
3.7/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Short lasting, small dark tan head. Nice black color, typical stout color.

S: Nice malty chocolate presence w/ a hint of coffee lingering in there somewhere.

T: Nice and smooth chocolate notes followed by a sweetness that lingers for a little bit. I like this one, very drinkable.

MF: Smooth and silky, typical for a milk stout, but not the best I've had. Good enough to be enjoyable for this style.

Overall I tend to drink this semi-regularly when I am in the mood for a sweet stout and when I don't feel like busting down my Moloko stash. Good offering for an all year round milker.

Photo of Vengeance526
3.63/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark black color with a small tan head that lasts for a little while before subsiding.

Aroma of chocolate and roasted malt upfront with just a touch of coffee in the back.

Taste starts off very sweet with roasted malt and chocolate all around.

Medium body, nice smooth mouthfeel. Overall, a good stout but nothing too special. I think I would get bored with it fairly quickly.

Photo of HopsKeepDroppin
3.9/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a Saint Arnold Pint glass.

A- Very dark color, almost black. Has a thin khaki head on top however it leaves a decent amount of lacing.

S- Smells of coffee and dark chocolate with some milk chocolate shining through.

T- Sweet, very smooth chocolate and coffee tastes.

M- Very smooth, not a lot of carbonation but it doesn't take away from the beer.

O- A good decent milk stout. One thing I'll note is that it is the middle of summer and over 100 degrees here everyday. Not exactly stout weather. This one is refreshing and delicious regardless.

Photo of cincyfan90
4.38/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer completely catches you off guard. You expect an extremely dark, fairly bitter beer yet this drinks smooth, has a light sweetness that balances with the bitterness, and displays a solid black color in the glass.

I highly recommend this beer for anyone, but especially for someone who wants a full flavor beer without being overcome by bitterness.

Photo of jondeelee
3.9/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Left Hand's Milk Stout--a beer style that contains lactose (not milk)--smells much like a typical stout, being ripe with coffee, ash, chocolate malt, and hints of milk chocolate aromas.

On the tongue, the beer is immediately noticeable for being far smoother in mouthfeel than most beers, and has a distinctive sweetness, much like a standard stout had sugar added (which is, of couse, exactly what has happened). Still present are the tobacco, coffee, ash, and chocolate malt flavors, which give the beer a lovely full base, but the addition of lactose has given the brew a creamy mouthfeel, and a condensed milk sweetness that pairs wonderfully with the more bitter, burnt flavors. The sugars die off near the end of the mouthful, revealing the true darkness of the malts, but enough sugars linger to still keep the sweet tastebuds interested. The aftertaste is a continuation of this, and lasts for a good while.

Overall, this is a good milk stout, and would make an excellent introduction to anyone not familiar with the style, as the flavors are easily palatable and delicious.

Photo of fsvan
3.8/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle poured into pint glass.

A- Almost black, but really a deep, deep brown, with reddish tinges around the edges. A finger of beige head that quickly dissipates.

S- Lots of roasted malts and dark chocolate dominate. A bit of coffee buried in the background.

T- Big roasted malts first. A sweetness that coats the tongue on the finish. 6% alcohol is nowhere to be seen. Not spectacular, but nice.

M- For a stout, it's a little watery and thin for my tastes.

O- Not a bad beer at all, and my favorite of the Left Hand regular line up to date. It is, in my opinion, overpriced at almost $12 a six pack locally, and for that reason I am not a regular purchaser of it.

Photo of gatorbreath
4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

need to quit being out o' this @ my local spot..tisk tisk..

Appearance is dark brown/very dark brown/black, presumably opaque giving the lighting conditions at my local imbibery Smell is dark malt, caramel, possibly dark fruits, slightly some chocolatey notes as well! Mouthfeel is slippery, thick, but not overwhelming, and I enjoy it very much.

Get it back!

Photo of zimm421
3.93/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a tulip. Appears a dark brown to black with a thin, fluffy brown head that leaves great lacing. There is a nice ring of head around the edges of the glass.

The nose contains sweet malts, and nice roastiness. The sweetness really comes through and dominates everything else. Smells almost like cream one would use for coffee. Speaking of coffee, there is a slight hint in the nose, but it doesn't stick out like in most other stouts. The taste is very sweet and malty, with nice roasted characters coming through. There is a slight coffee bitterness in the end of each sip. This goes down easily and has a decent complexity to it, but not like other stouts I've had.

The mouthfeel is extremely creamy, and this goes down so smoothly. That being said, there is also a good carbonation sting on the tongue. This is medium bodied, I was looking for a slight bit more in the body. Overall, a great brew. Something that is great for anyone, even if they don't enjoy stouts. The sweetness makes it enjoyable for people that can't stand the bitterness of other stouts and it is enjoyable on a hot day or a cold day.

Photo of MDDMD
3.8/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A-dark chocolate brown with a tan creamy head

S-sweet chocolate, toasty malt and coffee with hint of bitterness

T-chocolate and coffee with slight bitterness

F-surprisingly light-bodied and slightly watery

O-a standard, decent milk stout which doesn't distinguish itself

Left Hand Milk Stout from Left Hand Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 5,880 ratings.