1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

Left Hand Milk Stout - Left Hand Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Left Hand Milk StoutLeft Hand Milk Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

5,967 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 5,967
Reviews: 1,670
rAvg: 3.98
pDev: 12.56%
Wants: 198
Gots: 747 | 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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 04-20-2002


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: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 5,967 | Reviews: 1,670 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ATSJer
4.04/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle to glass
Room temp

Appearance: Pours a smooth extremely dark amber brew that is not quite opaque, typically I like the look of a brew that is completely black with no light showing, but this one looks good. A ½ inch dark almond head built but quickly faded to a thin ring around the glass, the carbonation streams feed the foam ring throughout the drink. As most stouts are to me this one has a definite appeal and fits the category well. There is however no lacing on the glass at all as it slides off with the smooth thin syrup brew.

Smell: I was struck by just how heavy the dark rich malts are in this brew they smelled very good to me, and to balance there was also a medium intensity hop spice as well as another spice that I couldn't quite identify. There is also a sweet syrup smell that is released when the beer is swirled. I can catch hints of toffees, and caramel but there was no burnt or astringent smell.

Taste: As with the smell the rich malts take the lead and layered with them is the sweetness that floats evenly with the hop spice, I was surprised at just how rich the malts are in this brew and while there is a spice it almost comes as a follow up rather than the main show. I would say that the malts are 50%, while the sweetness and the spice make up 25% each which for me balances very well on the tongue and provides a nice complexity that keeps my tongue working. The creaminess of this brew was also pleasant and apparently in keeping with the milk stout style guide. In the end this brew is a full bodied stout with a very rich sweet malt flavor that sometimes reminds me of a cola drink finished as one would expect a stout to do with a bite of bitterness on the back of the tongue.

Mouthfeel: Thick and heavy are the rule here, this is one smooth and creamy brew that is offset well with the moderate carbonation that sharpens the feel up a bit. This stout left a buttery coating in my mouth that I would attribute to the lactose or some diacetyl. On the glass it looked like a thin syrup in the mouth it feels thinner than that but still plenty of body to this brew.

Drinkability: This is a well balanced beer and the malts are by far the most prominent feature, it is rich in flavor and has an appealing spice that seems to dissipate as the brew warms a bit. The carbonation fills you up a bit, but the way this beer slides down really make it a pleasure to drink. This is a nice evening brew around a filet mignon or while sitting with friends for an nice evening, very drinkable and a shame when the glass is empty.

Photo of deg
3.99/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I received a bottle and a glass at an area restaurant. I poured the beer into the glass, and it was rich and black. I tried smelling the beer, and I got chlorine. I think this was leftover from the restaurant staff cleaning the glass so I won't rate the beer's smell poorly. I could taste sweetness, roasted malts, and a coffee like flavor. The beer had a milky feel to it, and went down nicely.

Photo of dmamiano
3.22/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Nice black pour, witha small tan head and sme lacing.
Coffee in the nose, burnt sugars, chocolate notes.
Taste was a bit thin, a little surprised. Expecting a bit more on the feel. Nice chocolate tones with bitter coffee on the other side.
Not bad, but have had better

Photo of Amalak
4.45/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had a 12 oz. bottle.
A- Completely black with a tan, foamy head and great lace.
S- Brilliant burnt scent.
T- Excellent burnt taste to match the scent. Light smokiness, well balanced, not too strong, despite decent ABV.

Outside of the masturbatory sound to its name, excellent beer.

Photo of showell
4.1/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is the first Left Hand I've tried. All in all, a nice first from them.

It pours a very dark brown to almost black. A nice two finger head that persists for quite some time. The smell is mostly roasted malt, with a touch of rosted coffee. The taste honestly reminds me of a very strong mocha. A lot of coffee flavor, and a touch of chocolate milk. Really tasty!!! The aftertaste has just a hint of bitterness. Mouthfeel is nice. Not quite as slick as an oatmeal stout. I have to be careful with this. I could probably drink a sixpack, just because I like the flavor. Yum.

Photo of dankbrew21
3.7/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a regular pub glass.

A-Very dark, nice two finger head. The tiniest bit of light coming through when held up to the sun. Very concentrated head with slight caramel color.

S- Coffee bean, black licorice and some chocolate coming through. Dark roasted malts.

T- Sweet coffee flavor with licorice and some chocolate coming through Dark roasted malts with a slight smokiness to it. Not to overpowering at all. Slick mouthfeel.

D- I would call this a session stout. I could probably drink a six pack in one night. Very good light stout!

Photo of woemad
3.77/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle purchased at Huckleberry's in Spokane for $1.39. Bottled on April 8th of this year, according to the date stamped on the bottle.

Poured a seemingly dark, opaque color, with a small,light tan head, but when held up to the light, the beer took on a decidedly reddish tinge, and was much more transparent than one would have initially suspected. Minimal, spotty lace.

The nose was chocolaty, which I expected, given the style. What did surprise me was that there also was a noticeable, prune-like dark fruit scent as well. In the background was a mild, coffee-like roastiness. No hops to speak of.

The taste was similar to the smell. Initially sweet, but with a bitter fruity taste not too far behind - though this aspect didn'[t seem quite as pronounced as in the nose. Very faint dry note at the swallow.

Medium bodied, and lightly coating in the mouthfeel.

Not a beer that's too terribly worthy of seeking out, but quite drinkable, as it was moderately interesting tasting, without being too demanding on the palate. One of the more sessionable stout's I've had in a while. It reminds me of Laughing Dog's Sweet Stout, except that the latter beer has more oomph in the flavor department. Not a hugely memorable beer, but an easily quaffable stout. Best beer I've had from Left Hand (not that I've been all that impressed with other LH beers that I've tried), and one that I'd drink again given the right circumstances.

Photo of bhalter8
4.03/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

When I saw this was on nitro-tap at the brewery, I had to give it a drink. I feel like I am in the minority in that I have liked this beer over the years. The nitro tap worked well with this brew. Pour dark black, but you can tell not that dense, color. A huge, frothy white head rests atop. Seemed like there was a rim of head around my glass the entire time I drank it. The aroma was none too overwhelming. A rich malt aroma is there, with some very sweet sugar and chocolate hints. Flavor was far more pronounced than the aroma indicated. A nice, full sweet chocolate malt flavor with a slight bitter ting at the end. The lactose aspect came through stronger as a drank it. The nitro-did wonders for the mouthfeel, and really brought out the creamy characteristics, and lighten the brew itself with some carbonation. I like a milk stout every now and then, and this one is done better with the nitro-tap, it just lightens it up, makes it an easy drinking, but sweet character stout.

Photo of Reaper16
3/5  rDev -24.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

served from a 12oz. bottle (born on 1/28/09) into a pint glass.

Pours a lighter-than-expected shade of brown. Well, it isn't so much that the beer is light its that you can see through it. There is a lot of coppery red in the brown when held to light. This looks like a porter, frankly. The 1/2 finger head quickly receded to nothing, leaving no lacing behind. It went so fast that I cannot remember the color of the head.

Roasted chocolate bitterness dominates the nose. There is something sweet and dairy-like showing through, too. No complexity.

This is a really sweet stout, as one would expect. I wouldn't consider it milky in any sense. (Though being spoiled by milk from local farmers, I've sort of forgotten how supermarket milk tastes like.) The roasted bitter elements linger on the aftertaste. The nose said chocolate, but the tongue says coffee. Regardless, neither said creamyness. There is just a lack of depth here to go along with the confusuion.

Mouthfeel is okay. Its certainly too thin. Its a little bit prickly, which I like given the sweetness. That sweetness, however, combined with its general averageness limits the score that I can give it concerning drinkability.

I found this beer to be pretty one-note, and that single note wasn't a deep one. I don't have a lot of experience drinking milk/sweet stouts, but I can't see why I would want this over some other, similarly priced stouts. Especially when it doesn't even taste like a stout. I guess that I just don't get it.

Photo of JoshuaJ
4.24/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown, nearly black color with the tiniest hints of red when the light hits it just so. The head quickly dissipated and there was virtually no lacing.

Smells like bitter coffee, milk chocolate powder and roasted malt. Mmm...

Taste is almost identical to the nose. Rich, roasted malts, bitter coffee, sweet chocolate and a really interesting milky quality.

Mouthfeel is a little thin. The carbonation is just about perfect here, but as a whole, I'd say this is bordering on being a medium bodied brew. People keep saying how thick this is, and I'm just not getting that. Creamy, yes. Thick, no.

Drinkibility is good, though. It's not heavy and with a 5.2% ABV, this could be sessionable. I'd love to have this alongside a rich, chocolate torte.

Photo of jettjon
3.55/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

From a 12 oz bottle date 4/28/09; consumed 6/12/09. Into my Sam Adams glass (thanks, guys!) it's a very dark, black-coffee brown color with minimal head and a decent ring. Coffee, powdery-chocolate nose. Distinct fresh-ground coffee bean aroma; quite refreshing. Nice full flavor with bitter dark chocolate and mild coffee flavors. Semi-dry finish. Mouth is somewhat thin yet crisp with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is good; definitely an enjoyable, sessionable brew.

Overall: A decent milk stout, nothing spectacular, somewhat thin for style, but tasty and refreshing nonetheless. Worth a try.

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

Pours black with ruby highlights. Has a tan 1/2 fing head that dissipates quickly and left minimal lace.

Smell was roasted malt, espresso

Tasted as it smelled with a faint chocolate undertone. Very smooth and drinks easily. Rich and creamy mouthfeel. A great milk stout.

Photo of Cylinsier
3.48/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a dark brown that just barely allows light through; a cherry red glow results. The head is tan and small and recedes slowly to a film.

Smells like sweetened grains and also slightly smoked.

Tastes about the same. Sweet like sugar and smokey.

Mouthfeel has a fizzy kick but is mostly very smooth, thick and creamy.

Overall a pretty good stout. Tasty and I'd definitely have this one again.

Photo of rkrisstewart
3.98/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Been mulling over the purchase of this one since I first spotted it. Finally broke down and purchased a sixer to add some variety to my summer vacation beer supply.

It fulfills pretty much exactly what you think it will. A "milky" brown, its smell of roasted coffee, milk chocolate, and some whole milk mixed in carries over to its overall flavor. I really enjoyed it from the first sip, definitely a sweeter beer, as should be expected. Reminds me of a bittered chocolate milk, with some light coffee bean, mocha flavoring.

Definitely a nice addition to any fridge. Would work best as a dessert, although I don't see drinking more than one in any given session.

Photo of ken2cart1
3.98/5  rDev 0%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

served in my 12 oz. snifter

A- very small 1/4 inch white head that quickly dissolves. poor head retention. dark brown with red hues....not typical for stouts

S- roasted coffee beans, bitter chocolate or cocoa, lactose

T- rich malty taste with hints of roasted coffee notes. Lactose is apparent, smooth chocolate or cocoa taste is also prevalent. I can detect the use of a small amount of noble hops for balance in the finish.

M- medium mouthfeel. very smooth.

D- very drinkable, great session beer, not too complex

Photo of WakeandBake
3.94/5  rDev -1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the Mountain Mixer Sample pack. A Deep amber/brown color body with a soapy light tan head. Aroma or dark roasted malt,coffee,and slight sweet cream. Flavor is of slightly burnt coffee with a touch of cream and sugar, nice and roasty ,light carbonation, with a crisp clean mouthfeel for a stout, light body, roasty coffee type aftertaste, pretty darn drinkable.

Photo of Seru1
3.95/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured in a pint glass from a six pack.

Appearance- Dark blackish brown beer with a week tan head that leaves very quickly.

Smell- Dark bitter chocolate with ground coffee aromas, not the most attractively presented bouquet of odors but not quite bad either once it opens up abit.

Taste- This is where the beer shines for me, The coffee really comes through, and the beer is appropriately named because thankfully it really tastes milk especially at the end. This Really reminds me of a finely crafted creamy latte. Just superb

Mouthfeel- Decently coating, pleasently lingering

Drinkability - You know some stouts aren't very good in the summer, but she subtle sweetness of this beer makes it good year round in my opinion. I think I could finish a sixer of this in a weekend no problem.

Photo of littlekidlover
4.2/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of the things that strikes me as interesting about different brewers interpretations of different styles is a characteristic that can completely turn you off to a style, in the right balance can change your mind about the possibilities of that style.

I poured my bottle into a willi glass. It poured like black coffee and appeared black in the glass with a light caramel head. The nose was pretty par, chocolate, caramel, coffee, little nutty. The taste is what puts this one over the top. You taste everything you just smelled, along with a bit of dried fruit, black cherry, and well balanced lactose. An overload of lactose is what had turned me off to this style in the past, but I think the burnt coffee may have kept that lactose from getting too sickeningly sweet. The mouthfeel is smooth, could be a little silkier, but this is a 5.2% beer so what do you want. I typically stick to beers of this ilk in the colder weather. My favorite combo is to switch this back and forth with FFF Alpha King.

Photo of aristeros
3.81/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

"Bottled on 11 05 08" on the label. I have met very few milk stouts that I've really loved, but we'll see!

Poured into a pint glass, very dark brown, nearly black, with a dusting of brown foam on the top. Pleasant, dark roasted malt smells and warm coffee. Nothing that stands out.

Big roasted flavors up front, plus coffee and toffee, with moderate heavy-cream sweetness on the back end. Smooth, creamy, but the drinkability is impacted somewhat by the carbonation, which is just a little much for the style.

A decent brew that essentially does what it's supposed to, but I've enjoyed others--like Young's Double Chocolate Stout's milk chocolate flavor--more in terms of their creativity.

Photo of Chelsea1905
3.83/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked up for about a buck fifty, 12 oz bottle and poured into a conical pint glass.

Pours a nice dark brown with some light brown highlights around the endge when held to the light. Smells a litte gaseous, and then some dark malt and a near milk like something in the background.

Tastes really good, nice dark malt, not present at first, but washes over you quickly. Litte sweet, but a very decent stout

Mouthfeel at first is medium but finishes dry and heavy.

Great little bottle of stout for under $2, well worth it

Photo of drunkboxer1
4.3/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours black into a pint glass with some deep ruby-red color at the base. Leaves a thin tan head that sticks around for the duration of drinking it. Leaves a fair amount of lacing. Smells sweet, slightly roasty, maybe a bit of chocolate. Tastes mildly sweet with some milky creaminess to it. There's a lot of roasted malt and dessert like flavors dominating the palate. A nice milk stout and one worth having again.

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

12 oz. Near black pour, fairly miniscule tan head. Rich smell of mocha and roast malt. Chocolate with roasted tones, lactose. Smooth, nice finish. Would call it medium bodied. Could have used just a little more something, not quite sure what though. Still good. Need to try again.

Photo of righthereisay
3.58/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This was a desert style beer. A little too much sugar. Of the Milk Stouts I've had, this tasted the most like milk.

It was smooth, nice flavor (maybe coffee?) Had a medium body, a little too much carbonation.

Not bad, but not a beer I would purchase in bulk.

Photo of jera1350
3.63/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours a deep and dark brown. Small dark tan head that quickly fades. A bit of lacing slides down the glass.

S- Deep roasted malt, dark chocolate, hint of coffee.

T- Same as the smell. Flavors are not real strong. Pretty subtle and light flavored for the style, but still good. Minimal aftertaste.

M- Pretty smooth. Seems to be too much carbonation for the style. Not as slick and smooth as I would like because of the carbonation.

D- Very drinkable. Not overpowering in flavor like some stouts can be.

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

A- Dark tan head sticks around on top of a opaque near-black body. Leaves some lacing on my mug

S- Dry, roasted smells of chocolate and coffee along with sweeter malty aromas and milky sweetness.

T- Moderately bitter, very roasty, and just sweet enough with flavors of cream and dark fruit (fig/raisin). Nothing amazing, but certainly tasty

M- Good feel for a milk stout. Thick and substantial without being slick or syrupy. Carbonation is light, but a bit rough.

D- Hard to make a drinkable milk stout, but this will do for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and of course, dessert.

Left Hand Milk Stout from Left Hand Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 5,967 ratings.