Fade To Black (Volume 1 - Foreign Export Stout) - Left Hand Brewing Company

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Fade To Black (Volume 1 - Foreign Export Stout)Fade To Black (Volume 1 - Foreign Export Stout)

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302 Reviews
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Reviews: 302
Hads: 659
Avg: 4.07
pDev: 13.27%
Wants: 51
Gots: 129 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Left Hand Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Foreign / Export Stout |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: superdedooperboy on 11-13-2009

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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 302 | Hads: 659
Photo of BTPete
4.1/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz pour to mug at Mahar's in Albany on 12/4/09.

Notes taken directly from phone.

Fade To Black Volume 1 - Foreign Export Stout

A: pitch black, 1 inch head. Lacing down mug.

S: roasted malt, a slight hint of chocolate.

T: similar to smell. Roasted malts with hints of chocolate and coffee. Nice robust flavor profile. Good stout.

M: smooth taste without alcohol burn. Full flavor and full bodied stout.

D: highly drinkable for 8+%! Tastes good, drinks well, I'd have another mug.

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Photo of Urbancaver
4.36/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance- Beautiful solid black with a minimal white head. Completely opaque even in a thinner glass

Aroma- Strong coffee aroma with a hint of malt. The scent is actually less potent than I would like.

Taste- Very well balanced roasted coffee and malt flavours with a hint of chocolate and a smoky touch.

Mouthfeel- Not too thin, not too thick. Hangs around on the tongue for a bit with a bite of alcohol.

Drinkabilit-: Definitely a sipper with a strong taste. Fairly well balances though which gives it a pretty good rating

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Photo of Hullabaloo2
3.92/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Aroma - Strong roasted malt, and Black Patent malt. Slightly astringent. Slight alcohol.

Appearance - Black, but lets some light through. Nice deep red highlights. Tan head poured 1 1/2 fingerwidths, but dissipated to 1/2 fingerwidth. From what little I can see through the glass there is a fair amount of visible carbonation. Disappointing head retention. No lacing.

Taste - Strong, coffee like roasted malt; some chocolate. There is a surprising amount of bitterness, but it is very earthy. Little to no hop flavor, or aroma. Noticable alcohol. While this beer has a lot of roasted coffee like characteristics, I don't think that there is actually any coffee in the brew.

Mouth Feel - Medium/heavy body. Smooth, creamy. Medium carbonation. Again, a surprising amount of bitterness, but not out of balance. Noticable alcohol. Slightly astringent on the finish.

Overall Impression - This is a great beer, and I'm surprised becasuse I really don't care for Left Hand's beer. I find their regular production to be less than mediocre. I hope they keep making beer of this quality. This is one I will definitely buy again.

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Photo of KeefD
3.7/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Guinness glass, dark brown on the pour but completely black and opaque in the glass, small tan head, very light lacing and weak retention. Aroma has a nice mixture of chocolate, roasted barely, smoke and light coffee. Alcohol is also coming through on the aroma. Flavor is balanced chocolate and roasted caramel, but there's nothing that really stands out here. It's well balanced between the roasty malt and hops, but nothing really shines or sings. I usually like to see a little less bitterness in an export stout and more roastiness. Mouthfeel is near full, but doesn't quite reach there and the carbonation is there in a perfect amount. Not a bad Export Stout, but it can never live up to something like Lion Stout or Guinness FES. Not bad though.

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Photo of Gavage
4.32/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: pours a black color with a short head that falls to a spotty surface foam.

Smell: roasted malts with mild coffee and chocoalte aromas.

Taste: big roasted malt goodness here with some milder coffee, chocolate, prunes, and a hearty bitterness. There is a bit of earthiness here along with warming alcohol.

Mouthfeel: medium-heavy in body. Lightly crisp to start but smooth at the finish. Aftertaste is very long as the flavors linger in the mouth.

Drinkability: this is a slow sipping beer that has a great flavor profile. Worth seeking this one out.

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Photo of BrewIndy
4.22/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up from my favorite store. Hadn't heard about it before.

A: Decent looking although I may have screwed up because there isn't any head. Sometimes I don't pay attention.

S: Strong espresso/coffee notes. Lovely.

T: This isn't what I expected. A great stout with some good coffee notes shining through. This is actually a great beer and I'm loving it. This is what a stout should be.

M: Not as creamy I'd like it to be but still very good.

D: Not one for pounding but if that's how you judge drinkability then you're at the wrong place. This one will warm you up and keep your spirits high.

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Photo of stoutfiend27
3.13/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle poured into scaldis glass very slightly chilled

a-black..typical..small head..no lacing..kinda blah

s-roasty..hint of coffee...sort of dull on this one..nothing really pops

t-more of the same...a little roasty a little bitterness from he coffee taste..finishes dry and bland

m-watery and thin...not enough carbonation...

d-one and done..glad i got to try it but wont pick it up again

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Photo of bluejacket74
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle, bottled on November 4th, 2009. Served in a snifter, the beer pours dark brown with about a half inch brown head that went away pretty quickly. Lacing is good. The aroma is molasses, coffee, smoke/burnt/charred malt, and some bittersweet chocolate. Taste is similar to the aroma, but with a bit of licorice noticable too. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a bit slick and creamy with good carbonation. Drinkability is good, it's smooth and not hard to drink at all. Also, the alcohol is well hidden. Overall I think this is a good beer, I'd buy this again in the future. It's a good beer for a cold December day!

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Photo of Thur123
4.27/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a oil black with very little head or any kind of retention. The beer looks to be 99% opaque. The smell is roasted standard grade coffee, caramel, a bit of dark fruits and maybe some cream too.

Glug glug glug

The taste is big roasted malt that has tons of coffee, maybe even a little bit stale...the coffee. There is a hop backbone that complements the roasted quality well. The dark fruit taste is very faint and exists under the crushing weight of all that roasty malt. The mouth feel is fine. Overall this is good and somewhat standard Stout, but definitely well done and rather big for its style, so cheers to fade to black.

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Photo of homebrew311
4.37/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured 12 oz bottle into NB globe.

A: Pours a somewhat thin looking black with a light brown head. Opaque in the glass, nice head retention.

S: huge roasted profile, coffee, chocolate, some toffee, a slight sweetness on the finish.

T: huge roasted profile just like the nose suggests, lots of bold coffee notes, bitter chocolate. roasted barley all over the place. This is a concoction of stouty deliciousness and I am glad that Left Hand decided to release it.

MF: a little thinner than I'd like for the style, but the carbonation seems to be where it should

D: Wow, there is nothing I like more than a big stout that is a new release and sold in 6 packs. What I like even more is when the product inside the bottle is delicious. Fade to Black accomplishes both feats. A nice example of the style and a delicious malt profile! Also hides its alcohol content dangerously.

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Photo of MbpBugeye
4.19/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- The appearance isnt anything to write home about. It looks pretty much just like an ordinary old dark beer. Its really really black, the head that rises with a pour is small and off white, there is really no retention at all, no lacing.

S- French vanilla coffee and chocolate. and roasted malts.

T- Bitter and sweet. Nice balance. Coffee, unsweetened chocolate and some faint alcohol. Its really nice.

M- Creamy, low carbonation. Slightly hot at times.

D- On the heavy side and kinda hot for an 8.5% abv. Still this is a really good stout. It falls in between a milk stout and a RIS.

This style is starting to become one of my favorites. I just wish there were more export stouts being crafted. Maybe Left Hand will start the ball rolling with this one.

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Photo of fropones
4.32/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Had this on cask at the Blind Pig in Champaign tonight.

A - Nice and dark, half a finger of mocha head.

S - Lots of unsweetened chocolate and coffee as well as some roasted and caramel malt.

T - More toasted malt and coffee, with a bit of sweetness in the back. Some dates and raisins. Nice warming from the alcohol. As it warmed, some more sweetness came out and more fruit flavors.

M - Nice carbonation, but it could be much bigger bodied. It was a little to watery.

D - Good. A very deicious brew that drinks a little too easily for 8.5% alcohol. Alcohol is very well masked.

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Photo of emerge077
4.17/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a single of this in WI for around $1.50 at Breeze-Thru.

As expected, a black body with some dark khaki foam leaving spotty lacing at the edges. Aroma of charred toast, woody tobacco, some light chocolate pastry sweetness.

Soft, roasty, and lightly bitter in the finish. Some vague raisin sweetness in the aftertaste, complimenting the smooth creamy feel. It's subtle and flavorful at the same time. Well balanced.

I'll pick this up again before it's gone, definitely worth a 6-pack purchase to enjoy in the cold weather.

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Photo of jkdrummer
4.23/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a beautiful thick and rocky head. Roasted overtones and sweet aromas. Very very smooth stout, wonderfully balanced sweetness and bitterness. Smoky, roasted and very tasty maltiness reigns. I really recommend this one, especially at the low low price of $1.60 a bottle at my local beer store. A winner for sure. Can't wait for Volume II!

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Photo of DIM
4.35/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a: This was black as...(insert your own spooky/gothic analogy) It poured with a large, foamy head that quickly faded to moderate lace.

s: I haven't had many examples of this style, but they all seem to have something i can't quite describe in common. They remind of imperial dry or milk stouts I think. Anyway, I smelled plenty of roasty cocoa and milk chocolate.

t: This tastes familiar. I'm reminded of Lion or Guiness Export, and that is a compliment. Gentle, roasty malt flavors of chocolate with some faint bitterness at the end. I couldn't find 8.5% abv anywhere.

m: Gently foamy carbonation and a lush, creamy body.

d: Great beer and a bargain at $35 a case.

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Photo of SiphonKing
3.76/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours with a nice tan head atop a dark, almost black body. A nice balance with good mouthfeel and a tasty, malty finish. I look forward to v. 2 and what Left Hand may be releasing in the near future. A delicious offering and also very sessionable for a foreign extra stout.

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Photo of tpd975
3.88/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap Varga Bar.

A: Pours a lighter shade of black with a nice solid off white head. Okay retention with some nice lace.

S: Nice toasty aromas. Toasted bread, dark malt, chocolate, and coffee.

T: Black Black roasted malt. Strong notes of coffee and bitter chocolate. Mild dark fruit and a hint of smoke.

M: On the fuller side of medium. A pretty damn good beer at a pretty damn good bar.

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Photo of beerman207
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours very black. The beer looks very sticky once it settles down. Nice.

S - Coffee and caramel are dominant in the nose. very inviting.

T - Coffee, buttery taste, caramel, slight hoppiness.

M - It's thick but in a good way. Goes down easy for me.

D - very high considering the ABV. I'm impressed by Left Hand on this offering.

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Photo of BradLikesBrew
4.15/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful black body beneath a cocoa head. The aroma is roasty and smokey with notes of cocoa. The flavor is roasted, nearly charred malt, bitter coffee, chocolate, and a smokey finish. The body is rich, creamy, and smooth. The finish is medium in length showing smoke and bitterness primarily. A fun Winter stout, why don't we see more Export Stouts? Richer than an American Stout, but more drinkable than an Imperial Stout. Nice work by Left Hand, too bad this is a one off seasonal and not a staple of their portfolio.

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

Looks very nice. Damn near opaque. Thick creamy brown head drops islands of lace all over the glass as I drink. Great aroma of roasted peanuts, mocha, chocolate malts and caramel. Flavor is top notch as well. This is well done. Roasty and chocolatey but aslo a little nutty. Some char and bittersweet chocolate. Great depth. Creamy easy going mouthfeel. This is one of the better Left Hand beers I've ever had. Nice pick for Volume I. Not too many export stouts around. And for 8.5%, the alcohol is really negligible on the palate. Quite drinkable.

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Photo of Mistofminn
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Picked this up at Heritage at the advice of Tim (?). Tasted on 11/27.

Poured into a pint glass, this one pours a murky brown color. Looks black in the glass, but obviously brown on the pour. A tan head is produced on the pour, creamy in texture. Decent retention and nice lacing.

The nose on this is a nice combination of toasted malts, bitter roasted coffee and chocolate, with hints of vanilla and toffee. Very nice.

The taste is nearly the same, with dark bakers chocolate, lightly roasted coffee and toasted malts with a nice sweet character, almost brown sugar like. Pretty good tasting too.

Mouthfeel is medium in body, is creamy and smooth with no alcohol to be found. Slighty dry finish. Drinkability is insane. I originally had this pegged for a session stout, had no idea it was north of 8% abv.

Overall, a great example of the style, possibly the best American made Foreign/Export Stout that I've ever had. Great stuff. Thanks for the recommendation, guy who I can't remember your name (Tim?) that works at Heritage!

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Photo of endincolorado
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Saw this at whole foods and was intrigued. The label is pretty cool, but also quite elusive. Had no idea what to expect.

Pours a thick, opaque black with a big, foamy, light-tan head that settles slowly. Nice, moderate lacing.

Fragrant aroma of toast and some sweet, bready malt. Roasty.

Absolutely delicious roasted malt flavors, toasted bread, cocoa and some coffee. Light in the hop department.

Medium to full body, with appropriately light carbonation.

Delicious and fairly impressive overall. Though the label doesn't list it, the ABV is probably up there.

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Photo of mwa423
4.59/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours black as night. You can't see light through it at all. There is a small amount of head which dies down to an exceptionally sticky

S - Rich malt and coffee flavors that fill the nose with a bit of caramel.

T - Very rich and think dark bittter and coffee flavors with sweet malt aftertaste A fantastic stout that I wish I would have bought sooner

M/D - Mouthfeel is thick but perfect. This is about the most drinkable 8.5% beer I have ever had.

This is by far the best left hand beer I have ever had.

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Photo of roadhouse
4.35/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle into a pint glass

Pours a very dark brown with a one and a half inch light tan head. Light lacing left on the glass.

Aromas of dark fruit such as cherry and blackberry, some mild cocoa, and star anise.

Taste is, much like the aroma, dominated by the same dark fruit characteristics and star anise. The level of roastiness is much higher however and big cocoa flavors appear in the middle and as the finish builds it gets more intense and akin to coffee.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, very creamy texture with a smooth consistency going down.

Very pleasing stout, can't wait for the next installment. Plus, a beer with Metallica reference is just pretty sweet.

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Photo of dbossman
4.12/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Black with a one finger dark tan head that dissipates to a thin lining of a head; okay lacing

S: Coffee and chocolate are most evident but anise is also prevalent; the roasted malts also dominate; there is something slightly funky that I can't put my "nose" on but it oddly adds to the aroma

T: Burnt malts; coffee bitterness; funky spiciness--licorice; there is also a slight tobacco flavoring in the back end

F: Slightly thin but fairly good over all; even mouth feel; well-balanced carbonation

D: This is a complex beer that is pretty drinkable but the anise flavors are somewhat overwhelming at times

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Fade To Black (Volume 1 - Foreign Export Stout) from Left Hand Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 302 ratings.