1. Don't miss our 7th annual American Craft Beer Fest featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers this May 30 & 31 in Boston, MA! Buy your tickets now!
  2. BeerAdvocate on your phone?! True story. Try the beta now.

Stranger - Left Hand Brewing Company


Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

689 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 689
Reviews: 192
rAvg: 3.47
pDev: 14.41%

Brewed by:
Left Hand Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: brew3crew on 02-12-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Reviewers
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 689 | Reviews: 192 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of rfgetz

New Jersey

3.56/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a golden orange color with firm cap of white froth, good lacing. Notes of dried grain, floral and grassy hops appear before a firm sweetness shines through. Taste is grainy and grassy, lightly floral and sugary sweet, moderate fruitiness, faint earthy spice. Medium bodied, some heft and graininess for a pale ale. Solid beer, unique composition.

Serving type: on-tap

02-18-2013 16:15:23 | More by rfgetz
Photo of thagr81us

South Carolina

3.5/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served from tap into a sampler shaker. Poured golden yellow with a half finger white head that subsided to a minimal amount slowly. Maintained phenomenal lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, grass, spice, pine, pine hop, and subtle citrus. The flavor was of sweet malt, fruit, fruit hop, banana, and bread. It had a light feel on the palate with medium-high carbonation. Overall this was a decent brew. I really enjoyed how the notes of citrus in the nose and the banana in the flavor were incorporated into this brew. These slight little subtleties definitely took this one above average status for the style. I just wish there would have been more things going on if I am honest. This one definitely has a lot of potential with some subtle tweeks. Glad I got to try this one and would likely do so again.

Serving type: on-tap

01-25-2013 21:36:04 | More by thagr81us
Photo of Thorpe429


3.36/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

On tap at Left Hand. Pours a light golden. Clear. Small head. Light and crisp. Some citrus hops. Light bitterness.

Serving type: on-tap

01-09-2013 05:09:22 | More by Thorpe429
Photo of Darkmagus82


3.18/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served on tap in a pint glass

Appearance – The beer was served a light golden-straw color with a one finger white head. The head faded relatively fast to give a medium amount of lacing.

Smell – A aroma is strongest of biscuit and bready smells mixed with some citrus of grapefruit and orange. Mixed with these is an ever so light floral aroma as well.

Taste – The taste begins with some caramel mixed with a biscuit base. As the taste advances some hop flavors of a more citrus nature come to the tongue. Toward the end the brew dries out some as a more floral hop flavor comes to the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the brew was on the average thickness and had a very average carbonation level. Good for the style and one easy drinking brew.

Overall – It was very easy to down with a moderately nice flavor. While a good session beer but it is nothing all that special.

Serving type: on-tap

08-20-2012 23:28:21 | More by Darkmagus82
Photo of kylehay2004


3.5/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: single finger head on a hazy golden-crimson body with thin lacing.

S: nice hop and malt profile with smokey and cirtus notes.

T: fairly hoppy but dull in a way. Not much sharpness or bitterness. Mostly mild grassy and earthy flavors. wood and mild citrus notes.

M: medium body and moderate carbonation.

Overall: This pale ale is a little different and seems a little light. Its fairly drinkable but not very memorable.

Serving type: on-tap

04-16-2012 00:47:43 | More by kylehay2004
Photo of 57md


3.18/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Appearance is a straw color with half a finger of head that had no retention. There is a mild floral hop nose to this offering. Sweet malt is present upfront in this offering. That sweetness is followed by spicy bitterness in the finish. A decent effort, but a bit light for an APA.

Serving type: on-tap

02-18-2012 08:00:41 | More by 57md
Photo of osusullins


3.8/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a pretty good pale ale. A nice addition to the Left Hand family.

Pours a nice blonde with white head. Some lacing, but nothing spectacular.

Smell is faint. Nothing that jumps out. Subtle hops.

Taste is well balanced with some subtle floral hops, but I am getting alot more malt. Finishes dry. Light body.

Not as hoppy as most APA's, but a solid beer. Easily drinkable.

Serving type: on-tap

11-03-2011 02:58:35 | More by osusullins
Photo of rangerred


2.35/5  rDev -32.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Had on tap at Dewey's Pizza in West Chester, OH

Clear, light copper with a small one finger head.

Earthy hops was the first smell I picked up on. There is a bit of bready malt but it takes a backseat to the hops.

Hops dominate the taste initially but once again they are more grassy/earthy rather than citrus. The hop flavor drops off pretty rapidly and there is somewhat of a void afterwards. No real maltiness. Very light mouthfeel.

Overall this was an average APA that I honestly thought seemed more British than American. Not sure I would seek it out again.

Serving type: on-tap

10-31-2011 18:18:50 | More by rangerred
Photo of jmvecchio1


3.5/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours out a clear light amber-almost golden color with a light head. The smell off the beer is light and bright with a playful variety of floral and piney hops. The taste is hopper than the smell would have you believe. You get a spicy herbal pine throughout the drink with a burst of citrus hops on the swallow. The drink also leaves a significant amount of residual hop oil on the tongue. My criticism is that it was lighter on the malts than my experiences with other APAs. The beer drinks pretty easily, but it's lightness on malt balance may render this beer more of a hop-head's ale.

Serving type: on-tap

07-16-2011 20:55:34 | More by jmvecchio1
Photo of devinoconnor

New Jersey

4.15/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

If you're not into the heavier beers, this is a perfect introduction into the world of craft brews.

This medium light amber pale ale pours a bright yellow, light color with little head.

Smell is nice and complex, a little hops and barley.

Taste has nice floral tones mixed with the sweet maltiness.

Very nice lighter ale.

Serving type: on-tap

06-18-2011 15:06:39 | More by devinoconnor
Photo of DCon


2.55/5  rDev -26.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Enjoyed on-tap @ the Wolf Public House in Ballwin, MO for $3. Tapped into a Pint Glass from the Left Hand Handle and has a Keg Date May 1, 2011.

Aroma- Mild amount of hop character and nothing like a normal APA should be like. High malt smell instead here..

Appearance- Received with a 1.5 finger head that is creamy and dies down. Dark golden body that is very clear and leaves rings of lace on all the way down the glass.

Flavor- Light citrus hop flavor, more malt that anything. Caramel tones and malt flavors are very strong. Attributes are not appropriate for the style.

Mouthfeel- Light Bodied, Big Carbonation, and leaves minimal hop taste on the palate.

Overall Impression- I'm surprised this is a brew from Left Hand! Not impressed at all! Too light and not enough hop characters to be an APA. This is more like a English Pale Ale... I'll keep drinking my Milk Stouts.

Serving type: on-tap

06-12-2011 04:31:16 | More by DCon
Photo of dmbsteve


3.4/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured golden color with one finger head. Light lacing.

Smells is light with citrusy and floral notes. Not picking up much else.

Taste is bready malt with a good hop bite. Not much hop flavor though..tastes more like an english pale ale than an APA. But, regardless I like the taste.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

Overall, this makes a good session pale ale. I like the fact that it isn't overly hoppy like some APA's. If I'm in the mood for something really hoppy, then I'll drink an IPA. I could drink a 6-pack of these watching a football or hockey game.

Serving type: on-tap

05-10-2011 03:52:23 | More by dmbsteve
Photo of ChainGangGuy


3.9/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Served a clear, light copper-orange body with a scant, wispy white head and some steady if sporadic effervescence. Sheet-like lacing on the way down.

Smell: Modest nose scented of lightly toasted bread, caramel, spicy rye, citrus fruits, and wet, soggy grains.

Taste: Lightly bready malts, lightly sweet and with some touches of grain, caramel, and zestful rye malt. Lightly earthy hops also delivering some fruity touches of oranges and lemons. Sufficiently bitter. A skosh more lemon on the drying finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-light body. Medium carbonation.

Overall: Well-balanced and keenly drinkable, without ever giving too much or too little maltiness or aimlessly wandering into being an IPA with excessive bitterness. A good replacement of Jackman's. Good-bye and good riddance, Jack.

Serving type: on-tap

04-05-2011 16:45:12 | More by ChainGangGuy
Photo of argock


3.78/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served on-tap in a clear nonic pint glass at Mellow Mushroom (Charlottesville, VA).

A: Clear golden with 1-finger of foamy, off-white head with good retention and scant lacing.

S: Light pale malt aroma with biscuity notes an grassy, herbal, and floral hops aromas. Not the strongest of aromas, but there are some good bits in there.

T: The flavor grows on you as at first it seems pretty bland, but, as it warms, it really develops into a pretty flavorful brew. Pale maltiness with biscuit and cracker qualities couples with grassy, floral, minty, and pine hop notes. The biscuit elements are light enough to complement the floral hops components nicely.

M: Smooth and coating with an appropriate light-medium body. Medium carbonation and a nice grassy, floral hoppy aftertaste.

O: Stranger doesn't make a great first impression, but it comes into its own with biscuity maltiness and floral hoppiness. Solidly above-average APA.

Serving type: on-tap

03-19-2011 01:00:21 | More by argock
Photo of Monkeyknife


3.5/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Arrived from the tap a bright, clear light bronze with a small white cap.

Aroma of bread and biscuit with light grassy and grapefruit hops.

Tastes of biscuit, caramel malts, light grassy hops and just a tinge of metal. Finishes clean.

Lighter bodied with a moderate carbonation.

An average APA from the folks at Left Hand.

Serving type: on-tap

03-19-2011 00:38:35 | More by Monkeyknife
Photo of Domingo


3.75/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this at the Royal Hilltop. It was a special firkin just for St. Patrick's day.
Arrives a golden color that is lighter than I expected, but is pretty to see. Foam on top was really thick (in terms of texture, not size), and lacing was off the charts.
The flavor profile is all about balance. At first the pine-y American hops hit your palate, but are followed up with an equal hit of a graham cracker-y slightly sweet malt. In the finish you get elements of both sweet and bitter, but neither really winning out. I'd say this is almost like a toasty UK style pale ale, only made using old school PNW American hops. If you enjoyed 400 Pound Monkey, I'd almost guarantee you'll like this beer, too. It's almost like a more drinkable little brother.
While this isn't going to blow your socks off with a flavor assault, a 6'er of this would be welcome almost anywhere. There are plenty of good big/bold pales in the area, and I appreciate how LH took a different road.

Serving type: on-tap

03-18-2011 14:34:30 | More by Domingo
Photo of MarcatGSB


3.98/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured on tap at the Hideaway in Iowa City, IO in a mini Left Hand tap takeover.

Appearance: nice copper color. Good one finger head, maybe less. Awesome lacing.

Smell: Mild flowery hop aroma. Not overwhelming.

Taste: Similar to the nose, the hop has a good mild flavor. Lots of body, and taste. Good tip of the tongue spice/dryness. He finish is very agreeable.

Mouth: Nice and light. Sessionable. Good carbonation. A good beer to stock in the fridge.

Drink and overall: Very enjoyable. I could drink this all night, and not have to sacrifice flavor. Very drinkable.

Serving type: on-tap

03-05-2011 02:36:33 | More by MarcatGSB
Photo of corby112


3.6/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Draft at St. Stephen's on Green.

Pours a dark golden yellow color with a one finger foamy white head that slowly settles into a thin lasting ring. Sporadic spots of soapy lacing left behind.

Slightly earthy aroma with hints of piny hops, pale malt, grass and straw. It smells hopper than expected with faint hints of crisp fruit, notably apple and pear.

Fuller bodied than expected with a nice balanced of dry, bitter hops, pale malt and crisp, light fruit. Not watered down at all with a blast of earthy, piny hops up front that linger throughout into a dry finish. There's also a subtle sweet citrus presence from the hops, mostly lemon peel, which counters the bitterness nicely. The hops are complimented by the pale malt notes that give off hints of light fruit as well as some grassy/straw flavor.

Overall, I wasn't expecting much going in but this was a pretty solid take on the style. Full bodied, well balanced and flavorful making this a pretty good sessionable beer.

Serving type: on-tap

02-28-2011 04:02:45 | More by corby112
Photo of NeroFiddled


4.13/5  rDev +19%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I was pleasantly surprised by Left Hand's Stranger, and not just because of the clever name. There are just so many APA's out there that taste very similar to each other, and that was what I was expecting (which would have been OK), but that's not what I got.

It looks like you'd expect an APA to look like, sporting a clear golden body beneath a creamy head of off-white froth. The head retention was quite good, and it left some very respectable lacing about the glass.

The aroma was bright, fresh, and inviting. It was floral, with notes of citrus and pine spicing it up a bit; and there was just enough of it that it still allowed a bit of the malt to come through.

The flavor followed suit, and I was surprised at just how hoppy it was. At the same time, it wasn't overdone. Sometimes hops can be overdone and you get a lot of resin and roughness, but there was none of that. It was interestingly spicy, piney, and gently citrusy and floral wrapped in a smooth blanket of golden malt. A solid bitterness balanced it, and it was quite a smooth transition from the first bit of hop and malt at the front to gently lingering, dry finish.

Medium bodied and crisp across the palate, it's a refreshing and flavorful ale.

I found it quite drinkable, offering a surprisingly unique character; and a flavor level that sets it just above some without slipping into almost IPA territory (as some others tend to do). Well done!

Serving type: on-tap

02-21-2011 15:29:55 | More by NeroFiddled
Photo of Urbancaver


4.08/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a golden yellow. a bit hazy with a fairly good amount of head. looks decent enough. Smells very hopy. Lots of citrus and grapefruit on the nice. Reminiscent of half acre's pale ale. smells pretty good. Tastes very similar to half acre. The hop profile is very similar. Less hoppy than I would like but for a pale ale its solid. a great hoppy beer especially for left hand. Good mouthfeel and very drinkable

Serving type: on-tap

02-12-2011 04:37:59 | More by Urbancaver
Photo of Emnmarko


3.41/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Clean and clear with a nice off white head

S- citrusy hop aroma that's a little skunky.

T- Same as smell the citrusy hops prevail although a bit dirty.

M- This one has a refreshing crisp feel to it. A Mello but firm aftertaste hangs for a few.

O- Not over or underwhelming. The look and feel unfortunately outshined other, and in my mind, more important attributes. I'll drink it again but won't seek it out.

Serving type: bottle

01-11-2014 23:30:15 | More by Emnmarko
Photo of Act25

New Jersey

3.89/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I am a fan of APAs (dales pale ale is my favorite beer), and of Left Hand.

Appearance: Pours a clear, copper-blonde body with a modest 1 inch head, that settled quickly, but leaves lacing all the way down. Not quite as sticky, lacy, copper as a Dales, but still good looking.

Smell: Too modest nose, which is made of toasted bread, caramel, rye, ripening fruits, and wet hay.

Taste: Dominant malts, plenty sweet and with some touches of grain, caramel, and spicy rye. An earthy hops second wave provides tangy oranges and lemons and flowers. Sufficiently bitter. Well balanced beer. Great food beer. I'd come back to this often.

Mouthfeel: Medium body & carbonation.

Overall: Great APA. Others wrote, perhaps it's English inspired in style. Original and sessionable. This could be an evening long session. Must try.

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2013 03:27:46 | More by Act25
Photo of Ri0


3.64/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

poured 12oz bottle into snifter. Best by 10/17/13. Whoops this is 3 weeks old!

A - A dark yellow with a 1.5 finger white head. Retention is low and the lacing is minimal.

S - I pick up the rye right away with faint notes of citrus and floral hops. I also notice some oak. It has a nice aroma.

T - Starts off with the rye and woody oak. The middle brings in the light citrus and floral notes from the hops. It is rather mellow with the bitterness, and has a tiny spice element to it.

M - Light bodied with fair carbonation.

O - I'm a bit surprised by the over all score as I would think this should rate around an 85. I enjoyed it and it was past its prime. I like the balance of rye, hops. and malt.

Serving type: bottle

11-10-2013 16:23:41 | More by Ri0
Photo of scotorum


3.39/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

a: Clear gold with a finger thick white head which dissipated quickly to heavy surface foam and extensive lacing.

s: Nothing detectable.

t: One of the lightest craft pales I have had. Easy drinking, but then so is Bud. This has more substance to it than Bud, but not a helluva lot more.

m: Light to moderate.

o: Refreshing enough, just little else to make it stand out. Probably a decent session brew or dinner beer with mild food, but not worth much of the extra cost over, say, Genny Cream Ale.

Serving type: bottle

08-31-2013 05:47:02 | More by scotorum
Photo of spinrsx

Ontario (Canada)

3.18/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

12oz Bottle from the Potsdam NY IGA for $2.25

Appearance - Clear yellow colour with a large size fizzy off-white coloured head. There is an average amount of carbonation showing and there is some decent lacing. The head lasted for around 4-5 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - Malts, caramel, cereal

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation and I can taste malts, caramel and grassy notes. There are also biscuit/cereal notes. It ends with a grainy/biscuit aftertaste.

Overall - Blah... just a basic lager. No hops to be found and zero citrus etc. Not something I'd buy again.

Serving type: bottle

08-09-2013 00:57:35 | More by spinrsx
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Stranger from Left Hand Brewing Company
79 out of 100 based on 689 ratings.