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Steel Toe Stout - Ska Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Steel Toe StoutSteel Toe Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

94 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 94
Hads: 240
Avg: 3.75
pDev: 20.27%
Wants: 20
Gots: 18 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Ska Brewing Co. visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Milk / Sweet Stout |  5.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-15-2006

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 94 | Hads: 240
Photo of younger35
2.84/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Received this beer as part of my BA Suicide Pool winnings from jhammerly. Has a bottled on date of March 2005. Drank from my Black Butte Porter pint glass while watching the Steelers vs. Dolphins.

Appearance- Pours a super deep mahogany/brown with a half finger foamy head. I’m surprised by the huge amount of carbonation in this brew but the fairly small head. The cap dissipates quickly and leaves a string thin collar.
Smell- Has a very nice dark espresso nose from all the dark roasted malt. Slight sweet chocolate and caramel with a bit of soft smoke. Nothing from the hops. This is all toasty malts.
Taste- Slightly sweet from the start that isn’t cloying but gets close. Some chocolate and vanilla amongst the sweetness. There is a small bitter citrus bite on the back of the tongue that quickly gets taken over by the sweetness. The nose is full of roasted malt but the there isn’t as much in the taste and it could really use some. Leaves a lingering sour aftertaste.
Mouthfeel- Very thin and watery with not near as much carbonation as it appears.
Drinkability- This beer has all the elements to be delicious but comes up just short. I’m going to assume that it’s a bit past its prime since it was bottled almost 3 years ago. I’d really like to try a fresh bottle and bet it would be pretty damn tasty. Big thanks to jhammerly for this brew!

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Photo of genek
2.91/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - Poured 12 oz bottle into a Pint. very dense malty brown, running to black. Slight brown with no lacing.

A - Malty & stale, though in a good way.

T - Spicy, Caramel malts come through. Weird watery aspect. Slight bitterness and a sweetness that doesn't seem like maltiness.

D - very quaffable and pleasantly smooth. A workingman's beer for sure.

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Photo of Zorro
2.92/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Clear black colored beer with very little head formation, looks a lot like a glass of coke.

Smells sweet per the style with a good chocolate aroma. Patent malt and a scent of mint. Slight smoke scent.

Starts out slightly sweet with a smoky after taste. Little bit of chocolate and coffee flavor, this seems to lake substance to it, lot like drinking a coke.

Mouthfeel is soda pop.

Overall there isn't that much to it. Like drinking a beer flavored soda.

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Photo of JuicesFlowing
2.92/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a standard pint glass. The beer is a dark cola color. The head starts out dark tan and rather small, then dissipates to virtually nothing. Minimal lacing. There is an aroma of coffee and roasted malts. They don't mislabel this beer, it's definitely a sweet stout. The sweetness comes through at the beginning with the burnt malt and dry bitter chocolate taste. It finishes dry. The mouthfeel gets knocked because this beer is watery, and feels like a cola to me. Overall, I wanted to like this beer, but it just didn't add up to much. With a name like "Steel Toe" I'd expect something a little more ... solid. I'm glad I didn't buy a sixer.

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Photo of birchstick
2.95/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A - pours a dark brown / black color without much of a head

S - smells of sweet, chocolate malts with a touch of roasted malt

T - the taste is similar to the nose in that it begins sweetly with the sweet chocolate malt and a touch of vanilla. This faded to some citrusy and spicy hops. These are all rounded out by a touch of roasted malt & coffee. Not bad.

M - a little thin and strangley carbonated - not a big fan of how this feels

D - pretty solid stout here. Nothing flashy, fits the style and has decent drinkability. I only bought a single of this and wasn't too upset about not having another on reserve. I would definitely drink it again, though.

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Photo of Oxymoron
3.05/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Is it a stainless steel toed boot? Pours a mostly clear lighter black color with red hues throughout. A light brown head with big bubbles. Quickly the foam is gone and next to no lacing at all.

The nose is mostly astringent with malt but limited overall. A good roasty and coffee nose with some light walnut smell. Some noticeable caramel. No real lactic quality. No off yeast aroma either.

The taste is limited. The coffee and richer caramel flavors come out a bit more with the astringent characteristic really backing off. Very wispy lacking that malt presence. Some fruity esters, plums and hints of figs. Some lighter alcohol notes but feint. A touch of earthy hops in the finish.

The body is not good. Really for a sweet stout/milk stout, I want more of a lactic and sweeter flavor. This is more wispy and watery. Very disappointing, more of a dry coffee finish. No off flavors but lack of body.

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Photo of GossageBrewery
3.07/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Poured a dark brown color, produced a decent creamy beige head. Average retention and lacing left on the glass. The aroma consisted of chocolate and roasted malt. Medium in body, this Milk Stout had a base of roasted malt, milk chocolate and was sweet throughout. Nice session beer, this is not my favorite Milk Stout that I have tried to date, but it is a decent example of the style. Prost!

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Photo of mdvatab
3.08/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 1.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Received as an extra in a recent trade. (Cheers!)
Poured from 12oz bottle into imperial pint glass.
Best by: 12/15/11

Aroma: Light chocolate, cola, and coffee notes. Not bad in the aroma dept.

Appearance: Dark espresso brown. A very hard pour, however, results in VERY minimal bubbles. Looks like there's a significant carbonation issue with this one.

Flavor: Nice, sweet milk chocolate, some tootsie roll, and a vinous note. Bitterness is enough to provide a little bit of balance, but does not hang on through the finish.

Mouthfeel: A thick, slick, syrupy body, which is excellent for the style. Unfortunately, though, this one is highly under-carbonated; almost completely flat. This significantly diminishes the enjoyment of this beer.

Overall: On a positive note, the flavors and body of this beer are great. On the flip side, however, the serious lack of carbonation (not to mention any foam) is a big problem. The beer reminds me of a good homebrew that I've tasted prior to racking to the bottling bucket-- it's just not a finished product. If you can find it adequately-carbonated on draught, try it. Otherwise, I'd recommend avoiding this one.

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Photo of beergoot
3.12/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Although bottling date info was printed on the label, there were no marks or hole punches to indicate the actual bottling date.

Deep mahogany, near black body that starts with a thick yet very loosely bubbled head that quickly fades to nada. Chickory with nearly hidden roasted grain scent; spearmint. Mildy chocolate-like flavor with a slightly spicy character; fair hop bitterness. Medium body with a semi-dry finish.

A lackluster milk stout with little visual appeal other than the body color and a somewhat strange, almost lightweight stout flavor. Drinkable and somewhat interesting, but hardly a must-have beer.

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Photo of GCBrewingCo
3.18/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

The beer poured into the glass translucent black with a brown low and persistent head which laced the glass.

The aroma was roasty with a strong coffee impression followed by a very strong nutty character. The caramel in the aroma was fairly high as was the dark chocolate.

The flavor was fairly bland with coffee and chocolate and a roasty presence. The flavor was fairly fruity and did contain a bit of caramel.

The finish was dry with lasting coffee and chocolate into the aftertaste. The body was below medium and the mouthfeel was watery. A great smelling beer with a less than mediocre flavor and body. It might have passed for a porter.

12 ounce bottle.

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Photo of tonistruth
3.18/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A- dark brown in color, featured, for a extremly limited time, an itty bitty tan head, no lacing, no retent

S- sweet, milk, ice cream like,roasted/burnt malts, and some coffee

T- milky ice cream like sweetness with a lingering sweet aftertaste. Some burnt malt flavor up front, unsweet chocolate as well

M- cola like feeling, carbonation slightly less though, smooth, decent body

D- had some flavor, strong yummy scents, but was not a fun drinking experience at all. As always, i'd be willing to give this brew another try, but i'm not going to inconvience myself for it. This is my 2nd brew from Ska, and i have to say i'm very disappointed.

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.22/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle,

A: Pours black with a solid finger of off-white head, no real lace.

S: Lots of creamed coffee, some brown sugar, licorice. Smell is very much to style.

T: Definite milk chocolate and some coffee. Lightly acidic, not infected but it thins out the whole flavour and gives a lemon/chocolate combo that's weird, not off-putting but weird.

M: Thin and a tad acrid. Light-bodied, light carbonation.

D: Not a trainwreck of a beer, but comparing this to the wonderful Left Hand Milk Stout, it's playing in the minors.

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Photo of Hemi
3.32/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - Black in color. Head tan with poor retention. Lacing subtle and doesn't stick aroundl

S - Sweet chocolate and roasted malts. No aroma from hops.

T - Chocolate, roasted malts and subtle cream taste

M - A bit thin for this style almost watery. Some co2 burn but not much. Creamy

D - Much more drinkable then simular sweet stouts

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Photo of Suds
3.41/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

This brew is utterly dark, with a thick tan head. The aroma is roasty and grainy, with a slightly cardboard scent. Just okay. The body, though is full, velvety, and satisfying. Balanced and cocoa like aroma. Good, but not great.

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Photo of Phelps
3.46/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle into a schooner pint.

Deep mahogany with surprising clarity, becoming ruby at the clear edges. A thin, large-bubbled head the color of cocoa powder slowly fades, becoming denser as it does. When it gets about a millimeter tall, it stands its ground and goes nowhere.

Bready nose. Lots of sourdough with a light toasting, along with some milk chocolate and sharp, earthy hops.

Less bready, more roasty here, but it’s altogether lighter. A bit of sweet chocolate, a touch of dark fruit sweetness, some sourdough and coffee. A touch of earthiness.

Soft, prickly carbonation in a creamy medium body. Nice viscosity. Surprisingly clean finish.

Not bad. Steel Toe’s a solid, drinkable stout.

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Photo of readbaron
3.47/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark brown with only the smallest hint of head.

Smells of burnt coffee with malty undertones.

Tastes like it smells - prominently of coffee with some mellow malt underneath.

Mouthfeel is pretty good - a bit creamy, but lighter and thinner than I'd expect from a milk stout.

Quite drinkable, especially for the price.

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Photo of AndoBrew
3.49/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

*like it would nit buy again*

app: not a black vail.. a bit of a dark dark ruby hue to it looks like a stout, a weak one.. but a stout.

smell: yummy! creamy coffee, roasted black malts, some sweets.

taste: like it smells but more sweets and water. a bit lacking in some of the richness places but good flavor.

mf: thin and no good!

drinkable?: yep. cause its so thin and weak

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Photo of GarrettB
3.52/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Sweeter and deeper in its chocolate tones than most milk stouts, the Ska Brewing Steel Toe Milk Stout is almost a dessert substitute. The coal black black body hints at the deep, enveloping chocolate flavors insude. In the nose I find scents of freshly unwrapped premium chocolate (the kind you cringe when buying, even if it’s for a special occasion) with chocolate malt and a nice, rich dairy freshness in the nose. The flavor is oozing with even more chocolate, more sweet than bitter, and recalls slices of decadent chocolate cake had at fancy dinners in the past. The boisterous carbonation washes away the flavors in the aftertaste, leaving behind a short but very intense burst of chocolate astringency. Milk stouts are engineered with lactose sugar in mind, but the Steel Toe is a special example of just how sweet a deep, dark beer can get with a heady dose of lactose. I never find it cloying, but I also know that a drink that sweet doesn’t seem like a beer sometimes. All the same, darn good drinking, and practically begging to be paired with a nice vanilla ice cream.

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Photo of chileman13
3.53/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

poured from 12 oz bottle into a stone pint glass.
A- dark brown almost black with mahogony tint at it's edges.
A- Chocolate, sweet malts with small amout of coffee malt smell.
T- chocolate milk sugar malt. Had off aftertaste undecernable to my tastebuds.
M- Thin for a stout with a little more carbonation than alot of stouts.
D- Though I have had this in the past and liked it maybe this wasn't such a good batch. I'm just unsure and will have to try another...

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Photo of thekevlarkid
3.53/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Out of the bottle and into my glass this one was a dark, nearly opaque brown with a tan head. Decent retention but good lacing. Aromas of sweet malts and chocolate with a bit of herbal hops. The flavors were chocolate, malt and something creamy or milky. Definitely a milk stout with the sweetness. Good, but limited in depth. Decent body could be richer and heavier. Moderate carbonation could be smoother too.

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Photo of flexabull
3.54/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice dark black with a very thin head.

Aromas are creamy, sweet, with some slight roasted malt and coffee like hints as well.

Flavors are pretty good, a bit light but tasty. A creamy dark roasted malt taste up front, beer finishes a bit flat, dry, with a just a hint of bitterness.

Mouthfeel is average at best, too lean for a stout.

Drinkablility is pretty good. Yet another session worthy brew from Ska. A decent milk / sweet stout... but there are better examples out there.

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Photo of toolbrew
3.55/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz bottle with nice artwork. Pours dark brown, nearly opaque with a thick tan head. Great retention and lacing down the glass.

It is a milk stout, and it does smell like milk, slight chocolate aroma, probably from the malts.

Also has a milky taste. Starts as a "regular" stout taste, then the milk taste comes in and dominates.

Smooth beer; not heavy, but lighter. And again...milky feeling/watered down milk feeling.

I could easily drink a few of these per sitting, although I prefer heavier stouts.

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Photo of Sammy
3.57/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Roast bold heavy lactose mocha with aggressive carbonation and sour finish.Sour not sweet aftertaste. Some smokey astringency. I don't drink coffee nor put sugar into my drinks, but I appreciate the effort, and the milk stout style. This is not double cream Bell's.
Thank you Hopdog.

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Photo of wedge6128
3.57/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The beat says its a working class milk stout and it delivers, you will feel like a real man! :) Its got a bit pf a hops punch in the beginning then a smooth wonderful stout flavor after that. Some serious complex bouquet of flavors.

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

Poured more of a dark brown than black with some ruby highlights,a thinner mocha colored head atop.Sweet lactose and caramel aromas along with dark roast and some roasted nut.Nice and smooth feel with little carbonation,sugary flavors upfront wih caramel and molasses,a nice drying roastiness in the finish.Not overly complex but its smooth and pretty flavorful.

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Steel Toe Stout from Ska Brewing Co.
85 out of 100 based on 94 ratings.