Bittersweet
Left Hand Brewing Company

BittersweetBittersweet
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From:
Left Hand Brewing Company
 
Colorado, United States
Style:
Stout - Sweet / Milk
Ranked #179
ABV:
8.9%
Score:
92
Ranked #5,226
Avg:
4.13 | pDev: 6.78%
Ratings:
316
Status:
Active
Rated:
May 02, 2022
Added:
Jul 20, 2015
Wants:
  32
Gots:
  85
SCORE
92
Outstanding
BittersweetBittersweet
Notes: This big stout gets aggressive with a boost from Allegro Coffee’s exotic mocha java blend. The coffee’s dark cherry flavors and spicy undertones weave into the rich milky sweet stout like a chocolate-covered espresso bean melting on your tongue. Bitter then sweet. Sweet then bitter. It’s bittersweet.

36 IBU
Recent ratings and reviews. | Log in to view more ratings + sorting options.
 
4.03 by LXIXME from New Mexico on May 02, 2022
Photo of Captain69
4.01/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by Captain69 from Illinois

great coffee flavor after taste slightly sweet

Apr 21, 2022
 
3.5 by TMoney2591 from Illinois on Jan 17, 2022
Photo of EMV
4.08/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by EMV from Pennsylvania

Poured from a 12 oz can into a Dogfish Head tulip

L: Dark, dark pour... nearly black with big fluffy mocha colored head. Fantastic lacing.

S: Big roast and espresso. Coffee and grains.

T.F: Sweet and roasty. Lots of coffee.... charred grains and light cocoa. Vanilla... more roast and coffee. Medium bodied. Smooth/creamy. A bit of roast for balance, but more on the sweet side.

O: A capably done coffee milk stout. Hits the flavors it should... hides its ABV and overall solid.

Dec 31, 2021
 
4.09 by Taenim from New Jersey on Oct 04, 2021
 
4.25 by MonkeyPilates from Minnesota on Aug 17, 2021
 
4.29 by Abstractspirit from Rhode Island on Jul 19, 2021
 
4 by NickMunford from Wyoming on Jul 15, 2021
Photo of tdm168
3.71/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
by tdm168 from Pennsylvania

Pours a deep black with a soft pillow of off white head that fades after a few seconds. Smells of coffee and faint anise. The taste is very bitter up front with coffee and bittersweet dark chocolate followed by anise and a piney bitterness. The bitterness lingers through the aftertaste. This is a medium bodied beer with a moderate to high level of carbonation.

This is a good beer, and I'm glad to have tried it once.

Jul 02, 2021
Photo of DaveMaciolek21
3.56/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5
by DaveMaciolek21 from New Jersey

Aptly named. Jet black pour with a minimal tan head. The coffee flavor is not shy. It is sharp, like espresso, and while the lactose does have a presence, it's pretty much dominated by coffee. Chocolate flavor is underneath, in support. The 8.9% ABV is nicely buried, but by the end of the glass, this Imperial Stout packs a punch.

May 31, 2021
Photo of TheRougeBastard
4.17/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
by TheRougeBastard from North Carolina

Initial taste is straight-up coffee! Aftertaste has a mellow chocolate notes, not overly sweet. Zero alcohol burn so the 8.9% can be dangerous!

May 23, 2021
Photo of schoolboy
3.92/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75
by schoolboy from Ohio

I went to World Wines last week, ALMOST fully vaccinated. I bought a huge bunch of great brews to take to my three year old granddaughter's birthday party (she really appreciated all the brews). This one stayed home, for tonight.

It opens very disappointingly with just slightly above average head - not very nitro (it does keep on giving). The aroma is strongly coffee (stout). The taste is nicely bitter (not that much sweet, but some). The aftertaste sits bitter too, and very clean (no booze or anything funky).

Recommended. It's good and tasty but ... disappointing more than amazing.

Apr 19, 2021
 
4.03 by Mortarforker from Texas on Mar 16, 2021
Photo of HorseheadsHophead
4.29/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
by HorseheadsHophead from Colorado

Pitch black with a huge creamy tan head.
Vibrant, saliva-inducing, freshly roasted coffee aroma.
Pops of dark chocolate and cacao upfront which immediately transitions into freshly roasted coffee, a bit nutty, black coffee and creamy milky lactose sweetness which balances perfectly with the roasted coffee bean bitterness. Super balanced.
Creamy in feel, moderately carbonated, slicky and oily initially but the palate is scrubbed clean.

An excellent imperial coffee milk stout. Fantastic job here.

Feb 23, 2021
 
3.69 by khargro2 from Tennessee on Feb 13, 2021
 
4.18 by cbcrunch from Wyoming on Feb 11, 2021
Photo of izraelc
4.25/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by izraelc from New York

Pours dark. Light foam. Mild sweet aroma. Big sweet coffee body. Rich and bitter malt finish. Creamy and smooth. Not too rich. An excellent milk stout.

Jan 24, 2021
Photo of DrDemento456
4.3/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
by DrDemento456 from Pennsylvania

Had both the regular version and the nitro and I have to say the nitro version is way better much smoother and creamier but they both have pretty equal tastes of smooth bittersweet chocolate mixed with a slight coffee twinge and finishes rather sweet again with some dark malts. The ABV is well hidden and the price is on point at around $3 for each offering. Would get it again!

Jan 17, 2021
Photo of BB1313
3.83/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by BB1313 from Ohio

Best by 7/15/21. 12oz can poured into a tulip. Pours almost black; small khaki head that fades leaving solid retention and lacing. The aromas have a nice blend of coffee, cocoa, caramel and vanilla with the coffee leading the way. Malts are there. The flavors follow the nose. More coffee leading the way. Some dark chocolate. More vanilla and caramel in the mix. It's probably more bitter than sweet. Solid malt backbone. Alcohol is well hidden. Mouthfeel is full-bodied with moderate carbonation. It's sharp, fluffy, smooth and dangerously drinkable.

This is a pretty solid coffee stout. It's bold but balanced. The coffee shines. I like their nitro version more than this based off of memory, but this is still nice. Well done. I like it.

Dec 27, 2020
 
4.47 by Fubudu187 from Illinois on Dec 18, 2020
 
4 by mrcraft from California on Feb 01, 2020
 
4 by shelby415 from Oregon on Sep 14, 2019
 
4.25 by mwvman from Indiana on May 04, 2018
 
4.12 by beergorrilla from Michigan on Feb 20, 2018
 
4 by 1971bernat from Virginia on Jan 02, 2018
Photo of TooLucid
3.92/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
by TooLucid from District of Columbia

Picked up a 4-pack the other day; I was craving a nitro, they got me with 'bittersweet'. The flavor is good. A strong bittersweet chocolate dominates the profile, but it's not a dark chocolate like you'd may expect, definitely very milky in taste. Not a lot going on otherwise, the finish is your standard well-crafted stout with the 'milk' flavor lingering throughout. I enjoyed it, but I wouldn't bother getting it again unless it was on sale. There are certainly better milk stouts and nitros out there. Although as a combination of the two it doesn't disappoint. Almost an afterthought; I did notice the coffee throughout but it was exceptionally subtle. For coming at almost 9% ABV this brew hides it well! If it wasn't for the warm sensation while drinking it, I'd think it was half that.

Nov 19, 2017
 
3.83 by rjp217 from Massachusetts on Sep 18, 2017
Photo of Lone_Freighter
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by Lone_Freighter from Vermont

This was poured into a snifter. The appearance was a dark brown close to black color with a thin wisp of an off white to tan head that settled at a nice pace. Lacing slid into the beer as it went down. The smell had a superb sweet and roasty coffee blend with sweet milk chocolate tones running blissfully into the beer. The taste was coffee sweet, the roastier portion slid more so into the background. Quick sweet milk chocolate aftertaste and finish. On the palate, this one sat about a medium on the body. Fairly sessionable with a slight dry to bitter feel pouncing on my tongue. Overall, I’d say milk stout- yes, as an "imperial" style, yeah, I think I can see it. Still, I’d have for me again, nice all around!

Sep 12, 2017
 
4 by baklo from North Carolina on Jun 03, 2017
 
3.81 by RickyBfromCT from Connecticut on May 31, 2017
 
4.08 by Zach136 from Georgia on Apr 21, 2017
Photo of BJB13
4.18/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by BJB13 from Maryland

Best By 7/12/17
22 oz. bottle poured into a tulip style pint glass.

This is the first Milk/ Sweet Stout I have ever tried. After seeing what was available to me and checking the reviews for a solid choice I settled on Bittersweet.

It looked real nice pouring black with it's decent khaki head and some lacing. The nose wasn't as strong as I would have liked but still had decent aromas of coffee, roasted malts and a hint of dark fruit I believe, coming through with only a slight whiff of alcohol. The nose was reinforced by the same flavors, again with just a hint of alcohol. Smooth and in my opinion striking a good balance between bitter and sweet, I really appreciated the lack of cloying sweetness and found that it finished fairly dry with slight lingering bitterness. At medium to full body It was a little thinner than I expected. This, the mild carbonation and the lack of overly sweet booziness made for one of the quickest bombers I've ever emptied.

While I will need to try some others of this style to better educate myself the bottom line is that I really enjoyed this and will drink another.

Apr 03, 2017
 
4.13 by reebtaerG from Maryland on Mar 21, 2017
 
4.08 by mpmcguire11 from Rhode Island on Mar 15, 2017
 
4.38 by BixbyW from Kansas on Feb 16, 2017
Photo of Bisco42
4.15/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4
by Bisco42 from Ohio

Very, very good for milk Stout. The coffee is balanced and the alcohol is subtle. I will continue to purchase this as long as it's available. One thing I wish it had more of is a burst of coffee.

Feb 09, 2017
Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.01/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
by TheManiacalOne from Rhode Island

On nitro-tap 1/22/2017 at Battleship Brewhouse in Fall River, MA, served in a tulip glass.

A: The beer is a deep and very dark brown color, with a large very dense beige head that fades very slowly and leaves a very thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains coffee, lactose, roasted malts, chocolate and a touch of hops.

T: The taste starts out sweet with a strong coffee flavor up front. Then some mild background flavors of chocolate and molasses come in. The roasted malt character is hearty and brings a good balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet and slightly bready.

M: Smooth and a little crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: Tasty, goes down very easily, not too filling, good kick, good representation of style, this is a solid beer to drink for a while if you’re in the mood for the style.

Jan 23, 2017
Photo of Ozzylizard
4.21/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
by Ozzylizard from Pennsylvania

$ 10.79 (Including tax)/bomber ($ 0.490/oz) at Oppermann’s, Saginaw, MI
Bomber dated BB 04/17/16 at 42 degrees into a hand washed and dried JK snifter. It is allowed to warm to between 50 and 55 degrees, per label instructions
Aroma – coffee, coffee, coffee!
Head – large (Maximum 4.3 cm, aggressive pour), tan, frothy, diminishing to a three mm ring with drag marks and a thin partial layer
Lacing – fair. Narrow complete rings of tiny bubbles with a few small ones thrown in. Short stalactites are also present.
Body – dark brown/black, opaque
Flavor – the coffee so instantly present and over whelming in the nose is actually quite subdued to the tongue. The initial tasting is a lightly creamy slightly sweet milk stout. The coffee tags along for the aftertaste and contributes some bitterness. Malt and hops are not evident in the nose nor are they noticeable in the flavor. Alcohol and diacetyl are also absent.
Palate – medium, slightly creamy, soft carbonation.

This is one of the better beers that Left Hand has produced, IMHO.

Appearance 3.75, Aroma 4, Flavor 4.25, Palate 4.25, Overall 4.5.

Jan 19, 2017
Photo of AustinWadkins
4.24/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
by AustinWadkins from Iowa

Poured blackish/cola like with a minimal head that quickly collars around the glass.nitro is quite visible

Nose includes lots of black coffee, hints of chocolate, vanilla bean, roasted malts

Taste is creamy coffee up front followed dark chocolate, next is a creamy delightful vanilla bean after taste with roasted malts

I LOVE THIS BEER! Great beer for starting your weekend off or an after dinner desert. Creamy delightful mouthfeel all the way through and with an 8.9 abv, there's little to complain about! Left Hand you've done it again!

Jan 09, 2017
 
4.19 by 7irondave from Massachusetts on Jan 07, 2017
Bittersweet from Left Hand Brewing Company
Beer rating: 92 out of 100 with 316 ratings