Bittersweet | Left Hand Brewing Company

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294 Ratings

Brewed by:
Left Hand Brewing Company
Colorado, United States

Style: English Sweet / Milk Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.90%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
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.

Added by ThatsThatDude on 07-20-2015

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 294 |  Reviews: 75
Photo of mwvman
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of beergorrilla
4.12/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of 1971bernat
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of TooLucid
3.92/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

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.

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Photo of rjp217
3.83/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Lone_Freighter
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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!

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Photo of baklo
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of RickyBfromCT
3.81/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Zach136
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of BJB13
4.18/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

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.

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Photo of reebtaerG
4.13/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of mpmcguire11
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of BixbyW
4.38/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Bisco42
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

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.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.01/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

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.

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Photo of Ozzylizard
4.21/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

$ 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.

 1,124 characters

Photo of AustinWadkins
4.24/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

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!

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Photo of 7irondave
4.19/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of gruves33
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of KRubes
3.78/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A - Vigorous pour into a tall tulip glass. Served at 55 degrees. Jet black with a beige, spongey two-finger head.

S - Cold pressed coffee, dark chocolate, roasted malt.

T - Chocolate candy bar, lactose, vanilla, coffee. Chocolate milk anyone?

M - Velvety, smooth, medium body.

O - A great dessert beer. Surprised to read it clocks in at 8.9% ABV. Drinks at least 2-3% below that. It's been a while since I've had a LHB beer and I'm not a huge fan of nitro, but this one does it for me. Well done.

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Photo of Skabiski
3.73/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Emilio_Estevez
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of arevalo
4.06/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of teamwiggum
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of gonger
3.3/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Pours black coffee black. Decent head, dissipates quickly, no pancake, a little lacing. unimpressive smell. Thinner than I expected. Taste is disappointing. Sweet coffee, raisins in the front, bland in the middle and alcohol/sour milk in the aftertaste. Too much lactose tastes like baby formula. Unbalanced. A high ABV milk stout maybe not a good idea. Glad I tried it but once is enough.

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Bittersweet from Left Hand Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.14 out of 5 with 294 ratings