Stranger | Left Hand Brewing Company

904 Ratings
no score
Send samples

Brewed by:
Left Hand Brewing Company
Colorado, United States

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by brew3crew on 02-12-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

For Trade:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Ratings: 904 |  Reviews: 205
Photo of Sammy
3.34/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours light orange that poured a huge head that leaves three-eighths of an inch retained. Off-aromas. Initially orange and fruity and hoppy flavours, followed by lots of malt that took away. Decent drinkability, but a bottle is a lot. Decent mouthfeel. Could this be reqorked into a good hoppy IPA?

 298 characters

Photo of kylehay2004
3.5/5  rDev +0.3%
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.

 425 characters

Photo of jaydoc
3.5/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of GRG1313
4.25/5  rDev +21.8%

Photo of spycow
3.5/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.57/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

a decent pale ale, a littler richer and sweeter than most. pours a really light fuzzy pale blonde color with a reasonable head. smells like candy hops, rock candy hops, with the flavor of sweet/tart hop. really nice evolution in the mouth, long finish, glory... a very very drinkable beer. goes good after dinner with a nice marijuana cigarette. whatever

 354 characters

Photo of kjkinsey
3.75/5  rDev +7.4%

Photo of djrn2
3.25/5  rDev -6.9%

Photo of Knapp85
3.27/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured nicely into a pint glass. The head stopped perfectly at the brim of the glass. The appearance was bubbly and golden yellow, white fizzy head that settled rather quickly. This beer has a fairly nice aroma of some light pine and citrusy fruits on the nose. The taste was kind of hit and miss. Some sips were better than others. Some were hoppy and other were more earthy. It was odd, but the beer is decent to say the least.

 439 characters

Photo of oriolesfan4
3.25/5  rDev -6.9%

Photo of metter98
3.5/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is clear light yellowish amber in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a half-finger high off white head that consistently left a thin layer of bubbles covering the surface and lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: There are light aromas of citrusy hops in the nose.
T: The taste is very similar to the smell and has delicate flavors of citrus along with hints of caramel malts and a slight amount of bitterness.
M: It feels medium-bodied and clean on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: The beer is very easy to drink and goes down smoothly. I would consider it to be sessionable if it had a stronger and more interesting taste.

 690 characters

Photo of BEERchitect
3.56/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

With fruitier over tones and a sweeter, more briney flavor, Stranger behaves in very English-like fashion. From the rye earthiness to grassy hops, I keep tasting classic English ale flavors throughout.

An appealing clear decantment of deep golden rod or light amber colors gives Stranger a solid pale ale start. The froathy, foamy head carries a more liquified appearance that has mild carbonation that forms a reserved statured head. Lacing and retention further reinforce the notion of English ales, perhaps traditional cask ales. Surprisingly, the signature dry-hop haze isn't present- the beer is very clear.

A balanced and blended nose of estery fruits, bread crust, light grain, and grassy hops carry the scent with impressions of wet tobacco, citrus, and pine. Only a metalic or minerally scent keeps the beer from complete enticement.

Hearty malt flavors range from the bread crust and grain found in the nose, along with spicy-earthy rye taste, medium caramel sweetness, tobacco, and maltball richness. Earthiness is accompanied by, and the sweetness is balance by grassy, piney hops that also compliment with background notes of citrus, herbal tea leaves, and finishing with a note of mint. Complex malt roundness compliment well the estery notes of over ripe oranges, apples, and pears. I'm happy that the metal/mineral elements aren't nearly as prevailant in taste as in aroma. An aftertaste of tea and caramel return for one final visit before the next sip.

With increased sweetness, the expected medium body also shows a rich and creamy weight that's less associated with American ales and more akin to English counterparts. The lush start holds onto a firm body, only attempting a minty, dryish, and bittering finish.

Aside from the label stating that this is an American pale ale, it is not as crisp or as neutral as American pale ales should be. Nor does Stranger exhibit the sharp and citrus bitterness of classics like Sierra Nevada's pale ale. But as an English pale ale, the beer fares well- with or without the spicy rye character.

 2,059 characters

Photo of dmorgan310
3.75/5  rDev +7.4%

Photo of zeff80
3.68/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a clear, golden-yellow color with a two-finger, head of white foam. It left thin trails of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled of citrus, floral notes and maltiness.

T - It tasted of snappy citrus bite. Good roasted malt backbone and a touch of spiciness.

M -It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium bodied ale with a dry, clean finish.

O - This is a nice APA. I've had better but this is a nice one to have around on a hot summer day.

 452 characters

Photo of WillieThreebiers
3.75/5  rDev +7.4%

Photo of LXIXME
3.75/5  rDev +7.4%

Photo of zestar
3.25/5  rDev -6.9%

Photo of superspak
3.68/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into pint glass, best before 6/27/2013. Pours hazy golden amber color with a 2 finger dense and fluffy white head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings down the glass. Aromas of grapefruit, orange zest, floral, pine, grass, spicy rye, caramel, bread, and toast. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance and complexity of malt and hop notes with decent strength; very unique aromas. Taste of grapefruit, orange zest, lemon zest, floral, pine, grass, caramel, light rye spiciness, bread, and toast. Light floral bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of citrus, floral, pine, caramel, light rye, bread, and toast on the finish for a bit. Good complexity of hop and malt flavors; with very balanced hop/malt flavors and no cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a fairly creamy and lightly sticky mouthfeel that is good. Alcohol is very well hidden with no warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is a nice pale ale. Good balance and complexity of hop and malt flavors; and very smooth to drink. A nicely enjoyable offering.

 1,135 characters

Photo of mothman
3.45/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours hardly any head. Leaves a bit of lacing, however. Color is a clear golden yellow.

Aroma: Weedy hops, grassy flavors, and some bready malts.

Taste: Grassy and weedy hops, a bit floral. Some bready and biscuit malts. Decent hop kick.

Mouthfeel: Bitter and creamy. Lighter bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. End a bit dry.

Overall, a decent pale ale. Nothing out of this world, but pretty easy drinking. Not bad. A bit dry.

 440 characters

Photo of Boone757
3.75/5  rDev +7.4%

Photo of olradetbalder
3.5/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.13/5  rDev +18.3%
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!

 1,425 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
3.37/5  rDev -3.4%
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.

114 characters

Photo of nickfl
3.5/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of dbrauneis
3.51/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served in a bottle at Ethos in Orlando, FL.

A: Pours a crystal clear golden orange to copper in color with some very light amounts of visible carbonation. The beer has a half finger tall dark beige head that reduces to a thin layer over the entire surface of the beer. Moderate to heavy amounts of lacing are observed.

S: There are aromas of caramel malt sweetness upfront and just a hint of grassy and tropical fruit hops (very subtle hop aromas which surprised me considering the style)

T: The beer had a much maltier than hoppy flavor which I did not expect. There are caramel malt sweetness with just a hint of some toffee notes as well. Light amounts of grassy and tropical (pineapple) hops can be detected with a very light amount of bitterness. Beer seems to be pretty well balanced.

M: Medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation.

O: This was a pretty easy to drink beer that had a rather pleasant taste. I could definitely sit down and have a couple of these though I am not sure that it qualifies as sessionable (as I would probably only have a maximum of 2).

 1,081 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Stranger from Left Hand Brewing Company
3.49 out of 5 based on 904 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.