Milk Stout | Lancaster Brewing Company

very good
469 Reviews
Milk StoutMilk Stout

Brewed by:
Lancaster Brewing Company
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: Milk / Sweet Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.30%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
We are proud to offer this traditional English Sweet Stout that's bursting with roasted barley flavor. A dark ale, Milk Stout has just a touch of sweetness provided by an addition of non-fermentable lactose sugar.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 06-01-2002

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Reviews: 469 | Ratings: 1,174
Photo of Boggdogg
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A- pours a deep black color with a beautiful brown head that fades into a small ring of lacing that lasts the entire glass.
S- don't really smell anything. Literally nothing score is low but very mellow coffee aroma.
T- very melo taste for a stout which I enjoy very much. Slightly bitter and slightly creamy. Balance is amazing with this beer.
M- very smooth full bodied beer with wonderful lingering sweet coffe bean flavor.
O- very well brewed and highly recommended. In one word, melo.

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Photo of generallee
4.06/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: The body has a dark black look with a a one inch thick off white head. The head holds on well and makes some nice lacing.

Smell: The aroma has nice toasted/roasted maltiness and mild sweetness.

Taste / Palate: The flavor is nicely balanced with mellow toasded and roasted maltiness. It has a nice molasses like sweetness and equally balanced bitterness. It’s palate is a light medium and very drinkable.

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Photo of Stevedore
3.43/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

12oz bottle, bottled 1/28/2014. Poured into an unlabeled snifter 5/13/2014.

A- Dark brown body, opaque, slightly oily looking. One finger tan head, very minimal retention, no lacing.

S- Surprisingly, this smells black coffee-forward with a nice roasty chocolate malt profile. I am not smelling a ton of lactose, although it does come out a little more as it warms up. Not complicated at all, but certainly different.

F- Roast malt, bittersweet dark chocolate, bitter black coffee, some milk chocolate but no clear lactose presence. Very interesting and surprising for a beer billed as a "milk stout", but I am actually enjoying this. Still, I have to grade it to the style and I think this is fairly average in terms of what it offers.

M- Thinner bodied, not surprisingly so for a 5.3% milk stout. Smooth but a bit watery and a little undercarbonated. Quite a lot of coffee bitterness.

O- For a milk/sweet stout, this is not quite right due to the relative bitterness and lack of lactose. If I take the gestalt, it's actually an enjoyable stout. It must be the fact that this is English style and presumably relying more on the malts rather than the lactose to provide sweetness, but this has a lot more bitterness than I expected.

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Photo of BigC88
3.32/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed this beer poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours an extremely dark brown, almost black, with a quickly-diminishing, light brown or dark cream colored head.

Aroma is dark and robust with semi-dry chocolate and a faint hint of blueberry.

The taste is not what I look for in a milk stout. This is a delicious stout, but as far as milk stouts go, not so much. Dry and roasted qualities with some burnt toast. The beer comes off tasting a little watery at the finish (somewhat like a Guinness) - having that mineral quench-your-thirst water finish - which does contradict the dry flavors.

Mouthfeel is pleasantly full but not heavy or thick - achieved by the carbonation. Some creaminess as well.

Overall, if this were labeled as simply "stout", I would say this beer is fantastic for the style. However, as a "milk stout" I think it is lacking. The best milk stout I've ever had is Left Hand Brewing's Milk Stout from the nitro bottle and that is really something special. This falls well short of that. I can't say it's a bad beer, on the contrary, I rather enjoy it's company. But if I'm ever in the mood for a milk stout, this will not be my first, second, or third pick.

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Photo of EvoRich
4.34/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Look: Nice and dark. A tinge or red on the edges, but otherwise very dark. Tan head, doesn't stick around very long.

Smell: Sweet cream, vanilla, chocolate

Taste: Sweet, creamy, vanilla, chocolate, coffee finish. Not very bitter.

Feel: Not as thick as I'd like, but good. I'd prefer it to be a bit creamier feeling.

Overall: This is my goto, year round, readily available stout. Being near Lancaster, it's a bonus, as I can find this beer EVERYWHERE!

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Photo of SerialTicker
3.77/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Having this side-by-side with Terrapin's Moo-Hoo, this one pales in comparison. This is still a solid choice, but the flavor is more simple and the feel is more thin than I'd like in a milk stout. It makes it more of a stout you'd sip on on a hot summer day, but it's more simple. Solid chocolate flavor with a good roastiness... it does about everything you'd want in a milk stout to a tee, but it's a bit thin, and I just didn't enjoy the flavor quite as much as Moo-Hoo. This would be an easy one to enjoy in any situation. Quite light and tasty, just nothing extraordinary.

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Photo of Chessmaster
3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from bottle into Samuel Smith's pint glass

A: Pours opaque black with a 1-2 finger creamy off-white head that quickly dissipates to a wisp of a cap. Not much if any lacing,

S: Roasty notes mixed with chocolate and caramel

T: Similar to smell, roasted barley with hints of chocolate and caramel

M: Just a tiny bit on the thin side for a stout, but adequate.

O: An enjoyable stout, good but not the best I've had. I wouldn't turn one down.

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Photo of ZagZagg
4.16/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured from 12oz bottle to pint glass

A: Rich deep cola black, gleaming with a bit of ruby. One and a half finger head that is quite transient. Moderate level of lacing in the creamy/tan colored head, jet and opaque, Medium looking viscosity

S: Light roasted smell with a coco chocolate blend. There is a cola undertone with perhaps an anise note or two. The aroma of bitter coffee wanders in the background. The dominant nose is burnt sugars and dark chocolate roast, sweet and mellow.

T: Milky sweetness with a subdued tartness. Cannot tease out any hop character. The sweetness comes in several stages, but seems a little diluted. Roasted malt, sugar, cola, and dark chocolate/coffee each reveal themselves, but not in a pungent fashion. Although no particular flavor is super strong or easily discerned, they combine for a layered experience.

M: Very light carbonation, and smooth. Medium-Light bodied, with little aftertaste. Creamy, but not frothy, subsides quickly. Goes down quickly.

O: Clearly a milk stout, and definitely sweet. I feel this has high drinkability for a beer of its style. Substantially the best offering I’ve had by Lancaster Brewery. I wish the body was a little more viscous and some of its flavors more pronounced, though the combination is quite nice. Living in Philly, love paying some respect to the area.

On a side note, I love the label artwork. (Different from the one pictured in the top left).

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Photo of Cylinsier
3.73/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 oz.

Pours jet black, half inch of tan head retains well.

Smells of lightly toasted oak and mild creamy sweetness.

Light smokey flavor, biscuit malt and light brown sugar.

Medium, creamy body with light fizzy carbonation on the tongue.

A decent sweet stout, good body and aroma with an okay flavor, but a bit watery. Could stand to have more punch in the flavor, but otherwise pretty good and worth trying.

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Photo of Immortale25
4.23/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Delirium Tremens snifter. No freshness date.

A- Pours a fully opaque black color with a 1/2 inch dark tan head that retains well before becoming a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a small center patch of surface foam. Semi-resilient lacing leaves a solid ring behind.

S- Nice dark roasted malt character that's quite sweet with notes of brown sugar, maple and milk chocolate.

T- Sweet at first with more milk chocolate and then it turns toward roasted malt and bitter char in the finish. The low ABV makes it so easy to drink but there's so much flavor. Notes of caramel, honey and mocha.

M- Slightly creamy with medium carbonation and a fullish body.

O- Such a great example of the style. I always seek this out whenever I find myself within this brewery's distro footprint. Tasty stuff.

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Photo of thecheapies
3.92/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Lacy tan head streaks down the glass walls. Beer is a very dark mahogany color. Looks good.

Creme de Cacao, mild roastiness, creamy malt grain, faint Whoppers note, and general earthiness.

Excellent flavors of husky grain, milk and dark chocolate, light toffee, lactose tang, medium roast, and faint aspirin bitterness. A little nutty, too.

Simple, yet sturdy, body with a perky carbonation level. Smooth and enduring.

Very drinkable and tasty milk stout. Likely, a flagship beer for this brewery.

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Photo of aqualung23
5/5  rDev +28.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is absolute my favorite milk stout. Not as sweet as some others, with a pleasant smell and notes of coffee with a nice amount of stout bitterness balanced superbly by the added lactose. If you like Left Hand but, like me, find it to be too sweet, try this beer ASAP.

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Photo of Ozzylizard
3.66/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Bottle at cellar temp into goblet
Aroma - light aroma of roasted/toasted malt
Head average (4 cm), light brown. creamy, mostly diminishing
Lacing good
Body dark brown to black, seems clear
Initial flavor is slightly bitter roasted malt becoming slightly sweet (Lactose?)
No diacetyl, no trace of hops
Medium to full body, creamy, carbonation just a little too lively.

Overall an OK to good stout (I'm a stout fan), just a little too sweet for my taste. I prefer to mix it 50/50 with Hop Hog to create a Hog's Milk.

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Photo of drewsif22
3.8/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

A - Forms a very nice head on pour, that settles a lot thereafter. Very good lacing. Nice and dark, just as the style should be.

S - Relatively strong smelling. Notes of chocolate and coffee from the malts. Very enticing.

T - Not the most outstanding one that I have tried. Not as much chocolate as the smell would have you guess. Definitely some caramel nature from the malts.

M - Leaves something to be desired. Not as thick as I would want; I would describe it as being on the low end of medium-bodied. Almost watery, and seems overly acidic if left in the mouth.

O - Certainly not the king of milk stouts by any stretch of the imagination, but it is still a solid brew and worth checking out. This is a style that I have really come to enjoy and this stacks up decently against the others that I have tried.

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Photo of Thornlovesbeer
3.18/5  rDev -18%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A decent beer to say.. could do a little better but not bad at all..

A - Very dark pour in a glass.. nice decent head on top that last's for awhile.. Slight cream chocolate color to the head..

S - Milky chocolate roasted smell..

T - A slight milk taste.. chocolate dark stout typical taste going on but not as strong as most stouts.. could use a bit more bite

M - A bit watery tasting.. a little thicker taste would add some bite to it..

Overall.. Far from a bad beer.. I would say it's a bit tame for a Milk Stout doesn't have that thick brew taste.. but it's decent.. I wouldn't go out of my way to buy a 6 pack unless I was in the mood for a little bit lighter version of a Milk Stout.. but hey it's a decent beer in it's own way if you wanna get away from a more pronounced Milk Stout!

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Photo of justintcoons
4.08/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a shaker pint.

Black with a little light penetration around the edges. Has 1 finger of tan head with good retention.

Semi-sweet chocolate, milk chocolate, nuts and coffee.

Milk chocolate, semi-sweet baker's chips, roasted barley and nutty malts. Smooth lactose notes and medium roast coffee. Hints of black licorice and raisin.

Medium-light bodied, smooth and clean.

Easy drinking, smooth and an excellent Milk Stout!

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.48/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

RE-REVIEW!!! 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a nearly pitch black color. The head is a two finger khaki shade; while it doesn't have the creamiest or thickest texture, it retains itself decently.

S: It smells like a milk stout should, with generous helpings of chocolate and lactose. There are some nice roasted barley undertones, also. I really like a good milk stout, and this smells like it will be a good milk stout due to how well all the elements coalesce.

T: It starts slightly acidic from the roast. This is quickly smoothed out by a cream-laden middle, before its roasted notes fill out the back end. While the roastiness is strong, it's balanced by the lactose cream. One complaint: I wish it was more chocolaty like the aroma hinted.

M: The healthy carbonation gives it a mild sharpness, which goes well with the initial finishing dryness. A reasonably full body also helps to quash the dry feel, but it also kills some of the drinkability.

O: Roast lovers like myself will enjoy this one. There's just enough sweetness to keep it balanced, though. This one is definitely worth trying.

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Photo of beerded_drunk
4.38/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I have to give Lancaster brewing a high rating 1. because this has become probably one of my favorite milk stouts. super dark, hoppy, malty sweetness. However the smell is somehow a bit nonexistent, the mouthfeel is creamy and sweetly malted. the head on this beer lasts about as long as it takes to drink, although not a very high ABV%, very satisfying, drinkable beer. it does have a lactose content so its not for everyone but it is surely for me. and 2. because its only about 50mins away from my house!!

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Photo of JJKBeerLvr
4.15/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled September 2013 from bottles in pint glass.

Appearance: Very dark color (almost black), with a nice thick tan head that lasted a long time.

Smell: Strong coffee aromas, with a smell of some sweet malts, as well as some hops. Overall a nice combination of aromas.

Taste: Full-bodied with a nice balance of malt and hops. The malts dominate, but there is enough hop flavor to make it interesting. It also has a little sweetness to the flavor. The combination of hops and roasted malts give this drink a nice balance of flavors. It is definitely smoother and not as 'forward' as some imperial stouts.

Mouthfeel: Full-bodied, but very smooth, almost creamy.

Overall: Very nice stout. Not as strong as some imperial stouts, but I enjoyed the combination of hops and malts, with a very smooth mouthfeel. I had bought a case of this beer, and it is definitely a stout I will buy again.

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Photo of metter98
3.68/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is close to being black in color - traces of reddish amber are visible near the bottom of the glass when it is held up to a light source. It poured with a short beige head that died down, leaving a thin layer of bubbles covering the surface and a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Light to medium aromas of lactose are present in the nose.
T: Similar to the smell, the taste has flavors of lactose along with notes of milk chocolate and hints of roasted malts. There is a slight amount of bitterness; no sweetness is perceptible.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied and a little thin on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is easy to drink but seems to be a little lighter in body compared to other beers in the style.

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Photo of jkeefe1800
3.83/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Brought this beer back from a recent trip to Philadelphia, bought it at a pretty cool store called Beer Heaven.

Poured into a goblet, dark brown head about 1/2 inch sits onto. Head is almost fluffy in appearance. Smell is that of bittersweet chocolate and a bit of candy sweetness comes through. Mouth feel is creamy but carbonation is still present, finishes clean. The sweetness on the nose doesn't come through as much here a little chocolate and cream is all. Overall really solid milk stout it is what says and executes the style really well. Wish i brought back more than one.

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Photo of socon67
3.87/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A - Black pour with a thin foam head that disappates. Lacing is decent on this. Slight amount of carbonation noted.

S - Impressive smell of chocolate and dark malts. For a sweet stout it really smells robust. Slight amount of smoke behind the intial scent.

T - Fairly rich chocolate taste that while enjoyable, doesn't last nearly enough. Over time it seemed to weaken.

M - Feels light and slightly thin, though not all that atypical for the style. Leaves a sugary sweet flavor in the finish. Could stand to be balanced a bit better.

O - Not a bad beer; just not as consistent throughout the consumption with the flavor profile and balance. But it is quite enjoyable and I would not mind having this again.

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Photo of maximum12
3.36/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle liberated from the back of the fridge & split with my wife.

Pour is black. Black. Why do we judge the appearance of stouts? I have no idea. Anyways, I looked again, still black. Smell is great, straight-up, 100% milk chocolate spilling vertically up my nose. That's a fine way to begin, right there.

Lancaster Milk Stout takes a cannon ball off it's smell score; this might be the steepest drop I've ever experienced. Chocolate is a lot less pure of heart, muted, & tainted with a bitter roast that has a dour edge to it. Very bitter on the finish. Milkishness is undetectable, unless you count the rather creamy mouthfeel. Six ounces will be enough.

Other than the gorgeous nose, this isn't very interesting; if the brewery could shoehorn that smell into the taste, this would be world-class. Not bad, but pretty mediocre.

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Photo of Mister_Falcon
4.56/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Poured an almost impenetrable dark brown-black with just some feint caramel translucency visible around the edges of the glass. Minimal head, just some brown wispy effervescence spinning around on the surface like clouds on a dark gaseous beer planet.

Smells slightly smoky and malty but not cheap. Smells like the ingredients will be quality.

It hits and bathes the tongue with an inky, syrupy-like embrace that turns sharp, with a just touch of bitterness and crispness that then reveals its well roasted and smoky character. Finishes up with a 'tonguefeel' like you just drank a glass of 2% milk.

Good stuff. Highly recommend this beer that is easy-drinking for how dark it is with a remarkably subtle, well-balance smokey, malty flavor and interesting multifaceted mouthfeel.

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Photo of cbutova
3.51/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

A good stout is always a great thing. I love Left Hand Milk Stout, let's see how this one matches up.

A- 12oz bottle poured into a tulip glass. Black bodied ale with a small, one finger light mocha head. The retention of the head isn't great and a ring made of fine bubbles sticks around after the head is gone. Small ring leaves few patches of spotty lace.

S- Actually reminds me a lot of Left Hand's example here. Roast forward with a rich feel but not heavily or over-roasted like big stouts. Notes of black barley and milk chocolate from these grains. Dark fruit, caramel and earthy hints beyond the roast grains.

T- Right away, it does not feel as rich and fulfilling as it did in the aroma. Roast grains still lead the way with cocoa notes but they aren't as decedent as I might have though after smelling the beer. The dark fruits, toasty, nutty and earthy hop notes are kicked up a notch here.

MF- Silky and creamy feel to the body. Carbonation is on the high end for a stout but feel smooth, maybe due to the added lactose. Just seems a bit thin after a while.

Pretty good milk stout that starts out quite roasty and smells rich but ends up having a heavy fruit (just a bit too much) character to it.

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Milk Stout from Lancaster Brewing Company
3.88 out of 5 based on 1,174 ratings.
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