I poured a 12oz bottle into a mason jar. It had a best before date of 8/19/13. It cost $2.95 ($0.25 per ounce).
Appearance: Standard opaque black body. Forms a fairly large, tan, creamy head which retains and laces very well.
Smell: Also standard: noticeable roasted malts plus sweetness from the lactose sugar.
Taste: Pretty much everything about Left Hand Milk Stout is standard.
However, that’s not to be a criticism. I guess I should say everything
about it is standard for a very good, thoroughly enjoyable milk stout.
Sure, it’s by-the-book with no surprises, but the final product is a
tasty, highly drinkable beer.
The palette opens on a slightly mild note. It reminds me cola or cream
soda. Sweet, but restrained, almost like artificial sweetener (though
lactose sugar is essentially brewer’s Splenda - ha ha!). A quick kick of
bitterness through the middle, follow by a delectable taste of
chocolate milk or soft serve chocolate ice cream. There’s some roasted
malt bitterness on the aftertaste, which is a bit strange since it’s not
all that prominent while in the mouth. Regardless, it’s a
well-balanced, tasty beer whose palette is quite accessible.
Drinkability: Though the label has the word "Nitro" in large letters,
there’s no widget in the bottle like with a Guinness. I’m not sure if
that’s what accounts for the noticeably thin, watery mouthfeel. While
the taste itself is enjoyable, I find the overtly light mouthfeel to be a
bit distracting. Still, it’s no challenge whatsoever to drink in larger
gulps since it glides down the throat with such ease. At 6% ABV, Left
Hand Milk Stout should be a hearty brew, but drinks like something much