Contrary to advice from 18th century physicians, milk stout will not cure what ails you. Unless of course you are suffering from a lack of creamy deliciousness, then this is the ale meant for you!
Milk stouts, also called sweet stouts or cream stouts, have a bit more alcohol, a fuller body and sweeter finish than the dry stouts we associate with Ireland. Their hallmark sweetness can be a result of a higher finishing gravity, though it often comes from the addition of lactose (milk sugar) to the beer, which is not fermentable by brewer’s yeast. Once upon a time, purportedly because of the added lactose, they were prescribed to nursing mothers and the so-called infirm. Those days are past, and in the process labeling a beer “milk stout” was banned in Brittan changing the name of Mackeson’s flagship product to XXX Stout.
Left Hand Brewing has been making a milk stout for years, and relatively recently started packaging a nitro version; nitrogen forms smaller bubbles than carbon dioxide. What’s more, they did it without a goofy widget and are distributing well beyond Colorado so everyone can enjoy it.
|Aroma: medium coco-dusted chocolate truffle, low cold brew coffee, medium-low toasty malt, low caramel, low applesauce and prune esters, no hops|
|Appearance: very dark brown, clear though color makes it seem opaque, creamy light brown head of miniscule bubbles never collapses and leaves solid lace|
|Flavor: medium unsweetened chocolate just dominates supporting low caramel and low custardy sweetness, low prune and raisin esters, very low earthy hop flavor, low bitterness has a slight black coffee sharpness; semi-sweet finish, medium toasty malt and low caramel linger with low earthy hops and a hint of molasses and low custard sweetness|
|Mouthfeel: medium body with an overall medium-full impression from nitro, medium nitro/carbonation, high soft creaminess reminiscent of melted ice cream, very low astringency, very low warmth|
|Overall: An incredibly drinkable Sweet Stout; creamy texture contributes just as much as the layers of grainy, caramel and chocolate/coffee malt flavors.|