Ska Brewing Co.
Available: AZ, CO, IL, KS, MO, NC, NE, NM, TX
Steel Toe is one of Ska Brewing Company’s most decorated beers with 12 national and international medals including 3 GABF medals and a World Beer Cup.
Original gravity: 1073
I have to admit, this beer didn't promise me much coming out of the bottle. It poured a thin, darkest-of-dark brown with a lot of light coming into the sides of the glass. But Ska Steel Toe Stout surprised me with aromas of freshly ground coffee, chocolate, caramel, vanilla, brown sugar and more. As I sipped, the flavors got more refined: milk chocolate, French Roast coffee, blackstrap molasses, caramel and a lingering spiciness all came into play. The alcohol made itself known only after a few sips as a warming effect, with the beer finishing soft and creamy and begging to be paired with a brownie.
Milk stout is one of the most overlooked beer styles in the world, and I can’t understand why, especially having enjoyed this tasty, nourishing, near-black creation. The aroma is instantly appealing, warmly suggestive of milk chocolate wafer biscuits and polished leather. The taste is predictably sweet, rich and unctuous but is never cloying, with molasses, light caramel and chocolate all in evidence, as well as a gentle warmth. I expected more creaminess but that didn’t detract from the drinking pleasure. More biscuit, chocolate and caramel feature in the dry finish. A big, sumptuous and satisfying beer.