July 21, 2017

Left Hand Brewing Co.

Left Hand Brewing Company began in December 1990 with a homebrewers kit founder Dick Doore received from his brother. According to Dick, "it was all downhill from there." By 1993, Dick had teamed up with college buddy Eric Wallace and they resolved to start a brewery.

In September 1993, they incorporated as Indian Peaks Brewing Company, and purchased a former meat-packing plant next to the St. Vrain river outside downtown Longmont, CO. A few weeks after beginning production, it was discovered that the name Indian Peaks was already in use by another Brewery, so the name was changed to Left Hand, in honor of Chief Niwot (the Arapahoe word for "left hand") whose tribe wintered in the local area.

Left Hand's doors opened for business on January 22, 1994. Their first batch of beer was Sawtooth Ale, which has since become their most popular brew. In October of that year, Left Hand took home two medals at the Great American Beer Festival, a Gold Medal in the bitter category for Sawtooth Ale, and a Bronze Medal in the Robust Porter category for Black Jack Porter.

1998 was a big year for the still young brewing company. In April, Left Hand merged with Tabernash Brewing, and doubled the size of their brewery. In June, they began packaging 12 oz. bottles for 6 packs (up to that point they had been bottling 22 oz. bottles and kegs exclusively). In November, they started their own distribution business, Indian Peaks Distribution Company.

By 2009, the Tabernash line has been phased out, and Indian Peaks Distribution Company sold. In their thirteen years, they have accumulated fifteen medals and one honorable mention at the Great American Beer Festival, eight medals at the World Beer Cup, a Gold Medal at the International Stockholm Beer & Whiskey Festival.

Left Hand produces approximately 35,000 barrels a year, and they currently distribute their beer in over twenty-seven states.

Left Hand Oktoberfest

A- / 4.1
Left Hand Oktoberfest

Left Hand starts brewing this in the Spring and it takes a full two months to reach lagered perfection. Biscuity, malty goodness dominates upfront while the noble pedigree hops lend a properly spicy, dry finish.

Style: Marzen Lager
Color: Copper, 21 SRM
Body: Medium
Plato: 16°
Malts: Munich and Pilsner
Hops: Magnum and Spalter Select

Left Hand Milk Stout

A- / 4.0
Left Hand Milk Stout

Dark and delicious, America’s great milk stout will change your perception about what a stout can be. Preconceived notions are the blinders on the road to enlightenment. Udderly delightful.

Style: Sweet Stout
Color: Black 47 SRM
Body: Full-bodied
Plato: 16°
Packaging: 6-pack, 12-pack, Keg and Nitro Keg
Malts: Pale 2-row, Crystal, Munich, Roast Barley, Flaked Oats, Flaked Barley and Chocolate
Hops: Magnum and US Goldings

Sawtooth Ale

A- / 4.1
Left Hand Sawtooth Ale

A properly balanced beer that begs to be served on cask. Floral at the start, with baked fruit in the middle and a persistent but restrained bitterness.