Lucky Pie and Upslope Release a Vegan Milk Stout

Lucky Pie and Upslope Release a Vegan Milk Stout
Lucky Pie Niwot
Lactose has become a trendy ingredient in the craft-beer industry; the milk-derived sugar is used in traditional milk stouts as well as newer styles like hazy IPAs and milkshake IPAs, because it isn't fermentable in beer and so adds sweetness. But luckily for beer drinkers who don't consume animal products or who are lactose intolerant, Lucky Pie Pizza & Tap House and Upslope Brewing Company have teamed up to create a milk stout that’s completely lactose-free. While most milk stouts aren’t vegan, the appropriately named Oatmilk Stout is because it's brewed with oat milk.

“We really wanted to do something different, but also hip and a little bit funny,” explains Upslope brewer Jack Walsh. “It seemed unique to make a milk stout with no lactose.”

Walsh adds that feedback has been extremely positive for their twist on the staple style. Dylan Schwab, manager at Lucky Pie Niwot, notes that he has been aspiring to collaborate with breweries on beers made exclusively for the pizzeria, and Walsh was his first choice.

“When we were talking about what we wanted to make, it was always a session milk stout, and after our meeting, "the unmilk stout" was something that we all loved the idea of right away,” Schwab recalls.

The beer is brewed with 24 gallons of creamy oat milk. “This deliciously silky stout provides the velvet texture of a milk stout without the use of dairy-derived lactose,” Walsh explains. “It’s jet-black color with a dense, cappuccino head reveals notes of cocoa, caramelized sugar, biscuit and light nuances of vanilla."

The lactose-free beer comes in at 5 percent ABV; the rich, slightly sweet but very quaffable brew can be found at the Lucky Pie outposts in Niwot (7916 Niwot Road) and Louisville (637 Front Street), where it's poured on nitro. For more information, visit Lucky Pie’s website or call 720-684-6888 (Niwot) or 303-666-5743 (Louisville).

Lucky Pie and Upslope join a growing number of breweries and taprooms offering vegan beers free of lactose, including Alternation Brewing Co. and Little Machine Beer.
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Kristen Kuchar is a Colorado writer covering craft beer, food and travel. For Westword, she explores vegan dining and the state's artisan beverages, such as cider and mead.