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Darkness - Surly Brewing Company

DarknessDarkness

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
100
world-class

2,254 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2254
Reviews: 752
rAvg: 4.5
pDev: 9.56%


Brewed by:
Surly Brewing Company visit their website
Minnesota, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  10.30% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
Labels:

2007-Grim Reaper
2008-Devil
2009-Mummy
2010-Vampire
2011-Zombie
2012 - Werewolf
2013 - Brewcifer

(Beer added by: ryantupy on 10-08-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Reviewers | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Darkness Alström Bros
Ratings: 2,254 | Reviews: 752 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of shroompod
shroompod

Ohio

4.05/5  rDev -10%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours dark! This has the best head retention of any RIS I've ever seen.

Aroma of citrus hops , dark chocolate and sweet caramel.

This beer is sweet. A lot of dark candy sugar tastes. Molasses, raisins, caramel, and figs. The sweetness comes at the expense of darker flavors I enjoy (coffee, chocolate & bitterness). Hops are their, but somewhat subdued.

Mouthfeel is thick , carbonation is good.

Overall an exceptional RIS that's too sweet for me.

Serving type: bottle

11-27-2008 23:07:44 | More by shroompod
Photo of punkrkr27
punkrkr27

Michigan

4.05/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2008 bottle. Lots of rich sweet yet bitter black strap molasses character with a shot of espresso. There's some milk chcoclate that comes out in the middle and it finishes with a long bitter black coffee finish. There was a hint of soy I didn't care much for though. The body is sticky and full with moderate carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

01-18-2010 21:42:07 | More by punkrkr27
Photo of pdoran10
pdoran10

Minnesota

4.05/5  rDev -10%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Served on tap at darkness day 2009 at Hell's Kitchen in downtown Minneapolis. Have procrastinated a long time on reviewing this beer.

When I ordered it, I was presented with a 10oz goblet of very dark brown beer, with a luxurious looking half inch of head. The smell is right away of toasted malt with dark chocolate, can't quite put my finger on some of the other flavors, but very complex. I was surprised when I tasted it, very thick and syrupy. I taste toasted malt right away, much like the smell. After that passes, I get an explosion of other flavors, chocolate, expresso, I might even taste some fig in there. It took me a few sips to get a grasp for all that was going on. Good taste, but a lot of toasted malt and a bit of alchohol taste are going on. I was not a big fan of the mouthfeel of this one. I'm all for thick imperial stouts, but somehow this one was much more syrupy than I liked, it felt a little to sticky sweet in my mouth. The drinkability is good enough. Some alchohol presense, and a bit syrupy, but it can't be all bad as I still had two and considered a third. Good beer, didn't live up to my expectations though.

Serving type: on-tap

01-23-2010 10:27:01 | More by pdoran10
Photo of mikeyv35
mikeyv35

New York

4.05/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Date: 05/25/2010
Type: 750ml. Bottle
Vintage: 2009
Glassware: Usual Portsmouth Tulip

Poured a nice charcoal black w/ a 1/2 finger light brown creamy head w/ minimal lacing. Nose was fantastic, w/ aromas of chocolate malts, light coffee, black licorice, slight smokiness, and a touch of earthy peat. Taste was excellent as well, w/ notes of dark chocolate, vanilla bean/marshmallow, and a finish of substantial hop bitterness. This brew contained a flavor in the middle that took me awhile to pinpoint, eventually I realized it was burnt toffee mixed w/ star anise. Mouthfeel was pretty viscous and oddly pillowy at the same time. The only negative on this brew for me was the sweetness, that got to me after only a 12oz. glass. To be honest, it kind of sadened me because it overshadowed the amazing complexity of this fine brew.

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this brew, but could only handle drinking a 4-8oz. pour. The next time I crack one of these bad boys open, it will be w/ other BA friends.

Serving type: bottle

05-27-2010 02:14:55 | More by mikeyv35
Photo of davod23
davod23

California

4.05/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Finally decided to open this bottle. 2008 vintage, poured into my Bruery tulip.

Surprise, surprise! Black, with a nice 2-finger tan head that retreats to a thin cap. Pour appears to be medium-bodied for an imperial stout.

Aroma... is odd. I'm not totally on board with it. Lots of malt there, looots of malt. There's a bit of a toasted character, some berry fruitiness, but malt dominates this beer, making it almost one-dimensional. I don't really care for this smell, other imperial stouts are vastly superior (IMO) in this department.

Taste, on the other hand, is really great. It's not often that you'll get such disparity between taste and smell. I'm glad for this. Malty, with slight bitterness on the back end. I am getting blackberry and cherry notes, roasted marshmallow, and a bit of toast here. Chocolate is barely a whisper, and coffee is almost non-existent. Very interesting take on the style, I've never had an imperial stout like this before.

Mouthfeel is outstanding, simply great. It's full-bodied, but doesn't quite reach thick. Perfect, medium level of carbonation. Silky, smooth, and creamy. Easily one of the best mouthfeels I've ever experienced.

Overall, this is quite good. I do wish that I had the opportunity to try this fresh, as I am guessing the hops add a lot to this beer, particularly with respect to the nose. As it is, it's still quite a nice and unusual stout. Recommended.

Serving type: bottle

06-09-2011 03:05:07 | More by davod23
Photo of ShogoKawada
ShogoKawada

Rhode Island

4.05/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes. First beer of the day! Whoohoo.

A- Dark as all heck. Swirling the glass leaves a brown coating, like brownie batter. This stuff is thick.

S- Lots of dark roast, heavy char. Lots of sweet fruit, as well. Potent aromatics.

T- I hear a lot of people call this one hoppy but I didn't really pick up on much. Lots of coffee and bitter chocolate, though. A wisp of smoke, and a bit of plum. This one is really all about the bitter, earthy chocolate, though. Like chewing on cacao nibs.

M- Not as thick as it looks- which is a good thing- I am impressed at the balance the body of this beer has. It is well thought out and simply works. Great, complex flavors that don't fight for space on the tongue.

O- Very good- a little goes a long way, but the flavors are spot-on. I very much enjoyed this one. Lives up to my expectations.

Serving type: on-tap

07-25-2011 15:04:55 | More by ShogoKawada
Photo of paulozanello
paulozanello

Brazil

4.05/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2011 version, on tap:

Pours a really opaque dark color with a light brown head with great retention and lacing.

Aroma is of dark malts, mollasses, some coffee, vanilla and chocolate.

Taste somehow follows the aroma with a very "dark malt" profile, with dark fruits, vanilla, coffee and bitter chocolate.

Body is heavy with a silky and smooth mouthfeel at first, with mild tart and astringent dark malt notes later on. Aftertaste is a little hop bitter.

Overall a very good RIS from surly. Not the most complex beer within the style but a great beer nonetheless.

Serving type: on-tap

11-27-2011 02:03:17 | More by paulozanello
Photo of ChugginOil
ChugginOil

Illinois

4.05/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Review #500

2011 Zombie bottle

Pours very black, dark as night with an eager finger of light brown head. Stringy and spotted lacing.

The nose has a ton of anise and bitter chocolate. If I take a huge whiff, the abv comes through slightly. Cocoa and licorice.

The flavors are heavy on bakers chocolate and anise. The is some sweetness involved but the dry roasty flavors take over. Roasty, dark, slightly sweet, and full of anise. Solid for the style but I had hoped for more.

The mouthfeel is sticky and rich, mixed with those dry bakers chocolate flavors. Sweet, roasty and dry. This is the best part of this beer.

Overall, I expected much more going into this because I have had many off the shelve beers that are just as good, if not better. Too much hype behind this one. Solid top tier stout but not near the best or even near it.

Serving type: bottle

12-28-2012 07:53:24 | More by ChugginOil
Photo of LittleBreeze
LittleBreeze

New York

4.03/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1/26/08

Thanks for sharing this one, drseamus.

I'm not sure this one "poured". It more like gulped from the bottle. Tan head.

The hops surprised me. I don't recall ever smelling a RIS that hoppy. Other tasters commented that it was a Surly smell. But it smells like a Double IPA

A nice malt bitterness sets up the caramel and chocolate. Nice bitter bite.

Dandy mouthfeel. A little dance on the tongue but not too much carbonation.

This is a very nice RIS. It didn't "win the night" when lined up against a few other beers in this category. I'll admit to expecting...more.

Serving type: bottle

01-31-2008 21:08:57 | More by LittleBreeze
Photo of Jwale73
Jwale73

Rhode Island

4.03/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2008 vintage, courtesy of DbHog (an awesome trader). Beer #5 in the "Motha of all Stout Tastings." Pours two shades shy of black with rubye highlights around the edges. Half inch mocha-colored cap embedded with ringlets - generous head recedes into a swirl. Glass was coated with delicate strands of lacing during the tasting. Nose is hoppy - enough said. Taste is really interesting and was difficult to tease out - a full malt bill mixed with citric acid, artificial sweetener, grapefruit and some booze towards the back. Mouthfeel is medium-bodied and slightly viscous. A complex and interesting beer, but a bit off-style in my opinion.

Serving type: bottle

04-18-2009 23:31:21 | More by Jwale73
Photo of AgentZero
AgentZero

Illinois

4.03/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at the Darkness release part at Sheffields in Chicago.

A - In a heavy glass chalice, looked thick like oil in the dark bar. A small tan head which was barely present by the time I got to mine. Nice lacing throughout the course of the drink, very attractive beer.

S - I think this is the strangest smelling stout I've ever smelled. I half thought I had the wrong beer for a while. Get some deep coffee and chocolate, with some undertones of vanilla and a touch of raisins. The strange part of all of it was the distince hops smell on the end of the nose. Very odd.

T - Is this really an RIS? It's either a really interesting take on one or it's just not. Don't get any of the classic stoutish taste on this. Very creamy and chocolatey with a nice splash of vanilla in the middle. Faint IPA-ish taste at the end due to the hops, how very different. I like it, but not at all what I was expecting.

M - Smooth and creamy, leaves the mouth cleanly with a mild hoppy bite at the end. Full bodied, but not heavy like I would expect a heavy stout to be.

D - Can't believe it's 10%+. Way too easy to drink, sessionable stout. Even those who have a hard time drinking stouts could get this one down with no problem.

Serving type: on-tap

11-05-2009 20:24:39 | More by AgentZero
Photo of mjyoung
mjyoung

California

4.03/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Split with scottfire and bbb099. Thanks to scottfrie.

2009 release

A: Pours very dark and rich, with a nice head that seems solid enough to eat at first but recedes quickly. Gorgeous lacing as it slowly recedes. Doesn't appear to be as thick as I was expecting, but that's not a bad thing.

S: Very strong smell of roasted molasses, overwhelming any other flavors.

T: Dark chocolate, roasted malt, and molasses. Very warm, with the alcohol following all the way down. Once you get past the initial powerful hit, you pick up some brown sugar and a sweet, full-bodied fruitiness. The molasses and malt definitely overpowers everything else. It would have been interesting to try this both fresh, and with another year in the bottle.

M: A bit thinner than I was expecting, but still a slky, viscous feel that sits quite well.

D: It's unfortunately a bit hard to rate this beer as objectively as I would like (my earlier find this evening is clouding my judgment). It is quite good, although a little bit more harsh than I would like. Another year in the bottle would have been interesting. It doesn't quite measure up to the hype, but don't get me wrong. I'd drink it again at the drop of a proverbial (or literal) hat.

Serving type: bottle

12-19-2010 05:09:50 | More by mjyoung
Photo of s1ckboy
s1ckboy

Massachusetts

4.03/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 bottle with about 10 months on it.

A - Dark(ness). Pretty sure I'm the only one to make that comment. Small finger of head that stuck around for a bit leaving small bubbles around the edges

S - Bitter chocolate, roasty.

T - A ton of chocolate, malty, molasses, some bitterness to it. Very sweet. Some other typical imp stout flavors (dark fruits etc). No alcohol taste to speak of. Sweetness got to me a bit after 12 oz. Reminds me a lot of Ten Fidy, but sweeter.

M - Thick. Leaves a coating on your mouth.

O - Not my favorite imperial stout but very good.

Serving type: bottle

08-07-2011 00:28:52 | More by s1ckboy
Photo of azdback
azdback

Arizona

4.03/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Vintage 2011. Poured into a snifter. Well it's name is Darkness and its initial appearance is just that. Deep reaches of space black. Highlight are black with some black shadows. Head is a beautiful two fingers and cocoa colored and smooth and silky in appearance. Lace is sticky and spotted leopard pattern. Beautiful!!

Smell is at first a bit mellow but comes on with great dark roasted flavors of coffee and some silky milk chocolate. Maybe just a bit of char or wood and some tart cherries and maybe just a hint of alcohol.

Taste is much like the smell. The cherries come out more towards the front in the taste than in the nose. The dark roasted flavors of coffee, molasses, chocolate and charred wood are next. It finishes with some alcohol warmness.

Mouth is velvety with creamy carbonation. Body is full to heavy and the finish is long and wet.

Overall I enjoyed this. I have been looking forward to this day for quite some time. I received a bottle of 2010 earlier this year but waited until today to try the 2011 I received from TIMMYJ21 a month or two ago. I expected the world from this but it didn't quite match up. Still really excellent and solid Russian Imperial Stout. Very proud to have this as my 250th review.

Serving type: bottle

12-01-2011 07:31:11 | More by azdback
Photo of trxxpaxxs
trxxpaxxs

New York

4.03/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Starting off 2012 in style. Thanks to LaCoursiere for this bottle.

2011 vintage poured into a Surly Darkness snifter.

A: Pours a deep black with about one and one half fingers of mocha head. The foam settles nicely on the top of this beer, leaving a thin film of bubbles. Some decent lacing as it drinks.

S: Smells of raisins, plums, dark chocolate, milk chocolate, caramel, and a touch of vanilla. There is also an underlying earthiness to this beer.

T: The taste follows the nose really closely. I get the raisins, plums, chocolate, and caramel notes.

M: Full bodied beer. This beer is a seriously creamy. It has great mothfeel, but the finish is a bit cloying. There is a stickiness that lingers for a bit after drinking.

O: In all honesty, I'm not super impressed. There just seems to be something missing, and I can't put my finger on it. I sincerely remember last years version being better. I'm looking forward to seeing how this beer develops over time.

Serving type: bottle

01-02-2012 01:23:30 | More by trxxpaxxs
Photo of jeonseh
jeonseh

Indiana

4.03/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a CBS snifter. 4th beer in my the baller blend tasting

A - Deep brown, almost black in color. Had a nice off white head that sat on top throughout.

S - Smells of cocoa, vanilla, and slight caramel. Has a strong hop, pine presence that comes through in the nose. Get a hint of the alcohol coming through as well

T - Taste at first is sweet caramel with a hint of chocolate. It is almost like a milky way at first. As the beer continues there is a stronger vanilla flavor that comes through. Near the finish we get a hint of bitter hops that reminds us that this is a surly beer

MF - No carbonation at all. There is a slight stickiness to it and it had a medium body that is not too thick or thin.

O - Solid RIS from Surly. Has a good balance between the sweeter flavors, cocoa, and hops on the backend. Nice to get if I ever get a chance to make it out to Darkness Day

Serving type: bottle

04-28-2012 05:35:21 | More by jeonseh
Photo of ThePorterSorter
ThePorterSorter

Missouri

4.03/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

the beer pours jet black with a thin tan head. the nose is caramel, alcohol, bandaid (subtle) & sugar. the taste is definitely all chocolatey malt forward with booze. the mouhfeel is definitely full bodied rich chocolatey stout, but easy drinking and smooth, very slight bitterness. this beer is definitely an approachable, drinkable ris that most people would enjoy

Serving type: bottle

03-17-2013 23:14:19 | More by ThePorterSorter
Photo of SacoDeToro
SacoDeToro

California

4/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at 2007 GABF. Poured by Omar himself.

The beer poured a deep coal black with a nice dark brown head.

The aroma of the beer was full of dark roasted malts, dark chocolate, and ash. Some tobacco in the aroma as well.

The flavor of the beer was focussed on roasty malts to the point of being slightly ashen. Mid-palate could've used a little more molasses/dark fruit sweetness. The hops seemed slightly citrusy and pretty up front. The finish had a faint tobacco note as well.

The mouthfeel was full, but was not too heavy. It finished pretty dry for a RIS. The carbonation seemed dialed in well.

This beer is good, but overhyped IMO. There are much better imperial stouts out there that eclipse Darkness in both complexity and drinkability. KtG, DL, and BCS are few that come out ahead IMO.

Serving type: on-tap

02-06-2008 20:06:36 | More by SacoDeToro
Photo of bainard
bainard

Illinois

4/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A - Onyx with a 1/2" tan head. Really nice look to this brew. Looks like a big RIS.

S - Smoke, fruit (grapefruit and peach, maybe?), and roast. Some coffee. The candi sugar starts to become VERY prevalent.

T - Though it opens very well, with flavors of vanilla and coffee, it starts almost too tart and too sweet, as if the candi sugar is dragging an otherwise great beer down. The warming gives you an idea of why the Belgian sugar is used in this brew. It's extremely unique and forward, but it could definitely use some mellowing.

M - The creaminess here is something most other brews would beg for.

D - The alcohol is there, of course, but it doesn't feel like a 10.3% beer. It's a really nice beer and worth every penny, but I believe this vintage just seemed too young to really appreciate right off the bat. I have a bottle that I'll be cellaring, and I'm quite sure this review will improve after I enjoy that.

Serving type: on-tap

11-18-2008 05:31:43 | More by bainard
Photo of katan
katan

Colorado

4/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at busters

A- pours dark as motor oil black. Head formation is about 1 cm in size and well retained. Mocha in color.

S- dominated by a bittersweet chocolate and just a hair of noble hops. Very light on the roasted smoked or coffee scents

T- starts off reletively light with only a light malt hit. Builds with some bitter background and only a hint of hops. wow that finishes sweet, with a load of caramel, toffee and vanilla flavors. I really taste the hops in the aftertaste.

M- extremely thick and creamy. Very sticky and clingng. A feel of molasses.

D- I could only have one of these at a time. Very potent and a flavor profile so intense that having another would be wasted.

Truly a RIS. Up there with dl or speedway stout.

Serving type: on-tap

05-28-2009 00:26:46 | More by katan
Photo of lackenhauser
lackenhauser

Maryland

4/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to scoobydank for this awesome bottle as part of the BA Vets BIF.

Jet black with a decent sized head. very tight and confined bubbles. Heavy dried fruit aroma. Very "india ink" like smell to it. Fruity and very malty flavors dominate. Again dried fruit, very plum like. Raisen quality to the flavor. Sticky sweetness and a trace of toffee. Lacks some of the heavy roasted notes and the strong hop bite I am used to in a RIS. Sticky and creamy mouthfeel. A damn good RIS. I like mine a bit more astringent overall flavor wise. Still damn enjoyable and well worth trying.

Oh my wife just commented the label would make a great tattoo.

Serving type: bottle

07-10-2010 01:55:52 | More by lackenhauser
Photo of Phyl21ca
Phyl21ca

Quebec (Canada)

4/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a large deep dirty brown color head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of roasted malt and black chocolate with some light liquorice and dry coffee notes is quite enjoyable. Taste is also a heavy mix between some roasted malt with light bitter notes with rich black chocolate notes and very subtle notes of liquorice and dry fruits. Sweetness is very well balanced and not nearly as cloying as Dark Lord. Body is full with good carbonation and warming notes are perceptible though nothing too heavy. Well done and still retaining some balance even though it is an extreme beer.

Serving type: bottle

07-12-2010 19:14:04 | More by Phyl21ca
Photo of CooperEllis
CooperEllis

New York

4/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

22oz into 6oz tasting glass. 2010 release. Thanks to afksports.

Dark - unable to tell if it is deep brown or black but the head is a fair tan; no lacing.

Cocoa nib in the front, full roasted malt takes over.

Flavor is a robust roasted malt which becomes very sweet; the finish is perfect bit I wish there was more complexity in the initial flavor. This isn't a slight so much as enhanced expectation based on reputation. This is certainly an above average RIS.

The mouthfeel is perfect. The carbonation, weight of the brew, taste and viscosity are all well matched.

I would certainly drink, and would drink it over damn near all the off the shelf options to which i have frequent access.

(57th)

Serving type: bottle

12-19-2010 22:15:45 | More by CooperEllis
Photo of LordAdmNelson
LordAdmNelson

Ohio

4/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

2010 Vintage.

Poured opaque black (like all big stouts) with moderate tan head. Nose is unexpectedly full of citrus hops (I knew this was hoppy, but damn). Citrus hops overlay the chocolate/roasted malts underneath. Flavor is big, with serious citrus and pine hops rushing over a big sweet stout base. Carbonation is a bit high on this guy, with corresponding thinness of body. Easy drinker, though, due to the carbonation.

This was a bit of a let-down for me... I was looking for a life-changing event, but this was not it. Struck me as more of a black IPA, which is good. The carbonation made the really nice and robust flavor difficult to access, it kind of diluted the flavor or washed it away too quickly. As it warmed, the beer really has a unique and wonderful flavor, but some of the details are a bit off, in my opinion.

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2010 03:40:01 | More by LordAdmNelson
Photo of DavoleBomb
DavoleBomb

Ohio

4/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter. 2010 vintage.

5.0 A: Pours black. About three fingers of thick, mostly creamy, secondarily frothy medium-brown-colored head. Very good retention and lacing covering most of the glass.

4.5 S: Mighty chocolaty is my first impression. This has a great mixture of roasty and sweet aromas with the sweet being moderately stronger. Hops are readily apparent in the form of herbal and citrus. Sweet caramel, a touch of smoke, and some toastiness to cap it off. Very nice.

4.0 T: Taste is pretty good, though somewhat disappointing based on the nose. This isn't nearly as sweet as the nose suggests. Rather, hop bitterness is apparent and hop flavor is nearly as strong as the malts. Hop flavor comes in the form of citrusy orange, herbalness, and a touch of spiciness. Malts contribute milk chocolate, caramel, molasses, anise, a touch of smoke and fruitiness in the form of plum, prune, and parsimmon. The malts aren't big and powerful like I like, but this is still pretty tasty.

3.5 M: Heavier medium body. Not the thick, rich imperial stout I was looking for. Moderate carbonation is a bit "dead" leaving the beer limp and heavy on the touch. However, this has a good creaminess to it and it otherwise smooth.

3.5 D: Gave this a 3.5 because the taste was a borderline 3.5. This is easily the best hoppy imperial stout out there, but I'm not that big of a fan of that approach to stouts. I like big malty flavors and low hop contribution. Still, this is a pretty tasty and I think this will be damn good once the hops have time to fade.

Serving type: bottle

02-13-2011 00:25:34 | More by DavoleBomb
Darkness from Surly Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 2,254 ratings.