1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Darkness - Bourbon Barrel Aged - Surly Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Darkness - Bourbon Barrel Aged
No picture uploaded.
Have one? Upload it now.
BA SCORE
99
world-class

62 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 62
Reviews: 16
rAvg: 4.58
pDev: 12.45%
Wants: 255
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Surly Brewing Company visit their website
Minnesota, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  10.30% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Huge Imperial/Double Stout aged in a fresh bourbon barrel.

(Beer added by: AdmiralDiaz on 12-23-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 62 | Reviews: 16 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of CaptainNomihodai
CaptainNomihodai

Illinois

2/5  rDev -56.3%

02-25-2013 05:37:27 | More by CaptainNomihodai
Photo of chicagobeerriot
chicagobeerriot

Illinois

3/5  rDev -34.5%

11-15-2011 03:40:55 | More by chicagobeerriot
Photo of tewaris
tewaris

Minnesota

3.23/5  rDev -29.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into ABR 2011 glass by the brewer himself!

Dark, rich black with a nice dark brown head. Good retention too... definitely inherits its looks from the base beer.

Aside from the looks and the raisin character of Darkness, this beer seems different on so many levels! The smoothness of regular Darkness is entirely missing, and so are the hops, obviously. The latter is not a bad thing in my opinion. However, this beer is still very sweet without being well integrated, and somewhat boozy, and yet the bourbon character is mute. Odd :/

Serving type: on-tap

09-19-2011 08:24:48 | More by tewaris
Photo of spycow
spycow

Illinois

3.5/5  rDev -23.6%

01-10-2013 00:56:07 | More by spycow
Photo of jrallen34
jrallen34

Illinois

3.75/5  rDev -18.1%

01-09-2013 03:27:32 | More by jrallen34
Photo of mothman
mothman

United Kingdom (Wales)

3.85/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2011 Cask served straight from the bourbon barrel at ABR.

Pours a big foamy tan head. Color is pitch black.

Aroma: Creamy, light roast, vanilla. The oak shows more than the bourbon. Chocolate and cocoa. Very rich.

Taste: I get a whiskey flavor here that is very dominate. It is also very oaky. Creamy and roasty with a nice amount of coffee. A little heat shows. Caramel and vanilla.

Mouthfeel: Warming and smooth. Light bodied with a decent amount of carbonation. Ends a little dry.

Overall, I like it, but I don't like it. This beer is a lot thinner than regular darkness and obviously not as hoppy. I really enjoyed the whiskey flavors, but it just wasn't like regular darkenss. If the body was fuller and it was still pretty hoppy then I would be all about this.

Serving type: cask

09-29-2011 00:53:16 | More by mothman
Photo of AleWatcher
AleWatcher

Illinois

4/5  rDev -12.7%

11-24-2011 21:49:56 | More by AleWatcher
Photo of SourNotes
SourNotes

Minnesota

4/5  rDev -12.7%

11-14-2011 16:09:32 | More by SourNotes
Photo of thewimperoo
thewimperoo

Illinois

4/5  rDev -12.7%

11-17-2011 14:58:47 | More by thewimperoo
Photo of MasterSki
MasterSki

Illinois

4/5  rDev -12.7%

12-08-2011 23:43:06 | More by MasterSki
Photo of kbutler1
kbutler1

Minnesota

4.13/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Cask. Served at ABR. Pours a very, very heady dark brown color with a reddish brown mahagony color head. The aroma is rich but isn’t as barrel and bourbon forward as I thought it may be, which is nice for me as I don’t like when BA beers get too much of the barrel. Medium/heavy mouthfeel. The bourbon is a little more noticeable in the taste along with chocolate, vanilla, and some roast. Overall, a balanced BA beer. Probably not as extreme as others would want.

Serving type: cask

10-23-2011 16:08:30 | More by kbutler1
Photo of jera1350
jera1350

Minnesota

4.18/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Served on cask at Darkness Day 2011.

Very syrupy and thick looking. Just a mere handful of bubbles spot the top of the beer. Lacing? No.

A rich smelling brew. Extremely sweet and bourbony smelling. Strong notes of caramel and toffee.

The taste is very nice. Extremely sweet, almost like liquid toffee. A very nice bourbon presence that is not hot and overpowering. A bit of roasted malt coming through as well.

The feel is very sticky and syrupy. There is absolutely zero carbonation in this beer which it so desperately needs to help it open up.

Really enjoyed the flavor of this beer, but I would still take a BCS over it. Would probably be much more solid if there were some carbonation to help it breathe. Still, an good beer that is worth trying if you find it.

Serving type: cask

10-23-2011 15:26:20 | More by jera1350
Photo of Cyclone8
Cyclone8

Minnesota

4.25/5  rDev -7.2%

04-23-2014 12:45:47 | More by Cyclone8
Photo of sliverX
sliverX

S. Georgia & S. Sandwich Isls.

4.25/5  rDev -7.2%

07-12-2012 11:30:06 | More by sliverX
Photo of Sparky44
Sparky44

Illinois

4.25/5  rDev -7.2%

03-23-2013 22:17:48 | More by Sparky44
Photo of hansgruber
hansgruber

Indiana

4.5/5  rDev -1.7%

03-15-2012 23:33:36 | More by hansgruber
Photo of riverrunt421
riverrunt421

Wisconsin

4.5/5  rDev -1.7%

01-01-2012 17:55:56 | More by riverrunt421
Photo of aliving1
aliving1

Minnesota

4.5/5  rDev -1.7%

01-03-2012 04:32:17 | More by aliving1
Photo of herman77
herman77

Minnesota

4.5/5  rDev -1.7%

11-30-2011 02:57:12 | More by herman77
Photo of zestar
zestar

California

4.5/5  rDev -1.7%

07-12-2014 08:44:14 | More by zestar
Photo of jimelee108
jimelee108

Illinois

4.5/5  rDev -1.7%

04-28-2012 22:24:55 | More by jimelee108
Photo of ucis
ucis

Minnesota

4.5/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Overall I wanted to love this beer like a red-headed step-child. I can't believe it has taken me this long to sip this monster. It's oily and resinous and smells so amazing, but the mouth isn't as pleasing as regular darkness. I think it's a hard formula to f- with. It kisses your lips like oily garlic bread, but the smell is what your in it for. So amazing-- So clean. It's absolutely worth a taste if your ever given the chance.

The sweetness is numb and the hops are subdued by the bourbon. Even though the pine resin is there. Don't get me wrong this is one sweet mamma jamma. It is wonderful that it doesn't taste like Darkness with a splash of bourbon. It is something entirely different.

Note to self: I love this beer and would drink it if they ever bottled it. Maybe it will be a regular staple at the new brewery--hint, hint.

Serving type: on-tap

10-24-2011 12:52:55 | More by ucis
Photo of KAF
KAF

Iowa

4.5/5  rDev -1.7%

01-18-2012 22:43:37 | More by KAF
Photo of XmnwildX12
XmnwildX12

Minnesota

4.5/5  rDev -1.7%

12-13-2013 03:44:48 | More by XmnwildX12
Photo of JackieTH
JackieTH

Minnesota

4.58/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

From notes. From first in line at the entry we made a beeline to the Surly tent first session at the ABR to get this. We were first in line and within minutes the line to this one single cask stretched half-way back to the gate, prompting Omar to stand up on a ladder advising anyone that didn't want the Bourbon aged Darkness to move to the other taps for bender, Four, etc.., none did of course.

Appearance was imposing, dark, with a heavy caramel-dark brown head that lasted. Smell was vanilla-bourbon, roasted malt and roasters chocolate. Taste follows the nose..vanilla, milk chocolate, molasses, toasted toffee. The distinct vanilla bourbon wood presence is lingering throughout. Its not sweet, and slightly warming. Mouthfeel is thick, chewy, rich and creamy. Overall this is an intensely rich sipper, so thick you could use a spoon.

Serving type: cask

09-18-2011 19:39:00 | More by JackieTH
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Darkness - Bourbon Barrel Aged from Surly Brewing Company
99 out of 100 based on 62 ratings.