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Is Dark Lord really worth it?

Discussion in 'US - Great Lakes' started by raynmoon, May 2, 2012.

  1. raynmoon

    raynmoon Savant (490) California Aug 13, 2011

    Spending 50-150$ per bottle, or waiting for hours in line (in the rain =P) just to get a taste, or does that beer, and it's Vanilla Bean aged brother, just appeal to those willing to spend the money.

    I'm sure there are many other stouts equally as good if not better.

    Having said that, I'd love to make the trip and attend the event some day, but only once ha.
  2. aceboogie

    aceboogie Aficionado (135) Illinois Apr 12, 2012

    Hell yes!
    thedarkestlordofthemall and C2H5 like this.
  3. A few months ago I had some '05 and '06 DL. The '05 was easily one of the greatest beers I've ever had, much better than having it fresh IMO. I have a couple of this years on the way through a trade and hope to obtain more. After that, well...I hope to age a couple for maybe 5 or 6 years! Cheers!
  4. I'm certain that it is a great beer. That said, I avoid events where I have to show up hours in advance and wait in line for a taste of beer like the plague. Much less, buy a ticket and an airfare to Chicago for the privilege of tasting and paying those prices.

    I wouldn't fault anyone who did it, I guess it just isn't worth the effort for me.
    Unholygoalie and Sebowski like this.
  5. No, I don't think so. The party sounds fun but if I went I'd skip buying bottles.
    harrymel likes this.
  6. WillCarrera

    WillCarrera Savant (485) Ohio Oct 11, 2010

    I haven't opened my vanilla yet, so idk about that one, but seriously DLD isn't even about Dark Lord anyway.
    TapeDeck, ravot, ChadlyG and 4 others like this.
  7. Bryan

    Bryan Aficionado (145) Michigan Feb 29, 2012

    It's an event. You go, you share, you taste, you sample, you meet people, make friends, buy beer, taste more beer, and just have a blast overall.

    If you get a golden ticket, pay the $50 and pick out a rare bottle. If DL or stouts aren't your thing, then make a few trades with people that do and get some tasty treats you enjoy.

    It was a little chilly on Saturday and some of the lines were long, but it was nothing close to KBS day...
    TapeDeck, ChadlyG and ThirstyBird like this.
  8. raynmoon

    raynmoon Savant (490) California Aug 13, 2011

    So you buy a ticket to wait in line and spend more money? ...
  9. cpinto6

    cpinto6 Savant (365) Georgia Feb 25, 2010

    I'd love to attend the event but just because of the festivities and all the awesome beers that get cracked. I would pretty much trade my whole allotment on the spot or not even buy it at all. DL doesn't suit my tastes at all. Reminds me of soy sauce combined with the sweetness of eel sauce.
    cavedave likes this.
  10. cpinto6

    cpinto6 Savant (365) Georgia Feb 25, 2010

    Amazing isn't it...the things that a brewery can get you to do.
  11. raynmoon

    raynmoon Savant (490) California Aug 13, 2011

    At least Vinnie at Russian River doesn't make you buy a ticket to taste Pliny the Younger.
    mecmd likes this.
  12. Really great IRS... but to me, not worth it! It gets amazing as it ages and i'm really glad I have some older vintages (07/08/10/11)... I'm not sure tho, that I'd be willing to sit on line in the rain and deal with all the A-holes just to get a bottle or two. Who am I kidding... I probably would! I can name close to 20 more Imperial Stouts I'd rather have... but I would never give up a chance to have a Dark Lord...
  13. ChadQuest

    ChadQuest Initiate (0) Illinois Mar 4, 2009

    Yea, waiting in line sucks. I hated having to drink Wooden Hell, Golden Blend, Chocolate Rain,JJ Blauw,Pegs #100, and 50 others......With a bunch of friends, and meeting new people in person you have talked to online......

    DLD sucks. Why the hell do i keep going.

    Truth be told, i like Dark Lord, but even if there were no Dark Lord there, i would still go to DLD for twice the price.
  14. dsal89

    dsal89 Advocate (505) Indiana Jul 6, 2008

    Some people dont care for it and think it is too sweet or just over hyped or whatever.

    I had it for the first time at DLD and i thought it was fantastic. I loved how sweet it was and just loved everything about it. So to me? Yes it is worth it. But this is why there is so much other beer...because we all have opinions.
  15. cpinto6

    cpinto6 Savant (365) Georgia Feb 25, 2010

    Vinnie is in a fringe of his own...you won't meet many, if any brewery owners like that guy.
  16. cpinto6

    cpinto6 Savant (365) Georgia Feb 25, 2010

    Do the tickets come with anything or they just let you get in and that's it? Do you have to pay for the samples of w/e they have on tap?
  17. Bryan

    Bryan Aficionado (145) Michigan Feb 29, 2012

    Tickets get you the chance to purchase up to 4 bottles of DL. The ticket proceeds go to charity, if memory serves correctly. It's much better to have a ticketed event so that you know whenever you show up you are guaranteed the specified allotment.
  18. aceboogie

    aceboogie Aficionado (135) Illinois Apr 12, 2012

    Its an event one must experience. atleast once.
  19. raynmoon

    raynmoon Savant (490) California Aug 13, 2011

    I've never been, and I might sound like an Ass, but I believe tickets just allow you entrance to the event/ pub while you still pay for pints and bottles. Can anybody confirm this?
  20. WillCarrera

    WillCarrera Savant (485) Ohio Oct 11, 2010

    yeah they just let you get in.
  21. Bryan

    Bryan Aficionado (145) Michigan Feb 29, 2012

    It allows you in the gates to the general event. You have to wait in line to get in the pub proper (where the DL variants are on tap) FFF has multiple stations set up so that you can get other regulars on draft (like ZD). They even had a tap station set up as you waited to get DL.
  22. WillCarrera

    WillCarrera Savant (485) Ohio Oct 11, 2010

    or where they aren't on tap and they only have barrel-aged black sun!!! I still haven't totally gotten over that
  23. DL - No
    DLD - Yes
    cpinto6 likes this.
  24. Pahn

    Pahn Advocate (695) New York Dec 2, 2009

    sounds like a great event to me. as for buying a ticket for the chance to pay more money for a beer, honestly i'd much rather buy a ticket and have a guarantee (or at least drastically higher chance) to buy the beer than wait in line and possibly leave empty handed.

    edit: incidentally, the beer itself, i'm not sure... if its final gravity is as high as people say, i don't understand how it could be very good. at the same time, beer geeks usually know what's up, so if the majority of them like it, they're probably on to something.
  25. Personally, I like DL very much, though I like a couple other stouts better (BCBS, Rare, Uncle Jacob's to name a few). It's great to keep my vertical going and the party at DLD is actually quite fun if the weather cooperates. This year's weather wasn't that bad since it stopped raining long before we got there around 8:30.
  26. mdvatab

    mdvatab Savant (440) Indiana Apr 5, 2006

    With the ticket, you're guaranteed an allotment of regular Dark Lord (this year the allotment was 4 bottles/person, and cost was $15/bottle). In addition, you're given a scratch-off "Golden Ticket" just before buying your allotment. If you have a winning ticket, you have the option to buy a bottle of rare barrel-aged Dark Lord. This year, the rare bottles were $50 ea.

    About the beer itself-- is it brewed to style? I'd say no. It's very different from your typical RIS. Some love it, others slam it for being "over-hyped". I love it, tho.
  27. I've wondered about this myself. Can DL (and all its variants) really be that good? More importantly, I freaking HATE crowds of people. I love music and sports, but I can't stand attending concerts and ball games. If I go to hell when I die, I'm sure it will resemble an amusement park.

    Still, the allure of this event and the opportunity to share rare beers and meet other beer advocates makes me more than willing to put up with the circus. Like you though, I'd probably just do it once. Tell you what, next year if I manage to get tickets I'll let you have one. If you can get them, you let me have one. Deal?
  28. BladeRunner

    BladeRunner Savant (260) Illinois Apr 4, 2007

    It's def worth it to at least try it. I wouldn't say it's the best RIS, but it's up there.
  29. Hanzo

    Hanzo Champion (955) Virginia Feb 27, 2012

    One of you should fly me out to DLD 13 and I will give my full assesment of the event and the beer.
  30. Brew33

    Brew33 Advocate (610) Ohio Oct 24, 2007

    Personally I think Dark Lord is an awful beer but I would LOVE to go to DLD.
    TWStandley and RBCORCORAN like this.
  31. Obviously, the whole DLD thing appeals to the extreme geek end of the beer spectrum. Personally, I like craft beer because it tastes good. And that's it.
  32. IMHO, Dark Lord is an excellent beer. Is it my favorite RIS? Probably not. There are a few I like better. Would I spend $50+ on a bottle of it? No. Would I spend days of my life traveling 1500+ miles to wake up at the butt-crack of dawn to stand in the rain for hours to buy some? Again, no.

    That said, DLD is a terrific time, and well worth the effort to get there. I was there in 2007, and was fortunate enough to go again this year. To me, it exemplifies what craft beer is all about. It's a group of like-minded, friendly, and generous people gathering to share some great beers, thoughts, and relationships.

    While "liking craft beer because it tastes good" is a big part of it for me, it's certainly not all of it. Hell, it's not even half the story. My enthusiasm for craft beer is based on my desire to be a part of a great community and subculture. I get more out of sharing a bottle of world class beer with friends, and watching them light up with excitement than drinking the beer itself. I love hanging out and connecting with good people (of various levels of beer geekery). I love the life-long friendships I've developed as a result of participating in the craft beer community.

    So, is the beer worth the money and effort? Probably not. Is Dark Lord Day worth going out of your way to attend? Absolutely.

    And on top of it all Vanilla Bean Dark Lord is easily counted among my top five favorite beers of all time. To get a taste of that beer is worth the effort required. I was fortunate enough to get a bottle of the Bourbon Vanilla Bean Dark Lord, and when the time comes to share it with some friends, that'll make it all the more worthwhile.
  33. stupac2

    stupac2 Initiate (0) California Feb 22, 2011

    I've never had the BA ones, but the '11 is among the worst beers I've had. The older ones get better (to where '09 is actually pretty good). I don't know if it's age or what, but '11 didn't improve at all over about 8 months.

    So my answer is no, it's not.
    ShanePB likes this.
  34. MarkIntihar

    MarkIntihar Initiate (0) Michigan Mar 17, 2010

    The last couple years the "regular" Dark Lord has been a bit disappointing. I favored the vintages that you basically had to chew to drink.

    2008 Dark Lord will forever be among my top few beers. Fairly easily my favorite non-barrel aged stout I've ever had.

    All that said, last year's barrel aged versions of Dark Lord were incredible, with the one exception being the de Muerte as it warmed up (I liked it a lot when it was cold though).
  35. The '11 vintage was quite bad. Cooked veggies in my beer?!
  36. atoulouk

    atoulouk Savant (400) Indiana Apr 25, 2011

    I've never been, but would like to sometime. I usually end up buying 1 bottle from buddy that goes for $20. Its nice to drink once a year or so, but isn't as high of quality as other stouts I've had.
  37. MaxSpang

    MaxSpang Advocate (515) Ohio Jan 28, 2011

    Is it worth waiting in a line for 20-30 minutes while drinking/sharing beer the whole time and spending $15 per bottle? Absolutely.

    Is it worth spending $70+ on ebay to grab a single bottle? No.
    DicemanSTL likes this.
  38. DSho

    DSho Aficionado (185) Florida Sep 6, 2011

    If they all taste like the 09 I just drank then fuck yes!
  39. FosterJM

    FosterJM Champion (825) California Nov 16, 2009

    So I quess I need to man up and go one year. Hated the base DL. Think the party would be kick ass!

  40. M1A2

    M1A2 Savant (425) Ohio Jan 15, 2012

    I can not speak for everyone but i have had the '11, '12 Darklord and both to me were super good!! At the top of my RIS list for sure! Thats the great thing about beer there is always somthing for everyone.

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