Darkness | Surly Brewing Company

BA SCORE
98
world-class
3,826 Ratings
DarknessDarkness
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Surly Brewing Company
Minnesota, United States
surlybrewing.com

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.30%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
This listing is ONLY for Darkness that is NOT barrel-aged, which excludes all of the 2014 bottles, all of which were aged in whiskey barrels. 2014 has a separate entry (http://www.beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/13014/141724/). Any subsequent years that have barrel aged variants, indicated by gold wax and lettering, also have their own separate entries.

Labels:
2007 - Grim Reaper
2008 - Devil
2009 - Mummy
2010 - Vampire
2011 - Zombie
2012 - Werewolf
2013 - Brewcifer
2014 - Harpy
2015 - Bat
2016 - Cerberus


Added by ryantupy on 10-08-2006

BEER STATS
Ratings:
3,826
Reviews:
878
Avg:
4.42
pDev:
9.28%
 
 
Wants:
3,306
Gots:
1,523
For Trade:
139
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,826 |  Reviews: 878
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3.5/5  rDev -20.8%

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4.5/5  rDev +1.8%

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5/5  rDev +13.1%

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4.5/5  rDev +1.8%

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4.75/5  rDev +7.5%

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4.5/5  rDev +1.8%

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4.5/5  rDev +1.8%

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4.75/5  rDev +7.5%

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4.5/5  rDev +1.8%

Photo of B_Faust
4.13/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I have yet to open my 2013 but I did have a few bottles of the prior years. Very distinct in it's quality. Nose was great, mouthfeel was fantastic, and the flavor was over the top. Chocolate, raisin, coffee, hops, fruity, toasty and rich goodness. Warming alcohol, but little smell or flavor, not solvent-like other big RIS's. Just a great experience. I had my first few fresh, can't wait to open my 2013....don't know how long I can wait! Surly never fails to amuse me.

 470 characters

Photo of cistercian12
4.75/5  rDev +7.5%

Photo of fanboy77
4/5  rDev -9.5%

Photo of MacQ32
4.75/5  rDev +7.5%

Photo of ironchefmiyagi13
4.62/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had the 2012 and 2013 next to each other.

2013 stole the show, hands down. The grade is reflective of that one.

Great color and head on both beers.

Aroma on the 2013 was much more powerful in terms of coffee, chocolate and hops. 2012 was sweeter smelling with a lot of dark fruit.

Flavor was much of the same differentiating factors. 2013 was balanced, hoppy, smooth and delicious. 2012 had a weird metallic 'twang' to it with every sip, and was just way too fruity and sweet with no hops or coffee/chocolate to add a little bitterness.

Overall, I was very disappointed with the results. While I am now glad I traded away my older bottles, I was expecting something a little more 'badass' in terms of a vintage showdown. Oh well, maybe my bottle just didn't age properly. Either way, the fresh bottle was outstanding and on par with my favorite RIS...Stone RIS.

 869 characters

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4.5/5  rDev +1.8%

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4.75/5  rDev +7.5%

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4.5/5  rDev +1.8%

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4.25/5  rDev -3.8%

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4.25/5  rDev -3.8%

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4.5/5  rDev +1.8%

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5/5  rDev +13.1%

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5/5  rDev +13.1%

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.25/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

my first darkness, as is common with many of my lucky rare beer scores, thanks to drlovemd87 for hooking this up for us last night. an impressive example of the style for sure, but a top 50 quality beer? I don't know. its rather straightforward as they go, excellent no doubt, but it reminds me of a great many other stouts like this out there on the market. rich creamy dark brown pour, sudsy mocha head, dense but not thick, attractive. the nose is muted dark roasted barley and unsweetened bakers chocolate. no alcohol at all, extremely impressive. the flavor, and I love this feature in this style, is all about the grain. I taste a few layers of varying roasted barley and chocolate malt, but no coffee, no vanilla, no bourbon barrel, no oak, none of that stuff. I do taste some dried cherry type notes in the finish, and as it warms even more fruit comes out, but this is a no frills example of the style, and I appreciate it for that. perhaps most impressive is that its massive alcoholic content is entirely absent from the smell and taste, its just not there. a real creeper, something to look out for when drinking darkness. I loved it with chocolate cookies, and could imagine a million other food pairings for it. expert quality stuff, but not different enough from some of the others for me to rate it off the charts. great beer though, they all are from surly.

edit: some age makes this epic, just cracked a 2011, and was amazed how much more mature and integrated and evolved the beer was from the fresh version, it really is one of the best in the game, with a chocolate and raisin complex coming to the fore. improving a few scores to reflect that.

 1,666 characters

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5/5  rDev +13.1%

Photo of Showboat66
4.5/5  rDev +1.8%

Darkness from Surly Brewing Company
4.42 out of 5 based on 3,826 ratings.
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