For the third year in a row, I woke up super early on a Saturday to go stand in line at Darkness Day, Surly Brewing Co.’s annual release of their Russian imperial stout seasonal offering. In 2010, friends and I arrived in line at 7:45am and were about half way through those who received one of the 1,500 wristbands available, giving us the right to purchase up to six bottles each of Darkness at $18 per bottle. In 2011, we arrived at 7:15am and were right in front of the last group in line to receive wristbands. Freaky!
This year, me and some guys from my homebrew club got in line at 5:15am to ensure that, with all Surly’s exponential growth and popularity over the past year, we’d be one of the lucky 1,500 people to receive wristbands. We were successful! I can’t be completely sure, but it seemed like based on how many wristbands Omar had left when walking by that we were 3/4ths of the way to the end of the line. We probably could have arrived around 6:00am and been ok, but that’s still super early anyway, so I’m glad we didn’t push our luck. Definitely colder this year (30 degrees) than in years past, though Darkness Day was also a week later this year, so that didn’t help with the temperature. Plenty of campfires going in line.