For fans of Surly Brewing Co., Halloween may very well be the second most important event happening today.
That because the Minneapolis, Minn.-based brewery is releasing Darkness 2018, a 12 percent ABV Russian imperial stout brewed with pale ale, golden promise, crystal, dark crystal, oats, black, chocolate and roast malts, as well as Amarillo and Simcoe hops that is packaged in 750ml bottles.
While attendees of Darkness Day 2018 were able to purchase bottles of the stout in September—as well as multiple Darkness variants like 2018 Bourbon Barrel-Aged Cherry Vanilla Darkness, 2018 Rum Barrel-Aged Coconut Darkness and 2018 Fernet Darkness—these bottles of Darkness 2018 are being released across Surly’s entire distribution network today.
The Darkness Series started in 2007 and has featured a different monster on the bottle every year since it was first released. Past years’ label art have included depictions of Baba Yaga, “a screeching bat nightmare,” a mummy, the Devil, a vampire, a werewolf and the Grim Reaper. The monster for this year is the Minotaur, a mythical creature in Greek mythology that is portrayed with the head of a bull and the body of a man with art produced the art for this year’s release.
In addition to the regular stout, Surly has historically released a non-adjunct barrel-aged version of Darkness on a later date than the regular version, with the 2018 incarnation currently scheduled for “early 2019″ according to a post on the brewery’s Facebook page.