It has been over a year since my original intentions had been to go to Darkness Day at Surly Brewing Company. I has anticipated going with Mark and his brother, Matt, for the ’09 release but it wasn’t in the cards and I put my wife on full notice that I wouldn’t miss the chance come 2010. All year I reminded the wife of the October date with a trip for a day of beerfull bliss in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota.
The weeks went by and as the time approached, everyone but mark and I could make the trek. We were off early on Friday with a stop planned in Madison, WI. Star Liquor and State Street Brats for lunch. My visits to Star Liquors are always fun and full of good beer; this visit didn’t go my way. Mark and I both left empty handed. State Street Brats hits on the other hand was well worth the visit: the food is outstanding and no matter which way you turn your head you can see a monitor.
Back on the road with the next stop being our hotel.
Heritage Liquors was quickly plugged into the gps as we wanted to get our hands on other Surly beers. We were in luck as wet was in season. A hundred dollars lighter And we were headed for some of the outstanding beer bars in St. Paul. Unfortunately everything was over crowded and we couldn’t find a parking spot.
Back to the hotel for pizza, baseball playoffs, and some Surly Wet. The alarm was set for 5:30am but neither Mark or I slept too well: we both snore a lot!
Darkness day officially started for us at 6:45am; the time we got our spot in line and the wait for the noon release began. 250th in line was our place. Some 100 or more spaces further than mark was the year before but arriving at the same time.
While in line we got to conversing with our neighbors: three recent college grads. I was more than happy to share the beers in the cooler: Founders KBS (5 bottles), a bottle of Founders Breakfast Stout, Flosmoor 2010 Collaborative Evil, and a bottle of 2010 Port Older Viscosity. All good beers and ice breakers.
The 5+ hour wait went by quickly and we soon had our bracelets. 50 minutes or so later we were out the door with our 6 bottles of Darkness and huge smiles on our faces.
With most of bottles shared with friends and the crazy thought that we drove back on Saturday afternoon, amped up for next year already. 5:00am is the goal for the line next year.
One last thought: I was fortunate enough to go to Dark Lord this year too but in terms of organization, civility of the people, etc Surly has it hands down over Three Floyds. Enjoy!