This past Saturday I headed down to Munster, Indiana for 3Floyd’s Dark Lord Day. Dark Lord Day is the brewery’s annual festival where they release their Russian Imperial Stout, Dark Lord. Dark Lord is only available for sale during the festival in 9oz drafts for $10 or 22oz Bombers for $15. Festival goers are only allowed to purchase three bombers each. Each customer also gets a scratch off ticket, with winning tickets providing the opportunity to purchase one of the special Dark Lord variants for $50.
The festival is in the office park across from the brewery, it consisted of a couple large tents, several beer vending areas and a large stage for the bands. Most of the people at the festival brought their own beer for consumption and trading. The scene was much like a tailgate with a lot of heavy metal. Most everyone was well behaved, I think I saw one guy get sick and a couple people passed out. I only stayed for about 6 hours.
The scene outside of the brewery was similar to a tailgate but with higher alcohol content and lots of pretzels. You were allowed to bring in your own beer and food just no cooler. So if you could bag something and it wasn’t on rollers you were good to go. I’m not sure if the two above actually made it inside with the pony kegs.
My one complaint is the signage throughout the festival was kind of a joke. You’ve got 18 taps running and all the beer is labeled by hand with a marker. None of the vendors really knew anything about the beer so if you couldn’t quite see the writing and you didn’t recognize the name you had no idea what you were ordering. I ordered an ‘Elf Power’ only to realize it was Evil Power. Considering the cost of tickets and the amount of attendees I feel they could have splurged for some decent signs.
There are a couple transportations options to get down to Munster. Parking anywhere near the brewery is around $20 and in short supply. There were a couple of the ‘Chicago Beer Tour’ buses that were running trips down to Munster but they were all at least $30 and all sold out quickly. After further research I tracked down Reggies Chicago which is just outside of Chinatown. Reggies was running shuttle busses down and back to 3Floyd’s close to every hour starting at 8am. The rides were free and they sold beer on the bus. In addition they had a free buffet at the bar throughout the day. This really made the day. Not having to organe a ride and trying to find it really made a difference.
The whole point of Dark Lord Day is getting your allotment of Dark Lord beer. In the past I believe people would line up the night before and the line would just continue growing throughout the day. This year when you purchased tickets they were broken down into groups with specific times to line up and purchase your beer. I’m not sure how long the waiting was before this system was in place but I waited more than two hours in line. The lines were moving at a steady pace and it was possible to jump out and grab drink/food or use the restroom. When we headed out to catch the bus back to Reggies the lines for the later time groups seemed to be much longer.
Tickets to Dark Lord Day cost $30 each and sold out online in about 30 minutes. Each ticket gets you into the festival, the opportunity to buy your allotment of 22oz bombers and a scratch off ticket. If your scratch off ticket was a winner you could then buy one of the special variants of Dark Lord for $50. By the time I got to the scratch off they were all out of the Bourbon Vanilla which is what I would have opted for. I did purchase a bottle of the Bourbon w/ Chillies but I ended up having second thoughts and I pawned it off on our bus ride home to some one who really wanted it. While purchasing the Dark Lord you could also buy any of the other beers 3Floyd’s brewed. For some reason the Zombie Dust was flying off the shelves.