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CYNDI MURRAY PHOTO
CYNDI MURRAY PHOTO

The icy 39-degree temperature and weariness from the Thanksgiving holiday did not deter the dedicated crowd that stood outside in the cold just before 9 a.m. Friday to be the first to get what is likely the tastiest deal of the holiday season.

This was no big box store, but rather a brewery.

A yearly tradition at the brewery since 2011, each Black Friday, Long Ireland Beer Company urges people to skip the shopping and instead enjoy the special release of its Black Friday Imperial Stout. And, as if that wasn’t enticing enough, the beer-infused waffles topped with ice cream and candied bacon could easily persuade anyone from stepping away from the mall.

The limited-release Imperial Black Friday Stout got its start in 2011, the brewery’s first holiday season after opening up on Pulaski Street. To buck the trend on the biggest commercial shopping day of the year, the goal was to bring people uninterested in the 4 a.m. lines and more interested in the social atmosphere of a local brewery.

While it came with out ribbons and it came without tags, and it came without packages, boxes or bags, it does come in a cork and caged bottle. And Long Ireland co-owner Greg Martin said he wouldn’t have it any other way.

“It just keeps growing and growing,” Mr. Martin said.

The Imperial Black Friday Stout is made with magnum and Willamette hops.  The dark ale also has hints of chocolate, providing sweetness and smoothness as it goes down.

The Imperial Black Friday Stout is only made once a year and when it’s gone, it’s gone until Black Friday of 2014.

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