The Art of Darkness

Spooky Spirits

February 21st, 2012 by Cobwebs

Tequila SkullI’ve posted lists of beer, wine, and spirits with helpfully creepy names before, but since I keep finding new ones it’s probably time to issue an addendum. These are all great additions to any party with a spooky theme, not to mention making a memorable hostess gift.

The estimable xJane pointed me to two wonderful items: Dearly Beloved wine (a Trader Joe’s exclusive with great bottle art), and KAH tequila, artisanal tequila that comes in hand-painted calavera bottles.

Absolut has just released Absolut London in a limited-edition bottle featuring a rather gritty London street scene illustrated by Jamie Hewlett (co-creator of Tank Girl).

Mistress of the Dark Elvira has launched a personal label with Elvira’s Macabrenet. The same cellar that carries her label also has a number of other offbeat wines, including Rockabilly Red, Cardiff Giant, and Film Noir.

Crystal Lake Wine is a label blessed by Adrienne King, the actress who played the only survivor in the original Friday the 13th movie. The bottle artwork depicts the end of the movie, where the tattered Alice rests in a canoe just before Jason leaps out of the water.

Elk Creek seasonally offers Bone Dry Red and Ghostly White. Owen Roe produces Sinister Hand, and indeed it is. Ed Hardy (Ed Hardy makes wine?) has a whole line of Tattoo-themed labels, including a neat Sangria with a very happy skull.

Ash Hollow has a collection called “Legends,” featuring Headless Red, Four Horsemen, and an upcoming label called “1882” (which doesn’t ring any bells for me, but here’s Wikipedia’s list of events for that year; Jesse James’ death, maybe?).

Twisted Oak offers a red called River of Skulls, with a nice minimalist skull design. Other attractive minimalist labels are Klinker Brick’s Old Ghost, featuring a spooky bare-branched tree; Big Red Monster, with an angry red eye; and Michael David’s masked Incognito (Michael David also offers Gluttony, Lust, and Sloth).

Ghost Pines, Witch Creek, Gray Ghost, and Graveyard Vineyards have the spooky stuff right in the cellar name. I particularly like the Graveyard label art, since it appears to be a cheerful impressionistic painting of a vineyard until you notice all the tombstones tucked away in one corner.

On the other side of the world, Redheads in Australia bottles the not especially interesting labeled but awesomely named Return of the Living Red.

To my vast annoyance, Lugosi Wines apparently produced exactly one run of Bela Lugosi Malbec before going belly-up. The wines are still available at Southern Hemisphere Wine Center.

On to beers.

Southern Tier Brewing has a number of thematic seasonal beers, including Iniquity, Pumking, and Krampus. As a bonus, they offer high-resolution images of their labels to download, so if you can’t find the beer in your area you can at least print out the labels, stick ’em on lesser beers, and pretend.

Brasserie Grain D’Orge offers Belzebuth, a golden ale with a whopping 13% alcohol content.

Deschutes Brewery has Hop in the Dark and The Abyss.

Left Coast produces Asylum and Voo Doo.

Atwater Brewery has a number of nice labels, including Voodoo Vator, Shaman’s Porter, and Teufel Bock (all on the same page). I’m also rather fond of Conniption Fit.

New Holland Brewing offers Mad Hatter, Dragon’s Milk, Night Tripper, Ichabod, and Four Witches.

Elysian produces Night Owl, Bete Blanche, Dragonstooth, and Great Pumpkin.

Brasserie Grimoire (whose site is all Flash, a pox be upon them) has Infernale, Grimousse, Armure, and Lime Mortel.

Great Lakes Brewery has Edmund Fitzgerald, Lake Erie Monster, Nosferatu, and (at least in theory) has a Devil’s Pale Ale with an alcohol content of 6.66%, but I don’t see a current mention of that one on their site.

Avery Brewing has loads of attractive labels, including a “Demons of Ale” trilogy consisting of Samael’s, The Beast, and Mephistopheles.

:::whew:::. That ought to keep you occupied for a while.

Posted in Resources | 4 Comments »

4 Responses

  1. Dana Says:

    I rarely even have a drink…and I think this post is PHENOMENAL! Excellent curating of spirits. :-)

  2. xJane Says:

    The Edmund Fitzgerald was one of my favorite songs growing up (even though I’d never heard it—only sung it!).

    Also, “Conniption Fit” would send my Yiddish teacher into conniptions, since a conniption, properly, is a fit in itself. (She heard me say “conniption” immediately appointed herself my Yiddish teacher…)

  3. cookie Says:

    Bela Lugosi…October 20 1882

  4. WitchArachne Says:

    Two of my very favourite red wines are named slightly spookily.
    Devil’s Lair wines (Australian) make a really nice mix called “Fifth Leg” because it’s apparently a 5th type of wine made from the usual four. In the red’s case it’s cabernet, sauvignon, shiraz and merlot. There’s a white wine version too but I don’t drink white so I don’t know how nice it is.

    There’s also a Chilean winemaker named Casillero del Diablo (Cellar of the Devil), so-called because the wines were apparently so nice that the original vintner made up a story about the devil living in his cellar to prevent people from breaking into it to steal his wine. I haven’t tried them all but the Shiraz is bloody beautiful.

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