Ommegang Game of Thrones Iron Throne Blonde Ale - Ale brewed with Grains of Paradise and Lemon Peel (2013)
Limited Release (Brewed Once)
25.4 fl. oz. / $8.99 USD / 6.5% ABV
About: "Brewery Ommegang and HBO are partnering on a series of beers inspired by the critically-acclaimed drama Game of Thrones. Launching ahead of the season 3 debut on March 31, Iron Throne, a blonde ale, is the inaugural beer in the series and the result of a creative collaboration between Brewmaster Phil Leinhart and HBO. Iron Throne is a blonde ale at 6.5% ABV and brewed with a robust amount of pils, honey malt, aroma malts and red wheat. Gentle hopping includes Styrian Golding and Hallertau Spalter Select, appropriately noble hops. Spiced with grains of paradise and lemon peel."
Thoughts: Hell fuckin' yeah! Man I wish I could have gotten one of those nice Game of Thrones glasses (like the one pictured) that they released with this beer, but oh well, I guess just getting the chance to drink it is enough. I did see a really cool House of Targaryen pint glass at the comic shop but it was like $18 so fuck that.
Cork popped off and went a-flyin', smoke emerged. I first poured the beer "lightly but with a little vigor as to not disturb the yeast"... but don't worry, when I pour the second half of this bottle I'm disturbing the shit right out of that bastard yeast believe you me!
Iron Throne poured a light yellow color, slightly golden amber, with a massive soft white head full of long lasting bubbles. As I raise the glass to the light I see an absolutely insane amount of carbonation rising, giving long life to that never-ending head. The beer itself is seriously cloudy.
First scent is of light Belgian yeast... naturally. There's a touch of sweet citrus here, with a mix of orange and lemon zest. It's been a while since I had a brew with Grains of Paradise in it. This one has a spicy, peppery quality to it and it's a bit floral. The three main components here work quite well together, all of them soft and falling back on a bright malt base.
A wondrous light brew we have here. Very juicy for a split second before it all foams up and tickling pepper just pops all over the place. It's a bit tart, tangy and quite yeasty. Lemon peel and slightly sour fruits bounce around. It's a bit bready, under cooked, earthy and herbal. A drop or two of oily, rose petal tasting hops linger around in the aftertaste. The little bit of funk gives way to clove flavors and "plywood". It's got a gentle bitterness after the swallow, a tart sweetness during the initial taste and a nice blend of easygoing flavors all around.
Those grains really give off a drying effect... almost minty.
This would be a very good beginners beer for someone getting into peppery Belgian style ales. It's mild, unoffensive, easily drinkable, interesting and light. Definitely not the drink of Kings, but rather for pretenders to the throne. Let's see what they come up with next... something fiery I hope!