what: Fire and Blood Red Ale
cost: $8.49 per 750-ml bottle
where: Sam’s Fine Wine and Spirits
This past Sunday, Westeros fans rejoiced as the fourth season of Game of Thrones premiered. (Even more moaned as their “borrowed” HBOGo accounts shut the site down for an hour.) And many fans were sure to celebrate with the third in Brewery Ommegang’s Game of Thrones beer series, Fire and Blood Red Ale. Named for the motto of House Targaryen, it’s no surprise that the 750 ml bottles of Fire and Blood have three different labels featuring each of Daenerys Targaryen’s dragons, Drogon, Rhaegal and Viserion. Apparently Ommegang realizes it’s dealing with a geek fanbase that has been conditioned by comic book variant covers and will buy three bottles just so they have a complete set (guilty as charged here). As for the beer itself, Ommegang has once again transcended gimmick and created another unique brew. While the deep red color certainly reminds one of blood, the Midnight wheat, flaked rye and spelt (inspired by the Dothraki plainspeople) give a very dry undertone to the malt profile, finishing with the subtle back-of-the-throat heat of the ancho chiles (because, you know, fire-breathing dragons). Strangely enough, I found a passage from a chapter about Stormcrows captain Daario Naharis that seems to talk about this exact beer: “Daario finished his ale with one long draught. It was hot and dry like the desert he had crossed from Meereen to Lhazar. He fingered the hilt of his arakh with one hand and wiped foam from his dyed blue beard with the other. The ale had awoken a new thirst in him. One for the joy of battle. And blood.”
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