Ommegang Reveals it's Next Game of Thrones Beer: Take the Black Stout
The next installment of Ommegang Brewery's Game of Thrones series makes a complete 180 turn away from the inaugural Iron Throne Blonde Ale in terms of style, but, with brews like Art of Darkness and Chocolate Indulgence under their belt, the new Take the Black Stout promises not to disappoint.
The limited edition series is a partnership between HBO and Ommegang, a well respected Belgian style brewery about ninety miles south of Syracuse, NY. It draws inspiration from the hit HBO program Game of Thrones, which is itself based on the best selling series A Song of Ice and Fire by George RR Martin. Perusers of the web may be familiar with the cacophony of shock and controversy that arose after the airing of the 3rd seasons penultimate episode, “The Red Wedding”.
The next Game of Thrones beer promises a dark and robust flavor. Ommegang's innovation manager, Mike McMannis told brewhound about the process of developing the stout, "with wintery thoughts and dark tidings in mind. 'I imagined Take the Black Stout as a hearty and robust beer to fortify those heroically standing watch at the Wall,' said McManus. 'Like their lives, the beer is dark, complex and bold. The maltiness offers deeper complexity than traditional stout; the brew also boasts more alcohol at 7% ABV, more body and more hops than typical stout offerings. Spicing with star anise and licorice root – imbues deeper flavors and an enticing aroma. I’d like to think it would offer comfort to those upholding their vows at the Wall."
Various pre-release tasting notes back McMannis' assessment and add that the chocolate, coffee, and roasted barley malts lay the foundation for the complexity he describes. The hops chosen for this dark brew are mostly earthy in character, which should work well with the robust malts. The stout also holds touch of fruitiness.
Beer Pulse got a hold of the limited edition beer's label. It features artwork by A52, who were behind the designers of the TV series sweeping opening credits. The label descriptor reads:
"A stout as dark as the winters that once engulfed Westeros, as robust as the men who swear their oaths at the weirwood tree. Chocolate & caramel sweetness are balanced by hop bitterness, roasty, woodsy notes, and an earthy finish." (insert pic of label alongside descriptor)
The label also boasts a 7 percent alcohol content by volume, up half a percent from the highly rated beer Iron Throne. The success of Iron Throne Blonde Ale, which was snatched off of store shelves within days and drained out of kegs within a night, has fortunately prompted Ommegang to double their production for the new Take the Black Stout. Ommegang, whose products are available in 45 states and internationally, is expected to release Take the Black through it's distribution network in Fall of 2013. Even with the increased quantity, Take the Black Stout will probably be sold out long before winter has come.