Merchandise

Game of Thrones to get an official beer

Iron Throne Blonde AleIn a case of two awesome things coming together to make something twice as awesome, HBO has announced that they are partnering with a craft brewery in the US to create beers inspired by Game of Thrones. The first beer, Iron Throne Blonde Ale, will launch the day of the season three premiere and three more beers will follow sometime after. Check out the press release below.

HBO Global Licensing is constantly raising the bar on brand extensions for their hit shows, and they’re showing their creativity once again through a new partnership with Brewery Ommegang to release a series of themed beers based on the critically-acclaimed drama, Game of Thrones.

Unlike previous efforts by brewers, which were typically executed as ‘brewed under license’ arrangements or straightforward product placement pushes, the collaboration between Ommegang and HBO is focused on developing truly unique beers that directly tie into themes, characters and nuances of the series of the medieval-like fantasy realm of Westeros and surrounding kingdoms.

The inaugural beer, Iron Throne Blonde Ale, will launch nationally timed to the season 3 premiere of the show on March 31st. It will be available on draft and in 750ml bottles for the suggested retail price of $8.50 per bottle beginning mid to late March. This will be followed by the launch of another Game of Thrones-inspired beer in the Fall and two additional beers in subsequent seasons.

Ommegang beers, which are created by Brewmaster Phil Leinhart, have gained a national following by connoisseurs of fine beer and are distributed in 45 states and internationally. The Belgian-style brewery is located on a 136-acre farmstead in Cooperstown, New York.

Winter Is Coming: As noted by WiCnet commenter the goat on Twitter, it is somewhat surprising it took HBO this long to do this. True Blood has had an official drink for three years now and beer and Thrones just go together so well. Perhaps they were looking for just the right brewery. In any case (no pun intended), I look forward to sipping my Iron Throne Blonde Ale as I sit down to watch the season three premiere!

101 Comments

  • AWESOME news. And makes a lot of sense.

    On a simliar note: anybody in the Philly area ever been to the Franklin Mortgage? It’s kind of a speakeasy-ish type place that serves pre-Prohibition style cocktails. One of them is called The Red Wedding. Thought it might’ve been a coincidence, but there’s another one called the Fevre Dream.

  • Can’t take their drink down in Kingslanding. It’s a dark ale or a stout porter that you need to fend off the cold and put hair on your chest.

  • I don’t drink beer that often but I have a feeling this stuff will have me drinking religously. If they’re releasing flavors with each season I cant wait until next year. Irone Throne winter ale is coming…

  • This is great! Now if only HBO would make available those awesome curved drinking cups made from horn/bone as seen on the show. They feature especially in the Castle Black scenes. The licensed mugs at the store don’t quite cut it, considering that no one ever uses shiny colored mugs on the show. But they would go well coupled with these new ale choices.

    Make it so, HBO!

  • I think this is the brewery that makes Three Philosophers? That’s pretty decent and I generally like their 750ml sizes, seems more appropriate than a six pack.

  • Hmm…what others would they conjure?

    Wildfire Dry, a hoppy pale ale

    The Last Hearth Winter Stout (a dark brown ale, naturally from the last house before one hits The Wall)

    Summer Isles Summer Lager (kind of self explanatory)

    Direwolf Dark (chocolate ale)

    I’d suggest one for the Iron Islands, but since they don’t plow the fields, they’d never be able to produce a beer. How do they run an economy based entirely around piracy, anyway?

  • This is great news. I hope they release the home brew recipes.

    Ommegang specializes in Belgian styles, so maybe a Targaryen Tripel-headed Dragon?

  • Beer is fine… but how about a Stark Age Old Whiskey called DireWolf Black served cold but heats up on the way down..for them – 30 degree nights on the Wall…

  • I really hope they consult with the ladies from Inn at the Crossraoads. They’ve done a lot of research into the type of beer and other alchohol the characters would consume.

  • Iron Throne Blonde Ale.
    Because a Lannister always picks up the tab.
    Please drink responsibly.
    (1) According to The Grand Maester, women should not drink alcoholic beverages during incestuous pregnancies because of the risk that the child will turn into a tyrannical monster. (2) Consumption of alcoholic beverages impairs your ability to hunt wild boar.

  • I doubt they’re going to put much thought into what styles of beer the characters would drink. Mainly because they’re doing a blonde ale and not naming it after a Lannister.

  • Ommegang’s Belgian style beers are not for everyone. It will be interesting to see if they dumb this down for the masses.

  • James,

    Arg, I just looked up Dragon’s Milk because it sounded like a great Christmas gift for my brother (he’s always happier if I give him a wet gift instead of a dry one), but it’s distributed in neither my state, nor his! My local wine/beer shop says they can give me some alternative ideas, but rawr. By the description and online reviews, Dragon’s Milk sounded like quite a dream. And I don’t even drink beer! :-)

  • mzf:
    Ommegang’s Belgian style beers are not for everyone.It will be interesting to see if they dumb this down for the masses.

    I would say the intersection of a Game of Thrones viewers and craft beer drinkers is pretty strong, relative to the general mix of the population. The target demographic is younger, more affluent than average, a little more hip.

    HBO is pretty good at branding to a segment — they know their brand and know it doesn’t appeal to all, but rarely really threaten it by trying to expand it past a point. This is a nice little PR and additional revenue move.

  • I wonder if they’ll market some Frey pie in a few seasons. Or hell, market it now, then later when the non-book audience finds out what Frey pie is in season 6 or 7… the reaction will be priceless!

  • Isabelle:
    James,

    Arg, I just looked up Dragon’s Milk because it sounded like a great Christmas gift for my brother (he’s always happier if I give him a wet gift instead of a dry one), but it’s distributed in neither my state, nor his! My local wine/beer shop says they can give me some alternative ideas, but rawr. By the description and online reviews, Dragon’s Milk sounded like quite a dream. And I don’t even drink beer! :-)

    Bummer, I didn’t have any clue about limited distribution or anything. Sorry :(. I bet there are some others out there that I haven’t found that would make good options, though… good hunting, if you decide to!

  • How about just The Long Winter Ale? Winter doing double-duty in that sentence, obviously…

    Seems like place names could be good ideas too: Sunspear Summer Ale, Winterfell Wassail, Highgarden Amber, Casterly Rock Rye, etc.

  • Mosh:
    I doubt they’re going to put much thought into what styles of beer the characters would drink. Mainly because they’re doing a blonde ale and not naming it after a Lannister.

    yeah, i’m not getting my hopes up. there is so much potential in naming these. “Lannister Blonde Ale” would have been a slam dunk. my view is that if you are going to make a product line after a show, you really need to put some thought into it, otherwise it is just going to be tacky.

  • Found a new audition. Seems legit (lol). – No, seriously, whats up with the cat and where is his damn shirt? People are crazy…^^

    – Or he had a test sample of Iron Throne Blonde Ale!

  • a blonde isn’t very exciting as a first beer but Ommegang is one of my favorite breweries so I’m looking forward to the others they do. A good winter stout for Winterfell would be great.

  • Blond for Lannister, I get it . But Iron Throne BLOND ALE? Anything named Iron Throne should be at least a Porter, but the ideal would be Iron Throne Stout. Why not Lannister Blond Ale, Iron Throne Dark Lager, Night’s Watch Black Stout?

  • DaveB,

    I have been trying to this up a drink called the Khaleesi for the bar I work at, I just haven’t been able to punch it out

  • James,

    It’s funny–when I called my local shop, they knew EXACTLY which beer I was talking about. Apparently they’ve had others ask about New Holland brews and have encountered Dragon’s Milk at a convention/tasting, so it’s obviously got a great following. Hopefully it’s only a matter of time until they and other shops nearby can get their hands on it!

    Thanks for letting us know about it!

  • Mike Chair:

    Please drink responsibly.
    (1) According to The Grand Maester, women should not drink alcoholic beverages during incestuous pregnancies because of the risk that the child will turn into a tyrannical monster.(2) Consumption of alcoholic beverages impairs your ability to hunt wild boar.

    Joffrey (and Westeros) was f-ed from the get-go then. Cersei and Robert weren’t exactly models of responsibility…

  • Have to agree that ‘Iron Throne’ is a lame name for a blond – ‘Lannister Blond’ would indeed have been a slam dunk (SSD). ‘Iron Throne’ definitely needs to be a chewier beer. ‘Take the Black Porter’ (dizzy) is much more like it.

    My own contribution – how about ‘Mad King’ for a winter warmer.

    Incidentally, there seems to have been an explosion of wacky beverage names of late. In the last couple of months alone I’ve drunk ‘Green Goblin,’ ‘Hobgoblin,’ ‘Dark Lord,’ ‘Scarecrow,’ ‘Pumpkinhead,’ ‘Monty Python and the Holy Ale,’ ‘Wychcraft,’ and my favourite, from Whitewater Brewery Co. Down ‘Clotworthy Dobbin’

  • Some more beer suggestions,

    Lysa Arryn – a milk stout
    Renly’s Peach – a gueuze, flavoured with peaches (a la Pecheresse, for those who know it)
    Drowned God – an oyster stout
    R’hllor Red Ale
    Martell Mild
    High Septon – alcohol free lager, this one
    Maester’s Chain – a Trippel style beer (a la Chimay), dark, sweet & very strong

  • Bene:
    is ist just me, or is this site getting more and more an unofficial marketing site from hbo?

    Well, I can totally understand that this becomes a news item here, since it IS GoT related news… That said, the news itself made me shake my head as I can’t understand anybody wanting to pay money to buy that beer just because it has a GoT label. Yes, I love the show, but no, that doesn’t mean I feel compelled to swallow (ahum) everything HBO throws at us. But well, looking at the reactions here I guess I’m just not good at being a fan :)

  • Nick Larter: Incidentally, there seems to have been an explosion of wacky beverage names of late. In the last couple of months alone I’ve drunk ‘Green Goblin,’ ‘Hobgoblin,’ ‘Dark Lord,’ ‘Scarecrow,’ ‘Pumpkinhead,’ ‘Monty Python and the Holy Ale,’ ‘Wychcraft,’ and my favourite, from Whitewater Brewery Co. Down ‘Clotworthy Dobbin’

    Ah…at least in Belgium beers have tradition and decency :p

  • Bene,

    Yeah you’re right……….why in the world would this website that’s 100% dedicated to the HBO series Game of Thrones post a story about an HBO/Game of Thrones product? The nerve…..

  • Tar Kidho,

    I will definitely buy it once to try, because it’s Game of Thrones and I like trying different beers. Even if it’s bad, it’s not expensive for a one time thing. If it’s good then I will continue to buy it, not that big a deal.

  • Hah, I have a tshirt for “Direwolf Winter Lager” from Stark Breweries. :)

    Anyway, this is cool if they do it right. It’s Ommegang in Cooperstown, so that’s good. Craft beers should at least be good and not just some mass-produced watered down product placement thing. Now as long as they keep the labels classy and understated, this could be really interesting. What I don’t want to see is just a bottle slapped all over with GOT logos. It should be a beer inspired by ASOIAF, not just another piece of HBO merchandise that happens to be filled with alcohol.

  • Pretty neat. I’m a fan of Ommegang in general, so I’m glad HBO went with someone who can actually produce good beer as opposed to just a gimmick with a pretty label.

    And of course we’re going to need an ale for the Baratheons, a stout for the Starks, maybe a nice bitter rye IPA for the Greyjoys, and…I don’t know. A spicy amber ale for the Targaryens? :)

  • Does anybody know if these beer brands will be available for purchase in other countries? Canada in my case…

  • Tar Kidho,

    Ha ha, I do love Belgian beer – when I lived in Brussels one of my favourites used to be the kriek done by the Cantillon brewery, it was fermented almost to completion and was a gorgeous rose pink colour and so sharp, some bars would bring you sugar to add to it. And it used to have a fantastic label with a cartoon of the devil tempting a naked woman. I think they changed this label a few years back – shame!

  • loco73:
    Does anybody know if these beer brands will be available for purchase in other countries? Canada in my case…

    I’m having trouble finding anything that says where their beer is available in Canada (their locator doesn’t seem to like your zip codes), but it does say they distribute internationally and beer sites have reviews from Canada. You can try tweeting them @BreweryOmmegang or they have contact a contact email at the end of the Game of Thrones press release on their website.

  • Pearson Moore:
    Blond for Lannister, I get it .But Iron Throne BLOND ALE?Anything named Iron Throne should be at least a Porter, but the ideal would be Iron Throne Stout.Why not Lannister Blond Ale, Iron Throne Dark Lager, Night’s Watch Black Stout?

    Best idea I have read on this subject.

  • Nick Larter,

    I see you know us belgians take our beers very seriously :) Since many of our beers have histories that can challenge the age of our little country itself, I just have problems getting my head around the idea of introducing a new beer with the name of a tv show. It just doesn’t seem right to me, and smells of a cheap trick to extract some extra coins from the fan’s pockets. Then again, growing up in Belgium, I was simply indoctrinated by the Belgian beer powers that be…

  • I kind of think that label might be temporary art. At least I hope so. The Iron Throne on that textured background is hideous. And the whole design is very basic and uninspired. Hopefully with three-plus months until release, they can come up with something a little better.

  • Winter Is Coming,

    Me too, but I’m not so sure. Looks like they’re using the photo and typography for familiarity purposes rather than best aesthetics. Definitely should have gone the art route.

  • Pearson Moore,

    You guys. I know its hard to accept, but you do realize that Joffery is king on the Iron throne, and Tommen will be thereafter, right? Calling it Iron Throne blonde ale makes perfect sense in light of the Lannister ascension to rule, and also echos back to the centuries of Targaryen rule (though I guess you could make that a whitbeer!). Robert was (and probably will be) the only black-of-hair king on the iron throne, so iron throne black ale or porter wouldn’t work at all.

  • It really should be wine instead of beer. Just think of all the “vintages” GRRM mentions throughout the series. Also $8.50 a bottle is a little pricey. In fact all the “Thrones” merchandise and it’s pricing on HBO.com is outrageous and completely shameless. I myself bought three t-shirts when Season 1 started. Now all the “Thrones” merchandise I collect are the official promo posters for each season and I buy those on amazon.com for $0.50 to about $3.00 plus shipping at like $3.99. So I would advise people to look for their merch there instead of paying ridiculous amounts of cash on HBO.com

  • Clambake:
    It really should be wine instead of beer. Just think of all the “vintages” GRRM mentions throughout the series. Also $8.50 a bottle is a little pricey. In fact all the “Thrones” merchandise and it’s pricing on HBO.com is outrageous and completely shameless. I myself bought three t-shirts when Season 1 started. Now all the “Thrones” merchandise I collect are the official promo posters for each season and I buy those on amazon.com for $0.50 to about $3.00 plus shipping at like $3.99. So I would advise people to look for their merch there instead of paying ridiculous amounts of cash on HBO.com

    I thought $ 8.50 was a little pricy as well, but then I saw it’s 750 ml. Isn’t that like twice as much as regular bottles of beer?

  • You would think the Blonde ale would be Lannister related. Lannister gold ale or something. I agree the design is pretty basic. They could get a bit more creative.

    Dare i say,
    Hear me roar Blonde Ale ( with the house sigil)
    or
    Winter is Coming Stout(direwolf)
    or
    Red Wedding Blood Amber Ale

  • JoopStroop: I thought $ 8.50 was a little pricy as well, but then I saw it’s 750 ml. Isn’t that like twice as much as regular bottles of beer?

    I suspect you don’t live in the US. We pay $8.50 for a six pack, not for a bottle. :)

  • 750ml is 25.36oz. So $8.50 for 25oz. IS ridiculous. A 40oz. Budweiser is like $2.50 so I would pay maybe $4-5 for a 750ml bottle of GoT beer. But like I said GoT merch is considerably overpriced to the point it’s sickening.

  • This beer may seem expensive compared to macro-crap like bud, coors, etc. But $8.50 for a bottle of craft beer is pretty standard. Ommegang makes tasty beers. Expand your horizons; stop buying the foreign-owned macro-piss.

  • Clambake,

    It’s actually a fairly standard price for the larger “bomber” sized craft beers, though its probably a little overpriced for this style of beer. Keep in mind, Budweiser is solely designed for mass-production and mass-consumption, and there isn’t a craft brewery out there that wants to compete with that. Mainly because its a piece of shit.

    I agree with those who think the branding lacks any creativity. And Iron Throne just feels wrong as a name for a blonde. I bet HBO handled that side of things.

  • […] the Game of Thrones season 3 premiere on March 31st. Word on the street is that Game of Thrones is getting an official beer, Iron Throne Blonde Ale, that will be released the day of the premiere—even more reason to be […]

  • Please tell me this is getting a UK release! I need to play the drinking game with official GoT beer!