Being a big fan of Game of Thrones (a big nerd of it actually; even more so of the book series – A Song of Ice and Fire) and being a big fan of Omnegang Brewery, I’m glad to finally get to review one of their beers; let alone one of their Game of Thrones series beers.
This is another fantastic addition to the Omnegang series of Game of Thrones beers. I believe this is going to be their final one, and its the only one they’ve released since the show ended. Its an interesting title in that its “MY” Watch Has Ended, instead of “Your” or “Our” Watch Has Ended. So I’m curious if thats a nod to it being the last of the series. Typically in the show when a watchman died, they’d say “Your” Watch Has Ended or “His” Watch Has Ended. Either way, its a good title (as all of their others are as well – Blackwater Stout, Hand of the Queen, Hand of the King, Mother of Dragons, etc.), and all of their beers (as all of Omnegang’s in general) have been fantastic, so if this is the last of the series, I will be disappointed to see it end. Just like I was with the final two seasons…. *bum-da-dish*.
Some of the other beers in their Game of Thrones series:
- Game of Thrones: Take the Black – Stout – Foreign / Export
- Game of Thrones: Three Eyed Raven – Farmhouse Ale – Saison
- Game of Thrones: Valar Morghulis – Belgian Dubbel
- Game of Thrones: Fire and Blood – Red Ale – American Amber Ale / Red Ale
- Game of Thrones: Seven Kingdoms – IPA – Belgian
- Game of Thrones: Iron Throne – Belgian Blonde
- Game of Thrones: Valar Dohaeris – Belgian Trippel
- Game of Thrones: King in the North – Stout – Russian Imperial
- Game of Thrones: Mother of Dragons – Smoked Beer
- Game of Thrones: Bend the Knee – Belgian Strong Golden Ale
- Game of Thrones: Hand of the Queen – Barleywine – English
- Game of Thrones: Queen of the Seven Kingdoms – Sour – Other
- Game of Thrones: Winter is Here – Witbier
- Game of Thrones: For the Throne – Belgian Strong Golden Ale
- Game of Thrones: My Watch Has Ended – Brown Ale – Imperial / Double
I believe thats not quite a full list, but thats the list given on Untappd. I thought there was a Blackwater Stout, and a few others, unless they changed the names of some of them in later releases of them. Out of that list above the only one I haven’t had is the Queen of the Seven Kingdoms (Sour). We – my friends and I, D. Scott, R. Dibeler, D. Arndt, Youngblood, and several others – typically would pair up the latest Game of Thrones beer with an episode, which they usually released one for the premier and one for the finale each season.
Background on Omnegang:
Brewery Omnegang is located just outside of Cooperstown, New York (famously known for the Baseball Hall of Fame). Their Untappd page bio says: Brewery Ommegang is a craft brewery dedicated to brewing American interpretations of classic Belgian-style ales. Located on a 136 acre former hop farm – the brewery grounds offer a truly heavenly backdrop in which to enjoy delicious Belgian-style brews.
Brewery Ommegang is listed as a Subsidiary of Duvel Moortgat . They have 222 unique beers on Untappd, with a global average rating of 3.77. They are considered a regional brewery.
I’ve honestly not had a bad beer yet from them, and their Game of Thrones series has been especially top notch. Its also obviously their biggest money-maker, as the show became such a huge cult phenomenon and pop culture highlight. Parties were held each week for the episodes, with people pairing up the latest release from Ommegang with that of the show. I know my friends and I were not alone in buying 2-3 upwards of 6-8 of the big corked bombers for the premiers and finales (where we had huge gatherings of 10-20 people). Occasionally we got multiples of each and sampled them as the episodes progressed. Comparing Hand of the Queen to Hand of the King, or Mother of Dragons to King in the North. Valar Morghulis to Valar Dohaeris.
So I was genuinely surprised when I showed up at Drew’s Thursday night before his podcast about Christmas movies he was doing with Esteban, Desiree, and a few others; that he had a new Game of Thrones beer. The show had been over for a bit now, the discussions on how bad the finale was all over, debates on how bad the final two seasons were, all forgotten. Much like life, the internet has moved on to discuss ad nauseum the latest pop cultural phenomenon – The Mandalorian now; rather than rehashing how bad the finale was of Game of Thrones (and dear god it was bad!).
So, as I was saying, I was quite surprised to see it. He said it just released and he found it at Giant on his way home from work the other night. I hadn’t heard a thing about a new Game of Thrones beer coming out, here I thought “I was in the know” (apparently not!). So, ahead of their podcast, while waiting for the others to come, and before I had to go to Ming and Don’s Christmas party, me and Drew cracked it open while watching the 1986 classic “Hands of Steel”. (Which that is an amazing classic movie…. if you ever get the chance, look it up on Amazon Prime and behold the glory!)
But enough about bad movies, and TV shows that were once good and then went to crap, lets discuss the beer!
Beer: Game of Thrones: My Watch Has Ended
Brewery: Brewery Ommegang
Style: Brown Ale – Imperial / Double
Untappd Write-Up: Imperial Brown Ale brewed with maple syrup and fenugreek.
Needless to say, I certainly had to look up fenugreek as I had no worldly idea what that was! So typing it into Google search, the first thing it brought up was on WebMD and on the Google Search page it said:
Fenugreek is an herb similar to clover that is native to the Mediterranean region, southern Europe, and western Asia. The seeds are used in cooking, to make medicine, or to hide the taste of other medicine. Fenugreek seeds smell and taste somewhat like maple syrup. Fenugreek leaves are eaten in India as a vegetable.
So there you have it, you most likely learned something new now today. Glad I could help.
Coloring on this is brown, obviously since its a brown ale. Its dark brown, not quite black, with a very beautiful foamy head. Its almost black in coloring, but I’d still label it brown. The head is heavy, thick, with white going to brown. Alternating bubble sizes, and the beer has great carbonation.
Aroma is heavy maple with a mixture of spices – probably that fenugreek, but I can’t exactly put my finger on that because I’ve never knowingly smelled just fenugreek before. There is a definitive herbal note to this, something similar to clover which is where I’d put my money on the fenugreek being. The maple is very strong though, so the spices kind of just work with it rather than act on their own.
Taste is fantastic and wonderful. Just like other Brewery Ommegang and their Game of Thrones beers, this is an exceptional, fantastically well made beer. You can tell they put true work and craftmanship into brewing. This is very thick and mouthfeel is very heavy, in a wonderful way, you are getting your 8% ABV worth on this bad boy. It feels like a heavy beer, it tastes like a heavy beer, and it gives you a great warming sensation with the herbs and spices. The maple is very strong providing a wonderful flavor to work great deep dark malts and roasted grains you get a real dark and heavy beer from the combination of these, that the spices then play over and lend it a wonderful fall / winter beer. The ABV gives you a bigger wallop then just 8% would lend you to think, probably also because it comes in the big champagne size bottles, so theres a lot more to drink than your typical 12oz or 16oz can or bottle. I could really rave on and on about this beer, but its just fantastic.
My Untappd Rating: ****.25
Global Untappd Rating: 3.85 (as of 12.14.19)
(Must admit, I’m surprised by the global rating on this one. Figured it’d be a bit higher. Usually I think I’m pretty close to the global rating, and sometimes, like this, it just surprises me when I’m off, especially when I think I might have even rated this 4.5 instead of 4.25.)
Ok, everyone, thanks for reading, and I managed to keep this pretty non-nerdy given the topic matter! I’m impressed with myself. Didn’t go crazy overhanded like I did with the Moon of Vega Space Balls one.
Cheers everyone! Happy Friday the 13th (when I started writing this) and Happier Saturday the 14th (when I finished writing this)!