Glassware: Belgian beers are subtle beers with layers of delicate nuances trapped inside that will show themselves in time, at least this is true with good ones. Valar Dohaeris from Ommegang is certainly a good one. Glassware that helps trap the aroma and allows the beer to warm slowly is best suited. Stemware is the best choice whether it be a chalice, snifter, tulip or oversized wine glass.
Description: Valar Dohaeris pours a slightly hazy, golden yellow with bright white head that takes off if you do not pour slowly enough. The aroma is filled with fruity yeast esters with a large amount of hop presence in the form of citrus and spice with hints of toasted malts. The taste follows the nose with crisp malt notes up front bringing hints of biscuit, honey, and fresh bread backed by flashes of hop bitterness and fruity yeast flavors that give the beer a very rounded experience that is straight forward yet complicated. The high carbonation and medium body impart a bright and crisp mouthfeel that is perfect for this beer. The higher ABV is not present. This beer is highly drinkable so be careful. Valar Dohaeris is a beer that “Game of Thrones” fans will love, but it is a great example of a Belgian tripel with a lot of flavor depth and is an absolute must try beer!
Food pairing: Valar Dohaeris is a great beer to pair with a wide variety of dishes that will be served in any party environment. This is a great beer to have with friends for any get togethers or while curled up watching the latest episode of “Game of Thrones.” Try pairing Valar Dohaeris with wonderful seafood dishes such as mussels, clams, scallops, swordfish or cod. The bright carbonation will cleanse the palate while hints of fruit and spice will match perfectly with the dishes. If you are looking for more of a contrasting dish, try with pork belly, the fat of the dish will be cut by the wonderful carbonation while the rich caramelization, when combined with the lighter malt bill, will create an added flavor depth. Valar Dohaeris is also a great beer to accompany many cheeses that will be enjoyed during the impending holiday season. It goes especially well with cheeses such as Camembert and Brie.
The Final Word: Ommegang paired together with “Game of Thrones” a few years back and began to release a series of beers that fans of both the show and the brewery quickly flocked toward. Since the initial release the styles have run the gamut of Belgian stouts, chili beers, Dubbels, a black Saison, and others along the way. The latest release proves this pairing is far more than any kind of gimmick. Valar Dohaeris is truly a delicious beer for beer lovers. The brewery has painstakingly worked to ensure the beer is of the highest quality with each release while still being true to the show that fans enjoy. Feel free to stock up on it and let it age a bit. It is available solo or in a gift pack with a bottle of Valar Morghulis.
Derek Warren is a beer fanatic, avid homebrewer and beer historian. Derek can be heard weekly on the Beer Geeks Radio Hour at noon on Sundays on WILK 103.1 FM with past episodes available on iTunes.
Brewer- Brewery Ommegang
Beer- Game of Thrones: Valar Dohaeris
Style- Belgian Tripel