The licensed products for "The Lord of the Rings" were pretty extensive, but they had nothing on the stuff Warner Bros. has done for "The Hobbit." Those "Hobbit"-inspired meals at IHOP were downright silly, but the latest tie-in could go either way.
A partnership between three brewing companies has resulted in a lineup of beers inspired by "The Hobbit." We kid you not.
Fish Brewing, Ocean Brands and BevLink have come together to create three beers themed around a trio of characters from the film trilogy: Gollum, Smaug and Bolg. In case you didn't notice, all three beers are themed around villains. (Is there a subconscious message there?) They're odd choices, as it's hard to imagine any of these characters drunk (well, Gollum maybe), while everyone knows how much Hobbits love their ale. Why was Bilbo ignored?
"Gollum Precious Pils," named for the famous creature and his obsession with the One Ring, is described as a "strong Imperial Pils" with smooth flavors. "Smaug Stout," named after the villainous dragon, has coffee, chocolate, Habanero chili and Northwest Hops flavors, resulting in something similar to a classic Russian Imperial Stout. That Habanero heat is why it's named for fire-breathing Smaug. Bolg Belgian Tripel, in honor of the Orc leader with a bug up his butt for Thorin Oakenshield, is "a flavorful, strong Belgian Tripel" grog.
All three weigh in at almost 10% ABV (alcohol by volume) each, and will be sold exclusively in 22oz. bottles. A picture of each villain graces the label of their honorary beer, along with a character biography. All three labels are viewable below.
"The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies" may not arrive in theaters until this December, but the beers ship to stores this week. Its availability will at first be limited to the western United States, since the partners operate in the Seattle area, but they hope to eventually spread it to the rest of the nation.
Will the Hobbit beers be good? Or will they go down in history as an ill-advised tie-in product?