A Modern Viking
The Ironwrath came into being when I picked up a bottle of Semi-Sweet Honeymaker Mead. I had just finished watching the Norwegian Netflix series Ragnarok (not bad, maybe check it out), and possibilities were percolating. Then another Drinking and Dragons came into my purview and I set to work crafting something new.
I wanted the base of the Ironwrath to feel like a "modern viking." So, of course, MEAD is key here. Beyond that, I can give way to a few sensibilities of today to finish it off, but the middle mix is the trick. I remember lying on the floor imagining this. A Kraken rising from the depths to crash into an ancient vessel of warriors. Their battle rages for eons, frozen in time and space somehow, until they smash into the present.
The first iteration blended literal Kraken spiced rum with the Mead, a thematic choice that made the alcohol taste rotten. Perhaps an earthy approach, then? No, the Oakheart made it worse. Like fermented seaweed. Ouch.
But keeping with boat feel, a simple Captain did well to accent the mead without demolishing it, and now I have a beautiful amber base to add to.
Now, this is where experimentation began. Originally, by smell, I had picked out a Blackberry Brandy to add in. ...This was wholly UNPLEASANT, and abandoned immediately. Wild Cherry Brandy had a similar outcome. And standard Brandy did not mesh well. Okay. No Brandy for the viking warrior.
Still needed something, though, so I settled on my modern spin. Root Beer Liqueur. Root Beer blends well with a lot of things I've been trying lately, and it's a no brainer with Captain Morgan.
That did the trick well, but I was still craving that little Kraken spice. So I traded a few ounces for a "splash" with the squid, and there it was. Sweet and smooth at the onset, then warm, and a kick at the end. When my players tried it, they said it had "layers" to its taste. Awesome-sauce.
3 oz Dry or Semi-Sweet Mead
2 oz Captain Morgan (Spiced Rum)
2 oz Root Beer Liqueur
A splash of Kraken Spiced Rum
Mead is becoming easier to find, and that serves me well, but I really wish I could locate something more interesting than Dry, Semi-Sweet, or freaking Blueberry at more local stores. There are so many fantastic meads and makes out there, and I encourage anyone who struggles with the "heavy" feeling of beer or suffers from lack of sufficient organs to handle even cider, to try mead. Who knows... Maybe you'll unlock your inner viking.
See you at the table.
Professional Game Master musician, music teacher, game designer, and aspiring fiction author.
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