Valentines day is tomorrow and for me I cant think of a better way to say I love you than with the gift of beer. But can beer be romantic and if not, can I make it romantic? When most of us think of being romantic, we think of the usual suspects: the flowers, Champagne, chocolates, fancy dinners and delectable desserts. But recently, I’ve started looking at different beers in this way. The flavor, style, shape of the bottle, the glass it is presented in and comparing traditional ideas of romance with beer–little did I know just how romantic it is. Here are a few ideas for your loved one this Valentine’s Day.
Beer, depending on the style, can be presented in a Champagne bottle with a cork and cage and upon opening will give that awesome POP! that we all enjoy hearing. Some of these beers can be just as exclusive to a region like Champagne: Lambics come from the Pajottenland of Belgium. Lambics also go through spontaneous fermentation as Champagne does.
But you can’t forget the chocolate on a day like Valentine’s Day. The flavor you commonly find in stouts and some porters can be even more pronounced if you serve your dark beer with dark chocolate.
You can cook with beer in all courses from appetizers to desserts. Or give the gift of beer or something to do with beer, like the perfect beer glasses or a bottle opener specially made for your spouse. Maybe a mixed 6-pack of personally selected brews expressing the notion that you do pay attention to their likes and dislikes.
With all these ideas and findings, it’s hard to decide where to start. My advice? The beginning. Start with flowers in a beer mug to decorate the table. Then serve a peach lambic in Champagne flutes while dinner simmers on the stove. I will be creating an elegant dinner, each course made with beer and paired with the proper brew. The grand finale will be a chocolate stout cake with strawberries on the side, served with framboise.
But best of all is the gift I chose: instead of a mixed 6-pack, I am doing a mixed 12 accompanied by a bottle opener engraved with our names and wedding date. I happened to luck out and am conveniently married to someone who I am sure will think this is the best gift yet–as long as I can keep it a secret until then.
However those of you that are skeptical give it a try. Gentleman, you may be surprised at the result of your efforts and ladies, if your spouse likes beer as much as mine does, this is a no-brainer. The possibilities are limitless. Go out expand your ideas of romance, have fun and enjoy.
Heather Fassett, ABC Fine Wine & Spirits beer consultant
Follow me on Twitter @abcbeerheatherf