As St. Valentine’s Day approacheth, I have begun brainstorming for creative ways to celebrate the day with my bride. (Side note: being married for four years now, I’m impressed that I actually started thinking about this two days in advance…) I’ve been dating/engaged/married to my wife now for about nine years, so with three major gift-giving events per year, along with random acts of kindness sprinkled in between, it’s getting very difficult to come up with creative, yet cost-effective ways to celebrate these occasions.
Well, I’m here to help those of you out there that are looking for a little something different to do this year. My suggestion is to find an interesting alternative to wine to liven up your romantic dinner at home. There are many great high-gravity beers out there that have similar characteristics to wine. Some even come in corked 750 ml bottles, you get the whole fancy wine/champagne presentation.
Hopefully this shortlist will give you some ideas and inspiration:
Belgian-style red ale that comes in a corked 750 ml bottle. It has a very fruity start and aroma with hints of pear and apricot. It’s a big beer at 12% ABV.
Flying Dog Horn Dog Barley Wine
Now, busting out something called “Horn Dog” on St. Valentine’s Day might give someone the wrong impression. But let’s be honest, we all know what we want, and it’s good beer. Horn Dog is dark and malty, with very little hop flavor evident. The color, mouthfeel, sweetness and alcohol content as closely resemble wine as I’ve had in a beer. 10.2% ABV.
Great Divide Yeti Imperial Stout
I know I’ve raved out this beer several times before, and you’re probably thinking to yourself that I’ve completely run dry, but I love this beer right now. It’s one of my all-time favorite stouts. If you are looking for something to accompany dessert, you can’t go wrong with this, especially if it’s a chocolatey dessert. It has such a rich, chocolate, roasted flavor that it has even appealed to people who tried it and swore they never like dark beer. Don’t be scared. 9.5% ABV.
And now I’m heading to Total Wine to stock up on some new material…