Wednesday, February 11, 2009


I'm not sure if I've already mentioned this in blogs past, but I pretty much hate Valentine's Day. In my opinion, more than any other day (including 'Take Your Kid to Work Day') Valentine's Day is the single worst day of the year. Elaborate or casual, with boyfriend or single, rich or poor, Valentine's Day has always been one huge disappointment. I hate the cards, the cheap chocolates, the doilies, the flying fat babies with arrows, all of it! As far as I'm concerned, Valentine's Day can kiss it.

It's times like these, when the dark spectre of Cupid rears his ugly head on the horizon, that I turn to the one thing that doesn't disappoint one true love, craft beer. Thankfully, some great brewers also know that V-day sucks and make us beers that will help us through this difficult time. Here are my beer picks for poopy, stinky Valentine's Day. (It is completely intentional that some of these beer picks are sour or bitter!)

My Bloody Valentine - Alesmith Brewing Company - San Diego CA
Released shortly before Valentine's Day, My Bloody Valentine is Alesmith's bolder, stronger cousin of their great Halloween specialty ale, Evil Dead Red. Caramel sweet malt is delicately balanced with floral American hop varieties for a truly unique drinking sensation. A deep mahogany red color and a big, aromatic hop profile are the signatures of this seasonal ale -with an evil 6.66% abv.

The Dissident - Deschutes Brewing Company - Bend, Oregon
Because I say nay to Valentine's Day, I am a dissident, breaking from the Hallmark and Sees Candy establishment. Deschutes makes a beer to celebrate this spirit of dissent. Brewed with candy sugar and Montmorency cherries, this beer is huge at 8.8% alcohol. This beer also uses two types of brettanomyces (wild fermentation) which means that this beer has good and sour notes. Because its aged for 18 months in oak wine barrels, this beer also finishes nice and dry. Think chocolate and sour cherries, with molasses and wood. A great beer with which to tell V-day to eff off.

Honesty Ale - Craftsman Brewing Company - Pasadena, CA
The Dissident is a sour cherry ale, more in the lines of a Flandres Brown Ale, but Craftsman Brewing Company's Valentine's Day seasonal Honesty Ale tastes like a true Lambic. Sour and funky with a fruity cherry finish, this beer is more tart than sour. Clean, crisp with a big nose of fresh cherries and citrusy finish, this beer goes really well with that sour feeling that is left after Valentine's Day. 5% abv.

Stone Brewing Bitter Chocolate Stout - Escondido, CA
Who me? Bitter? Okay, maybe. But sometimes there's nothing better than bitter and this Bitter Chocolate Stout from Stone Brewing Company is a prime example of that. Brewed for Stone's 12th Anniversary, this beer pours a deep engine oil black. Roasty, malty and chocolaty in the nose, this beer uses unsweetened and unprocessed cacao from Chuao Chocolatier.
This beer has coffee and licorice accents and a thick, rich, creamy, silky mouthfeel from the oatmeal used. This one also packs a wallop at 9.2% abv. So if you're feeling as bitter as me, this is the beer for you.

Oh, and a Happy Effing Valentine's Day to you all!

Written by The Beer Chick, February 14th, 2009

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  1. Thank god I'm not the only one who is nauseated by fat, flying babies, cheap chocolate, and pink fluffy things masquerading as "romance." Bah.

  2. My wife and I haven't celebrated V-Day in years. It's little more than a money grab by the greeting card/chocolate/jewelry/florist cabal.

  3. F*** valentines day. I have always hated it and still do.

  4. No kidding. Much agreed. I am not a personal fan of Pre-manufactured Hallmark Day (although we do good business on that day!).

    Thanks for the mention of the Stone 12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout.

  5. I'm with you.

    It has nothing to do with love. It's about keeping the candy companies, card manufacturers and florists rich.