Valentine’s Day is a time to spoil your sweetheart, and what better way to do that than with chocolate. And if your sweetheart is a fan of beer, then beer and chocolate are a wonderful idea — paired together or together in the same bottle.
If you missed last week’s sweet indulgence at Goshen Brewing Co., you missed a spectacular treat. They infused their Stonebridge Stout with cocao nibs and served it with dark chocolate espresso mousse with raspberry orange compote topped with white chocolate shavings. It made my eyes roll back in my head. But never fear, there are still some other options for you and your sweetheart this weekend.
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Now through Valentines Day while supplies last, Iechyd Da Brewing Co. is offering mini cupcake and beer parings. For $6 you will get a strawberry cupcake paired with a ginger pale ale, a chocolate decadance cupcake paired with Big Pit Porter, and a maple bacon cupcake paired with Stiff Wind Scottish Ale. The three beers are 3.5 oz. each and the cupcakes are from Mini Delights Bake Shoppe, just down the street.
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All four locations of Mad Anthony Brewing Co. will have special Valentine’s menus. To view each menu visit their website.
If your valentine likes chocolate desserts or onion rings, I strongly recommend Miles Lab. Their tap list is always filled with great choices and currently includes four of my favorite Bell’s beers: Hopslam (double IPA, 10 percent ABV), Le Pianiste (wild ale, 5.8 percent ABV), Milchkaffee Stout (coffee milk stout, 5.5 percent ABV), and Bell’s Two Hearted Ale (IPA, 7 percent ABV).
If you choose to stay at home with your valentine, here are some bottle options that you can pick up around Michiana:
- Bell’s Smitten (golden rye ale, 6 percent ABV): While this is not a chocolate beer, how can you go wrong with a name like Smitten.
- Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout (Imperial stout, 10 percent ABV): This has big chocolate aroma and flavor and pairs very well with anything chocolate.
- North Peak Dubious Black Chocolate Stout (5.3 percent ABV): I have not personally tasted this one, but it has a great description from the brewery website: “North Peak Dubious is a dark chocolate stout that has the perfect combination of chocolate roast and black malts resulting in a smooth, rich beer. A swirl of aroma, flavor and body is underscored by the rich chocolate that is added at the end of the boil.”
- Brasserie Dieu du Ciel Aphrodisiaque (American Stout, 6.5 percent ABV): Another great Valentine-named beer with lots of vanilla, dark chocolate, roasted malt and slight bourbon flavors.
- Founders Breakfast Stout (8.3 percent ABV): If your valentine enjoys coffee, chocolate and beer, this is a favorite of mine to recommend.
If you are looking for chocolate to pair with your beer, remember that this is Valentine’s Day and you are going to be with your sweetheart. Don’t just settle for a 35 cent chocolate bar in the check out line. There are plenty of Michiana locations to pick up great chocolate, and my favorite is The Nut Shoppe in Goshen. Sorry, no beer truffles with Iechyd Da beer this year, but I certainly didn’t have any problems filling up several gift boxes when I was there.
Happy Valentine’s Day!