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Romancing the Stein

Can Beer be Romantic?

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Romancing the Stein
Zoran Milich
Beer has developed a reputation that makes it somehow too common for significant events. Even the most devout of beer lovers feels some pressure to pick up a bottle of Champagne for special occasions like Valentines Day and anniversaries even if they personally would rather pop the top on a good brew. There's something about the ceremony of Champagne and even wine that says this is a special event. Pulling the cork, pouring the drink, toasting - it just wouldn't be right to replace that with yanking the tap on a can of beer and slurping the foam off of the top.

Don't believe it. Beer has grown up - rather our perception of it has. There are positively elegant beers available, some even packaged a lot like Champagne requiring the identical cork-pulling ceremony. And they are much better quality for the money. A bottle of fine beer rarely costs more than a bottle of cheap Champagne.

But we're talking about romance, not economics. And beer can definitely fit the scene. I challenge any devotee of Champagne to buy a bottle of peche' (peach) lambic - fruity, effervescent, delicate in flavor and beautiful in a flute - and see if it doesn't stand-in nicely for the bubbly. However, creating an analog for Champagne of beer is not the goal here. Unlike the bubbly, which only comes in grape flavor, beer is regularly brewed with many different ingredients creating a huge variety of flavors. Apple, raspberry, cherry, spices even coffee and tea beers are available so you can perfectly match the drink to your sweetheart's taste.

Chocolate is a vital part of any romantic evening. Many beers pair brilliantly with chocolate, particularly fruit beers and dark beers like stout and porter. But don't stop there, how about some chocolate beer? There are many fine beers brewed with a bit of cocoa in the brewpot resulting in a luxuriantly chocolaty drink. Here are some favorite chocolate beers.

Besides beer brewed with great flavors, you can create your own beer drinks with beer cocktails. Combining the creativity of mixology and the wide selection of beer varieties guarantees a memorable evening at your home bar. For example, try the visually striking and decedent Black and Red.

Not only does beer mix well with beer, but it makes a great companion for that romantic dinner you're planning. Whether you pair the meal with a great beer or include beer in the dishes you make like this lovely beer float, make sure that beer is part of the menu.

If your partner is the beer lover, then there are plenty of perfect beer related gifts available. From a subscription to a beer magazine to a vacation based on beer, there are lots of ways to say I love you with beer.

Can beer be romantic? Absolutely!
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