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Ten Decadent Beers to Celebrate Valentine’s Day

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Whether you will be out for a romantic evening or staying in by yourself, Valentine’s Day is here and the perfect way to celebrate, or drown your sorrows is with sweet, fruity, boozy, chocolatey beers. From chocolate to vanilla, blueberries, raspberries and even oreos, these beers may brighten your nights and sharpen your sweet tooth. As usual, we have chosen only beers available in bottles or cans, here are our ten favorite Valentine’s Beers for 2017.

 

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Block 15: Love Potion #9

The only beer on this list not available in bottles is Block 15 Brewing’s Love Potion #9, but it still made the cut because the brewery is filling 32oz Crowler cans to-go and it’s just so damn perfect for this list.

Love Potion #9 is a sweet stout, brewed with chocolate and black cap raspberries, exactly what many of us think of V-day gift boxes. The crowlers even feature a custom label art and in addition to being available at the brewery in Corvallis, a number of Portland, Salem and Eugene spots like Belmont StationBailey’s TaproomSaravezab² Taphouse16 Tons and The Bier Stein are getting draft. Seek some out!

 

Ommegang Siren's Song

 

Ommegang: Siren’s Song

Recently released from the acclaimed Ommegang Brewery, Siren’s Song is a limited release 12oz bottle in 4-packs and available now. What better way to sip near a fireplace while playing a romantic jazz album to yourself, alone, in the dark, than a dark ale brewed with figs and raisins. Named for the enchanting melodies that fabled sirens used to lure in wary sailors, 9% ABV Sirens’ Song will draw in beer fans to explore uncharted imbibing territory.

 

Oreos

The Veil: Hornswoggler (Oreo Cookie Milk Stout)

The one beer on this list not available on the west coast was too good not to include. The Veil Brewing of Richmond, Virginia just released this special version of their chocolate milk stout but aged it on Oreo cookies this time. Available in 16oz cans, Hornswoggler has beer geeks describing it as a chocolate ice cream milkshake and having whole pieces of oreos floating in it. This one will be damn near impossible to find since they did not release much of it and it’s got a whole lot of press for the oreo cookie concept. 7% ABV and 45 IBU’s.

 

Double Mountain Bourbon Chaos Imperial Stout bottle

 

Double Mountain: Bourbon Chaos

The 3rd release in Double Mountain’s barrel-aged bottle series is called Bourbon Chaos, it’s naturally a bourbon barrel-aged version of the breweries Belgian-style Imperial Stout they released two years ago.

“Sometimes it’s best to put a beer to rest, forget about it for a year or so, and then bring it back to life. Well done, father time”- Matt Swihart Brewmaster

Laid down a year and a half into Bourbon barrels, the Double Mountain Bourbon Chaos tastes like Vanilla, caramel, and molasses lead, with fig and blackberry following in the shadows. 11% ABV, 100+ BU available in 375ml wax dipped bottles at bottleshops and Double Mountain’s pubs in Portland and Hood River, Oregon.

 

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Founders Brewing: Lizard of Koz

Recently launched in Oregon, Lizard of Koz might be one of the ultimate rich, seductive, boozy, dessert beers. Made by adding Michigan blueberries, rich chocolate and vanilla to a sweet, strong, dark Stout then aged in bourbon barrels. The blueberries add a tartness while chocolate and vanilla help for a creamy rich profile and the bourbon throws off oak and spice. 10.5% ABV, 40 IBUs, Lizard of Koz is available in limited edition bottles right now.

 

Ruse Kriek bottle

 

Ruse Brewing: Kriek

From Portland’s tiny but much talked about Ruse Brewing comes a new, recently released limited bottling of year old 2016 Kriek. Brewer/owner Shaun Kalis added over 100 pounds of Bing cherries into Pinot noir barrels filled with a Flanders Red, mildly sour base beer. All bacteria and yeast were sourced from the skins of the fruit itself. 500ml bottles of Kriek are available at fine bottleshops like Belmont Station, Imperial, The Beermongers and Saraveza among other places. 2016 Kriek is 6.2% ABV.

 

Migration Frankie belgian chocolate stout bottle

Migration Brewing: Frankie Belgian Chocolate Stout

One of Migration Brewing’s finest creations and a very rare bottling, winter seasonal Frankie, was bottled and sold in 750ml champagne bottles for the first time ever this year. Strong, warming alcohol attempts to hide under Frankie’s French chocolate layers with subdued but noticeable Belgian yeast esters and phenolics like banana and dried red fruit, even a hint of toasted almond. You should still be able to track down a bottle at the brewery of this 11.8% ABV and 60 IBU treat for only $12 and it will cellar nicely for years to come. Bonus: this Saturday 2/18 the brewery will be putting on sale  “Frankie Cabernet Franc Barrel Aged 2015” and “Frankie Whiskey Barrel Aged 2015” for their 7th anniversary and Zwickelmania.

 

Rogue Hazelutely Choctabulous bottle

Rogue: Hazelutely Choctabulous

This beer is a fusion between Rogue’s Chocolate Stout and Hazelnut Nectar. It’s dark with a rich nutty flavor up front followed by a chocolate truffle finish. It’s hard to beat two of Rogue’s most well established and popular beers in a new mash-up that captures both of the beers best elements and then plays them off of each other.

 

pfriem Brett Trois Pale

pFriem: Brett Trois Pale

So pFriem Family Brewers in Hood River never sits on their laurels too long, it was hard to even choose amongst three different awesome new bottle releases all appropriate for Valentine’s drinking. Whether it be the toffee and vanilly Cognac barrel-aged Imperial Stout or the re-release of their sour-ish Flanders Red. We settled on the newest beer, though, Brett Trois Pale, a funky wild yeast fermented beer that will delight the senses with flavors of fruit and spices. Aromas of pineapp and funk will greet your nose, followed by pie cherries and white pepper, even a fleeting sense of black tea. Pick up a limited caged and corked 375ml bottle now of this just released 6.9% 30 IBUs mixed culture, slightly tart Belgian-style farmhouse ale now.

 

Breakside Bourbon Barrel-Aged Salted Caramel Stout

Breakside: Bourbon Barrel-Aged Salted Caramel Stout

Winter is time for caroling, thick sheets of ice to slip and break your leg on and Breakside’s best-selling winter seasonal Salted Caramel Stout. This year, for the 2nd time ever, Breakside has released an extra special, extra delicious version of that popular winter collaboration with Salt & Straw ice cream, this time aged in Heaven Hills Bourbon barrels. You can still find limited edition 22oz bottles around at select bottle shops or either of the two brewery locations.

Founder of The New School and most frequent contributor Ezra Johnson-Greenough has worked in the craft beer industry for almost 10 years, doing everything from illustrating beer labels to bartending at renowned beer bars and breweries like Belmont Station, Apex, Laurelwood and Upright Brewing. He has also had a hand in creating events like the Portland Fruit Beer Festival, Portland Beer Week, and the Brewing up Cocktails series. He is available for freelance consultation in marketing, events, graphic design and branding. Contact: SamuraiArtist@NewSchoolBeer.com

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