Love it or hate it, we are on the cusp of Valentine's Day, and the Orange County beer scene will have your heart thumping for some excellent beer whether or not you have a date in tow. If you're still scrambling for ideas or are looking for activities to fill the weekend, take a deep breath and read the following ideas below. Whether single or smitten, casual or classy, the bars and breweries of the OC have you in mind this Valentine's Day.
1. Beer and Chocolate Pairing (The Bruery)
Who says chocolate only pairs best with wine? Join The Bruery for their beer and chocolate pairing this weekend starting Friday night. Mignon Chocolate, providers of the event's chocolate, will showcase signature flavors such as chili pepper, cappuccino and pomegranate to pair with The Bruery's tequila-aged Roble Blanco, cinnamon-rich Or Xata, and tart Sour in the Rye. You can also find seasonal favorites White Oak and 7 Swans-A-Swimming in the beer flight as well. Find out what chocolate they pair with this weekend at the event. They only have 100 of their $20 flights for sale and they're expected to go fast. In-store purchases only for this event, folks.
2. Single Hop (Downtown Santa Ana)
No date? No problem. Beers In Paradise and Foodbeast are hosting Single Hop--a bar hop in the name of the single life--this Friday the 13th. The Single Hop route will lead you on a beer tour of DTSA, starting at The Good Beer Company and ending at Native Son Alehouse.
While a celebration of the single life comes into play, the event main squeeze is the celebration of single-hopped beer. Double-entendres aside, all are welcome to Single Hop. When the beer drinking winds down, head down to The Frida Cinema under Native Son Alehouse for a special showing of The Rocky Horror Valentine's Show at 11:30pm. Buy your $20 flight here before sales end and maybe you'll find a Valentine after all. 3. Home Brew Date (BrewBakers) Huntington Beach's BrewBakers is a beer-centric couple's date made in beer heaven for those wishing to learn the craft of home brewing. Make a date of it on Saturday and brew either full or half batches of your own beer, of which you later bottle and label cases for keep. The V-Day slot is filling up quick but spaces are still available for those wishing to brew with a helpful guide instead of filling your kitchen/garage/backyard with a messy failed experiment. In addition to brewing beer, BeerBakers also host baking classes, where anyone can learn to bake about 20 different styles of bread. For the month of February, in honor of Valentine's Day, BeerBakers will show you how to make heart-shaped spent-grain pretzels and triple-chocolate bread.
4. Prix-Fixe Dinner (TAPS Fish House & Brewery)
Sometimes we like to be told what we want, especially when its TAPS Fish House & Brewery telling us what we want to eat. This Valentine's Day, TAPS is offering a prix-fixe menu with some classic favorites and unique takes for the night's guests. Oysters on the half shell are always to be expected from the fish house, but you'll also enjoy some charbroiled escargot for another kind of shell dish. While their specialties rest in fish courses and seafood medleys, TAPS will also showcase a whole roasted chicken molé, in addition to filet mignon and a Maine lobster clam bake. Although their tasty lagers and ales will not be part of the prix-fixe menu, their beers will, of course, be available for pairing. Call 714-257-0101 for reservations.
5. Couple's Flight and Pint Glass (Beach City Brewery)
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If a casual date with your dearest fulfills your heart's desire, head down to Beach City Brewery for Valentine's Day to snag a flight to share. Try five of the brewery's various taps ranging from their 100 IBU Hang Ten DIPA to their well-rounded bourbon barrel-aged Russian Imperial Stout, Bourbon Ruski Noir. With a purchase of each flight comes a commemorative Valentine's Day pint glass. Don't worry about prix-fixe menus here because The Buffalo Truck will be rolling up for dinner.