Not only are they weird with chocolate, speed dating, and a luau – they’re cheap.
The average American plans to spend $196 on the Hallmark holiday this year. That’s ridiculous for one night when people should celebrate their loved ones every day.
So why not break away from Valentine’s Day traditions and do something different? I found five Valentine’s Day events at local breweries and craft beer bars for under $30. I contacted the owners and managers of each place, and here’s what I’ve learned…
- What: 5150 Chocolate Co. from Delray Beach is supplying the chocolate and Gulf Stream’s got the beers to pair with. Chocolate will complement the flavor profiles of the beers.
- Where: Gulfstream Brewing Co. 1105 N.E. 13th St. Fort Lauderdale, FL 33304
- When: Friday, Feb. 14, 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.
- How much it costs: $29
- Why you should go: “5150 Chocolate is Delray’s own ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,’” said Claudio Menicocci, Gulfstream Brewing’s taproom manager. “Chocolates are freshly roasted from different regions and specifically made for different beers.”
- What: Craft Beer Cellar’s Cicerone-certified beer pouring staff teamed with local fromager Becca Lynn from Muncheese to pair some excellent beers with gourmet cheeses from around the world.
- Where: Craft Beer Cellar 2301 N.E. 26th St. Fort Lauderdale, FL 33305
- How much it costs: $23
- When: Friday, Feb. 14, 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
- Beers and cheeses: Beer will be served as 5-ounce pours. Here’s what they’re offering: Bayerische Staatsbrauerei Weihstephan Hefeweizen and Burrata cheese … Lindemans Strawberry Lambic and goat cheese … Péché Mortel Brasserie Dieu du Ciel espresso Imperial Stout and aged Gouda.
- Why you should go: “Beer is complex, there are so many different flavor profiles and different mouth feel, like whether it’s dry or sweet,” said Eddie Abralde, Craft Beer Cellar part-owner. “When we chose these beers and cheeses to go together we were looking for things that complement and contrast each other.”
- What: South Florida Speed Dating will be at Tarpon River Brewing. Have to be in your 30s and 40s to participate.
- Where: Tarpon River Brewing 280 S.W. 6th Street, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301
- When: Friday, Feb. 14, 7:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m.
- How much it costs: $10
- Why you should go: “We’re doing a release of a wild French-oak-barrel-fermented Saison called ‘Key to My Tart,’” said Ashley Reda, Tarpon River Brewing General Manager. “Instead of marketing to people in couples we want to try and help people find someone to spend the day with.” The “Key to My Tart” is normally sold for $16 but will be sold for $14 because it’s February 14. Anyone who participates in speed dating will get 10% off their bill.
- What: “Adult” doesn’t mean sexual – I asked. It’s an interactive, two-person team scavenger hunt game for anyone over 21. No kids allowed.
- Where: Bangin’ Banjo Brewing Co. 3200 N.W. 23rd Ave. #500, Pompano Beach, FL 33069
- When: Friday, Feb. 14, 8 p.m. to 11 p.m.
- How much it costs: Free
- Why you should go: Discounted beer, free to play – first, second, and third place winners earn cash to use at the brewery. “Normally happy hour stops at 6 p.m. but we’re extending until we close at midnight,” said Kayleigh Carpenter, Bangin’ Banjo Brewing Co. taproom manager. “Guests will get $1 off drafts, $2 off flights, and $5 off the mega-banjo, which is a 20-beer flight.”
- What: Hawaiian-themed Luau party. Dudes, rock those Tom Selleck “aloha” flower shirts. And ladies break out your flower dresses, grass skirts, or go bold with a coconut bra. Flower leis for everyone.
- Where: LauderAle, 3305 S.E. 14th Avenue, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33316
- When: Friday, Feb. 14, 7 p.m. to 1 a.m.
- How much it costs: Free
- Why you should go: “Yard games, special beer releases, a step and repeat for pictures, pineapple cups, fire flow performances,” according to a Facebook event page. “Odell’s BBQ will be whipping up authentic Hawaiian dishes. lemonades, and treats. They will also be running a raffle for your chance to win a free meal.”