The husband and wife team behind Trademark Brewing, Sterling and Ilana Steffen, are providing a Valentine’s Day destination for both laid back and upscale couples this year.
Along with its normal operating hours and selection of 18 beers on tap, on Valentine’s Day the brewery will also partner with a local catering company, Primal Alchemy, for their Hoppy Valentine Feast featuring expertly paired food and beer selections during a multi-course meal.
“The steak was actually being marinated in one of our beers,” Sterling told the Signal Tribune. “The salad course actually uses some of the beer in the dressing. And then we paired all of these mini courses with beer.”
The meal will be served family style in the brewery’s barrel room at a communal table with live music played by the Long Beach band, Brother Pines. Dessert will be paired with 10 Hour, a coffee-chocolate stout that is also the first beer Sterling and Ilana ever homebrewed together, years before they considered opening their own brewery. While the ingredients have been upgraded, the taste is essentially the same as that first batch.
“The primary difference and change over the years is that we’ve started roasting our own coffee,” Sterling told the Signal Tribune. “We’re using our own coffee floor and also our chocolate comes from a vendor in Los Angeles, called Letterpress Chocolates. They buy whole cocoa, and they roast it, and they provide us with nibs and chocolate that we use for that coffee and they actually make that exclusively for us.”
It won’t just be the beers that are made with love at this dinner, as Primal Alchemy is also owned by a married couple, Dana and Paul Buchanan. Chef Paul has built a reputation for using farm to table ingredients in his cooking.
While the Hoppy Valentine Feast will feature a variety of interesting dishes and beer pairings, at $125 a ticket, it’s not in everyone’s price range. For those who just want to grab a beer with their sweetheart, Trademark Brewing crowlers are the perfect size to share and also take home. The 32 ounce cans are filled to order on sight with any beer on tap.
“The crowlers are great to take home,” Sterling said. “If someone wants to snuggle up with their honey and have a nice evening at home and have some great beer with them then come by the taproom and get a crowler or two.”
Trademark Brewing also offers five beer flights with five ounce pours. According to Sterling, couples can split a flight or use the opportunity to get one each to mix and match as many flavors as possible.
The brewery opened in the summer of 2019 at 233 E Anaheim St. Trademark aims to be sustainable, sending all its used grains after the brewing process to a cattle farm to be used as feed which significantly eliminates food waste. It also often harvests fruit from an extremely local source, the backyards of Long Beach residents.
On its social media, Trademark Brewing put out a call for people who were locally growing fruits they could infuse their beers with. This uses excess fruit available in the community that would often go to waste otherwise.
“There’s a lot of interesting and creative things you can do with fruit and citrus and beer and some of our favorite beers utilize a lot of citrus. Especially in Long Beach, there’s so much fruit out there. Just the other day, we helped a friend harvest their grapefruit tree. And [from] this one tree, which is not very large, we only took a third of it, we took home about 1000 pounds. Which is crazy itself, but by and large, most of that ends up going to waste [usually]. It ends up rotting on the tree, people don’t know what to do with it.”