Release the sea of roses and two-tops and oysters and chocolate desserts! Valentine’s Day is on Tuesday February 14th, and if you absolutely have to head out for dinner that night, here are a few things to do that caught my eye for various reasons.
I thought the five-course tasting menu at ~RN74~ looked pretty fabulous (like lobster thermidor and morel raviolo). It’s $105 for the dinner and $85 for the optional wine pairings, which you know will be on point. An à la carte version of the five-course menu will be offered at the bar and in the lounge.
If you want to opt for more of a dinner and a show, head to BLACK CAT, which is hosting A Night in Paris. Chef Alicia Jenish-McCarron will feature a three-course tasting menu for $95 (excluding tax and gratuity), with dishes like crab bisque and red wine-braised beef short ribs. Miss Paula West, the fab jazz and cabaret singer, will be performing Saturday February 11th-Tuesday February 14th.
I think the seasonal French-Cal food and charming atmosphere at NICO is hard to beat. You’ll find a six-course menu for $90/person; standard ($65) and premium ($85) pairings will be available as well.
~GARY DANKO~, the HQ for romantic dinners, is running a special Valentine’s Day celebration Saturday February 11th, Sunday February 12th, and Tuesday February 14th with extended hours, 4:30pm-10:30pm, so you can snag that reservation if you just have to have it. The restaurant will be offering a three-, four-, or five-course prix-fixe menu with choices ($87, $106, and $124) or a tasting menu. All tables will receive a complimentary rose and chocolates. Awwww.
Pssst, AL’S PLACE isn’t normally open on Tuesdays, but they are opening for the big love holiday, and chef Aaron London has put together a special family-style menu highlighting some of their most popular dishes, with some surprises. $110 per person, with optional wine pairings.
Same thing at ~COI~: it’s normally closed on Tuesdays, but is open for Valentine’s Day and chef Matthew Kirkley is serving an eight-course tasting menu, $295 per person.
Need something more affordable? ~TWENTY FIVE LUSK~ has a three-course menu for $65, with choices like Kusshi oysters with paddlefish caviar and roasted duck breast and, of course, their vanilla-lime posset for dessert.
And there are other ways to get into a lovey-dovey mood, like the annual Food from the Heart event at the ~FERRY BUILDING~ on Friday February 10th, from 5pm-7:30pm. Come by for small bites ($2-$6) and Napa Valley Vintners will pour wine for $4 per taste while you do Valentine gift shopping and enjoy tango dancing and music. Proceeds from purchases of wine and tastes will benefit Slow Food San Francisco.
Over in the East Bay, on Saturday February 11th, MARKET HALL FOODS ON 4TH is hosting their eighth annual For the Love of Chocolate event, where you can sample chocolate confections, bars, and truffles from a variety of chocolatiers while you do some Valentine’s Day shopping. You can also watch chocolate decorating techniques, try cheese pairings with dark and milk chocolates, and more. You should also pick up a chocolate pot de crème to bring home ($4.50). 1pm-4pm. 1786 4th St., Berkeley
Help share some love and kindness with PALMENTO A DOPO on Sunday February 12th, when they host their first-ever Pizza Party for a Cause. They will be donating 100 percent of all sales to Centro Legal de la Raza, an Oakland-based advocacy group dedicated to protecting and empowering the city’s Latin immigrant population. Staff will be volunteers, and the majority of products will be donated by purveyors. Come by from 2pm-7pm and enjoy pizza, beer, and wine and add your voice in saying that we stand in solidarity with our immigrant community. 4293 Piedmont Ave. at John, Oakland, 510-652-3676.
If you’re up in Marin, you don’t want to miss a night of top-notch Champagne from the one and only Dr. Champagne (Jerry Horn), who is hosting a special dinner with badass chef Ron Siegel at TIBURON WINE. $250 all-inclusive, which includes the Champagne pairings. Read more here, it’s sure to be a blast. 84 Main St., Tiburon.
An antique Valentine. Image from Wikimedia Commons.
Friday Feb 10, 2017 – Tuesday Feb 14, 2017