You can find plenty of great recipes on Sweet Tea Sweetie to make a romantic dinner for your Valentine, but sometimes a holiday calls for going out somewhere with romantic candlelight, gorgeous views, and someone serving you! I am sharing my collection of the most romantic restaurant options for Valentine’s Day, including a recommendation from guest writer: Crawfish and Crunches! There are hits here from San Francisco, Los Angeles, Dallas, New Orleans, Charleston, and Richmond!
Gitane – San Francisco, CA
Gitane is one of the most romantic restaurants in San Francisco. You walk down a side alleyway to find a patio full of tables. It feels very much like Paris! Once inside, there is a gorgeous two story tapestry and amazing light fixtures. You can grab a seat at their long narrow bar while you wait for a table. Ben and I have been there for every single Valentine’s Day that we have been together! The main chef has changed a few times, but the food is consistently amazing. My two favorite dishes are the maple glazed duck and bacon bon bons. Bacon bon bons are prunes stuffed with goat cheese and wrapped in prosciutto. They are heavenly!
Absinthe – San Francisco, CA
A lush French-themed restaurant and bar, Absinthe is the perfect place to make like 1929 and let the bartender delight you with innovative (and potent!) cocktails. They have plenty of intimate little booths which is perfect for couples.
Top of the Mark – San Francisco, CA
Top of the Mark is the restaurant on the 19th floor of the Mark Hopkins Intercontinental Hotel. You get almost a 360 degree vista of San Francisco and the surrounding sights, including the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz, the East Bay Hills, downtown and Twin Peaks.
Cicada Club – Los Angeles, CA
It doesn’t get much more glamorous than this in L.A. Located in the historic Oviatt Building, Cicada occupies what was once a haberdashery, with a design inspired by an Art Deco oceanliner from the ’20s. The 30-foot ceilings, supported by soaring hand-carved maple columns, are etched in gold leaf, while a mezzanine level is lined with colorful murals. Also upstairs is a swanky bar with sofas and leather club chairs that invite guests to relax with a cocktail before dinner, or linger with a grappa afterwards. The restaurant, loaded with precious Lalique glass, is surely among the most dramatic dining environments in town, making it ideal for romantic outings.
Mansion on Turtle Creek – Dallas, TX
The Mansion on Turtle Creek is THE place to make an impression. Start with the scallops, continue onto the pheasant and finish up with a decadent chocolate mousse. End your evening with a brandy in their romantic lobby.
Brunch at the Jefferson Hotel
The Jefferson Hotel in Richmond, VA is one of the most romantic hotels in the world. It has a grand staircase that is rumored to be the inspiration for the staircase in Gone with the Wind. Whether that is true or not, it has an old world elegance to it and the food is unbelievable!
Husk Charleston, SC
Centrally located in historic downtown Charleston, Husk, the newest offering from James Beard Award-winning Chef Sean Brock of McCrady’s and the Neighborhood Dining Group, transforms the essence of Southern food. Led by Brock and Chef de Cuisine Travis Grimes, a Lowcountry native, the kitchen reinterprets the bounty of the surrounding area, exploring an ingredient-driven cuisine that begins in the rediscovery of heirloom products and redefines what it means to cook and eat in Charleston. Try the Duck Confit or the Cornmeal Dusted Catfish for dinner and if you are feeling adventurous, try the Pig’s ear lettuce wraps as a starter. You will be glad you did!
Our final restaurant recommendation comes from one of my favorite Southern bloggers, Crawfish and Crunches. A girl after my own heart, she shares realistic lightened up Southern recipes as a part of a balanced lifestyle.
“In my eyes, GW Fins is one of the most romantic restaurants in the heart of the French Quarter of New Orleans. It could be because that’s where my now husband took us on one of our first dates in the city, or because of the dim lighting, or the wine we shared. The seafood is seasonal and often wood-grilled. You can actually taste every flavor in the seafood because it isn’t masked with heavy creamy sauces. Get dressed up, split a bottle of wine with your hunni, and go a little overboard on the cheesy biscuits.”
– Crawfish and Crunches
Who is Crawfish and Crunches?
What is the inspiration behind your blog?
The South is so full of must-try restaurants, booze, fried food, and parties. While I love the sunny vacation-like environment where I live, I wanted to find a way to balance all of the awesome culture with a healthy lifestyle for my husband and I. I wanted to share some of the healthy tweaks that I include in my weeknight meals that allow myself the wiggle room for some real jambalaya on the weekend. I wanted to show people that they can enjoy all of their favorite flavors, without all of the artery-clogging calories.
What is your favorite thing about the South?
The fun never stops. There is never a weekend without a festival, a mimosa-filled baby shower, a restaurant to try, or a boat to take on on the water.
Favorite dish to make:
A huge hit lately has been my finger lickin’ southern chicken. After marinating it all day then blackening it on a cast-iron skillet you might just find yourself fighting over a drumstick, lickin’ your fingers, or even lickin’ the skillet.
Peach Cobbler or Caramel Cake?
Peach Cobbler. A cobbler a day keeps the doctor away. It’s fruit right?
Oldest thing in your kitchen:
A handed down traditional seasoned cast-iron skillet. A wedding gift that changed my outlook on cooking and life. I bought two more after I learned the magic it works.