About this time last year, I posted a list of Atlanta restaurants offering special menus for Valentine’s Day and suggested that reservations should be made soon. I mentioned that I’d tried to make a reservation at one spot that no longer had availability.
One of the commenters (“Steven”) wrote, “Shocked that a food blogger would suggest going out on Valentine’s day. One of the best days of the year to stay home and cook.”
While I do love to cook, I also love any excuse to go out. I admit I also have a hang-up about celebrating holidays on their actual date. I’ll be going out again on Feb. 14 this year. But that’s me. Do you go out on Valentine’s Day?
I surveyed a few individuals working in various capacities in the food industry to see how they celebrate Valentine’s Day. Here are their responses:
I take my wife out either a few days before or a few days after Valentines Day, to avoid the masses. You get better tables, and servers aren’t so slammed they can’t take great care of you. I do plan to take my wife out to dinner this year…
–Jason Dominy, Customer Supper & Outreach Coordinator for Batdorf & Bronson
It is a good night to go out since most chefs like to play and experiment with different techniques and products that they wouldn’t necessarily do on a typical menu. Chefs really have a good time with this theme and trying to think outside the box in terms of ingredients and presentation. I think diners have the best opportunity to eat out on “special” nights and they are willing to try and taste out of their comfort zone on these special occasions.
–Heather Hurlbert, pastry chef and owner HH Desserts
My husband and I have a tradition of going out for our Valentine’s dinner on Feb. 13th. It’s insane for us to fight the crowds to prove our love on the actual Valentine’s day. The only reason we stick to the 13th is to have an excuse to spend money on fine dining. On the 14th we usually order pizza at home and crack open some way-too-nice-to-pair-with-cheap-pizza wine.
– Allison Pallestrini, Southeast Director, Culinary Events for Share Our Strength
We’ll do something at home that includes a fabulous bottle of wine but we’re waiting until the weekend after Valentine’s to go out because we like to choose from menus a la carte (most menus on the big day are prix fixe) and we like a mellower night that’s less crowded. I think it’s great that people go out on the day — if you’re one of them, have a fabulous time and enjoy your honey!
– Elizabeth Schneider, Certified Sommelier and Specialist of Wine, Wine Consultant and author of Wine For Normal People blog
Do you go out on Valentine’s Day, a few days earlier/later or just stay home?
If you do plan to go out for Valentine’s Day, here are a few restaurants serving special menus that evening.
–by Jenny Turknett, Food and More blog