Point Cupid’s Arrow at These Romantic Restos for Valentine’s Day
As posh as its food is imaginative, Doris is an intimate neighborhood gem. Its Middle Eastern origins make it even more intriguing in a city full of American steakhouses. On Feb. 14, the a la carte menu will be on offer — consider the standout porterhouse for two — and guests will receive complimentary heart-shaped blondie cookies from its Badolina Bakery. Optionally, choose steaks from the on-site butcher shop and cooking tips to take home.
Looking for dinner and a view? Try the sleek rooftop lounge. Upstairs or down in the airy modern dining room, choose from any dish from the regular menu for Valentine’s Day. Chef Greg Peters’ special features include A5 aged ribeye with bourbon butter and beef tartare topped with quail egg and caviar. Start with the Loose Cannon cocktail, a blend of citrus vodka, mint and sparkling rosé... The night is young.
La Colombe d'Or
Check out Tonight & Tomorrow for dinner, or check-in for the night at Houston’s most romantic, art-filled European-style inn. Its Valentine’s dinner features a starter, entrée and dessert with dishes including prime beef tenderloin, salmon, lobster and more ($97 per person). Pop by cozy Bar No.3 for specialty Valentine’s Day cocktails. The hotel’s “Amour” overnight package includes a craft cocktail and in-room bottle of Champagne, chocolate covered strawberries, and breakfast for two. Reserve online here.
Lee's Den (photo by Jenn Duncan)
Waiting for the weekend to celebrate? Sneak away to this tropical “treehouse” atop Local Foods in Rice Village. Shareable plates mirror the paradise vibe, like sesame ginger meatballs with Thai basil; Forbidden Rice balls; halibut with Japanese squash; for dessert, mille crepe cake with miso caramel. On the upstairs terrace (weather-permitting), kick things off with a Champagne cocktail touting lavender bitters and a ginger twist.
Lulu's pappardelle bolognese (photo by Kirsten Gilliam)
If any restaurateur knows about setting the mood, it’s Armando Palacios, co-founder of Lulu’s, the cozy Italian joint in the same River Oaks center as his eponymous restaurant. Settle in for the Valentine’s Day three-course tasting menu including bread service and a glass of prosecco, and a choice of featured specials or the regular menu, like smoked ricotta ravioli or Black Angus tenderloin ($75 per person).
March (photo by Julie Soefer)
It’s a thrilling time to visit one of Houston’s most romantic and elegant restaurants, as the culinary team is about to unleash its next menu theme: Greece! When award-winning March re-opens Feb. 8, chef Felipe Riccio’s new tasting menu will reflect the exploration of Greece’s roots from land and sea with re-imagined classics and some of Greece’s most iconic wines.
Navy Blue carrot cake
Reserve a cushy banquette with a view of the open kitchen at this sophisticated seafood newcomer where the firecracker staff pamper you. Let us count the ways to fall in love with chef Aaron Bludorn’s menu: Start with tuna crudo, fennel and apple; segue to luxe seafood risotto and swordfish au poivre; end with mind-blowing carrot cake garnished with sweet cream cheese and candied ginger.
State of Grace oysters (photo by Andrew Thomas Lee)
Is there a food more reputed as an aphrodisiac than oysters? This River Oaks fave boasts a cool, tucked-away oyster bar with daily changing bivalves. Or go all out with a table in the dining room and special prixe fixe menu ($145 per person). Start with the amuse bouche of caviar service and oysters, followed by three courses of your choice — think Texas quail and roasted bone marrow — plus dessert. Reservations here.
Ten Sushi (photo by Kirsten Gilliam)
Bathed in vibrant pink and murals of cherry blossoms, sexy Ten Sushi will flatter your Valentine with rosy hues in a compelling setting. Start with the Forbidden Roll layered with fresh seafood and avocado perfectly paired with the cocktail “Lychee Like That.” Whatever you order, you really can’t go wrong here.
Uchi (photo by Logan Crable)
Outside-the-box Japanese restaurants Uchi in Montrose and Uchiko in Uptown will each offer a 10-plus-course omakase tasting menu (also available to-go!) for Valentine’s Day. Highlights include softshell crab maki and Wagyu strip steak at Uchi, and Sawara crudo and black truffle squab at Uchiko. Call to reserve: Uchi, 713-522-4808; Uchiko, 713-522-4808.
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