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What’s on the Menu for Valentine’s Day?
Planning a dinner date for Valentine’s Day? Here’s what restaurant kitchens are serving up for the occasion. By Julyssa Lopez
Comments () | Published January 22, 2010

>> We'll be adding new menus as they become available, so check back often. If you have a menu to submit, e-mail jlopez@washingtonian.com

>> Related: Where Can You Still Get a Valentine’s Day Table?

Againn
On the menu: This British-inspired gastropub is celebrating singles with a three-course Anti-Valentine’s Day dinner. First-course choices are house-made black pudding with a fried duck egg, petite mustard greens, and toast; and celery-root soup with Stilton mousse and grated apple. For the second course, you can pick either a mixed grill of Tamworth pork with a ten-hour roasted shoulder, crispy pork belly, house-made sausage, sage dumplings, Brussels sprouts, and an heirloom applesauce; or Loch Duart salmon with King Richard leeks, olive-oil crushed butterball potatoes, and watercress broth. For a third course, there’s dried-fruit pudding (known as spotted dick) with maple-rum custard.
When it’s available: February 13.
What it costs: $39 per person.

Art and Soul
On the menu: The three-course dinner at this dressed-up Southern dining room kicks off with a shrimp-and-grits amuse-bouche to share. Next comes a choice of a winter-greens dish with blood orange, fennel, toasted hazelnuts, and feta cheese; oysters on the half shell with candied Meyer lemon and vodka mignonette; or seared foie gras with French toast, fig smear, and kumquat syrup. There are four main-course options: bone-in prime rib eye with black-pepper jelly, smashed fingerling potatoes, and creamed spinach; Lola duck with bourbon-cherry glaze, sausage confit, winter vegetables, and spaghetti squash; crispy whole fish with seafood gumbo and dirty rice; or herb-roasted pork rack with parsnip purée, braised Brussels sprouts, mustard jus, and candied cranberries—all designed for two. Dessert options include a tartlet trio—apple spice, cherry mascarpone, and apricot-honey—also designed for a couple; a spiced chocolate-pudding cake with caramelized pears and caramel; and a blood-orange mousse paired with almond shortbread.
When it’s available: February 14.
What it costs: $90 to $120 a couple.

Asia Nine
On the menu: This large Penn Quarter hot spot will have an à la carte menu and Valentine’s cocktails. Special drinks include the nonalcoholic Pinky Rosy Love ($6), made with strawberry purée, lime juice, sparkling water, and cherry syrup; the Head Over Heels Bellini ($10), which has sparkling wine, black-currant liquor, wild-blueberry purée, strawberry juice, and Belle de Billet pear liqueur; the Love Bit ($10), with light and dark rum, strawberry purée, ginger juice, lime juice, lemon juice, and mint; and the Falling in Love ($10), a concoction of rum, raspberry rum, Monin, rose water, rose petals, and lime juice. Starters include the Because I Love You ($10)—shrimp three ways with a rice-wrapped shrimp dumpling, crispy rock shrimp in a wonton wrapper, and a plain shrimp dumpling; Hot Passion Soup ($8), with coconut milk, a lemongrass broth, mushrooms, cilantro, and chicken; and the Web of Love Salad ($10), which comes with baby octopus, mixed greens, seaweed, lime dressing, and creamy sauce. Entrées include the Soul Mate Surf and Turf ($28), which is a six-ounce filet mignon, grilled shrimp, mushroom cream sauce, and cilantro purée; the Lovey-Dovey Grilled Fish ($24)—grilled fish with napa cabbage, zucchini, yellow squash, and enoki mushroom in a red sauce; the Forever and Ever Honey Duck ($24), which is a braised honey-roasted duck with Chinese broccoli, five-spice dark soy, and brown rice; and the Pink Diamond Valentine’s Sushi ($25). The desserts include the Marry Me Chocolate ($9)—chocolate génoise, chocolate ganache, toasted hazelnuts, and strawberry purée; and the I Do Cappuccino ($9), coffee mousse with chocolate ganache, striped génoise, coffee glaze, and crème anglaise.
When it’s available: February 14.
What it costs: Menu items can be purchased à la carte, but there are combo specials. The deluxe set is $100 and includes two drinks, two starters, two entrées, two desserts, and two added glasses of complimentary dessert wine. The Love Set is $80 for two drinks, one starter, two entrées, and one dessert.

Bangkok Joe’s
On the menu: At this waterfront spot, there are three menus that each include two glasses of wine, an entrée for two, and a strawberry-cream profiterole for dessert. The least expensive includes either Pinot Grigio or Pinot Noir, and entrée choices are pad Thai with sen lek noodles or crispy whole flounder fileted tableside. For the mid-range menu, you can switch the wine for Champagne, and for an appetizer you get lobster dumplings with ginger/lobster cream sauce, edamame, and red tobiko. Entrée choices are crispy whole flounder; Crying Tiger, a grilled marinated flank steak with red onions, basil, and rice powder, served with green-papaya salad and Thai sticky rice; and red curry with seafood, red jasmine rice, Asian pear, roasted tomatoes. and crispy beets. The most expensive menu offers a choice of any wine by the glass, and you get a four-course meal: seafood/lemongrass soup with Thai herbs and mixed mushrooms in a hot-and-sour broth, followed by the lobster dumplings. For entrées, there’s a larger crispy whole flounder; Aulie’s Peking Duck—a half farm duck with cherry-hoisin sauce and vegetables, served with steamed pancakes; or seafood curry; and dessert.
When it’s available: February 12 through February 14.
What it costs: $22, $32, or $42 per person.

Bastille
On the menu: This charming mom-and-pop French bistro in Old Town has a three-course prix-fixe dinner. Appetizers are a salad of Belgian endive, orange suprêmes, fresh goat cheese, olives, and almonds; celeriac-and-wild-mushroom soup; house-made potato gnocchi with duck confit, mushrooms, and truffle ragoût; and seared local sea scallops with pink-peppercorn sauce. Entrée choices are a pan-roasted local striped-bass filet with saffron-lemon nage, pearl pasta, capers, pine nuts, and fennel; a Smith Meadow Farm grass-fed veal loin and braised shank meat à la daube Provençale with olives, tomato, citrus, olive polenta, and braised greens; a pan-roasted Moullard duck breast with star anise, Ceylan cinnamon jus, caramelized Anjou pear, and root vegetables infused with Madagascar vanilla bean; and a winter root-vegetable tagine with orange-fennel coulis and garbanzo panisses. Desserts are red-velvet cheesecake with bittersweet- and white-chocolate sauces and strawberries; and a Valrhona Manjari chocolate terrine with caramelized bananas, blueberry compote, and cashews. You can also add an optional cheese course for $19, which includes a Saint André galette, kumquat jam, and almonds.
When it’s available: February 12 through February 14.
What it costs: $45 per person; add $25 for wine pairings.

Birch & Barley
On the menu: This 14th Street restaurant’s five-course tasting menu starts with a choice between scallop crudo with blood orange and pink peppercorn and Island Creek oysters with green-apple mignonette and radish batons. The second course is halibut with fennel and pommelo beads, followed by gnocchi al forno with house-cured pancetta and tomato coriander. For the fourth course, you have the option of a beef strip loin with potato purée, balsamic-braised cabbage, and cippolini onions; or honey-glazed duck breast with wild rice and turnips. Dessert is a blood-orange-pudding cake with a bittersweet-chocolate sorbet and cardamom.
When it’s available: February 14.
What it costs: $55 a person; add $20 for beer pairings or $35 for premium pairings.

Bistrot Lepic
On the menu: This cozy French bistro and wine bar in Georgetown is offering a prix fixe three-course menu. Appetizers include chestnut soup with duck confit; sautéed duck foie gras with black-trumpet-mushroom sauce; smoked-salmon terrine with spinach and lemon-confit vinaigrette; a salad of red and yellow endives, Asian pears, Roquefort cheese, and walnut-oil dressing; and golden-and-red-beet Napoleon with goat cheese, frisée, and crème fraîche mousse. For the main course, you can choose a Maine lobster à la nage with spinach, mango, pineapple, avocado, heart of palm, and coconut milk; seared rack of lamb served with Peruvian potato au gratin and truffle-mushroom sauce; seared duck breast with Savoy cabbage, duck confit, and porcini-mushroom sauce; king salmon and jumbo shrimp served with Beluga-lentil ragoût and red-wine/butter sauce; or ratatouille with a julienne of vegetables, sautéed mushroom, potato gratin, Beluga lentils, and olive oil. An optional $8 cheese course includes four selections. For dessert, there’s a duo of Grand Marnier or chocolate hearts with raspberry coulis.
When it’s available: February 14.
What it costs: $69.50 per person.

Bourbon Steak
On the menu: The six-course menu at Michael Mina’s restaurant in the Four Seasons Hotel starts with chilled Cape Breton oysters with mignonette gelée and Aubry Brut Champagne. Next comes Ahi-tuna tartare with toasted sesame oil, ancho chili, Asian pear, and mint. That’s followed by lobster risotto with black truffles and then Châteaubriand for two with steakhouse sides. Dessert starts with a passionfruit panna cotta with mixed fruits and a lemongrass consommé, then there’s warm milk-chocolate fondant with Nutella ice cream.
When it’s available: February 13 and February 14. If you’re one of the first 20 to arrive for the 5:30 seating, you’ll receive a complimentary pair of AMC movie tickets to see Valentine’s Day along with two glasses of Champagne and house-made caramel popcorn.
What it costs: $199 a couple.

Café Atlántico
On the menu: José Andrés’s Latin/Asian fusion restaurant is pairing Valentine’s Day with Brazil’s Carnaval celebration. The prix-fixe menu includes a hearts-of-palm salad with passionfruit, orange, chayote, quince, and almonds; and crab soup with okra and curry. Main courses include a mocqueca with lobster, monkfish, and coconut risotto and a dish of braised oxtail, beef tongue, truffles, and polenta. For dessert, you can order a variety of petit fours.
When it’s available: February 12 through 14.
What it costs: $85 a person.

Café Promenade
On the menu: The four-course prix fixe menu starts with a choice of appetizers: seared diver scallops with strawberry-vanilla soup and rose-petal noodles; smoked-salmon with capers, red onions, hard-boiled eggs, micro-greens, crème fraîche, and American caviar; grilled Mississippi quail with braised shallots and parsley-black-truffle sauce; a gratin of oysters on the half shell with leeks and a black-truffle hollandaise; or, for an additional $10, a seared medallion of foie gras with a vanilla brioche, grilled frisée, and a blood-orange sauce. For the next course, you can pick either a lobster bisque or a salad of organic mesclun greens with toasted almonds, sliced grapes, Stilton cheese, and Champagne vinaigrette. Entrée choices are pan-roasted Atlantic salmon with bamboo rice, baby bok choy, and citrus beurre blanc; grilled New York strip steak with goat cheese, mashed potatoes, baby vegetables, and a truffle-scented demi-glace; grilled rack of New Zealand lamb with soft polenta, sautéed rapini, tomato, and rosemary jus; or for an additional $20, a vanilla-butter-basted two-pound Maine lobster with Mediterranean couscous, asparagus, and lobster beurre blanc. For dessert, choose between a warm chocolate-lava cake with strawberry ice cream or the Cupid’s plate, with chocolate-covered strawberries, white-chocolate/raspberry pot de crème, tiramisu, and passionfruit crème brûlée.
When it’s available: February 12 through February 14.
What it costs: $85 per person.

CityZen
On the menu: At this grand restaurant in the Mandarin Oriental hotel, there’s a six-course tasting menu, which starts with marinated hiramasa with grilled pineapple, red-pepper julienne, cilantro oil, and espelette sorbet, followed by Jerusalem-artichoke agnolotti with Satsuma tangerine and wilted watercress. The third course is a sautéed filet of red snapper with cardoons, piquillo peppers, Niçoise olives, and garlic confit, followed by sweet-butter-poached Maine lobster with spinach and lobster gratin. The last two courses are a truffle-stuffed Bobo Farms poussin with Yukon Gold potatoes, Périgord truffle mille-feuille, baked Belgian endive, and sauce Périgourdine; and Valrhona-chocolate-and-caramel pâte à choux with Tahitian-vanilla crème anglaise.
When it’s available: February 12 through 14.
What it costs: $150 per person; add $100 for wine pairings.

Co Co. Sala
On the menu: This chocolate lounge and boutique is offering a prix-fixe menu that includes lobster with Hackleback caviar and chive foam; tomato tarte Tatin with pistou sauce and eggplant caviar; and Champagne-and-pomegranate sorbet. You’ll also have a choice of rosemary-and-potato gnocchi with asparagus cream sauce; dry-aged black Angus tenderloin with Gorgonzola cream; a red-wine-braised short rib with parsnip potato gratin; and Dover sole with caviar butter sauce and lemon-lime-and-asparagus risotto. For dessert, enjoy a white-chocolate-and-raspberry heart with rose sorbet, raspberry caviar, and a goji-berry chocolate bonbon.
When it’s available: February 14.
What it costs: $65 per person.

Fire & Sage
On the menu: This three-course prix fixe menu starts with a choice of appetizers that includes lobster bisque with sherry cream; roasted-beet carpaccio with arugula salad, shaved pecorino, and roasted-shallot-and-tarragon vinaigrette; baked Vermont goat cheese with fire-roasted tomatoes and herb crostini; flatbread with shiitake, portobello, and button mushrooms and shaved Parmesan; and iron-skillet mussels with garlic, lemon, white wine, and a baguette. Entrées are a grilled 16-ounce cowboy steak with roasted-garlic aïoli, hand-cut French fries, and sautéed spinach; seared jumbo sea scallops with wild-mushroom ragout, roasted-garlic beurre blanc, and herb risotto; roasted shrimp with chilies, lemon, and garlic over chorizo and thyme lentils; free-range chicken with lemongrass, fire-roasted-tomato couscous, and grilled artichoke hearts; and tea-smoked halibut topped with char-grilled corn, fresh spinach, basil, lemon, olive oil, and tomato. Dessert options are vanilla crème brûlée filled with liquid raspberry; a fresh-fruit napoleon; and chocolate-covered long-stem strawberries.
When it’s available: February 13 and 14.
What it costs: $45 per person.

Firefly
On the menu:
The first course is deviled egg paired with sparkling wine. Next is a choice of sunchoke-and-ginger bisque with blue cheese; little-gem lettuce salad with creamy caper dressing; oysters au gratin; steak tartare; and Alaskan king crab carbonara ($7 supplement). For the main course, choose among pan-roasted swordfish with salsa fresca; “corned” pork tenderloin with squash dumplings; “surf and turf” with grilled bistro steak and lobster potato-risotto; miniature pot roast with baby carrots, mashed potatos, and roasted-shallot jus; or butternut-squash/porcini-mushroom casserole. Desserts are banana split for two; chocolate pot de creme; apple brown betty; red velvet cake; and apple-cider sorbet with a salty oat cookie.
When it’s available: February 12 through 14.
What it costs: $75 per person.

Fyve Restaurant Lounge
On the menu: You’ll start with an amuse-bouche of vermicelli with caviar and lemon, then you’ll be served roasted tomato soup with chive cream. Next comes a vanilla-infused lobster with celery-root purée and braised Belgian endive, followed by veal tenderloin with root-vegetable fricassee and black-truffle sauce. The dessert on the menu is milk-and-white-chocolate mousse topped with a layer of crunchy pralines and vanilla sauce.
When it’s available: February 13 and 14.
What it costs: $68 per person. 

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