Valentine’s Day weekend is almost here, and while you can’t go wrong with any of the restaurants on our recently-released 100 Very Best Restaurants list, here are a few that put extra-romance in the equation.
1340 Fourth St., NE
Chef Nick Stefanelli’s Italian tasting room may not look like much from the outside—the restaurant is housed amidst working warehouses near Union Market—but the inside is stunning, starting with the atmospheric courtyard, and the prix-fixe menus truly memorable. Valentine’s weekend kicks off with a late-night Champagne soiree on Friday, February 12 from 10:30 pm to 1:30 am.
3226 11th St., NW
You’ll have to get in line early for one of the 24 seats at this Columbia Heights gem, but you can grab a delicious cocktail at Room 11 nearby while you wait for space. Once you’re in, expect to get cozy with your date (the place is tiny) over modern Filipino fare.
122 Blagden Alley, NW
The wood-burning hearth at the center of this gorgeous Shaw restaurant already seals the deal in terms of romantic atmosphere. The menu changes near-nightly, but you can expect exciting interpretations of Mid-Atlantic and Southern dishes.
Petworth and Georgetown locations
These sister French bistros won’t break the bank, and serve spot-on classics—escargots, steak frites—in two very different atmospheric spaces. Petworth feels like a Parisian haunt with a wood-burning fireplace and exposed brick, while the Georgetown space is all airy elegance.
1734 N St., NW
This historic Dupont space offers a variety of chances for romance over Valentine’s weekend, from divine cocktails in the carriageway bar to dinner in the fire-lit dining room, and vino snuggled under heat lamps in the courtyard (weather permitting). Chef Tony Chittum’s stellar Mediterranean fare is served in various menus throughout.
332 Springvale Rd., Great Falls, Virginia
There’s a reason this classic French restaurant is among the longest-running members of our 100 Best Restaurants list: old world indulgences like chateaubriand, lobster in sauternes-butter sauce, and the airiest soufflé in town. The red-hued brasserie bar is a fitting place to start the meal.
1731 New Hampshire Ave., NW
Restaurateur Michael Schlow’s retro American restaurant inside Dupont’s Carlyle Hotel has the feel of an Old New York supper club, and is just scene-y enough to impress a date. Cozy up in one of the oversize booths over well-made classic cocktails, steak with “super-Frenchy” béarnaise sauce, and chocolate ice box cake for dessert.
1200 16th St., NW
Few places in DC offer the sumptuous elegance of this Jefferson Hotel restaurant, with its wood-burning fireplace, silk wallpaper, and formal yet attentive service. The Valentine’s tasting menu is a splurge ($155 per person; $255 with wine pairings), but this is wining and dining at its finest. Take time for cocktails at Quill beforehand, and snag a room for an over-the-top date night—U.S. News and World Report named it the second best hotel in the country.
692 Federal St., Paris, Virginia
Make a weekend of it and head out to Virignia hunt country for dinner or brunch at this 19th century inn overlooking the countryside (don’t skip drinks in the fire-lit taproom before). Even if the inn’s rooms are booked for Valentine’s day, there’re plenty of other accommodations nearby—and you can dine at any point over “valentine’s weekend” to make it count.