Valentine's Day is the one time of year that you don't want to be like Anthony Bourdain—you know, no reservations. So if you haven't booked yet, take a deep breath and pray to the culinary gods that there's still a table open for you and your sweet significant other. While there's no guarantee on availability at this point (seriously, why would you wait this long?), here's the short list of spots it'd be worth looking into if you want to look like you tried.
For those couples looking to spice it up this Valentine's Day, Penca, located at 50 East Broadway Boulevard, is the way to go. Share options like mahi mahi ceviche with habanero cilantro oil or grilled cabrilla with oyster mushrooms and a huitlacoche-mezcal butter, along with a smoky mezcal cocktail or two to really get things heated up. To wrap it all up, you can cool thing's down with Isabella's ice cream topped with a mezcal-berry compote and prickly pear biscochitos. The special four-course dinner runs from 5 until 9 p.m and is $55 per person. You can make your reservation by calling 203-7681.
Acacia's menu is for the sweethearts this year. Your choice of a range of dishes like salmon with a scallop mousse and a winter mushroom custard with Brussels sprouts and asparagus in a three course meal can either be $55 plus tax and gratuity for teetotalers or $75 if you want to pair it all with wine. Best of all, if you're busy on the 14th, Acacia is also offering their special dinner event on Friday, Feb. 13. Both dinners begin at 5 p.m. at Acacia, located at 3001 East Skyline Dr. To reserve your table at Acacia, call 232-0101.
Over at The Coronet, a classy meal is only one factor of your Valentine's plans. With live music from Naim Amor Trio from 6:30 until 9:30 p.m. and champagne included, you can get in the mood to stare deeply into your date's eyes. From there you have choices for each of your three courses, including seared scallops, wine braised lamb, amaretto cheesecake and a "heartbeet" soup with crème fraiche. The prix frixe meal at The Coronet, located at 402 East Ninth St., is $45 per person and reservations can be made by calling 444-2830.
If you've really messed up this year, you might want to plan for more than one dinner. Pastiche, located at 3025 North Campbell Avenue, has you covered because they're offering their Valentine's menu Thursday, Feb. 12 through Sunday, Feb. 15. The $35 per person three-course meal features luxe offerings like brie-topped bruschetta, red wine braised short ribs, bourbon glazed salmon and a classic crème brulee. For reservations, call 325-3333.
Walking into Agustin's beautiful bar and dining areas should be enough to really knock some socks off, but that's just the beginning for Agustin diners. Five courses will take you through chef Ryan Clark's romantic line-up of options like lobster bisque with champagne foam, tuna tartare, oysters, a strawberry champagne sorbet and more. Main courses like grilled salmon, duck breast with farro and filet mignon with a tarragon béarnaise are sure to satisfy, while dark chocolate mousse, sous vide poached pears, and chocolate bread pudding will end the meal on a high note. The whole meal is $75 plus tax and gratuity at the restaurant located at 100 South Avenida del Convento Suite #150. You can make a reservation by calling Agustin at 398-5382.
Scott & Co.
Whether it's after dinner or in the place of dinner, head over to Scott & Co. for your pick of six cocktails served especially for Valentine's Day. The cozy downtown bar is mixing up a little something for everyone, whether your significant other goes for rum, gin, scotch or just a standard Old Fashioned. Beginning at 6 p.m., you can snuggle up to the bar, located at 47 North Scott Avenue, where Matt Martinez and Ryan Sunderman will be serving up drinks like the Deuce of Hearts and the Hallmark Holiday.