From romantic oyster and champagne combos to vegan menus, detox menus, red meat for the red blooded and even a cheese-lover’s dream, The Resident picks out some of London’s best Valentine’s Day menus…
1 Mexican Seduction at Ella Canta, Park Lane
Ella Canta, the contemporary Mexican restaurant on Park Lane, is offering a seven-course Mexican Seduction tasting menu in celebration of El Día de San Valentín. Be seduced by Mexico’s enchanting stories of beauty and love, told through Chef Martha Ortiz‘s expressive dishes. The menu (£85pp) features the likes of scallops ceviche with cacao, vanilla and sesame seeds, miniature tlayuda with refried beans and dry-aged beef, grilled langoustines with achiote seed foam and habanero chile and prime rib of beef, barbacoa style, with pink peppercorn. The bar team will also be serving Valentine’s Day cocktails like the Makech, a fresh and candied blend of Patrón Silver Tequila, coconut, cola and vanilla reduction, fresh lime (£15). Available 5-17 February.
One Hamilton Place, Park Lane W1J 7QY; ellacanta.com
2 Dinner at the Chef’s Table at Corrigan’s Mayfair
Enjoy dinner for two at the chef’s table and a five-course tasting menu at the Kitchen Library at Corrigan’s Mayfair. The Kitchen Library is a cosy dinner table tucked into the restaurant kitchen, which is perfect for discerning diners who value their privacy. You can watch watch the chefs hard at work prepping your romantic meal featuring canapes, dishes of venison tartare, wild turbot, spiced mallard and more. Bookable for two during Valentine’s wee (minimum spend, £500). The five-course tasting menu is also available in the main restaurant priced £120pp with the option of wine pairings for an additional £90pp.
3 Galvin La Chapelle’s Valentine’s Menu, the City
Regarded as one of London’s most romantic restaurants, Michelin-starred Galvin La Chapelle is perfect for a Valentine’s dinner date. Jeff Galvin has designed an exquisite three-course Valentine’s Day menu (£125pp) bookended with champagne to start and coffee with handmade chocolates and macaroons to finish. In between you can choose from the likes of linguine of Fine de Claire oysters, Oscietra caviar, compressed cucumber and sea herbs; tea-smoked Cumbrian beef fillet, pommes Anna, cêpe purée, caramelised shallot and Madeira sauce; and hot Valrhona chocolate fondant with salted caramel ice cream.
35 Spital Square, the City E1 6DY; galvinrestaurants.com
4 Champagne & Seafood at Wright Brothers, various locations
Wright Brothers is serving a show-stopping double-tiered seafood platter loaded with the freshest shellfish and topped with a platter of 12 dressed oysters. The oysters – that most famous of aphrodisiacs (they’re packed with zinc, which is supposed to boost your sex drive) – come in three flavours; four are natural, four are enhanced with wasabi ponzu and four with pomegranate). The platter will be paired with a bottle of Piper-Heidsieck Rosé Champagne. Priced £55 per person (tables of two) and available at all five Wright Brothers restaurants in Battersea, Soho, Spitalfields, South Kensington and Borough Market from 12-18 February (pre-order to avoid disappointment). Home bunnies note; they do take-away platters, too.
5 Bentley’s Oyster Bar & Grill Oyster Valentine’s Menu, Mayfair
Bentley’s Oyster Bar & Grill, just off Regent’s Street, celebrated its centenary in 2016, so this is a restaurant of both style and substance – perfect for those who want a flawless Valentine’s date night. Bentley’s is serving a three-course Valentine’s Day menu that includes dishes such as lobster lasagne, oysters, Dover sole and scallops with blood orange and salsify. Priced at £85pp, the menu is available in the Grill. For those looking for something a little different, Bentley’s is also hosting a Valentine’s Oyster Masterclass with Master oyster shucker Helio Garzon on Saturday 10 February, where you’ll shuck and taste oysters with champagne and learn valuable tips on serving the ultimate aphrodisiac (£65pp).
11-15 Swallow Street, Mayfair W1B 4DG; bentleys.org
6 Love Yourself Detox Menu at M RAW, Victoria
Indulgence does have its pitfalls! If you’re keeping up your New Year commitment to a healthier lifestyle, then the Love Yourself Detox Menu at M RAW is for you. M RAW at M Victoria Street began life as the first high-quality gluten-free restaurant in London. The new Love Yourself Detox Menu is designed to stimulate all five senses and open up you and your loved one – or your friends – to a more experiential way to dine. Start with a bone broth paired with Kombucha to stimulate your sense of smell, before moving on to a salmon tartare designed to be eaten with your hands to heighten your sense of touch, followed by an ‘Open Blue’ Cobia griddled in coconut oil and served with artichoke, turmeric, ginger and wheatgrass, presented with Vision Cobia Googles. You’ll then enjoy a lemon and basil sorbet as a palate cleanser before enjoying coconut ice cream. Each course is paired with a matching tea, juice or mocktail. Available from 1-14 February for £29pp.
3 Zig Zag Building, 70 Victoria Street SW1E 6SQ; m-restaurants.co.uk
7 Vegan Valentine’s Day at Comptoir V, Kensal Rise
Comptoir V, the new international vegan restaurant in Kensal Rise, is offering a vegan Valentine’s Day menu. The specially designed three- course menu includes a Moroccan sharing starter, a choice of mains including the Return of the Mac signature dish (vegan Mac and ‘cheese’ with BBQ mushroom ‘ribs’ and garlic sauteed spinach), as well as the chef’s special dessert. You can even enjoy a complimentary glass of vegan sparkling wine, plus exotic entertainment courtesy of a professional belly dancer. With an international, plant-powered menu and decor inspired by the souks of Marrakech, Comptoir V aims to make plant-based eating and drinking exciting for vegans and meat-eaters alike. Priced £24.95pp.
1 Keslake Mansions, 12 Station Terrace NW10 5RU; comptoirv.co.uk
8 The Cheese Wheel Presents: A Valentine’s Lady & The Tramp Evening at KERB
Instagram cheese phenomenon Graham Bradbury will be getting behind the wheel at KERB Counter to cook you and your date a four-course Cheese Wheel feast on 14 and 15 February. The star course is your very own grana-padano wheel to dunk extra long fettucine alfredo pasta into, so that you and your fellow cheese lover can have your very own Lady and the Tramp-style Belle Notte moment as cheesy romantic tunes play in the background. The rest of the menu features goats cheese mousse, Arancini stuffed with chorizo, mozzarella, caramelised onion and tiramisu cheesecake, as well as and a Chapel Down bellini. Cocktails, wine and beer will be available at the bar throughout the night. A standard couples ticket is £66. Sittings at 6.30pm and 9pm.
KERB Counter, Camden Market NW1 8AF; designmynight.com
9 Valentine’s Tasting Menu at InterContinental London – The O2, Greenwich
The three AA Rosette Peninsula Restaurant at InterContinental London – The O2 on Greenwich Peninsula is offering a Valentine’s Tasting Menu serving up modern European cuisine. Available on 14 February only, the menu includes dishes such as smoked salmon tartare with oyster, veal shoulder with cavolo nero and a themed sharing dessert. The menu is priced at £180 for two and includes a complimentary glass of Rosé Champagne each. The hotel is also offering a Valentine’s Spa Day for Two, with a choice of two 30-minute treatments; either a Swedish Massage or ESPA Express Facial. The package includes three hours’ access to the spa facilities with its 17m indoor swimming pool, gym, sauna and steam rooms, plus a complimentary gift from ESPA and prosecco upon arrival. Priced £155 for two and available on Valentine’s Day only. If you really want to push the boat out, book the double.
1 Waterview Drive, Greenwich Peninsula SE10 0TW; iclondon-theo2.com/offers
10 Fiume’s Valentine’s Day Menu, Battersea
Fiume, Francesco Mazzei’s latest restaurant at Battersea Power Station, is offering a four-course set menu for Valentine’s Day featuring heart-warming foods inspired by the Mezzogiorno region of Italy. The meal begins with a light and fresh tuna tartare followed by a creamy tortelli burrata with anchovies. The main course will be roast veal, artichokes and m’pacchiuse, then for dessert, it’s the decadent Cupolone chocolate dome. With fabulous views across the Thames, this new Battersea hotspot is the perfect date night restaurant. The menu is priced at £55pp including a glass of Ferrari Maximum on arrival.
Circus West Village, Battersea Power Station SW8 5BN; fiume-restaurant.co.uk
11 Radici’s Valentine’s Day Menu, Islington
Francesco Mazzei fans who reside north of the river should take a look at Radici’s Valentine’s Day set menu. The three-course meal begins with a pizza to share – sharing is caring – adorned with broccoli and sausage, n’duja and mozzarella, prosciutto, anchovies, capers and olives. This is followed by a light main course of oven roasted sea bream with prosecco, artichokes and potatoes, before indulging in a selection of the finest Italian pasticinni (Italian pastry delicacies), again, for sharing. Radici’s Valentine’s Day set menu, priced £45pp including a celebratory glass of prosecco, is available for lunch or dinner on 14 February.
30 Almeida Street, Islington N1 1AD; radici.uk
12 Texture’s Vegan Valentine’s Menu, Marylebone
Michelin-starred Texture is offering a vegan Valentine’s tasting menu developed by Chef Patron and Owner Aggi Sverrisson. Texture’s cuisine plays with on all the senses, making it a seductively sensual spot. The valentine’s vegan menu will elevate plant-based dining to new heights with dishes such as beetroot soup with avocado, ginger and dill; black perigord truffles with barley, fregola and hazelnuts; and baby Italian artichokes with broth, olives and herbs. The meal is finished with blood oranges with mint, lime leaves and lemongrass. Priced £105pp with wine pairings available for £89pp. The restaurant os also serving a non-vegan menu featuring Norwegian king crab, Isle of Skye scallops and Scottish border roe deer for £115pp.
34 Portman Street, Marylebone W1H 7BY; texture-restaurant.co.uk
13 Valentine’s Dining at The Guildford Arms, Greenwich
The Guildford Arms offers West End-style dining in quiet, residential Greenwich. The restaurant is offering a four-courses tasting menu with a rhubarb or pear prosecco bellini for £45pp. To start you’ll be served a celeriac soup with apple and stichelton crostini, before either poached salmon with winter leaves, pickled beets, fennel tops, capers and aioli, or heritage beets with winter leaves, blood orange, hazelnuts, westcombe ricotta, dill and mint. The main course is a choice of Swaledale beef fillet with turnip gratin, white kale, heritage carrots, thyme and juniper, or gnocchi alla romana with wild mushrooms, Jerusalem artichoke, cavolo nero and winter truffle. Then, for dessert, it’s chocolate and chestnut torte with Neal’s Yard creme fraiche and orange dust.
55 Guildford Grove, Greenwich SE10 8JY; theguildfordarms.co.uk
14 Portuguese Feasting at Bar Douro, Southwark
Bar Douro in festoon lit Flat Iron Square, Southwark, has created a Valentine’s feast that avoids all clichés. Sitting at the countertops and looking onto an open kitchen, couples can tuck into petiscos (snacks) of Chanfanna Rolls and Prawn Rissole, accompanied with a complimentary glass of sparkling wine, while choosing from dishes like scallops with Jerusalem artichokes and Bellota Iberico ham powder or turnip tops with pickled turnips, black garlic and migas. In true Portuguese spirit, sharing mains include cataplana, fish and seafood stew; roast suckling pig and Josper-grilled picanha. End the night on a sweet note with moreish chocolate tart with sea salt and ginga. The set menu is priced at £40pp.
Arch 35B, Union Street, Flat Iron Square SE1 1TD; bardouro.co.uk
15 Tuyo’s Valentine’s Day Menu, Broadway Market
Set on a quiet street on the edge of the canal in Broadway Market, Tuyo is the ideal setting for a romantic meal for two. Exclusively for Valentine’s Day, the restaurant is offering a set menu for £30pp including a selection of their renowned Mediterranean and Levantine small plates, including sea bream with red quinoa tabbouleh, coriander and feta cheese; free range chicken thigh with honey poached apricots, sumac yoghurt and pistachios; and falafel with ajo blanco, black olive and piquillo tapenade. For dessert, check out the chocolate surprise, which combines dark chocolate ganache, chocolate sponge, white chocolate sauce and passion fruit caviar.
129A Pritchard’s Road, Broadway Market E2 9AP; tuyo.london