By Denise Ortuno
Valentine’s Day is only a week away. It is by far the busiest night in the restaurant business, basically because everyone wants to take their sweetheart out on Valentine’s.
If you plan to go out, and have yet to make a reservation, you better get on it. Because tables might be hard to come by on this most popular of nights. To help out, here are 5 lovely Valentine’s Day Dining spots suggestions, lovingly chosen and picked from personal experience.
Love Spot #1–Le Vallauris Palm Springs– This classic French restaurant has been the valley’s go to fine dining establishment for over 4 decades, boasting outstanding French cuisine with elegant style. If that weren’t enough, it is housed in one of Palm Springs precious historical sites, formerly the home of George Robertson, the son of one of the cities foremost pioneers (and my personal hero), Nellie Coffman. Robertson used to entertain quite often at his home to likes of such legendary dignitaries as Winston Churchill.
The restaurant is adorned with acute French décor, with antiques and lush drapery, all vividly contouring the main star which is their fairytale like patio. Their outside dining has a ceiling that looks as if it is comprised of leaves from trees that hover over the patio, and most likely predate the restaurants existence.
It truly is an experience dining at Le Vallauris. It feels like a time warp of sorts, when dining out was an event and people would get dressed up, abandoning the casualness of everyday life (although Le Vallauris like most Coachella Valley restaurants have long since relinquished their dress code). All of these attributes makes spending Valentine’s Day at this landmark restaurant an excellent choice.
The restaurant is featuring a special three course Valentine’s Day menu for $94 dollars per person. The first course offerings include Smoked Salmon on crunchy potato and crème fraiche with caviar (my fave), or Maine Lobster Cocktail with avocado and passion fruit dressing, among other selections. The second course offerings dazzle with Rack of Lamb, Roasted Duck with Cherry Sauce or Grilled Filet of Beef, just to scratch the surface. And for dessert, enjoy Delice Vallauris with fresh berries and lemon cookies, White Chocolate Crème Brulee or their Special Valentine’s Composition Plate.
As an added bonus, Le Vallauris is a stone’s throw from the heart of downtown Palm Springs. Making a post dinner stroll down Palm Canyon with your love a romantic option.
From their classic menu, down to their tuxedo clad waiters, Valentine’s Day at Le Vallauris is a definite list maker and sure to impress your cuddle bug.
For reservations and more information visit www.levallauris.com or call 760-325-5059
Love Spot #2-So-Pa Palm Springs-Sleek with modern style, So-Pa is located inside L’Horizon Resort and Spa in Palm Springs. The restaurant is truly unique as it is comprised mainly of alfresco dining. Studded with distinct fire pits and streamlined décor, the restaurants innovative cuisine coupled with the vivid ambience is sure to make your Valentine’s a standout experience.
L’Horizon was originally built in 1952 as a private get-away for Hollywood mogul Jack Wrather and all of his friends to hang out and enjoy the Palm Springs vibe. Wrather’s guest list reads like a historical Hollywood memoir. Today, the resort is enjoying a resurgence, while still adhering to the property’s glamor and exclusivity.
Their Valentine’s Day menu is developed with delicate precision conjuring up creations such as, Oysters on the Half Shell with yuzu basil, Butternut Squash Agnolotti with wild mushroom and parmesan, Day-Boat Scallops with cauliflower, golden raisin sabayon and madras curry, and Milk Chocolate Mousse with flourless chocolate bites and crisp meringue, among other selections. The menu is $125 per person and has optional wine pairing for an additional $40 per person.
So-Pa’s obvious physical aesthetic beauty spills over onto its plates, providing guests with a visual and palate pleasing dining experience. Valentine’s Day at this exceptional restaurant will certainly be one that neither you, nor your baby cakes will soon forget.
For reservations and more information visit www.lhorizonpalmsprings.com
Love Spot#3-Mr. Parkers Palm Springs- In my opinion, it is hands down the hottest and sexiest restaurant in the Coachella Valley…Period! It is laced with decadence. It can actually be a little much, but that’s alright. Because after all, that is the essence of decadence to its core. Mr. Parker’s is located inside the Parker Palm Springs and is extremely seductive, making it an awesome place for a couple to go and dine for Valentine’s Day.
The restaurant is almost blindingly dark, with candlelight seeming to be the main source of light. It is dressed to the 10’s in circa 1970’s fashion, with black walls, dark booths and banquettes. There are pictures on the walls depicting 70’s funkiness, with some naked portraits and even a LSD picture. It lures you in right from the start.
The restaurant attracts a high end clientele, and it is one place that getting dressed up won’t be in vain. Mr. Parkers is offering a TBD Valentine’s Day dinner menu. Whatever the menu turns out to be, it will surely incorporate fabulous menu selections, consistent with their dedication to creative dining.
There are few restaurants in the Coachella Valley that have a swanky sexy vibe like Mr. Parkers. And if you want to give your Valentine’s Day some octane, then there is no other place to go for some full throttled blatant romance. Without question, a night at Mr. Parkers with your hottie will rank high as one of your best Valentine’s Day adventures.
For reservations and more information visit www.theparkerpalmsprings.com or call 760-321-4629
Love Spot #4-Spencers-Located in the historic Tennis Club area in Palm Springs, Spencer’s restaurant hugs the base of the mountain in which it is tucked away in. The stylish restaurant has elegant indoor dining, and their outdoor seating is a seriously splendid. Spencer’s menu has a wide range of selections, including steaks and lobster.
For Valentine’s Day, Spencer’s offers a three course menu for $80 per person. The items offered include Wild Mushroom Bisque, Pistachio Crusted Rack of Lamb, and Red Velvet Cupcake with cream cheese filling and frosting, plus many more.
This highly romantic spot is a perfect Valentine’s Day option, one that will certainly have your honey cheeks smiling from ear to ear.
For reservations and more information visit www.spencersrestaurant.com or call 760-327-3446
Love Spot #5-Cielo-If you’re looking to pull out all the stops this Valentine’s Day, Cielo is your best bet. Perched at the top of the Morongo Casino Resort in Cabazon, Cielo has shockingly stunning views. It is a desert dining must, just for the view alone. Add fantastic food and service, and it’s a winner all around.
Valentine’s Day at Cielo will be quite the event, as they will be not only be having their regular menu available, but also a five course menu priced at $195 per couple. Highlights of the menu include a Seafood Symphony, with lobster, crab legs and other seafood, Specialty Pasta, and ultra-chocolaty Chocolate Cake, among other items.
Looking to take the night up a notch? Then booking a room at the resort would definitely do the trick. A little gambling, dinner, cocktails and a night in a one of their luxury rooms. Sounds like a fantastic Valentine’s Day celebration, and a beautiful memory for your sweetie pie to look back on for years to come.
For reservations and more information visit www.morongocasinoresort.com or call 1-800-252-4499
No matter if you choose any of these suggestions or not, may your Valentine’s Day be unforgettable with your special someone. Just remember, a box of chocolates, flowers and a sincere card go a long way….it’s what’s in your heart that counts.