Friday, February 11, 2011

Romance in Cleveland

I will admit, I have always liked Valentine's Day.  I never thought of it as "Single's Awareness Day" or some made up Hallmark holiday, even when I did not have a Valentine.  I would look forward to the classroom parties in grade school and had my Snoopy Valentines filled out by February 1.  Even in high school and through college, I would still buy the box of Valentines and pass them out to my friends and, if I really felt daring, my crush of the moment.  Maybe it was just another excuse to eat way more candy and treats then I should, or maybe I am just a hopeless cheesy romantic.  Either way, I am looking forward to another romantic culinary adventure on Feb. 14th with my boyfriend and our dinner at a new Cleveland hot spot next Friday.  With all that said, I hope to inspire you if you are still in need of V-Day plans with my top 5 most romantic Cleveland restaurants.

5: L'Albatros Zach Bruell's French inspired brasserie has provided a modern yet seductive atmosphere on University Circle for almost two years.  There is something to be said for enjoying French cuisine by the fireplace with a bottle of wine in the winter or on the patio in the spring and summer.  I also enjoyed a very romantic birthday dinner here.  For Valentine's Day, Bruell is offering a prix fixe menu at $75/couple along with an aprodisiac salon on February 13.

4: Lago The only Italian restaurant in Tremont offers a wine list and menu to seduce the wine and Italian food lover in all of us.  The booth's offer a cozy, intimate setting to enjoy one of Chef Fabio Salemo's interpretation of Northern Italian cuisine and a bottle of wine from a list that boasts over 100 varieties of Italian wine, many being undiscovered or hard to find.

3: Fahrenheit Rocco Whalen's Tremont restaurants provides a dimly lit atmosphere perfect for any couple looking to set the mood.  The food speaks for itself, making it one of my favorite Cleveland restaurants.  Whalen describes the food as "contemporary American regional cuisine".  I describe it as romance for your tastebuds.                              

2: Lola Michael Symon's East 4th establishment can make anyone fall in love.  Dimly lit and intimate tables for two are only the beginning.  The menu boasts some of the Iron Chef's best creations and can satisfy any pallet.  If you are looking for a "wow-factor" date, everything about Lola will fit the bill.  Afterall, the wine list is on an iPad.  Or just order the 6 a.m. special.  Bacon ice cream = food of love!

1. Pier W.  Maybe it is because I love seafood and Pier W sets the standard.  Maybe it is the breathtaking view of Lake Erie and the Cleveland skyline.  Maybe it is the fact that is has been a Cleveland landmark since 1965.  Maybe it is because it was the setting for my perfect Valentine's Day last year.  Whatever it is, Pier W tops my list.  Last year, their special Valentine's Day menu was superb.  This year, they are offering a chocolate bar and V-Day packages starting at $75/couple.

For more Valentine's ideas around Cleveland, check out these posts from fellow bloggers Bite BuffPoise in Parma, and Why CLE?.  I can only speak from experience with this list, so I must ask you dear readers, What do YOU think the most romantic restaurant in Cleveland is?   

Until next time...follow your heart, fulfill your hunger!


  1. You may have a new #1 after this year, you never know. Great list!

    And I agree about loving V-Day, especially our "Sisters Before Misters" events.

  2. Nice list, though I prefer Symon's Lolita to Lola. I just love the coziness of the original Lola more than the atmosphere at the E. 4th St. venue. The iPad drink menu rocks!