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Posted at 11:41 AM ET, 01/30/2012

10 Valentine’s reservations you should make


At Acqua al 2, Valentine’s dinner will be a five-course affair that can include the Filetto al Mirtillo -- a filet mignon drizzled with a not-too-sweet blueberry sauce that’s easily the most talked-about dish at the Capitol Hill Italian restaurant. (James M. Thresher)

Some of the area’s most romantic restaurants have rolled out five-course dinner menus for Valentine’s Day, and if you’re looking for a decadent, truffle oil-laced night out, making a reservation now is a must.

To help you decide, we’ve picked 10 of the most sumptuous Valentine’s dinners to cross our desks, each at restaurants that are known for setting the mood. For more ideas for Valentine’s Day dinners and events, just search Valentine on the Going Out Guide.

Acqua al 2

This Capitol Hill hot spot likes to boast that it’s been the venue for many a proposal. Want to pop the question? Do it over this prix-fixe, five-course dinner for lovers: options include burrata with grapefruit, roasted pine nuts and honey; linguine all'Aragosta with lobster, white wine and tomato; and your choice of the restaurant’s popular takes on filet mignon, such as the Filetto al Mirtillo, topped with blueberry sauce. $85 a person.

Ardeo + Bardeo

A four-course prix-fixe dinner at this Cleveland Park hot spot might be the go-to for truffle fans: The menu includes such options as spinach salad, gnocchi, braised fennel and truffle vinaigrette; oxtail risotto and pickled beech mushrooms with black truffle emulsion; and a duo of beef. The dinner concludes with a sampler of desserts. $65 a person.

Bombay Club

There is no menu set at Bombay Club yet, but thanks to the grand piano, swanky decor and incredible service, every meal feels extravagant at the gorgeous Indian restaurant blocks from the White House. For folks shut out of a Rasika reservation — which is booked up from the weekend of Feb. 11 through Valentine’s Day — this is a great backup.

Brabo by Robert Wiedmaier

A stroll around Old Town to the water might be the perfect mood-setter for the five-course menu at Brabo. It includes dishes such as pepper-crusted tuna tataki with cauliflower puree, watermelon radish and ginger vinaigrette; Maine lobster ravioli with artichoke and sundried-tomato ragout and lobster cream; and roasted New Frontier Bison strip loin with potato and apple gratin; while the dessert course features red velvet souffle. $85 a person; wine pairing, add $45.

Cafe du Parc

The bistro at the Willard Hotel has a five-course, prix-fixe dinner on tap that stays true to the restaurant’s French theme, offering diners such options as saffron risotto with mascarpone cheese and gold leaf, butter poached lobster with almond cream and tomato tartar, and pepper-crusted fillet of beef with dark chocolate sauce. $65 per person; $90 with wine pairings.

El Centro D.F.

The cavernous 14th Street Mexican restaurant offers a sweetheart of a deal on its three-course dinner — making it a good choice for couples who want to go out, not go broke. Diners can choose from appetizers such as crab queso fundido and duck confit sopes; and entrees including mushroom crepe “enchiladas” and lobster and crab tacos. A beverage and shareable dessert sampler are included; a bowl of the restaurant’s delicious guacamole, however, is extra. $50 a person.

Elizabeth’s Gone Raw

The all-raw vegan restaurant in a stately downtown home dishes up a multi-course dinner that includes d’anjou pear and walnut ravioli with herb macadamia nut ricotta; avocado carpaccio on sunflower sprouts with lemongrass vinaigrette and pistachio pesto; and a non-dairy panna cotta with raw cacao sauce and berries. $85 a person; wine or champagne pairing, add $45 to $55.

Firefly

A five-course dinner for couples at this cozy Dupont Circle spot begins with bacon-wrapped dates and sparkling wine. Then diners choose from such options as salt-roasted baby beets with Cherry Glen goat cheese, pistachio, fig vinegar and micro arugula; mini pot roast; butternut squash and porcini mushroom risotto with sage, pickled wild mushrooms and crispy parsnips; and for dessert, a peanut butter ice-cream “sandwich” made of flourless chocolate cake, bananas foster sauce, peanut brittle and sea salt. $75 a person.

Hank’s Oyster Bar

For couples with an aversion to stuffiness, Hank’s is offering couples a half-dozen oysters paired with two lobsters. If you don’t want to make a date on Valentine’s Day itself, it’s no problem: The deal is offered on Mondays and Tuesdays through February. $60 a couple; $32 a person. Add a a half bottle of Gardet champagne for $30.

J&G Steakhouse

A prix-fixe, five-course dinner includes warm Kumamoto oysters with creamed basil; steamed Maine lobster with Japanese turnips, bok choy and yuzu vinaigrette; and of course, steak, served with truffle fritters and roasted asparagus. $90 a person, $135 with wine pairings.

By  |  11:41 AM ET, 01/30/2012

Categories:  Restaurants | Tags:  Valentine's Day

 
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