If there’s something South Florida is known for, it’s having really great food. From Japanese to Greek and everything in between, it’s easy to find a restaurant that hits the spot. But on Valentine’s Day, finding that perfect place with both the vibe and the menu to achieve the feeling you’re looking for on the most loving of days can be a little more difficult. Whether you’re looking for a cozy night holding hands or one with short skirts and flirtatious gazes, here are some of our top picks.
For the most romantic night of the year, it’s all about intimacy. Il Sole opened at the Versace Mansion after Barton G. took over the property, and it’s as intimate as it gets with only 30 seats. In true Versace style, the cozy restaurant is a feast for the eyes with intricate murals and Middle Eastern inspired chandeliers overhead. Another small spot is Pascal’s On Ponce, French cuisine is what’s on the menu at this Coral Gables eatery. Choose on your own from the dinner menu or let the experts do the work for you with the dinner tasting menu, fit with matching wines. Atop the 1111 parking garage, Juvia is known for its fantastic view looking over the city from Lincoln Road. Bringing a sense of calm to the city, the Japanese, French and Peruvian fusion restaurant is open air with greenery climbing up the walls.
You can never go wrong with Italian, and Timpano in downtown Fort Lauderdale takes on the look of a traditional Italian American restaurant you might find in Manhattan, with a jazz band, close intimate seating, and impeccable service. Share a flat bread together or order your own dish from the endless menu of traditional Italian fare with a great glass of wine.
Bringing Sexy Back
Miami knows sexy, so heat up the night in Miami Beach at Drunken Dragon. An Asian food spot inspired by Korean barbecue, the decor features black-and-white photographs of Japanese rope bondage and rope curling around the dark, wood interior. Grab a table with a grill for a truly cozy experience cooking your own meats. Speaking of meats, at Meat Market on Lincoln Road, the place amps up your typical steak house to a trendy spot mixing sexy dark woods and tufted couches with reflective bar tops and chandeliers overhead. On the menu are signature steaks, reserve cuts of meat, items from the wood-burning grill, and delicious side pieces like lobster tail and foie gras. Finally, the lobby restaurant, Toro Toro, at the InterContinental Hotel in downtown Miami marries class with fun. Whether you’re sipping cocktails at the happening bar or holed away at a rich, honey-toned table, the menu of Central and South American cuisine is sure to please.
If it’s seafood you’re in the mood for, Lobster Bar & Sea Grille in downtown Fort Lauderdale has an extensive menu of crab, oysters, lobsters, fish, caviar, or for a mix of it all, a seafood tower at your table. The ambiance is heightened with marble, white tiling, and modern seating and lighting fixtures for a unique night out. For a more traditional experience, Thasos presents a clean, all-white interior, or opt to sit outside under a white-washed wooden overhang and Grecian blue throw pillows. Munch on grape leaves, feta, and oysters — you know what they say about those sea creatures.
Check it Out
Il Sole, 116 Ocean Drive, Miami Beach, 30.5576.8003
Pascal’s on Ponce, 2611 Ponce De Leon Boulevard, Coral Gables, 305.444.2024
Juvia, Lincoln Road Mall, 1111 Lincoln Road, Miami Beach, 305.763.8272
Timpano, 450 East Las Olas Boulevard, Fort Lauderdale, 954.462.9119
Drunken Dragon, 1424 Alton Road, Miami Beach, 305.397.8556
Meat Market, 1424 Alton Road, Miami Beach, 305.397.8556
Toro Toro, 100 Chopin Plaza, Miami, FL 305.372.4710
Lobster Bar & Sea Grille, 450 East Las Olas Boulevard, Fort Lauderdale, 954.772.2675
Thasos, 3330 East Oakland Park Boulevard, Fort Lauderdale, 954.200.6006
Originally published in WhereTraveler