A surefire way to show that you care this Valentine’s Day is treating your significant other to a night out at one of the city’s most romantic restaurants. With tables filling up fast, these are the elegant eateries putting on a set menu to set hearts racing this February 14th.
Nestled away in an old chocolate factory in Parnell, Cibo is an intimate space to dine with your loved one. This year, Head Chef Kate Fay has constructed a sumptuous five-course degustation, which includes a glass of Taittinger Cuvée Prestige on arrival. Once you’ve toasted to you two, enjoy Chatham Island crayfish and West Coast whitebait; duck on a charred corn salad; salmon with squid, avocado and gin; a lamb rack and rump; and a red velvet and raspberry dessert to finish.
Sid at the French Cafe
With a legacy like no other, the French Cafe is an especially special spot to spoil your loved one this Valentine’s Day. This time around, the team is offering a five-course tasting menu with snacks to start and a complimentary glass of Champagne, or a non-alcoholic cocktail, on arrival. While this special menu is yet to be published, trusting the chef here is a true act of appreciation.
Park Hyatt Auckland
On the water’s edge, Park Hyatt’s Onemata restaurant creates a feast for all the senses. This Valentine’s Day, the team is serving up a decadent five-course dinner, including natural oysters, a Curious Croppers Caprese salad, and a fresh market fish as well as a succulent lamb rump dish. The set menu includes a glass of Billecart-Salmon Brut Champagne on arrival. Then, if you’re after an intimate nightcap, Captain’s Bar is also setting the mood. Bar Manager and mixology extraordinaire, Ezequiel Marquez, has created a couple of bespoke Valentine’s cocktails for the occasion.
Designed with a romantic experience in mind, Andiamo’s three-course set menu includes delicious summer dishes to indulge in — including the new kingfish crudo with Central Otago stone fruits, and a succulent Wagyu rump cap with salsa rossa, Ortiz anchovy and grilled confit potatoes. To mark the occasion, there is a complimentary glass of Perrier-Jouët Grand Brut on arrival, along with a special gift from the kitchen.
The more lovers, the merrier at Bar Magda, with its special Magda Valentine set menu, available for a party of two to ten from the 11th to the 20th of February. The three-course shared menu showcases seasonal summer dishes and includes a decadent dessert — such as a ‘Fiji dark chocolate’ marquise with a delicate potato mille feuille. Each couple will be able to choose a bottle of wine from a curated list, while there are also many sensual cocktails to win over your heart.
No strangers to special occasions, the team at Ostro has put together a comprehensive menu for the most romantic day of the year. The set menu, with spectacular views of the harbour, includes the likes of South Island Wagyu tartare and long line snapper, with the option to add the establishment’s stand-out seafood platters and aphrodisiac oysters. If you’d rather keep things private, Ostro will be delivering a Beef Wellington for two, plus petit fours, to your door this Valentine’s Day, between 12 and 5pm. It doesn’t get much more personal, and precious, than this.
The buttery-soft booths at Paris Butter sure lend themselves to a coupled-up dining experience. As part of cupid’s yearly soiree, the charming and creative restaurant is offering a five-course menu, filled to the brim with good food and fine Champagne.
The atmosphere at Azabu Ponsonby is second to none, so why not take your main squeeze here for its mouthwatering Omakase menu? Chef Yukio Ozeki has created an exceptional experience — from amuse-bouche tuna ceviche to special lamb chuleta and Nikkei steak. Each set menu includes a complimentary flute of Veuve Clicquot, a pour of Asahi Super Dry on tap, or one of the house’s favourite cocktails for two. It’s set to be a wonderful evening for all.
When it comes to intimate dining experiences, it doesn’t get more bespoke than Faraday’s Bar. Opening especially for Sunday the 13th and Monday the 14th of February (as well as Saturday the 12th), the boutique bar has coupled Krug Grande Cuvée and caviar for two. Elegant and refined, with diverse yet harmoniously full flavours, the half bottle of Krug is perfect for sharing as you enjoy 15g of Sturia Vintage Caviar. Limited spaces are available — email [email protected] or call 09 217 1017 to secure your spot.
Esther at QT Auckland
The tables are set to swoon at Esther, where a Mediterranean culinary adventure awaits. The lust-worthy three-course set menu features Esther’s most darling dishes. Begin with fresh oysters in Champagne mignonette and Manganui Kingfish crudo with pomegranate explosions, escorted by the restaurant’s beloved wood-fired puff bread. Meanwhile for mains, there will be its one-and-only pistachio herbed lamb rack. To finish, you’ll find the delightful crêpe Suzette modern, with orange Grand Marnier sauce and vanilla bean gelato. There will be two dinner sittings, the first from 5 to 8pm, and the second from 8 to late.
Treat your loved one, and yourself, to a tasting menu of the best of Ebisu, complemented with a flute of Veuve Clicquot and the option to add a premium sake match. From its fresh tuna and beef tataki to its pan-seared Glory Bay Salmon and crayfish dumping (with a vegetarian menu available on request), this tempting menu is sure to show your date a good time.
Dine in the whimsical courtyard of NSP and enjoy an a la carte service with Valentine’s Specials including cioppino with fennel and saffron, and a selection of seafood with crayfish, prawns, green lipped mussels, tuatuas and John Dory. They don’t call this place ‘Non Solo Pizza’ for nothing… For those who would rather settle in from the comfort of their own home, there will be an aperitivo dinner and drinks selection available for takeaway soon.
There’s a lot to love about Kingi this Valentine’s Day. The sustainably-minded Britomart eatery has dreamed up a three-course menu, including a sharing antipasti platter and your choice of a wood-roasted eggplant dish, seafood pappardelle, or pan-roasted snapper. For the most romantic course of all — dessert — there’s perfected profiteroles with rum and raisin ice cream and chocolate.