GOING OUT

If you have been huddled indoors since New Year, counting the pennies and cursing the weather, Valentine’s night is the perfect excuse to come out of hiding and treat yourself, and each other, to a special night.

There are plenty of options to tempt couples and parties alike and with some gorgeous set menus around to suit all budgets and tastes, there really is no excuse.  Besides, there is nothing like a pile of washing up to kill the mood, so why not leave that to someone else? 

SEVENDIALS RESTAURANT

Buckingham Place, Brighton 01273 885555

sevendialsAt the heart of trendy Seven Dials lies this stylish family-run restaurant serving contemporary European cuisine made from fresh, seasonal ingredients.

Sevendials has made quite a name for itself since it opened in 2001 receiving much critical acclaim and two AA rosettes, and featuring in the Good Food Guide and the Time Out Guide To Eating And Drinking.

For Valentine’s Day, they are serving an impressive five course set menu at £45 per person, (plus optional 12% service charge) with champagne on arrival and hand-made chocolates to round off the evening.

Starters include a warm carpaccio of local sea bass with sautéed wild mushrooms, baby herbs and a truffle oil vinaigrette, while for main course they are offering a roast loin of lamb with a black olive crust, fondant potato, basil purée and tomato jus.

Open daily noon to 3pm and 6pm to 10pm.

 

THE REAL EATING COMPANY

Western Road, Hove, 01273 2214412501454993_951f8fb2a8

Focusing on locally sourced ingredients and fresh produce and serving breakfast, lunch and dinner, The Real Eating Company is the perfect place to start your Valentine’s Day or, indeed, to end it.

The breakfast menu features breakfast pancakes with fruit and maple syrup for £6.50 and ‘Eggs Royale’ – free range eggs with smoked salmon – priced at £8, and is served until 11.30am. 

In the evening they will be serving a special menu for £29 per person for three courses.

Starters include seared Rye Bay scallops served with cauliflower puree and crispy pancetta and for main course you could choose rack of lamb with anchovy and rosemary, potato and fennel al forno.

Open 9am to 11pm Tuesday to Saturday, 9am to 5pm Sunday and Monday

 

TERRE A TERRE

East Street, Brighton, 01273 729051

The brains behind award-winning vegetarian restaurant Terre a Terre, classically-trained chefs Amanda Powley and Philip Taylor, want to change the way we think about vegetarian restaurants.

They want to banish the idea that vegetarianism is about puritanical denial and introduce some experimental indulgence.

terre2Their Valentine’s menu, £33.50 per person for three courses plus coffee, does just that.  Their ‘Better Batter and Lemony Yemeni Relish’ is halloumi dipped in chip shop batter, served with vodka-spiked preserved plum tomatoes, fresh pea mint hash with pickled quails egg, sea salad tartar – a tangy sauce made with toasted seaweed, capers and cornichons – and chips, finished with the poetic-sounding lemony Yemeni relish.

For pudding, you could try their sugar spice dusted doughnut straws served with dipping chocolate and ‘Rain Vodka sozzled’ cherries. 

They also have a selection of gifts.  Their Valentine’s Hamper, priced at £66 includes a gift box of Pink Fluery Champagne, chocolate truffles, chocolate buttons, smoked sundried tomatoes and handmade jellies.

Open noon to 10.30pm Monday to Friday, noon to 11pm Saturday, noon to 9pm Sunday.

 

THE ANCIENT MARINERancientmariner

Rutland Road, Hove, 01273 748 595

If you are unattached, or a couple who want to escape the Valentine’s hype, then you could head to Poet’s Corner in Hove for the Ancient Mariner’s Anti-Valentine’s Night.

They are declaring themselves a safe-haven for singletons and will be defiantly serving their usual menu, including their popular mix-and-match sausage and mash.

Alternatives include rolled turkey leg stuffed with apple, bacon and walnut and served with root vegetable mash and meat gravy priced at £8.75, or feta, corn and coriander fritters served with a sweet red pepper and tomato salsa and a dressed leaf salad for £7.25.             

The fun kicks off at 7pm with an acidic anti-Valentine’s playlist.  Manager Sarah Walton said: “One or two slushy love songs might slip through the net, but certainly not enough to make you sick.”           

Open noon to 11.30pm Monday to Thursday, noon to 12.30pm Friday and Saturday, noon to 11pm Sunday.

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STAYING IN 

If the credit crunch means the cost of a night on the town has you breaking out in a cold sweat, or you simply don’t fancy fighting for a table and a cab on a Saturday night, then this is your ultimate guide to the perfect romantic night in.

Once upon a time, staying in for a Valentine’s meal meant half a day of sweating over a hot stove, guaranteed to leave you feeling rather less than romantic.  Nowadays Brighton has plenty of options for lazy Lotharios or savvy seductresses.  No cooking required. 

IN2NIGHT

Cobden Road, Brighton, www.in2night.com, 01273 695178 or 07901 844328

in2nightIn2night is the brainchild of Julian Clark and Jan Dupree, a Hanover couple who prepare fresh, home-cooked meals for takeaway or home delivery within three miles of Brighton Pier. 

All food comes from local suppliers.  Meat is supplied by Archers organic butcher in Hanover and all fruit and vegetables come from Mears at the Open Market on London Road. 

Meals can be delivered hot and ready to eat or prepared and frozen allowing you to cook them yourself with minimum fuss and, if you are feeling sneaky, maximum credit.  Delivery is free for orders over £15, or £1 otherwise.

Valentine’s specials include a lobster bisque to start, home-cooked beef wellington or seared tuna with grated ginger and chive for main course and, to finish, a chocolate pecan tart or champagne and rhubarb cheesecake with a strawberry and rhubarb compote.  Argus readers can also claim a free bottle of house wine with all orders over £25 on Saturday.  To claim, just mention the Argus.

They can also provide DVD rental (see website), drinks, including wine and locally brewed Sunburst Ale, and even games for £3.50 plus £10 deposit.  Anyone for Twister?

Open 6pm – 9pm Sunday to Thursday, 5.30pm to 9:30pm Friday & Saturday.

 

DINNER2GO

www.dinner2go.co.uk, 01273 608526 or 0845 880 4040 (local rate).

Dinner2go is a delivery service that brings restaurant food to your home. 

The website lists an impressive number of local restaurants, from Al Duomo to Zamdani, as members, but if your favourite is not there, they can usually still arrange to pick your meals up if you know what you want.

Delivery charges start at £3.50 and vary according to your postcode (a list is available on their website) but if you are fairly close to town it is likely to be cheaper than a cab home.

They will also deliver groceries, snacks and desserts as well as incorporating an off- licence delivery service.  You need never leave the house again.

Open 5pm to 11pm Monday to Friday, 11am to 11pm Saturday, noon to 10.30pm Sunday.

 

DUE SOUTH CATERING

Kings Road Arches, Brighton 01273 821218

due_south_bvp1Seafront restaurant Due South has been winning awards, popularity and critical acclaim since it opened in Autumn 2003. 

Their passion for local, sustainable and seasonal ingredients has been an undeniable hit.

If you are one of the restaurant’s many fans, but would prefer not to brave the cold, never fear.  They are now offering an outside catering service for anything from romantic meals for two to corporate events and weddings.

They provide a fully bespoke service, allowing customers to choose the type of occasion they would like and can provide everything from the waiting staff to the tablecloths if required.  Plus, of course, that award-winning food.

Restaurant open noon to 3.30pm and 6pm to 9.30pm Monday to Saturday, noon to 4.45pm Sunday.  Catering service on arrangement.