Valentine's Day Guide 2013 | Valentine's Day | Chicago Reader

Valentine's Day Guide 2013 

Our picks for the best places to be on the most romantic day of the year

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Dinner for two

Dinner for two

Anthony Tahlier

[Romance is for suckers]

See the rest of our (almost) romance-free ode to Valentine's Day.

Dining

Allium Chef Kevin Hickey offers a four-course prix fixe through the weekend; it's $130 with a glass of Dom Perignon. $95.120 E. Delaware, 312-799-4900, alliumchicago.com.

Baume & Brix Chefs Thomas Elliott Bowman and Ben Roche offer a six-course menu ending with "dessert explosions," as well as the regular menu. $70.351 W. Hubbard, 312-321-0351, baumeandbrix.com.

Bistronomic Chef Martial Noguier offers a three-course prix fixe based on Escoffier recipes; vegetarian options available.$55.840 N. Wabash, 312-944-8400, bistronomic.net.

Boka Chef Giuseppe Tentori's five-course menu includes capon consomme with tortellini and black truffle, roasted lamb loin with beet gnocchi, and chocolate mousse. $85.1729 N. Halsted, 312-337-6070, bokachicago.com.

Cafe des Architectes Chef Greg Biggers offers a five-course menu throughout the weekend, featuring an amuse bouche of Perigord truffle custard with caviar and a main course of poached lobster or beef tenderloin. $79.20 E. Chestnut, 312-324-4000, cafedesarchitectes.com.

Cafe Selmarie Three-course prix fixe with the theme "rose petals and red wine." $44.4729 N. Lincoln, 773-989-5595, cafeselmarie.com.

Cantina Laredo Three-course prix fixe with choices including a mango-jicama salad, stuffed quail, and filet mignon with pasilla pepper sauce; the a la carte menu will also be available. $35, $50 with cocktail pairings.508 N. State, 312-955-0014, cantinalaredo.com.

Cyrano's Farm Kitchen Five-course prix fixe featuring a "symphony of appetizers" and a selection of chef Didier Durand's favorite desserts. $59, $95 with wine pairings.546 N. Wells, 312-467-0546.

Deleece A three-course prix fixe including a dessert of chocolate fondue for two is $100 per couple, $130 with pairings. 3747 N. Southport, 773-325-1710, deleece.com.

Henri New chef Christopher Gawronski offers a five-course menu featuring French classics such as lobster consomme, torchon of foie gras, and squab with Perigord truffle. $120, $190 with wine pairings.18 S. Michigan, 312-578-0763, henrichicago.com.

Ing Moto's sister restaurant offers a six-course prix fixe menu featuring venison bratwurst, Vietnamese beef, and "pizza." $100.951 W. Fulton, 855-834-6464, ingrestaurant.com.

Jerry's Andersonville A prix fixe dinner is $28, $40 with beer pairings; the a la carte menu will also be available, as will an expanded roster of IPAs on tap. "Need not be single to attend!" 5419 N. Clark, 773-796-3777, jerryssandwiches.com.

Maison Brasserie In addition to the regular menu, chef Perry Hendrix offers specials including chateaubriand and Dover sole. 333 E. Randolph, 312-241-1540, maisonbrasserie.com.

MK Four-course prix fixe featuring Kobe sirloin, a cheese course of Brin d'Amour with "twigs of love," and chocolate mousse with champagne gelee and passion fruit sorbet. $79, $119 with wine pairings.868 N. Franklin, 312-482-9179, mkchicago.com.

Nacional 27 From 5 to 6:30 PM, a three-course dinner is $39, from 7 to 10 PM, $69; the latter features a champagne toast, and both include a complimentary rose for the ladies. There's also dancing from 10 PM to 2 AM. 325 W. Huron, 312-664-2727, nacional27.net.

Pizza Rustica A four-course prix fixe menu features house-made pasta, filet mignon or lobster, and Venetian-style doughnuts with sabayon cream. Beer or wine pairings are available for an additional $20. $55.3908 N. Sheridan, 773-404-8955, pizzarusticachicago.com.

Prasino Wicker Park A four-course prix fixe will be available through the weekend in a dining room "transformed into an eco-friendly love shack" featuring strolling musicians; pairings are $35, $55 for a "luxe" option. $65.1846 W. Division, 312-878-1212, prasino.com.

Quince Chef Andy Motto offers a four-course prix fixe including house-made chocolates; a vegetarian option is also available. $70.1625 Hinman, Evanston, 847-570-8400, quincerestaurant.net.

Sepia Chef Andrew Zimmerman's four-course prix fixe, available through February 16, features choices such as duck breast or Wagyu beef; an a la carte menu will also be available. $90, $155 with pairings.123 N. Jefferson, 312-441-1920, sepiachicago.com.

Slurping Turtle Chef Takashi Yagihashi offers two prix fixe options continuing through the weekend: the five-course "I Kind of Like You" ($50 per person) and the eight-course "I Think I Love You" ($85 per person). 116 W. Hubbard, 312-464-0466, slurpingturtle.com.

Tavernita A sharing menu for two consists of a selection from the raw bar, plus a choice of three small plates, two flatbreads, a large plate, and a dessert tasting; it's $45 per person. 151 W. Erie, 312-274-1111, tavernita.com.

Zocalo A three-course tasting menu with vegetarian options is $75 per couple, which includes an amuse bouche and complimentary cava. 358 W. Ontario, 312-302-9977, zocalochicago.com.

[Romance is for suckers]

See the rest of our (almost) romance-free ode to Valentine's Day.

Parties, Shows, and Trouble

Animal Attractions Breakfast Treat yourself to yogurt parfaits, breakfast burritos, and the company of live baby gorillas while learning about love from an endocrinologist's perspective. Sat 2/9, 9:30 AM, Lincoln Park Zoo, 2200 N. Cannon, 312-742-2000, lpzoo.org, $65-$75.

Chicago Gay Men's Chorus presents "Deep Love" A cheeky, romantic revue of cabaret and Broadway classics in honor of Valentine's Day. Thu 2/7, 8 PM, Drake Hotel, 140 E. Walton Pl., 312-787-2200, thedrakehotel.com, $35-$45.

Chicago Reader Anti-Valentine's Day Party Take aim at Cupid's tyranny with a musical performance by the Hood Internet, DJ sets by the people behind the monthly Slo 'Mo party, and a Fly Honeys dance-off—plus dating disaster stories and submissions from Salonathon's "Words From Our Loves, Words From Our Exes." Thu 2/14, 8 PM, Logan Square Auditorium, 2539 N. Kedzie, 773-252-6179 or 866-468-3401, lsachicago.com, $14.

ComedySportz Valentine's Weekend Celebration An evening of improv games specialized for couples celebrating Valentine's Day.Through 2/16: Thu 8 PM, Fri 8 and 10 PM, Sat 6, 8, and 10 PM, ComedySportz Theatre, 929 W. Belmont, 773-549-8080 or 312-559-1212, comedysportzchicago.com, $22-$24.

Dateless on Division: A Six Bar Valentine's Day Pub Crawl "Singles Awareness Day" is a hop (or six) away when you take advantage of food and drink specials at bars like the Hangge-Uppe, She-nannigans House of Beers, Original Mother's, Mother's Too, Lodge Tavern, and Bootleggers. Each location will offer special five-dollar drinks and free pizza. Thu 2/14, 9 PM, start at the corner of Division and State and head west toward sad and drunk.

Duets for My Valentine Chicago Dance Crash presents a showcase of hip-hop, contemporary, and ballet. Sat 2/9, 8 PM, Athenaeum Theatre, 2936 N. Southport, 773-935-6860, chicagodancecrash.com, $25-$30.

French With Me 3: Ménage à Trois Strangeloop Theater presents this performance of five original works from local playwrights, each centering on concepts of "love, lust, attraction, reaction, and affairs of the heart." Tue 2/12, 7 PM, Signal Ensemble Theatre, 1802 W. Berenice, 773-347-1350, strangelooptheatre.org, $20.

I Love You, I Think Monologists detail their embarrassing forays into the dating world. Part of Chicago Theatre Week. Through 2/23: Fri-Sat 8 PM, Tom Robinson Gallery, 2416 W. North, Chicago, 773-227-3144, $15.

Jesse Garon Presley & the Branson Family, Dead Native, Dana Lynn & the Dirty Creeps, Indiana Bandana Sweaty Elvis tunes and a whole lot more rock 'n' roll to drown out the deafening blare of Valentine's Day. Thu 2/14, 8 PM, Double Door, 1572 N. Milwaukee, 773-489-3160, doubledoor.com.

Let's Make Out!: Stories of Awkward Love 2nd Story hosts an evening of monologists sharing their most uncomfortable dating experiences. Lott Hill, Robyn Okrant, and Wyl VillacresSun-Mon 2/10-2/11, 7:30 PM, Webster's Wine Bar, 1480 W. Webster, 773-868-0608, websterwinebar.com, $15-$20.

Letters/X A cabaret performance inspired by real-life letters, e-mails, texts, and Facebook messages sent on Valentine's Day. Through 3/2: Thu-Sat 8 PM, Apollo Theater, 2540 N. Lincoln, 773-935-6100, apollochicago.com, $12-$15.

Love in the Time of Online Dating Street artist Don't Fret, a self-described "human from Chicago" (and the guy who illustrated much of this issue), presents new work inspired by courtship in the 21st century. Reception Fri 2/8, 7-10 PM. Through 2/27, Johalla Projects, 1821 W. Hubbard, johallaprojects@gmail.com, johallaprojects.com.

Make Up Make Out DJ sets by Reuben Wu of Ladytron, Perfect Kiss, and Heaven Malone. RSVP online in advance. Thu 2/14, 9 PM, Beauty Bar, 1444 W. Chicago, 312-226-8828, thebeautybar.com/chicago.

Nerds at Heart Love Fest Nerds unite in this annual mixer of the hopelessly brainy and tragically quirky. Trivia included, of course. Thu 2/14, 7 PM, Rebel Bar, 3462 N. Clark, nerdsatheart.com, $30.

Pink Frost, Runnies, Touched by Ghoul, Melina Ausikaitis, Old Black & Blue Eyes, Gel Set (DJ set) Handlebar is locking its doors for the night so it can celebrate its ten-year anniversary at the Empty Bottle—featuring a musical lineup comprisingthe restaurant's staff. Thu 2/14, 8 PM, Empty Bottle, 1035 N. Western, 773-276-3600, emptybottle.com.

Valentine's Day Portraits Artists from Project Onward, a "studio and gallery dedicated to the creative growth of artists with mental and developmental disabilities," will be on hand to paint portraits of couples. Sat 2/9, 11 AM, Chicago Cultural Center, 78 E. Washington, 312-744-6630, projectonward.org, $20.

Valentine's Latin Dance Night A beginner-level, professionally taught rumba and salsa class with sparkling wine on the side. Thu 2/14, 6:30 and 9 PM, Ballroom Dance Chicago, 4043 N. Ravenswood, suite 105, 312-504-5866, ballroomdancechicago.com, $75 per couple.

Valentine's Day Wine and Chocolate PairingBucktown chocolatier Katherine Anne Confections joins forces with a West Loop wine behemoth. Thu 2/14 7 PM, City Winery, 1200 W. Randolph, 312-733-9463, citywinery.com, $65.

Vamos, Rabble Rabble A popular Logan Square late-night spot hosts what's sure to be a pleasant, booze-fueled nightmare of fun. Thu 2/14, 10 PM, the Owl, 2521 N. Milwaukee, 773-235-5300, owlbarchicago.com.

The Whistler's Prix Fixe Cocktail Menu Three cocktail courses and complimentary candlelight are up for grabs at one of two seatings at the mecca of craft cocktails (only 16 tickets available per seating). Thu 2/14, 6-8 PM and 9-11 PM, the Whistler, 2421 N. Milwaukee, 773-227-3530, whistlerchicago.com, $85 per couple.

White Mystery, Absolutely Not, Twin Peaks, Post Honeymoon A fine cast of rock 'n' roll locals has been called on to soundtrack the ninth annual Chris Saathoff Foundation benefit show. Thu 2/14, 9 PM, Schubas, 3159 N. Southport, 773-525-2508, schubas.com.

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