Rat’s Restaurant/Matt Yao Photography

Valentine’s Day is Sunday and although a romantic celebration might not be on the top of your to-do list this year, devoting some time to your partner is more important than ever. You’ve weathered a pandemic together, but chances are, you probably haven’t gotten a lot of time to reconnect just the two of you.

Read on for some of our favorite ideas for celebrating Valentine’s Day with your sweetie. With snow in the forecast, you can also definitely celebrate early on Friday or Saturday – or stay at home for a cozy celebration. And remember – whether you hit the town or just hit the same spots on the couch, what matters is that you do it together.

STAY IN AND ORDER OUT 

Goldbelly Valentine’s Day Dinner
For the ultimate cozy (and COVID safe) Valentine’s Day order in a meal kit from an incredible restaurant. All orders are shipped straight to your door so all you have to add is the vino (and the love!). Choose from Blue Ribbon Sushi, Gramercy Tavern, White Stone Oyster Company and many more. Delivery is said to be really fast but be sure to order ASAP.

This weekend is a great time to support your favorite local restaurant and liquor store by ordering in so be sure to make a plan.

LET THE PROFESSIONALS DO THE COOKING 

The Farm Cooking School
67 Pleasant Valley Road, Titusville
This is a fantastic place to take a cooking class but on Saturday, February 13, the chefs will serve you at a Farm to Table Dinner. The dinner takes place from 6-9 pm, $125/per person. Masks and social distancing are required, and they are operating at 25 percent capacity.

David’s Culinary Delights
2520 Hooper Ave, Brick Township
Experience a Romantic Dinner in the comfort of your home. They will prepare and serve you a three-course meal. For the full romantic Valentine’s Day experience, add a couples’ massage! Chef David serves the Central Jersey area and does contactless curbside pickup.

SHUMI JAPANESE CUISINE

DINE IN A GREENHOUSE, IGLOO OR IN A ROMANTIC SETTING

It’s Greek to Me
21 E. Ridgewood Ave., Ridgewood
The restaurant’s eight individual greenhouses are well-equipped with electric wall heaters that are outfitted with stainless steel casings and mounted on the roofs of each greenhouse. For Valentine’s Day, they are offering a five-course prix fixe menu that offers a wide array of Mediterranean classics.

Shumi
70 E. Ridgewood Ave., Ridgewood
Shumi Japanese Cuisine’s eight outdoor bubble tents are heated with rechargeable, heated back and seating pads on all chairs within each bubble. Shumi is highlighting their Omakase, which refers to the Chef’s select tasting menu, with two different options: regular (14-piece Omakase sushi with one appetizer) and special (21-piece Omakase sushi with 5 hot appetizers).

Pearl Restaurant
17 South Broad St., Ridgewood
This neighborhood classic has six outdoor igloos that are heated by a natural gas furnace that is connected to the restaurant’s internal heating system. For Valentine’s Day weekend they are offering their most popular dishes which highlight their handmade pastas, freshly prepared sauces and locally sourced produce.

Rat’s Restaurant
16 Fairgrounds Road, Hamilton
Rat’s is offering a Valentine’s Day menu featuring specials like a sparkling flight to add some bubbles to your evening. Located inside Grounds for Sculpture the restaurant is “designed to give visitors the sense they have stepped into a village reminiscent of the impressionist painter Claude Monet’s beloved town of Giverny.” The restaurant is open for indoor and outdoor dining and is operating according to “Safe Café” practices which include enhanced sanitation and physical distancing.

Carmine’s
2801 Pacific Avenue, Atlantic City
Since you can’t take a trip to Italy right now, visit Carmine’s in AC for a romantic Italian feast. Located at The Quarter in the Tropicana Hotel, guests can choose to dine in or order dinner to-go. The Carmine’s Love Them Package feeds two for $150 and includes Garlic Bread, Penne Vodka, Chicken Parmigiana and three cannolis, and the more elaborate Carmine’s Really Love Them Package for $245 which serves two includes dishes such as Baked Clams, Porterhouse Steak, Mixed Seafood Red Linguini and a decadent Chocolate Torte. Both specials have the option to add a bottle of prosecco for $25 and a magnum house wine for $95. The restaurant has a commitment to COVID safety and is following all state rules that apply.

Calandra’s
Locations in Newark, Fairfield and Caldwell
Visit il Vecchio Café, Calandra’s Mediterranean Grill and Cucina Calandra for special Valentine’s Day menus that will bring romance to the table. You can also order your meal to-go.

HIT UP A VINEYARD FOR A TASTING AND QUALITY TIME

Unionville Vineyards
9 Rocktown Road, Ringoes
Book a tasting with your sweetheart or purchase a case of wine that allows you to reserve an outdoor fireplace with Adirondack chairs around it. Groups are separated from other guests by at least six feet and masks must be worn on the property.

Tomasello Winery
5 Washington St., Mount Holly
February 13th: Valentine’s Sweetheart Dinner 6:30-9:30 pm
Treat your Valentine to an exquisite 6-course tasting menu and enjoy a Love Potion from the fully stocked cash bar. $48.95 per person includes dinner and 1 glass of wine.

February 14th: Wine & Truffle Pairing 12-5 pm
Spend the afternoon with your special someone enjoying four sweet pairings, a scrumptious lunch menu and the intoxicating Love Potion cocktail! Indulge in gourmet chocolate truffles and award-winning wines. $20 per person includes admission, 4 truffles, and 4 one-ounce samples of wine. Masks are required and group sizes must not exceed 8 guests.

Brook Hollow Winery
594 New Jersey 94, Columbia
Celebrate Valentine’s Day with your loved one this February 14, 5:30-8 pm. This event features a socially distant, buffet-style dinner complete with live music from John Cain. Dinner buffet will include desserts, coffee and tea buffet. One bottle of wine is included per couple. Cost is $110 per couple. Safety measures including masks and limited group sizes are in effect.

RELAX TOGETHER 

Alchemy Mind and Body
4451 State Highway 27, Princeton
Enjoy a couples’ massage in the outdoor cabana, located in the spa garden which is surrounded by lush bamboo. $250 for 60 minutes, $330 for 90 minutes. All services must be prepaid, no walk-ins, and masks must be worn except when face down on the massage table. Staff members will wear masks at all times.

Himalayan Salt Cave Spa & Float
330 US 9N, Englishtown
Enjoy a massage, flotation therapy and of course, champagne with your sweetie at this incredible man-made cave made out of mostly Himalayan pink salt, which can give the body a stimulus for better physical and mental health. Check the website for several special Valentine’s Day packages.

GET OLD-FASHIONED WITH YOUR VALENTINE

Howell Living History Farm
70 Woodens Lane, Hopewell
The air may be chilly, but the farm’s wintery landscape is the perfect setting for a heartwarming Valentine’s Day ride. Couples can take a romantic spin in a two-seater sleigh or carriage pulled by a team of light workhorses. All guests are required to stop at the Visitor Center to register and receive program and safety information. All Mercer County Park Commission rules and regulations are in effect as well as NJ state requirements regarding the use of masks when social distancing isn’t possible.

TRY A HIGH SEAS ADVENTURE 

Perth Amboy Dinner Cruise
From 401 Riverview Drive Perth Amboy – Raritan Bay
Cornucopia Cruise Line, Boarding 5 pm, Departing 5:30 pm
On Saturday, February 13 enjoy exciting dinner selections consisting of savory chicken, fresh fish, perfectly prepared beef selections, pasta selection, rice, potato, vegetables, international desserts, coffee and tea. Cost range: $74.96 – $99.95 and there is also a cash bar. Face coverings are required at all times except while dining.

MAKE IT A WEEKEND GETAWAY

Crystal Springs Resort
3 Wild Turkey Way, Hamburg
From a Suite Heart Escape to a Spa Daycation, Crystal Springs Resort has everything you need to make Valentine’s Day unforgettable for you and your partner. From romantic holiday-themed activities to chocolates and champagne, you’ll find something special to share at every turn and countless ways to connect and rekindle during a romantic holiday away. A face covering is required at all times while indoors and outdoors when social distancing cannot be maintained and while in line for food and drink orders and while making payment.

LET YOUR LOVE TAKE FLIGHT

In-Flight Balloon Adventures
Clinton
Combine the adventure of a hot air balloon flight with the romance of elegant dining, followed by a comfortable night in a charming country bed & breakfast. Sunrise flight, evening flight, dinner before or after, it’s your choice.

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