55 E. 54th St., between Madison and Park Aves.; 212-759-5941
Oceana’s inspired décor, with seascape murals and sleek polished wood accents, evokes the feeling of being on an elegant yacht. Chef Cornelius Gallagher’s six-course, $125 menu of seafood specialties (halibut with spaghetti squash and edamame, smoked cod chowder) completes the maritime theme. The notoriously attentive service can make you feel like Onassis, which should ensure smooth sailing in impressing your date.
BED New York
530 W. 27th St., between Tenth and Eleventh Aves., sixth fl.; 212-594-4109
Simply spending Valentine’s Day in bed is perfect for some, but not quite enough for their partners, perhaps. Supine-minded hot-spot BED New York bridges the gap via an “aphrodisiac menu” that starts with mango-papaya oysters and moves through blinis and caviar, seared foie gras and tuna, beef tenderloin with “exotic wild mushrooms,” and more before reaching the obligatory chocolate dessert. Roses and a flute of rosé top off the $125-per-person package. Reserve a bed on the enclosed roof deck for the skylight view.
137 E. 55th St., near Lexington Ave.; 212-755-7055
The former private club Fizz has a secluded aura that’s ripe for romance. The upstairs dining room, aglow with Klimt-inspired art and stylishly metallic curtains, feels like an art patron’s entertaining room, while the downstairs nightclub, presided over by an award-winning bartender, lends itself to alcohol-fueled naughtiness later in the night. The $80-per-person menu includes a champagne cocktail and choices of oyster, foie gras, or caviar appetizers; and lobster, lamb chop, or seven-spiced duck entrées. The dainty creations of a Jean-Georges and Le Bernardin alum are served by studly French waiters, sure to keep guys on their toes.
60 Thompson St., between Broome and Spring Sts., in the 60 Thompson Hotel; 212-219-2000
It may be too late for that romantic, four-star getaway to Bangkok you keep talking about, but you and your sweetheart can still bid adieu to city life—at least for the evening—at this Thai oasis in Soho. Kittichai strikes that perfect balance of stylized chic and Zen tranquility: dark booths swathed in silk, carved teak panels laden with orchids, a pool teeming with floating candles and water lilies. With a $65 prix fixe menu created by chef Ian Chalermkittichai (formerly of the five-star Four Seasons Bangkok) that includes exotic choices—tuna in coconut milk, Asian flan with rose hip tuille and passion fruit—you can leave with a “been there, done that” feeling and shoot next year for Belize, instead.
430 Lafayette St., between 4th St. and Astor Pl.; 212-505-5111
Low lighting, dark corners, banquet seating, and dishes made to be shared make this perennial downtown favorite the perfect place to canoodle with the one you love (or just the one you’re with). Also, adherence to the regular à la carte menu of French-Vietnamese fare (Asian duck confit, steamed sea bass with lemongrass and ginger, filet mignon with satay sauce) means you won’t have to break the bank on an expensive prix fixe in order to impress your date.
246 DeKalb Ave., near Vanderbilt Ave., Fort Greene, Brooklyn; 718-789-2778
This cozy Fort Greene spot is covering all the bases for Valentine’s Day. First, for couples with hectic schedules (or those who may have “double-booked” dates), iCi is also serving their four-course, $55 prix fixe the weekend before. Diners can enjoy ambient dining room downstairs, complete with a fireplace, and choose from items like oyster Rockaway, lobster Thermidor, or roasted duck with confit rosti. And for those who prefer the comforts of home, the V-Day dinner is also available to go.
255 Smith St., between Douglass and DeGraw Sts., Cobble Hill, Brooklyn, 718-855-1535
It’s time to revisit an old love. Patois, the joint that started the restaurant-ification of Smith Street, is celebrating V-Day with a $40, three-course prix fixe. It’s the perfect opportunity to reacquaint yourself with the rustic little French bistro that first propelled hungry Manhattanites across the river almost a decade ago. Their winning formula is still in effect: intimate, candlelit tables pour deux, impeccable French fare, a venerable wine list, an amiable staff. Plus, the annexation of the adjacent space in recent years has added to the romantic ambience by providing a fireplace and sumptuous booths.