This Valentine's Day, romantics around the city will be making bookings at their favourite restaurants, as the popular ones will fill up fast - even for a Tuesday night. If you are looking for something more decadent to impress, there are also Valentine's Day degustation dinners and events organised all around the Capital. The following is a list of restaurants who are planning memorable evenings with beautiful food and wine to serenade your loved one. If you are on a smaller budget however, perhaps snuggling up on a beanbag for two, watching a movie as the sun sets, is more up your alley? Depending on your budget, this list has been split into "Over $100" and "Under $100", so everyone can celebrate Valentine's Day - in their own way.
Enjoy a night of degustation at Pialligo Estate. Source: Pialligo Estate website
1/ Pialligo Farmhouse in Pialligo, near the Canberra Airport, will be hosting two special events in their scenic Farmhouse Restaurant and Garden Pavilions. The Farmhouse Restaurant is offering a four course degustation with sommelier-paired wine, unlimited beer and non-alcoholic drinks, live entertainment and a photo booth. Cost is $195 per person.The Garden Pavilions are serving a fresh four course shared menu with a bottle of champagne, unlimited beer and non-alcoholic drinks, live entertainment and a photo booth. Cost is $175 per person. See here for more details.
2/ Pod Food, also in Pialligo, will be hosting a 5 Course Dinner Degustation with matching beverages. This fine dining restaurant is located in a leafy, restored 1930's cottage amongst the Pialligo Plant Farm. Cost is $120 per person. See details here.
3/ Hotel Kurrujong in Barton will be hosting two Valentine's Day dinners. Dine Under The Stars includes a cocktail on arrival and then dine under the stars with a decanted three course dinner and French sparkling wine. Cost is $119 per person. See here for details.
Under $100 Option - Alternatively, Celebrate Valentine's Day at Chifley's is a decanted three course dinner inside Chifley's Restaurant including sparkling wine on arrival. There will be two seatings at 6pm and 8pm. Cost is $89 per person. See here for details.
4/ Buvette Bistro & Wine Bar is a French-inspired restaurant located inside the 5 Star Hotel Realm in Barton. This year the restaurant will be celebrating with a five course Valentine's Day Dinner, including a glass of Piper-Heidsieck Rosť Champagne. Cost is $110 per person. See here for more details - including the delicious menu on offer.
5/ Hyatt Canberra will be hosting a Romance five course dinner in the The Tea Lounge with free flowing Australian Sparkling wine throughout dinner. Cost is $199 per person. Another option is to enjoy a Celebrate themed dinner buffet featuring a wagyu roast carvery, a variety of fresh seafood, cheese station and decadent dessert stations complete with a glass of Chandon sparkling wine. Cost is $125 per person. See here for details.
Under $100 Option - There will also be an Afternoon Tea Buffet between 1pm - 3pm. This decadent afternoon tea features an extensive range of sweet and savoury items, inclusive of a glass of Lerida Estate Zenzi Sparkling wine. Cost is $68 per person. See here for details.
6/ Hot Air Balloon rides are a romantic way to start the day, with two companies in Canberra providing this memorable experience. Sip champagne as you float over the city in the dawn light. Cost is over $300 per person. See the website for Dawn Drifters and Balloon Aloft Canberra.
7/ The Boat House is an award-winning restaurant by Lake Burley Griffin in Barton. This Valentine's Day it will be hosting a romantic evening with a six course degustation menu. Cost is $150 per person. Alternatively, you can purchase the Romance Package which includes two degustation dinners, a bottle of G.H.Mumm and a guaranteed window table. Cost is $410 for two. See here for details.
The scenic Boat House restaurant. Source: The Boat House Facebook
8/ Southern Cross Cruises will be running a special Valentine's Day evening cruise from 8pm, with a sumptuous three course meal on board. Cruise the lake as the sun sets and enjoy a beautiful meal for two, with delicious chocolate-themed heart desserts. Cost is $98 per person. See here for details and menu.
9/ Ben & Jerry's Openair Cinema is located on Patrick White Lawns in front of the National Library of Australia. On Valentine's day they will be showing a flashback to Dirty Dancing, with the gates opening at 6:30pm and the movie starting at sunset. Cost is $30 per person or upgrade your ticket to the Valentine's Day Star Lounge for $50 per person. See details here.
Nobody puts Baby in a corner! Source: Ben & Jerry's Outdoor Cinema website
10/ Cinema's around the City are Dendy in the CBD, Hoyts at Belconnen and Woden, Event Cinema's at Manuka and Limelight Cinema's in Tuggeranong. Fifty Shades Darker will be released on February 9th, just in time for a racy Valentine's Day evening. Cost $10 - $13 per person (plus popcorn of course!). See the You Tube preview here.
These are just 10 things to do around Canberra this Valentine's Day, however there are plenty of other ideas that you can tailor to your loved one. Does he or she enjoy leisurely picnics, where you can relax and do nothing? Why not take a picnic basket with all their favourite foods down to Lake Burley Griffin, or your favourite scenic spot. Does your partner love chocolate and dessert cafes? Why not skip dinner altogether and just go out for a decadent dessert with all the trimmings. Does the person in your life prefer a pub, rather than a restaurant? Why not take them to a gastropub - which is half pub, half restaurant, for a delicious meal and cold beers after a busy day.
Enjoy this Valentine's Day - your way.
A racy night at the movies! Fifty Shades Darker. Source: You Tube