Preparing the Perfect Home Date Night
Whether it’s a special anniversary, a surprise date night, or Valentine’s Day, a romantic dinner for two can be especially intimate in the comfort of your own home. Not only can you avoid the unwanted distractions that may come from dining around others, you can also take the opportunity to impress your date with a homemade meal and personalized decorations.
So set the menu, set the table, and set the mood for an ideal romantic date night at home.
First things first: stick with a favourite dish you know you can pull off and that your significant other will enjoy. A special evening is no time to experiment with new dishes or cooking techniques. If you do want to try something new, practice it ahead of time—and have a back-up plan in place such as take-out menu or pizza to throw in the combo oven.
Dress up the meal with more than one course, but keep it simple. Start with appetisers that can be prepared ahead of time, and end with a simple dessert. Homemade ice cream made beforehand with a slow juicer will both look and taste impressive when served, especially with a quick garnish added on top.
Choose the spot you want to dine in. If the weather’s nice, enjoy your meal in the garden or on a private balcony—particularly if you’ll have a good view of the sunset or a clear night sky. If it’s too cold or wet for the outdoors, there are plenty of options for where to eat inside. Set a small table by the window, use cushions as seating around a coffee table by the fireplace, or sit side-by-side at the kitchen bar.
As for table dressings, stick to the classics: use nice dishes, cloth napkins, and cutlery for each course. Unsure how to fold the napkins or where to put the forks? A quick online search will bring up all sorts of resource videos to guide you step-by-step.
The table won’t be complete without a suitably romantic centerpiece, of course! Keep it simple and low so as not to overwhelm the table—flowers or candles are always a sure bet. If you can, add a personal touch such as a homemade menu on each plate.
As for the atmosphere, start by dimming the overhead lights in favour of lit candles or stringed lights. Choose background music that won’t be distracting such as instrumentals or jazz. If you use a streaming service, make sure you won’t be interrupted by mood-killing commercials! Play the music through a voice-activated home speaker if you have one—that way, rather than leaving the table to adjust volume or skip a track, you can keep your attention on your date.