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Food & Wine

Valentine's Day Wine and Dinner Menu

December 10, 2020

Written By Coravin

Valentine’s Day has a not so lovey-dovey history. On February 14 of different years back in the 3rd century A.D., the Romans executed two men by the name of St. Valentine. This date also marks the ancient Roman celebration of the feast of Lupercalia – which we won’t go into detail about here. In short, it was a pagan ritual that eventually evolved into a more tame celebration of fertility and love. 

As years passed, the holiday grew even sweeter. Fast-forward to the middle ages, in Shakespeare's Hamlet, Ophelia called herself Hamlet’s Valentine. “Tomorrow is Saint Valentine’s day. All in the morning bedtime, And I a maid at your window, To be your Valentine.” 

Today we often celebrate with wine, chocolate, and indulgent meals. The pairing of wine and love, in particular, dates back to Greco-Roman mythology when the god of wine, Dionysus, and the goddess of love, Aphrodite, had an affair. So, on this holiday dedicated to love, why not have some win? If you’re still looking for the perfect bottle, we share some of our favorite Valentine’s Day wines below.

Start a Valentine’s Day tradition

Before we get into the wines, let’s talk about traditions! With a Coravin Timeless wine preservation system, you can preserve your wines for weeks, months, and years. If you dread Valentine’s Day or are always scrambling for something special to do, invest in a special bottle and enjoy one glass every time February 14th comes around. This will give you something to look forward to each year. 

7 Valentine’s Day wines

Red, white, sparkling – they’re all here. Make Valentine’s Day special by exploring new wine – or wines! With a Coravin system, you can tap into more than one bottle at once, allowing you to pair one wine with appetizers, one wine with dinner, and one wine with dessert (dinner and dessert suggestions below). 

1. Bollinger, Brut Rosé Champagne

This Rosé Champagne has the perfect combination of fruitiness and freshness, and its salmon-pink color fits right in the Valentine’s Day mood. 

2. Casa Belfi, Colfondo Frizzante Prosecco

If Champagne is over your budget, opt for Prosecco, like this Casa Belfi. It’s light-bodied, low in alcohol, bone-dry with delicate bubbles and fruity scents.

3. 2005 Villabella Fracastoro, Amarone della Valpolicella Classico

Amarone – one of the most romantic wines out there, from Romeo and Juliet’s region, Veneto, Italy. What makes these wines so rich, powerful, and, most importantly, so unique? After harvest, the grapes are left to dry all winter, concentrating their sugars, flavors, and alcohol levels.  This 2005 Villabella Fracastoro is a majestic wine with great structure, elegant fruity and spicy notes, and notes of cacao, tobacco, and cherries.

4. 2012 Weingut Laurenz V., Charming Gruner Veltliner

Austria’s signature grape: Gruner Veltliner. The cool Austrian white’s minerality and crisp acidity make it perfect for any occasion, basically – but mainly for your Valentine.

5. Bodegas Tierra Secreta, Malbec

Try this Tierra Secreta Malbec from Mendoza, Argentina. Its deep ruby with dark purple hues exhibits elegant floral notes, leading to a full-bodied mouthful of rich, spicy black fruit. The wine has a lively finish which reflects the aging in French and American oak barrels. 

6. Bourgogne Blanc Chardonnay

Up next is the first Chardonnay on the list, Bourgogne Blanc Chardonnay from Burgundy, France. France has always been tied to the imagery of lovers and romance, and the mystique surrounding French wine carries an air of class and sophistication. The bright acid, stony minerality, and hints of citrus and florals shy away from the classic butter and oak bombs of California and compliment a wide array of foods. Pair this wine with aphrodisiac oysters on half shells, pan-seared fish, herbed roasted chicken, or even pasta with a rich cream sauce. 

7. Mia Dolcea, Moscato D’Asti

Last on our Valentine’s Day wine list, Mia Dolcea Moscato D’Asti from Piedmont, Italy. The grapes for Mia Dolcea are carefully selected from the Asti region of Italy, where the history is as rich as the grapes. The sweet and creamy aromas of pineapple, lychee, dried apricot, and honey are a wonder of a combination. The perfect accompaniment to a strawberry-forward dessert.

wine cheers Moscato on marble

Valentine’s Day Dinner Menu: Steak and Chocolate Mousse

Now that you have your wine suggestions, it’s time to think about dinner. Whether it’s dinner for one, two, or a group of friends (i.e. your pod or household), a seared steak makes a great choice. The recipe below is for two people, halve or double as needed. Pair this meal with your favorite Cabernet Sauvignon or that Amarone mentioned above.

Ingredients for steak

  • 2 (12-oz) grass-fed New York strip steaks 

  • 1 tsp kosher salt

  • 3/4 tsp fresh cracked black pepper

  • 2 Tbsp butter

  • 2 garlic cloves, diced 

Ingredients for chocolate mousse

  • 7 oz. dark baking chocolate

  • 6 eggs, separated

  • 1/2 tsp sea salt

steak and red wine

Directions

  1. Prep the mousse first (hours before the meal): Fill a saucepan with an inch or two of water and heat to a low simmer. Add baking chocolate to a medium metal mixing bowl and set over the saucepan – creating a double boiler. Allow chocolate to melt until smooth. Remove mixing bowl from heat. Add egg yolks and whisk until smooth.   

  2. In a second metal mixing bowl, add egg whites and salt. Whip with an electric mixer until the whites form stiff peaks. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold 1/3 of the egg white mixture into the chocolate. Take care not to overmix, as you want to retain the air bubbles. Fold in the remaining egg whites just until incorporated. 

  3. Divide mousse between 2-4 ramekins. Cover and chill until set, about 3-4 hours. Serve with whipped cream. 

  4. Move onto the steak: Bring steaks to room temperature. Season meat liberally with kosher salt and cracked black pepper. Heat a heavy-bottomed skillet, preferably cast iron, on high for several minutes and open your windows or your vent. Once the pan is searing hot, add steak. Don’t move it around. Cook for 3 minutes until browned, flip and cook for another 3 minutes. Check internal temperature with an instant-read thermometer: 120 to 125°F for medium-rare or 130°F for medium. 

  5. Once desired temperature is reached, turn heat to medium-low and add butter and garlic to the pan. As butter melts, baste steak by flipping it in pooled liquid a few times or spooning it over top. 

  6. Remove steaks from pan and let rest ten minutes. Serve steak with remaining butter from pan drizzled over top. Pair with roasted veggies, mashed potatoes, or a side salad.

Enjoying one of these Valentine’s Day wines or this special meal? Share it with us on social, @Coravin.