First up, we suggest venturing to the depths of North West London. Situated in the heart of Camden, Shaka Zulu, the neighbour of the highly popular Gilgamesh, will be treating guests to a 5 course meal fit for (Zulu) kings. The South African inspired interiors are opulent; perhaps over-the-top but entirely appropriate for Valentine’s Day, and provide the perfect backdrop for the luxurious meal. As guests tuck into their corn-fed chicken breast, Brett Warren will be serenading couples to add to the romance of the night. The meal costs £29.95 and double-daters will be treated to a bottle of South African Rosé.
Thursday 14th February 2013
To book, either call 020 3376 9911, email firstname.lastname@example.org visit www.shaka-zulu.com
Chalk Farm Road
Our second suggestion is Hony Tonk, in Chelsea. For those of you that are bored of the mushy, lovey-dovey Valentine’s routine, this New-York inspired restaurant is bringing something much edgier to the equation. On February 14th, Honky Tonk will be offering a Yankeefied set menu, champagne upon arrival and live music. Three courses will cost you £39.95 per person, or $62.50 (if you really want to be authentic).
Thursday 14th February 2013
6 Hollywood Road,
Tel: 0207 351 1588
Our third suggestion is Bunga Bunga, the famous Italian Karaoke bar in Battersea. This year, Bunga Bunga will be celebrating Valentine’s Day twice. At first, they’ll be organising a secret singletons party, named the ‘Segreto Club’, on Tuesday 12th February, with unlimited Prosecco and Bellinis (from 7.30pm until 9pm), small pizzas and a musical chairs game with a speed-dating style twist. Secondly, on Thursday 14th February, if the previous event has worked at all, lovers will be treated to heart-shaped pizzas, serenaded by according players and offered the right amount of Prosecco to get the daring/drunk guests to take to the karaoke stage, at the ‘Lovers Dinner’. This is certainly a less pretentious alternative to other Valentine’s Day events being offered in London!
Date: Tuesday 12th February 2013
Time: 7.30 start
Date: Thursday 14th February 2013
37 Battersea Bridge Road,
Tel: 020 7095 0360
They say that oysters are an aphrodisiac, so is there really any place better to go than an Oyster Bar, on Valentine’s Day? Bibendum, in South Kensington, is famed for its spacious and surprisingly unpretentious Oyster Bar. Four varieties of oyster are available, including a seasonal treat of six native Colchester No.2s for £19.75. As well as the food being delicious, the tiled wall and high ceilings of the extravagant Michelin building also provide the perfect back-drop for a highly romantic evening.
81 Fulham Road,
Tel: 020 7581 5817
If you've left it a little bit late or have managed to bag yourself a date today ... Have no fear. London has plenty of great restaurants with a strictly no booking policy. This may mean that there are long queues of disorganised lovers on Thursday night, but it also means that a delightfully romantic evening is still possible to attain.
Chicken Shop (79 Highgate Road, NW5 1TL (020 3310 2020) in up-and-coming Kentish Town is part of the growing chicken rotisserie scene in London. Simple but delicious food in a somewhat high-end setting. Alternatively, Meat Liquor is a popular choice with London foodies; famous for its burgers and alcohol, hence the name. It's situated just off Oxford Street, so you can even buy a Valentine's present just before... If you're cutting it reaaaaally fine. The final suggestion is creative, inexpensive and could, if done correctly, be the most romantic option of them all. A stroll alongside the charming Camden Lock, with a meal from one of the international stalls, may be an interesting option for those of you who shy away from the typical Valentine's Day affair.