It may seem like you have weeks to prepare for it, but I assure you, it will sneak into your calendar view before you know it. What is it? Well, Valentines Day, of course. Many marketing companies have exploited Valentines Day for it’s commercial qualities and yes, we also agree that romance shouldn’t be forced or limited to a single day. There are many others that would argue its value in their relationship, that this is one of the few days they are admired with the passion adrift in daily regiments of daycare and bath time, career and commute, and health regiments and physician visits. Valentines Day, along with other romantic “Hallmark Holidays”, give a needed focus for many.
Celebrating the holiday can cause much stress and frustration, especially if you wait until the last minute. Starting early and preparing for the occasion thoughtfully will make a successful, romantic and lasting celebration of your love. One of the keys to a successful evening is dinner and considering Madison is a “food junkie” hot spot, there are endless restaurants with varying genres and price ranges to choose from.
We have two favorites that we reserve for special, romantic evenings. Our first choice would be Fresco located on top of the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art. Its first attraction is the astonishing view. You can see nearly all of Madison’s beauty from the restaurant. The food is to die for, always cooked to perfection and presented beautifully. My favorite is the Seared Tuna Salad. I am not normally the “get a salad” woman but after being reassured by the waitresses that it was a fulfilling dish, I gave it a try. Flawlessly seared and served with kalamata olives, black sheep truffle cheese and champagne vinaigrette. Delicious! The only drawback you might face is that dinner and drinks can get a little costly, especially if you are working on a budget but I will tell you it. is. worth. it. Every penny.
Our other favorite is Nostrano on the Capital Square. On top of having superb food, eclectic spirits, a delicately chosen wine selection and prompt courteous staff, they also try to use many locally grown foods to keep their dishes fresh – a detail I must always mention. Because of this, the menu is short and seemingly complex making some people feel a little apprehensive. However, I encourage you to go boldly into the unknown and find a new favored dish. They kitchen staff have clearly spent many hours perfecting the choreographed waltz between texture and flavor for each dish. Maybe you will try the Grilled Sturgeon and ease into a tender fillet of meat cooked to perfection or possibly the Rabbit Boudin Blanc & Confit equally balancing the boldness of the meat with the mushrooms and olives and truly exquisite in presentation. I don’t have a favorite here – I haven’t had a dish I don’t love.
While inspirations of romance are dancing through your mind, booking a room at the Speckled Hen Inn Bed and Breakfast in Madison is the perfect choice for an all-inclusive romantic evening. There are several options for romance packages making it easier for you to focus on the important things, your sweetheart. And if an overnight getaway just doesn’t fit your schedule right now, there is always the option for a Speckled Hen Inn Gift Certificate because any night with your sweetheart could be special.