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The season of love is upon us.

If you’ve been coupled up for a while now, you may have gotten good at the practice of doing date-night at home. But Valentine’s Day is as good a time as any to up your game, without having to fight for a reservation. Read on for our tried-and-tested tips on how to do at-home date-night, right.

First: Determine the Special Touch

We need to differentiate date-night at home from every other night at home. Tonight is not about TV dinners or finishing emails while eating. Instead, add a little special something to make it feel just as great as going out (and you know, being waited on).

Here’s a little inspiration:

Recreate a Trip 

Whether your favorite destination is as far-flung as Japan or as close to home as a weekend getaway, you can never go wrong with recreating a fantastic experience you had on a trip away in the comfort of your own home.

If you traveled abroad and loved it, take inspiration from the region’s cuisine. If you enjoyed something closer to home, like a fall or winter weekend in New England, light your favorite woodsy candle, throw the fireplace YouTube channel onto your TV, and enjoy a meal that mimics one you had on your travels.

Cook a Recipe from Your Favorite Restaurant

Speaking of meals, you don’t have to have taken a flight or a road trip to throw together a memorable one. Sit down with your S.O. and run through all of the most delicious restaurant dishes the two of you have ever enjoyed together, then drop them in the Notes app on your phone. Decide on your favorite and then Google the recipe. (Pro tip: for more notable restaurants, the exact version is often on line.) If you’re desperate for authenticity—why not just call the restaurant and ask for the recipe?

Plan the Evening Around Something You Both Love

Most couples have one thing that they agree on and love unequivocally. Whether you’re obsessed with the arts… or well… Game of Thrones, you know what your shared “thing” is. Take one aspect from that shared interest and incorporate it into the evening. Love classical music? Play it on a record player over the course of your meal. Love sports? Serve cracker jacks in a vintage popcorn holder as an appetizer. Into wellness? Drink kombucha out of wine glasses instead of your average cocktail. The opportunities to get creative without leaning too kitschy are endless.

Step Two: Set a Timeline

This is admittedly the least sexy step, but it’s hard to pull off an unforgettable evening at home without some pre-planning. The whole point is that we want to make things special here, so build out a workback schedule that leaves you relaxed and ready when the day comes. In our minds, it goes something like the below:

Two Weeks Ahead:
Determine the special touch

One Week Ahead:
Order your dry goods (flowers, tablescape decorations, etc)
Determine your recipe & food vendors

Valentine’s Day is as good a time as any to splurge on food shopping. If you eat meat, set aside some extra funds to get the best cut from your local butcher. If you drink wine, by all means, get the most highly recommended bottle at your local wine shop, and, if cheese is part of the equation, go to a cheese shop and ask the cheesemonger for their top choice.

Three Days Out:
Purchase all of your groceries
Put together a playlist
Plan your outfit (feel free to treat yourself to something new; you are saving on the restaurant tip, after all)

The Night Before:
Prepare all of the food, just plan to warm it in the oven or heat it in the saucepan the next day.

Et voila, a foolproof plan for a fabulous date night at home.


If you use any of our tips, don’t forget to tag us on social media using #casadesuna.

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