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Table for two: Local chefs dish on their most romantic meal ever

A number of stories include exotic destinations, but hey, one chef found romance in the West Village.

As Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, we asked local New York chefs about the most romantic meal they’ve ever had. While we don’t expect you to take your special someone to an international destination on Feb. 14 like some of these chefs did, you can learn some romantic tricks from the masters. In the future, though, a trip to the Amalfi coast definitely wouldn’t hurt.

Chris D’Amico


335 Bowery St.



“The most romantic meal that I had was on the Amalfi coast, just up the mountains in between Sorrento and Positano, in a town called Sant’Agata. There is a tiny, local pizzeria which overlooks the coast. During the evening the stars can be seen so clearly and look huge – there’s nothing more romantic!”

Chef Devon Gilroy


115 E. 60th St.



“My fiancee and I made time this past summer while Amali was being built to eat at Recette in the West Village. The food was simple but refined and we spoke at length about our time cooking together — rehashing openings and mishaps. It brought us back to an earlier time in our relationship that was more care-free.”

Chef/owner Huy Chi Le


430 Lafayette St.



“The most romantic dinner I ever had was with my wife, Michelle, onboard a Halong Bay cruise in Vietnam last year. It was a fantastic way to experience Vietnamese culture in luxury and comfort. We dined by moonlight on the open deck. The crew would catch lobster, squid and fish as we sailed, and they would grill the day’s catch on deck in front of us nightly.”

Executive chef Marco Moreira

Tocqueville Restaurant

1 E. 15th St.



“The most romantic Valentine’s Day dish I have ever made for my wife was one year when we decided to escape the city to our beach house for a romantic getaway. That year, there was a huge snow storm and the lights went out. So we lit all the candles in the house and I prepared braised quail served over polenta with a bottle of Barolo wine.”

Executive chef Jeffrey Kreisel

Hotel Chantelle

92 Ludlow St.




8-08 Queens Plaza South

LIC, 718-289-6118


“One of the first dishes I made for my fiancee was something she grew up eating called Burek. Her mother, being from Montenegro, traditionally made it but I decided to make a more refined version to impress her.”

Chef Laurent Manrique


92 Madison Ave.



“My most romantic meal is the memory of a Valentine’s Day with my wife where we spent hours in the kitchen cooking together and dancing between each course. Each meal was prepared in a way that we were able to eat with our hands and feed one another.”

Follow Mary Ann Georgantopoulos on Twitter @marygeorgant

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