If you haven’t got a Valentine’s card, then we recommend these eco versions made from recycled materials and embedded with eleven varieties of wildflowers and grass seed. That means once they have been enjoyed, the recipient can plant them and grow wildflowers. Priced at €5.50, they are available from The Kind on Fade Street, Dublin, or available online. www.thekind.co
From now until the end of February, the Oyster Bar at Cliff Townhouse and its downstairs neighbour Urchin Bar will be serving a tempting “Share the Love” seafood platter €65. €10 from each pre-ordered platter sold goes to Focus Ireland, helping people who are homeless or are at risk of losing their homes across Ireland. The “Share the Love” platter is available every day at the Cliff Townhouse Oyster Bar from 12-2.30pm and from 5pm to close, and in Urchin Bar everyday from noon, at 22 St. Stephen’s Green, Dublin 2
The first Tapas Trail launches today, Thursday February 13 at 6pm, at Powerscourt Centre, which will involve visiting three of Powerscourt Centre’s favourite restaurants – The Pepper Pot, Little Pyg and Pygmalion. Guests will sample tapas and drinks in a relaxed, unpressurised environment, perfect for meeting new people and making new friends. Tickets are currently for sale on the Tapas Trail website at the price of €69 per ticket. Included in this ticket price is all of the food, along with a drink in each of the three venues visited. www.powerscourtcentre.ie
Luttrellstown Castle Valentine’s “Wish Upon a Castle” Afternoon Tea takes place on Sunday February 16 in the elegant surroundings of the Van Stry Ballroom. On the menu is freshly baked plain and cinnamon and orange scones with clotted cream, pastries including mini red velvet cupcakes, love heart shortcake sandwich with pistachio cream and raspberry jam, strawberry and elderflower macaroon and a chocolate and salted caramel delice with hazelnut praline and popping candy. There are three sittings – 1pm, 3.30pm and 5.30pm all priced at €50 per person. A Rose Champagne Afternoon Tea is available for €65; www.luttrelstowncastle.com
Overlooking formal gardens and its own championship golf courses, The K Club, Co Kildare is a luxurious setting for Valentine’s weekend. With an award-winning spa, a selection of bars and restaurants to enjoy, “My Lovely Valentine” at The K Club includes one or two nights’ luxurious accommodation, full Irish breakfast in the River Room restaurant, a four-course dinner in the Byerley Turk on one evening, champagne and chocolates on arrival and a complimentary room upgrade, all available from €190 per person sharing. www.kclub.ie
For gourmet lovers, Conrad Dublin has a tempting Valentines’ Aphrodisiac Dinner and bespoke cocktail, from Thursday 13 to Saturday February 15. Executive Chef, Gary Rogers has created a three-course menu which includes a complimentary glass of prosecco and chocolate truffles and costs €60 per person. On the menu is Kilkeel harbour crab, Carlingford oysters, Wickow venison, Atlantic halibut, with a white chocolate and pistachio souffle with ice cream and white chocolate and caramel sauce. Bon appetit! www.conraddublin.com
Served in The Gallery, Valentine’s Afternoon Tea, until February 16 at Adare Manor is nothing short of spectacular. The room features stained-glass windows dedicated by the Earl of Dunraven “in the love and honour of Caroline Wyndham, his countess”. In that spirit, Executive Pastry Chef Xavier Torne has designed a menu of savoury bites and sweet delights available from €55 per person. There’s also a special Twilight Valentine’s Afternoon Tea from €85 per person, on February 14 which includes freshly shucked oysters, will be served from 5.30pm to the tune of Adare Manor’s live jazz quartet. www.adaremanor.com
Going shopping for a special love token? Zoë Jordan has just launched a new personalised Amor Edison Bomber – The Love Bomber. Handcrafted by Jordan’s team in their studio in London, the Love Bomber is an exclusive run of ten, costing €450 and available online. www.zoe-jordan.com
JP McMahon’s Tartare Café + Wine Bar, 56 Dominick Street Lower, Galway, has a special Valentine’s Day Menu for €39 per person which is available from February 14 – 16. Guests will be greeted with a gin, meadowsweet and rhubarb cocktail on arrival, before being presented with Irish charcuterie and farmhouse cheese, pickles and compote to share and enjoy together. Diners can then select two dishes from an extensive menu, including beef tartare or Burren Smoked Salmon. The menu finishes on a sweet note with Chocolate and Woodruff Mousse and Salted Caramel; www.tartaregalway.ie
Set on 170 acres of mature parkland, Lyrath Estate is just five minutes from Kilkenny city centre, and is offering a one or two-night break – the “All You Need is Love” package. This offer includes bed, breakfast and Valentine’s dinner in the two AA Rosette, Yew Restaurant and is available on either the February 14 or 15, from €185 per person sharing. Alternatively, The Oasis Spa at Lyrath Estate is offering a “Couple’s Experience” treatment, which includes a half day of pampering (from €90 per person to €115 per person) and a wellness journey through the Thermal Suite before a Rasul mud treatment, before a relaxing massage in the Couple’s Suite. To book contact www.lyrath.com
Finally, Valentine’s Day wouldn’t be complete without some chocolates. Our favourites are Butlers Chocolates Indulgent Heart box (€16) featuring an assortment of chocolate truffles and caramels including Pink Himalayan Salt Caramel and Passionata. It’s just one of several Valentines gift boxes available from Butlers Chocolate Cafés and selected stockists nationwide and online at www.butlerschocolates.com.
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