Once a year, the boyfriends and girlfriends of the world are faced with one of the most daunting tasks — effortlessly, awe-inspiringly, and miraculously impressing your significant other on his or her birthday.
If you’re lucky like me, your boyfriend is a complete foodie, so the best way to accomplish this goal is to surround him with amazing food and thematic foodie gifts.
Based on my own recent experience, here is a simple guide on how to take your boyfriend or girlfriend out for a proper birthday dinner.
Step 1: Secretively manage to make a reservation at one of the city’s most earth-shattering fooderies.
Think about Babe’s favorite cuisines, and search Yelp for somewhere with high reviews and an intimate atmosphere. Continue to hide information from them until arrival.
TIP: If you aren’t sure about his or her favorite cuisine, consider a tapas restaurant where you can try a bunch of different options.
If you’re good like me, you’ll pick a restaurant that looks even more secretive once you’ve arrived. Enter ‘The Lion,’ located in an 1800’s townhouse in the West Village of New York. The sensuous black lacquered doors with ivy exterior leads into a stylishly inviting dining room decorated with eclectic contemporary artwork like Andy Warhol and Basquiat and crowned by a dome skylight.
If it just so happens that Babe is an art lover and a foodie, you’ll score some extra points at this establishment…go me!
Step 2: Start drinking immediately.
It’s a special occasion so spring for a speciality cocktail.
Step 3: Allow Babe to use cell phone at the table, because it’s their birthday and you have no choice.
Plus, it will probably lead to Google-imaging birthday cakes, because that’s normal.
Step 4: Order a specialty menu with a wide selection of eats.
Research beforehand what some of the highly-rated dishes are at the restaurant to make sure you get to taste the best of the best.
TIP: Certainly do not forget the wine pairing option that your generous waiter will offer. This brings everything up 10 notches!
Enter the Long Island Fluke Crudo, delicately placed on a pool of green tomato broth (good enough to drink with a straw) and combined with elements of seeds and sprouts and a touch of pepperoncini. Paired with the Sauvignon Blanc and we’re off to a fantastic start. Must eat for the Insta.
Hooray, the world will never be the same after this Burrata. The cheese was intertwined with local stone fruit, pickled and raw, dressed with a touch of sesame oil and paired with cute little sesame crisps. Paired with a stunning and delicious Rose, the night was made.
Step 5: Show everyone how clever and artsy you are by documenting the entire event.
We hashtagged this “Whatta Burrata.”
Our third course, Squid Ink Spaccatelli with squid, nduja and gremolata, offered a perfect transition meal with a nice spicy kick. Babe will compare this to religious greatness. That means you’re doing a good job.
The fish of the day, Halibut with favas, preserved lemons and sunflower emulsion — fresh and light.
Status update: By this point Babe is giddily drunk. This also means you’re doing a good job.
This grandiose meal concluded with a Colorado Lamb Loin, the filet mignon of the lamb world. Tender and perfectly balanced with baby gem lettuce and cherry jus.
Syrah from Cotes du Rhone, the only reason one would remember the 5th wine is because its flavor was a perfect pairing.
Step 6 (but also kind of Step 1.5): If you’ve done this part of the evening right, then dessert will just arrive at the table.
Order it beforehand when you make your reservation and secretively remind your server about it upon arrival. They might bring it out with candles or makeshift table candles work well. Who cares anyway, your date is inebriated, full and in love.
Step 7: Chaperone your now inebriated date home on the sexy subway.
End successful birthday dinner date. You are now engaged. You’re welcome!