Forget Valentine’s Day (read: Valiumtime’s Day), let’s focus on Leslie Knope’s anti-Valentine’s day holiday called Galentine’s Day, traditionally celebrated on February 13th. For all of you single ladies out there, this is your chance to treat yourself to a fabulous meal without the pressure of dealing with a date who thinks that because he’s paying for one meal out of the year, he’s going to get laid.
So gather your best girlfriends and check out these great Galentine’s Day restaurant suggestions. If you really want to make it special, you’ll find some Galentine’s day gift suggestions in the video at the end of this article.
If you’re in Miami:
The Forge- This iconic Miami eatery was recently re-vamped to include an enomatic wine bar which includes 80 wines by the glass. Aside from the wine, they have an extensive menu of cocktails like the Zombie, which includes Bacardi 151, Lucid Absinthe and Flor De Cana rum. The food is just as amazing as the drink selection. Some of their signature dishes include their Fried Corn Raviolis (to die for.), the Oak Grilled Super Steak, and Three Mushroom Risotto. The décor always makes me feel like I stepped into a scene straight out of Scarface (minus the machine guns and mountains of cocaine).
STK- Located in the Gansevoort Hotel, STK is one of my favorite steakhouses. One of the major reasons: they play 80’s music all night long. Could that be any more perfect for Galentine’s day? I mean what girl doesn’t love jamming to 80’s music? (Enter Nick Swardson joke here). Their Shrimp Rice Krispies and Lil’ Big Mac’s are great starters, and supreme for sharing, because you and I both know that a girl’s night out involves A LOT of sharing. If steak isn’t your thing, they have plenty of fresh seafood on the menu. And if all else fails (or even if it doesn’t) order the Mac and Cheese.
Mr. Yum- Located on historic “Calle Ocho,” this diamond in the rough sushi spot is a sublime place for Galentine’s Day. The menu is extensive, the food is delicious (try the Calle Ocho Tuna), and there’s plenty of Sake and Saporro to make you forget that crazy ex-boyfriend of yours. They even have an adorable private room in the back, so no one can get in the way of you and your Thai Donuts.
If you’re in DC:
Jaleo- I hate to put a Jose Andres restaurant on here, because he is just so damn annoying. But Jaleo is really THAT good. They have plenty of tapas to choose from (again, sharing is caring), and amazing Sangria. And if you really want to indulge (it IS Galentine’s Day after all), they make a great Paella. A good friend of mine who is from Spain has said this is the best Spanish restaurant he has been to in the U.S.
Oya- The first thing that attracted me to this restaurant was the beautiful stark-white décor, and the fireplace lining the dining room wall. Oya is a GW student staple, and with good reason. This place is pricey, but Galentine’s Day is an excuse to treat yourself. There are plenty of small plates to choose from, and their rolls are innovative and decadent (Short Rib Tempura roll, anyone?). They also have a great selection of Champagne. If you’re in the mood to splurge, go here.
Urbana- This place is casual, and the food is great. If you’re looking to go somewhere fairly inexpensive with a great ambience, this is your place. The staff is super friendly, they have a great wine list, and their desserts are amazing! The Arancini (risotto breaded and fried) is my favorite appetizer, but the Brussels Sprouts casserole is also great. Try the Swordfish or the Lamb as an entrée. I love the chill vibe of this place; it’s great for drinking wine and hanging out, and perfect for Galentine’s day. Their menu changes seasonally, so you’ll never have the same thing twice.
If you’re in NYC:
Mulberry Project- I cannot get enough of this place. First of all, they have Bespoke Cocktails which pretty much means they make you your own personalized cocktail according to your taste (spicy, sweet, sour), and the vibe is a “downtown cool” atmosphere without the pretentiousness. Their menu consists of mostly all small plates; think Crispy Pork Belly, Braised Octopus, and Fried Brussels Sprouts.
Beauty and Essex- They have free champagne in the girls’ bathroom. Need I say more? They also have a great raw bar, and “Jewels on Toast” with toppings like Mission Fig & Goat Cheese, as well as Roasted Bone Marrow. Seek out their great cocktail menu (try the Masterly Touch). Once you’re intoxicated, move onto the big plates like Chicken Meatballs or the Beauty and Essex Burger. This place will not disappoint.
Galentine’s Day is all about indulging, and lots of champagne. I hope you try one of the places listed above; I promise they are all perfect for a girl’s night out. Happy Galentine’s Day!