It is with a heavy heart, that we greet the aftermath of the notorious and glorious Valentine’s Day, or as it is less commonly known; The Feast of St. Valentine, which helps explore a different perception of this highly contestable day. Let me assure you, that this blog entry will not be the repeat of the standardized criticism of Valentine’s Day, and all the commercial love propaganda that is contested and debated year on year. In stark contrast to others, I for one, am a fan of Valentine’s Day….and no, not because I have an affinity for romantic poetry, nor wishing to be the next Christian Grey, or even for simply liking the colour red….No, my reason is simply for the love of food, and more specifically, dining out.
January is an ever-challenging month, what with the lasting financial burden legacy of the festive season, and the inevitable “Dry January” crusaders (see my last blog – CLICK HERE). As a January baby, I know too often the limitations of this cold and depressing month, however, the arrival of Valentine’s Day marks the first real occasion of any significance – sorry Groundhog Day fans! Since the dawn of man, we have enjoyed and celebrated our food; perhaps to different degrees, as I am fairly sure that the average caveman didn’t cry out in sounds of joy over the latest Ramen dish, but more the toast of actually not starving. If there is an occasion that prompts the masses to take to dinning out, then I am all for it.
Most definitely not the professional in relationships and love, I live by a motto that I sadly cannot claim to be my own. “You should feel about your partner the same way you feel when you see the waiter bringing your food” (no, not hungry!). However, what is sad to see, and I have seen it way too often, is when a couple is thrust into the ‘obligatory’ Valentine dining experience, only to find they have very little to say to each, and suddenly the approach of the waiter, brings more relief, not for the fact they are bringing your food, but as a distraction to the otherwise silent dinner conversation – when this is the case, perhaps time for you to stop swiping right so often.
So what is the point I am trying to get at? Valentine’s Day should be more a celebration of dining out, than a declaration of love. However, the two go so nicely together. Don’t allow the goliath supermarkets prompt you to cook for your partner at home – you should be doing this every other day! Dine out, challenge your taste buds, and explore that place you have been so longing to check out. Take a gamble! My fondest Valentine’s Day was enjoyed at what appeared to be a run down Mexican restaurant, where I was greeted with no available table, but an enthusiasm to accommodate. Thus ensued a 2-hour taste marathon, sat at the bar with some unbelievable dishes, washed down with a bottle of tequila. Not quite sure that was what cupid was going for, but hey, it worked for me.
“Food, far more than sex, is the great leveler. Just as every king, prophet, warrior, and saint has a mother, so every Napoleon, every Einstein, every Jesus has to eat.” (Betty Fussell). By Jonathan.