Romance is in the air: 20 restaurants to celebrate Valentine's Day on the South Shore
Valentine’s Day falls on a Tuesday this year, which is not the sexiest day of the week to dine out with your sweetheart, but no matter the night, romance is always in the air at these South Shore restaurants. However you decide to celebrate, make reservations soon – or else risk sleeping on the couch.
Alden Park in Plymouth
Valentine’s specials will be available throughout the week starting Feb. 10. You can also have fresh roses waiting at the table for your one-and-only. A half-dozen long stems cost $50 and a dozen is $70. The regular dinner menu is billed as “creative American” with choices such as baked Dijon salmon, taco grilled cheese, lamb lollipops, lobster mac-n-cheese and pan-seared ribeye.
160 Colony Place, Plymouth; 508-830-6777; aldenparkrestaurant.com
Alma Nove in Hingham
Situated along the waterfront in the Hingham Shipyard, Alma Nove, run by chef Paul Wahlberg, is one of those places that invites you to stay for a long time to linger over the meal. Wahlberg’s menu is constantly changing, but consistently delicious. Try the sweet potato gnocchi, roasted chicken thigh "pot pie," truffle Yukon frites or wood-grilled, bone-in pork chop. Cupid would probably eat here too.
22 Shipyard Drive, Hingham, 781-749-3353; almanovehingham.com
Alba in Quincy and Alba on 53 in Hanover
At both of Leo Keka’s restaurants, the atmosphere always makes you want to pull your seat closer to the person you're eating with. The Hanover location is a slightly more rustic take on the original Alba's classic Italian steakhouse. It offers sushi and includes a wood-fired pizza oven. The space is an open concept with a direct view into the kitchen and exposed wooden beams. In Quincy, diners can expect dry-aged steaks, fresh seasonal seafood and house-cured charcuterie.
Alba, 1486 Hancock St., Quincy, 617-376-2522; albaquincy.com
Alba on 53, 2053 Washington St., Hanover, 781-789-5527; albaon53.com
'Steven Tyler made everyone's night': Rocker drops into Alba on 53 in Hanover
Trattoria San Pietro in Norwell
Elegant meals and old-world Southern Italian charm make it feel like the North End has come to Norwell. Your Valentine will love the homemade pastas, raviolis, risottos, veal and pork chops and classics such as old-school chicken Parmesan. Mangia!
376 Washington St., Norwell, 781-659-2009; trattoriasanpietro.com
Let's Eat, Ledgerland:There's a story behind every dish at Trattoria San Pietro
The Red Lion Tavern in Cohasset
Five working fireplaces, historical charm, picturesque location. That's the setting for a restaurant that’s both fancy and comfortable at the same time. Chef Richmond Edes will offer a special Valentine's Day menu that includes four starters: Wagyu beef and tartare, tuna crudo, chicory salad, celery root veloute. Entrée selections are poached salmon, squid, sirloin or lamb dishes or a bone-in rib-eye for two. Desserts are dark chocolate cremeux or warm gingerbread pudding.
Red Lion Tavern, 71 South Main St., Cohasset,781-383-1704; theredliontavern.com
Tosca in Hingham
With its high ceilings, exposed wooden beams, brick walls and open-concept kitchen with wood-fired grill, Tosca is a big but intimate fine-dining establishment. Celebrate the holiday of hearts with prime cut steaks, swordfish, veal sirloin Parmigiano topped with Muenster cheese or a seared scallop dish and more than 250 bottles of wine. Cheers!
Tosca, 14 North St., Hingham, 781-740-0080; toscahingham.com
Let's eat, Ledgerland: Hingham's Tosca finds ways to stay fresh
E2 in Marshfield
Chef Charly Bournazos opened Ember in 2004 and later changed the name to E2. Doesn’t matter what you call it, Ember – old and new – has only gotten better with age. The low lighting, contemporary décor, sophisticated-yet-accessible menu and scattering of gas fireplaces provide an atmosphere of intimacy that seems to be designed with couples in mind.
E2, 459 Plain St., Marshfield, 781-834-9159; e2kitchenbar.com
Scarlet Oak Tavern in Hingham
This is a place to celebrate a special night, but its ambiance is also relaxed enough to enjoy on a regular basis. The restaurant is housed in a handsomely restored 250-year-old Colonial home and features a comfortable dining room, a large, dark-wood bar and a wood-burning fireplace.
Scarlet Oak Tavern, 1217 Main St., Hingham, 781-749-8200; scarletoaktavern.com
Mallebar Brasserie in Plymouth
Starry-eyed lovers and French cuisine are a perfect match for Valentine’s Day at Mallebar Brasserie, the second Plymouth restaurant from chef Jim Casey and his wife and general manager, Heather Casey. Entrees include beef bourguignon, chicken Francaise, escargot and foie gras. Bon appetit!
Mallebar Brasserie, 15 Main St. Ext., Plymouth, 508-747-0471; mallebarbrasserie.com
1620 Wine Bar, Plymouth
For couples that want more than a meal, this Plymouth waterfront hotspot offers live entertainment, a full tapas menu, which is perfect for sharing (very romantic), and an extensive wine and cocktail list. Grab a seat next to the fireplace. The restaurant is offering a Valentine’s special from Feb. 9-12. Diners can get two tapas and a bottle of wine to share for $40. From 7 to 10 p.m. Feb. 10, the restaurant is hosting a Valentine's Cocktails, Cheese and Chocolate Pairing Night. Tickets cost $70 for one admission or $120 for a couple, at eventbrite.com.
1620 Wine Bar, 170 Water St., Plymouth; 1620winebar.com
Let's Eat, Ledgerland:Plymouth's 1620 Winery makes pandemic shift
Osteria Vivo in Pembroke
A mix of classic and modern, the menu is stacked with Italian favorites such as veal Bolognese and chicken Parmesan with other offerings such as roasted duck breast, Piedmontese sirloin steak with truffle jus and a variety of homemade pastas and sauces. It’s everything you need for a special night out.
Osteria Vivo, 254 Church St., Pembroke, 781-924-1315; osteriavivo.com
'Nobody leaves here unhappy':It's a taste of Italy at Osteria Vivo in Pembroke
Lucca South Shore in Rockland
Opened in 2020, Lucca has become a favored destination for romantic dinners and special occasions. Chef Anthony Mazzotta’s menu – butter-braised calamari, oven-roasted swordfish, ricotta cavatelli – might make you fall in love all over again.
Lucca, 933 Hingham St., Rockland, 781-871-5789; luccasouthshore.com
Sun Tavern in Duxbury
It is unlikely any other restaurant on the South Shore has more charm and history than the Sun Tavern. Housed in a lovely extended Cape built in 1741, it is surrounded by gracious lawns and gardens and even has a resident ghost. Fire crackles in the grates of its original brick fireplace to create an atmosphere so intimate and cozy that you’ll forget there’s other people around you.
Sun Tavern, 500 Congress St., Duxbury, 781-837-1027; suntavernrestaurant.com
Wicked Smaht, fit – and generous:Group leaves $4,600 tip at Plymouth restaurant
Davio's in Braintree
A three-course prix fixe menu is available Feb. 14 for $95 per person. Courses include confit duck leg with toasted pomegranate and walnut vinaigrette or Nantucket Bay scallops to start followed by an 8-ounce filet mignon, lobster tail and potatoes or Atlantic halibut, clams and Parmigian risotto. Desserts are warm red velvet cake, cheesecake and chocolate strawberries.
Davio's, 250 Granite St., Braintree, 781-843-4810; davios.com/braintree
Bia Bistro in Cohasset
Brian Houlihan serves a menu of comfort-food classics with fresh, locally sourced ingredients at this quaint dine-by-candlelight bistro inside an old white Colonial home. Choices range from duck confit with poached seasonal fruit and pan-roasted salmon to steak au poivre and slow-braised beef short ribs.
Bia Bistro, 25 N. Main St., Cohasset Village, 781-383-0464, biabistro.com
Novara in Milton
Novara, a Northern Italian restaurant in East Milton Square in the old Milton Cinema space, has reopened after a kitchen fire in November. The restaurant is co-owned by New Kids on the Block singer Jordan Knight. Paying homage to the history of the space, Novara plays old movies on a large screen. The menu features items such as sweet potato arancini, calamari fritti, chicken Parm meatballs, Duxbury oysters, seafood scampi, salmon piccata, pasta dishes, plus brick-oven pizzas and salads.
Novara, 556 Adams St., Milton, 617-696-8400; novararestaurant.com
Sala by Fratelli's in Quincy
Grab two spoons and sweeten your night with a decadent dessert or chocolate-drizzled cocktail at this warm and welcoming downtown Quincy lounge. Snuggle up with your significant other and share a platter of mini cannoli, Nonna’s tiramisu or strawberry shortcake trifle.
Sala, 470 Southern Artery Unit #2, 617-479-4863; salabyfratellis.com
Indulge: Sala by Fratelli's is a cozy Italian lounge in the heart of Quincy
Siros in Marina Bay
A fine-dining establishment, Siros has long been an old standby – it opened in 1993 – to celebrate a special occasion on the South Shore. Who hasn’t marked a milestone birthday, bridal shower or graduation at the Marina Bay restaurant? The space, which affords an amazing view of the Boston skyline, is beautiful and elegant but not fussy.
Siros, 307 Victory Road, Quincy, 617-472-4500; sirosblue.com
New South Shore restaurants:Bluefish River Tavern, Evviva Trattoria, Zserbó Bakery
Bay Pointe Waterfront Restaurant
Nestled inside Bay Pointe Marina in Quincy, the restaurant, run by the Hynes Restaurant Group, is known for its fresh local seafood, steaks and chops. Every seat in the dining room overlooks the water and adjacent marina. The sophisticated nautical décor creates an ambiance of simple elegance that sets just the right mood for Valentine's Day.
Bay Pointe Waterfront Restaurant, 64 Washington Ct., Quincy, 617-472-3200; baypointewaterfrontrestaurant.com
More:Employees of three South Shore restaurants get $100,000 surprise
This article originally appeared on The Patriot Ledger: 20 romantic South Shore restaurants to celebrate Valentine's Day