The Fine Art of a Romantic Date Night at Home
For Valentine's Day last year, Scott had the brilliant idea of bringing home a carry-out dinner for us. It was perfectly romantic to relax at home, without fighting the crowds, and enjoy a gourmet dinner. Flash to this Valentine's Day and we thought it would be fun to collaborate with the talented chef/caterer Amanda Leveroni of Bacio Catering again.
Despite one of the rainiest seasons on record here in Northern California, the weather was unseasonably warm which allowed for another alfresco dinner. I created a colorful table with a runner I purchased in Positano, Italy, last summer. The bold florals accented the lemon motif platter, also from the Amalfi coast. I added the flowers - roses and lilies - Scott brought home the evening before, a few candles and the table was set. Scott and I headed into the kitchen to see what delicious cuisine Amanda had cooked up for us this time.
I asked Amanda about her inspiration for a romantic dinner menu like the one she created for her customers this Valentine's Day and she dished:
"Our inspiration for this dinner? Well, that’s a tricky one. It has to be easy, user-friendly, not too complicated for someone (or 2) to re-heat and figure out. It’s the trick really with all of the items that we offer in the carryout.
When we are at your house or venue, our chefs can make it all magical. When you buy food from our retail location or a special dinner like this, we have to take into account soooooo many factors. Does it re-heat well? How does it present when it’s cold in the case? Ahhhhh! It’s such a hybrid business in the food world.
Our inspiration comes from the beautiful stuff the farmers bring in our back door. We look at what’s beautiful and delicious and build from there. We’re inspired by the many ways that we all think this meal should be shared. Shhhh! It get’s kind of naughty." - Amanda Leveroni
The menu for the Valentine's Day carry-out dinner was pure deliciousness . I pre-ordered the butternut squash lasagna and Scott ordered the steak medallions with red-wine reduction. Bacio clearly laid out all instructions for heating our meal and it came together in just a few minutes. There was plenty of time to enjoy sips of sparkling wine while preparing our courses.
*The cheese board featured just the right balance of cheese, fruit, crackers and nuts. The Point Reyes Toma is always a favorite cheese in our house.
*The Mega Glow Greens included slices of orange, watermelon radish, sweet-spiced nut brittle and golden drops of dressing.
*The butternut squash lasagna, with velvety Grana Padano cheese, was to die for, as was the Niman Ranch beef. We shared bites and were equally pleased with our selections.
*Honey glazed carrots and potatoes infused with garlic thyme browned butter rounded out our entrees.
Bacio catering paired with Tin Roof Bakery for crusty bread and Mim's Bakery for the decadent, creamy chocolate delight that was intensely rich and decadent, so much so that we had some leftover for the next night. Mim's created our wedding cake 16 years ago and that added a special touch for our Valentine's day.
Amanda Leveroni is famous for her fresh, seasonal and flavorful dishes in the north state area and it is always a treat to see what combinations she will put together for a menu. Bacio Catering definitely understands the fine art of a romantic dinner at home.
We are hoping that Bacio Catering will be offering their romantic Valentine's Day Dinner again next year. In the meantime, you can order Bacio Biz Boxes year round or stop by the shop at 1903 Park Avenue to pick up delicious dishes to carry out for lunch or dinner. For more on Amanda's inspiring story of 30 years of fresh, healthy food and community love here.
Our thanks to Amanda Leveroni and the Bacio team for creating a romance inspiring carry out dinner for us. Just as you said, Amanda, there are many ways this kind of delectable meal can be shared. Dining at home can be most romantic, especially with a menu like this one. We agree with you, "Food is Love".
Cheers to you!
Our meal from Bacio Catering was a gift to us.
All opinions are, as always, my own.
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