Valentine's Day falls on a Monday this year, so you can start celebrating the Friday before. Restaurant chefs and owners are jazzing up their menus and offering sweet deals for this romantic holiday.
■ For the first time, Greentree Tearoom will be open on Valentine's Day. Tea will be served at noon, and the menu features French onion soup, poppy seed scones, Low Country shrimp and grits, chocolate pots de crème with raspberry sauce, and glazed heart cookies. Call (859) 455-9660 or go to Greentreetearoom.com.
■ Appalachian Artisan Center Café, 16 West Main Street, Hindman, is offering Valentine's Day in a Box. For $30, you get candles, a red tablecloth and dinner for two — stuffed chicken breasts, rice pilaf, side vegetable, bread and handmade truffles. The deadline for orders is Monday. Orders will be available for pickup 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Valentine's Day.
Boxes of handmade truffles are $5 for a half-dozen, $10 a dozen. Call (606) 785-9855 or (606) 487-3453 or go to Artisancenter.net.
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■ Wingspan Gallery, 191 Jefferson Street, will celebrate Valentine's Day on Feb. 11 and 14. Entree choices are pan-seared lamb chops with raspberry/bourbon reduction, and pan-seared sea scallops with spicy red bell pepper coulis. Cost is $55. The deadline for reservations is Tuesday. Call (859) 225-5765 or go to Wingspangallery.com.
■ Marikka's Restaurant & Bar, 411 Southland Drive, is serving its paprika chicken specialty for Valentine's Day. Dessert, funnel cake with sliced strawberries and whipped cream, is free with any entree. Call (859) 275-1925 or go to Marikkas.com.
■ Stella's Kentucky Deli, 143 Jefferson Street, is planning a dinner for the dollar-minded lover. On Feb. 11, it will serve dinner specials for diners on a budget. On Feb. 12 and Valentine's Day, the dinner menu will feature a five-course meal for $35 featuring bacon-wrapped filet mignon, lobster bisque and vegetarian options. There will be seatings at 6 and 8:30 p.m. both days. Call (859) 255-3354 or go to Stellaskentuckydeli.com.
■ Ouita Michel, chef/owner of Holly Hill Inn in Midway, will serve her annual aphrodisiac menu on two weekends in February. On Feb. 11 and 12, guests may choose from a three-course menu for $35 or a seven-course tasting menu for $75. A four-glass wine flight chosen to complement the courses is $25.
On Feb. 18 and 19, guests may choose a three-course meal for $35 or five-course for $55. On Valentine's Day, a seven-course dinner will be $75.
A sweetheart brunch will be served from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Feb. 13. Cost is $18. Call (859) 846-4732. Holly Hill Inn is at 426 North Winter Street, Midway.
■ Triangle Grille at the Hilton Lexington/Downtown, 369 West Vine Street, has created a special Valentine's Day dinner for Feb. 12.
The prix fixe dinner, served from 5 to 10 p.m., is $45. Entrees include Alltech Angus fillet mignon, pan-roasted bone-in chicken breast, shrimp and scallop gnocchi pasta, prime rib, wild Atlantic striped bass and rack of Kentucky lamb. Call (859) 281-3773.
Dinner and a show
Bluegrass Mystery Theatre will perform Death by Valentine at Bakers 360 at 7 p.m. Saturday. The menu includes slow-roasted beef, herb-roasted pork loin or pasta primavera. The cost is $47.50 for the three-course meal and show. Bakers is at 201 East Main Street. Call (859) 494-2877 or go to Bluegrassmysterytheatre.com.
Celebrating a new year
The Julep Cup, 111 Woodland Avenue, will celebrate Chinese New Year on Friday and Saturday. Entertainment includes Chung Yen Twins from 7 to 9 p.m. Friday and Jo Nardolillo on Saturday. Call (859) 226-0300 or go to Thejulepcup.com.
Double-teamed at Winchell's
Winchell's Restaurant, 348 Southland Drive, will have team-themed specials for Super Bowl fans on Sunday. Live NFL trivia will be 3 to 5 p.m. Call (859) 278-9424.
Offering healthier choices
Bd's Mongolian Grill, 2309 Sir Barton Way, has added some healthier recipes to its Fun Fresh Food limited-time menu. Included are charred tomato pasta, Tuscan chicken, mahi-mahi lettuce-wrapped tacos and pesto chicken. Call (859) 264-0686 or go to Gomongo.com.
Kids can eat for less
Onizim's Restaurant, 735 East Main Street, offers its kids' menu for 50 percent off on Tuesdays and Thursdays. The menu includes hamburgers, fried catfish, chicken tenders, spaghetti, macaroni and cheese, fried shrimp, grilled cheese and hot dogs. The items are priced at $5.95 and $6.95 before the discount and include a drink. Call (859) 266-9000 or go to Onizims.com.
By the glass and the bottle
Wines on Vine, 400 Old Vine Street, is having a bourbon tasting and bottle signing from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday.
Hunter Chavanne from Kentucky Bourbon Distillers and a representative from Bryant Distributing will be on hand to talk about the bourbons. Cost is $5, which goes toward the purchase of a bottle. Call (859) 243-0017.
Bean soup in your choice of colors
Akielo Temple Daughters of the Nile will hold its annual bean soup fund- raiser on Friday, Feb. 11, at Oleika Shrine Temple, 326 Southland Drive. Hours are 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Cost is $5 and includes white or brown bean soup, corn bread, dessert and drinks. Take-out is available.