The way to a man's heart, the saying goes, is through his stomach but if you want to woo a woman, you don't want her faced with a stack of dirty dishes at the end of a romantic dinner.
Luckily, you don't have to go far to find gourmet dining options in romantic settings on Valentine's Day.
The Bee & Thistle Inn on Lyme Street in Old Lyme was recently chosen as one of the state's most romantic restaurants by Connecticut Magazine but for Valentine's Day, the restaurant at the Inn and Spa is offering a special menu with decidedly aphrodisiac qualities.
Any meal that begins with a Love Potion #9 Champagne cocktail and a "Melange a Trois" of oysters and champagne is definitely starting off with a bang!
Across the street, The Old Lyme Inn at 85 Lyme Street is also offering a special Valentine's Day menu with equally decadent choices and a similarly romantic setting. A table in front of the fireplace is sure to heat things up. For a little more privacy, you can also retire to the lounge and cuddle on the couch by the fire as you enjoy coffee and dessert.
In Niantic and East Lyme, there are literally dozens of great restaurants to choose from but for a really intimate dining experience, it's tough to beat La Belle Aurore. The tiny bistro is also offering a special Valentine's Day five-course prix fix menu that features fresh farm-to-table ingredients.
If you're looking for chocolates, skip the supermarket candy aisle and make a trip to Gumdrops & Lollipops on Main Street, Niantic. Though the store's name has maximum kid-appeal, Amaretto fudge and handmade chocolates are designed to please even the most sophisticated palates—and the store will gift-wrap every sweet confection.