Seductive Dining

Eight luscious local dishes to spark romance this Valentine's Day

Deviled Oysters

Barrel 31














   Foods like oysters, chocolate and chili peppers are said to be aphrodisiacs — they increase desire when consumed. (In fact, the term “aphrodisiac” is derived from Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love.) 

  Here is an array of desire-inducing local dishes to boost the romance factor on your next date.


Chocolate Bag, McCormick & Schmick’s

 This unique dessert features a hard shell chocolate "shopping bag" filled with white chocolate mousse, fresh berries and whipped cream. Chocolate causes spike in dopamine, which induces feelings of pleasure according to a Harvard Medical School study.

Deviled Oysters, Barrel 31

   This appetizer takes deviled eggs to the next level with bacon and a fried oyster placed on top. Eggs are a symbol of fertility, and oysters are full of zinc, which triggers increased levels of the sex hormone progesterone.

Foie Gras French Toast, Story

   This unexpected duo makes for a divinely decadent dish. Seared fois gras is paired with hazelnuts, sage and Mountain Rose apples with enticingly rosy flesh.

Black Truffle Pasta, Westport Café and Bar

   Pappardelle pasta is tossed with black truffle shavings, white truffle oil and Grana Padano cheese for a seductive dish. Truffles emit androstenone, a pheromone supposedly irresistible to women. They are also a prized ingredient in the culinary world.

Chicken 65, Chilli n Spice Indian Bistro

   Chili peppers increase the pulse rate and induce sweating as well as release endorphins, much like the effects of love. The Chicken 65, cooked in a vibrant red sauce of chilies, cumin seeds, onion, ginger and cilantro, will definitely turn up the heat.

Seared KC Rib Eye, Michael Smith

   This rib eye dressed with lobster mushroom ragout with a side of fingerling potatoes and a balsamic demi glaze is pure indulgence. Pair it with a lusty red from the restaurant’s extensive wine list.

Pintxos de Higo, La Bodega

   This Spanish tapa comprised of roasted red peppers, goat cheese and fig coulis on grilled bread is perfect finger food to share with your date. The suggestive shape of figs was associated with sexuality and love in ancient cultures.

Grilled Artichoke, North Italia

   According to Greek mythology, Zeus created the artichoke by turning a beautiful young woman into the thorny thistle after she rejected him. Artichokes invented the game of hard to get, with their tough, inedible exterior and their supple, delicious interior. North Italia grills this sexy finger food with sea salt, truffle oil, Grana Padano cheese and serves it with lemon aioli.