Recipes for Romance

Published in Gourmet Live 02.08.12
Celebrate with romantic dinners and destinations, reflections on how food choices affect your dating life, and an interview with chef Marcus Samuelsson’s model wife

If you ask us, there are many parallels between the ideal mate and the ideal meal: bright, lively, attractive yet real, surprising but not startling, balanced, wholesome yet sometimes a little naughty. For Gourmet Live’s Valentine’s Day issue, we’re exploring that intersection between food and love, starting with Matthew Kronsberg’s look at what food preferences can tell us about compatibility. Is what we eat really the window to our souls, and how does this all play out in the online dating arena, when Cupid is a computer?

On the surface, a chef (whose life revolves around food) and a model (whose profession too often seems to reward eschewing it) might not seem to have a lot in common. Not true for Marcus Samuelsson and his wife, Maya Haile. Gourmet Live’s Kelly Senyei learned that this couple shares more than good looks, including a number of good causes.

If you’re in New York City on February 14, you might even want to book a table for two at Samuelsson’s Red Rooster, where the chef has devised a sumptuous-sounding romantic menu. Our partners at BlogHer serve up 15 more restaurant suggestions for lovebirds, including picks in Seattle, Nashville, Boulder, and San Francisco.

If you prefer, skip the reservations rush and serve your sweetie a steakhouse staple at home using our recipe for Tuscan Porterhouse with Red Wine–Peppercorn Jus. Speaking of wine, nothing says romance like a good bottle—or a trip to a wine-producing region. Expert Ted Loos recommends where to stay, eat, and sip in France’s Loire Valley, so book your tickets and brush up on your skills in the language of love.

What foods say “romance” to you? Share your sweet somethings via Twitter or Facebook, drop us a line (, or post a comment on our blog. For more tasty bytes, sign up for our weekly newsletter to get convenient access to our most-read blog posts, editors’ favorite recipes, and exclusive reader offers.


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