Not the roses and Hallmark cards type? These 5 tips will have you creating a romantic winter dinner, without all the fuss.
Movies tell us that a romantic winter dinner should consist of falling snow, a crackling open fire and a passionate crescendo from a symphony orchestra. For us in Australia - and living in reality - these 'necessities' are merely a dream.
Angela Gallagher, Owner of Gallagher Hotels, restaurateur and wife, has provided her top tips for creating a romantic dinner this winter - without the pomp and circumstance of an accompanying soundtrack.
1. Sharing is caring
There's nothing more romantic than a shared meal over a candlelight dinner. A meal full of flavour, such as Roast Lamb Shoulder on the Bone, with smokey tones, rich sauce and sweet vegetables is the perfect plate to share with a loved one.
2. Three is the magic number
If you're cooking a romantic meal, don't just stick to the one course. Make your dining experience a journey, rather than a pit-stop. Start with an entree that is light and full of seasonal produce, which will get your taste buds working for your tasting trip. The main course should be something full of big flavours, warm and hearty, to both combat the wintry weather and complement the fresh, light entree. The end of the journey (make sure you have room for it!) should be sweet and not too heavy.
3. Red, red wine
If you're wanting to pair your meal with a wine - choose something red that is oakey and full of rich texture. Lamb is perfectly paired with a deep Merlot, while duck is a match made in heaven for a smooth, velvety Pinot Noir, which brings out the meat's full flavour.
4. Decadent desserts
No winter meal is complete without a delicious dessert. The ideal match for a romantic winter meal is something with chocolate, whose sweetness and decadence can transport you to the snowfields of Switzerland or the countryside of Cheshire.
5. Sweet dreams
Finish off your meal with a dessert wine to satisfy your sweet tooth. Pick something like a Chateau du Pavillion or Bernadins Muscat Beames de Venise to tie your meal together with a tasty bow.