In the Windy City, Valentine’s Day ideas are in the air

This weekend’s Wisch List newspaper column from The Daily Journal (Kankakee, Ill.) and The Times (Ottawa, Ill.)


By Dave Wischnowsky

It’s the 9th of February.

So, you have five days to get your act together, fellas.

But if you’re still struggling with how to butter up your sweetheart as the calendar creeps toward Valentine’s Day. Or if you just want to impress – and this goes for you too, ladies – then I have some suggestions on how to make him or her swoon up in Chicago.

Wine and chocolate at City Winery

For some people, Valentine’s Day is about roses and teddy bears and poems and stuff. For others, it’s about sweets and spirits. If you fall into the latter camp, City Winery (1200 W. Randolph St.) is pairing up with local chocolatier Katherine Anne Confections to offer a Feb. 14 wine and chocolate pairing.

For $65, patrons will enjoy a casual walk around sampling of exotic chocolates and wines with “intense, surprising and usual pairings” to be expected. Doors open at 7 p.m. To purchase tickets, visit citywinerycom/chicago.

Amore at Harry Caray’s

You can’t take your special someone out to the ballgame on Feb. 14, but you can take him or her to Harry Caray’s (33 W. Kinzie St.). There, you can build your own heart-shaped pizza for $12.95 or decorate a specialty heart-shaped cookie.

Also on Harry’s menu from Feb. 11-14 is a special Godiva Dark Chocolate Martini. For more information, visit

Dinner for art lovers

If you love art (almost) as much as you love your sweetheart, consider spending Valentine’s Day at Terzo Piano (158 E. Monroe St.), located in the Modern Wing of the Art Institute of Chicago.

On Feb. 14, the restaurant is offering a four-course dinner along with cocktail service and a live band. For details, visit

Opposites do attract

Maybe you’re a morning person but your significant other is a night owl. Perhaps you enjoy beer, but they like wine. Or it could be that you love fish, while they like nothing more than a good steak. If you and your flame run hot and cold, then The Local (198 E. Delaware Place) has the Feb 14 menu you need.

For Valentine’s Day, this newish eatery launched the restaurateurs behind Chicago Cut Steakhouse is offering a special “Opposites Menu” with the entrees to fit any palate. For more information, visit

Visit Chicago’s ‘most romantic’ restaurant

Considering it’s regularly voted as Chicago’s “most romantic” restaurant, it might be tough to score a table at Geja’s Café (340 W. Armitage Ave.) on Feb. 14. However, lucky for you, the fondue destination established in 1965 has an eight-day Valentine’s Festival.

On “Double Anniversary Discount” Monday (Feb. 11), couples receive a double discount on their meal with proof of total years married. Additionally, on “Love Note” Tuesday (Feb. 12), guests are encouraged to bring in a copy of the most meaningful love note written by their significant other. The writer of the most romantic note will win dinner for two, once a year, for however many years old the note is (limit $150 per visit). For details, visit

Or, if you’re still single …
Maybe you don’t have a sweetheart for Valentine’s Day … yet. But if you’re looking to find one, you might consider visiting the Singles Wine Lovers Soiree from 6 to 8 p.m. on Feb. 14 at The Boarding House (720 N. Wells St.), the new River North restaurant opened by Alpana Singh.

Singh, who recently left her job as longtime host of WTTW’s popular show dining “Check, Please,” will share her most romantic wine picks paired with appetizers in The Cellar, the restaurant’s subterranean lounge. Tickets are $40 and available at