Wisdom From: A Personal Chef on Romantic Valentine’s Day Dinner at Home

Photograph by Art Gomez

Jill Lawrence is a personal chef and the president of Culinary Campus. Here she offers advice about choosing a chef for a romantic Valentine’s Day dinner at home.

Hiring a private chef …
It’s important to look at the chef’s credentials. Talk to previous clients, look at pictures, and make sure he or she is legitimate. Anyone can put on the coat and say they are a chef, so don’t be afraid to ask lots of questions—including whether they have insurance if they are cooking from your home.

Menu for a romantic dinner …
This is where you should take advantage of the chef’s experience. He or she should be able to guide you based on your likes and dislikes and should even have a food survey for you to fill out. That said, I would stay away from heavy garlic and onion options if you truly want the evening to stay romantic until the end. Interactive meals would be another suggestion. Wine (pairings) can enhance the meal, so make sure to discuss this as well.

Make your meal extra special …
This is the best time to think of your partner. What is their secret indulgence? Even if it’s a dessert from their favorite restaurant, let the chef pick it up for you.

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