Valentine Day dining recommendations...
My wife and I will be in the city during the week of 2/11-2/17. Of course Valentines Day is the 14th and I am looking for a romantic evening starting with a nice dinner. We are staying in the West Village but willing to traverse the area. Looking for good food with a nice romantic ambiance, but not overly pretentious. We have dined in the past at Babbo, Crispo, L' Artusi, as she loves Italian, however I would prefer something different. Any suggestions ??
I would say to look on Open Table to see who is doing something for V-Day and then avoid them at all cost. We have made the mistake at least a few times (I know, fool me once, etc...) in going out to some of the best restaurants on V-Day and it has always turned out to be a much less enjoyable evening than any other time going. We now go out a couple days before V-Day (as long as the restaurant isn't already running their V-Day menu) and celebrate that way. Now, for your other requirements, nice but not pretentious, a new favorite of ours is ALDEA, excellent Mediterranean influenced food. Or Junoon, Indian fusion (not overly romantic) but great food. MAS La Grillade or MAS Farmhouse, dark and cozy. The NoMad in the Parlour Room or Fireplace Room (NOT the Atrium).
Spiritchaser has some excellent suggestions above. But if you prefer upscale Italian food you might like:
For something newish but casual I've enjoyed my recent dinners at Louro, Acme and Il Buco Alimentari.