Whether you've been dating for a day or several decades, prefer DIY picnics or swanky seafood feasts, there's plenty to pick from to make sure your Valentine's Day is a memorable, and mouthwatering, one.
Good for lighting
Sydney is full of alleyway bars and broody backrooms, but Bibo in Double Bay stands out for striking the balance between saying "I'm here for a good time" but also "I'm not creepy, I swear". Dark and moody, it has the perfect vibe, while the classic cocktail list helps keep things classy. You won't be left hungry either. Order a few Portuguese-inspired snacks to tide you over and see where the night takes you.
Bibo has the perfect balance of 'cool' and 'sophisticated' 2018 Photo: Supplied
Good for atmosphere
In the early, nervy stage of dating? Bodega has the atmosphere thing nailed. Tongue-tied types will relish the buzz and action that'll cover any conversation lull.
Not dating - more enduring - each other? You need dim lights, French food and romance revvers. Cavernous but cosy Restaurant Hubert is like walking into a Parisian style speakeasy. Dine on classics like cassoulet and creme caramel, or prop at the bar for duck parfait and steak frites.
Bodega's tasty tappas are there distract you if conversation lulls a little. Photo: Supplied
Good for dessert
Feeling fancy? 12-Micron in Barangaroo is the dessert haven you never knew you needed. Boasting dreamy harbour views and a dessert menu to match, spending Valentine's Day here will be a treat. Opt for the five-course sweet and savoury tasting menu ($175 per person, including a glass of champers), because in life (but not in partners, of course) it's hard to pick just one course.
Fine diner 12-Micron features a dessert bar. Photo: Supplied
Good for food
China Doll is so hot right now, one bite of their signature sticky pork belly and you'll know why. The house made dim sum are rivalled only by the killer cocktail list with creations named after classics like Whole Lotta Love and When Doves Cry. If your date isn't swooning by the second round, the view of Wooloomooloo Wharf should do it. Just try saying that after a couple of cocktails.
It's easy to see why China Doll's pork belly is so popular.Supplied
Good for views
Sydney harbour at night comes second only to Sydney harbour by day in the isn't-it-magical stakes, so get you and yours a spot a table right in the middle of it. Cafe Sydney offers harbour views and a five-course menu ($240 per person) for you and your special someone to enjoy. Graze on fresh seafood, toast yourselves with complimentary bubbles, and lap up those views.
Watch the sun set in Sydney Harbour from a perfect vantage point. Photo: Supplied
Good for picnics
Set up a blanket at Cremorne Point Reserve for harbour views à deux. Don't forget to pack that bottle you've been saving for a special occasion - alcohol is allowed.
For those wanting picnic romance without the fuss, check out 50 Shades of Bay at the Watson's Bay Hotel. A pre-prepared picnic basket of goodies awaits filled will all the essentials plus a selection of canapes and bottle of bubbly for extra wow-factor. Tuck into your feast while watching the night descend over Watsons Bay beach. Romantic or what?
Enjoy a picnic on the beach in Watsons Bay. Photo: Supplied
Good for fun
For the most fun you need the holy trilogy: good food, good booze and a good time. Or, in the case of The Carter, fried chicken, cocktails and hip-hop. Swap a candlelit dinner for a dance floor and a fancy meal for waffles and tacos. Paying tribute to two of the greatest names in the industry, Jay-Z and Queen Bey, it certainly lives up to its namesake. Take a date, take some friends, or go solo and tear the place up.
The Carter is all attitude and you'll love it.Photo: Supplied
Good for Instagramming
At Luna Park, you can treat yourself to a fine dining experience from the most unique spot in the harbour. Take your date for a spin on the ferris wheel - transformed into your own private dining room by The Deck restaurant at Milsons Point. Make sure your phone's charged, #nofilter Instagrammable moments are guaranteed.
Luna Park's Ferris Wheel has boost the romance with dinner for two.Photo: Damian Shaw
Good for a first date
Manly's Chica Bonita is where to go when you want to take the edge off. The lively taqueria is known for their Mexican food but their margaritas are a winner too. Whether you like them classic or with a fun tropical twist, there's something for you. Let your hair down and just have some fun. And, if all else fails: tequila.
Say cheers to love at Chica Bonita. Photo: Supplied