Between snow falling and roads icing Thursday, restaurant owners were scrambling to prepare for Valentine’s Day, traditionally the second-most dined-out-upon holiday in America (Mother’s Day is first).
Some, like Moffett Restaurant Group’s trio of Barrington’s, Good Food on Montford and Stagioni, planned to keep all reservations for the big day – after doing some rescheduling when the snow started – and were promising to call diners with updates. Delivery problems were anticipated, their press folks said, and extra supplies ordered early.
Others knew quickly they wouldn’t be able to do what they’d hoped. Lumiere, the new modern French place in Myers Park scheduled to open to the public on Valentine’s, won’t do so, said partner Matthew Pera, though sibling The Liberty planned to be open.
“It’s a big disappointment, as we’ve worked so long and hard to get open, and the community has been so supportive and patient,” Pera said. Some intricate dishes on the menu require some preparation a day ahead, and that wasn’t possible Thursday, while some of the restaurant’s specialty vendors weren’t delivering Thursday – and weren’t sure they would on Friday, either.
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“We’ll just redouble our efforts and hope the weather allows us to get open on Saturday.”
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A quick survey of places found most hoping to make the best of it:
• The Harper’s Restaurant Group was planning for full go on Valentine’s, though the company’s Steve Seitz said they had concerns about some product availability, since it appeared some vendors wouldn’t be able to deliver Friday.
• D’Vine Wine Cafe in the Ballantyne area was open and serving early Valentine’s specials Thursday night, and advertised openings in its Saturday night Valentine lineup, though Friday’s was close to full.
• Siblings 5Church and Nan and Byron’s also were open Thursday and planned to be on Friday, with their press folks using Twitter to encourage people uptown (for the first) and in South End (for the second) to make the trek on foot. (To which, naturally, someone tweeted “Y’all could deliver.” Umm: No.)
Among other spots planning to be open for the Big Date: Hotel restaurants (always a good bet to be open), from BLT Steak and The Asbury uptown to Gallery at the Ballantyne Hotel and Lodge; SouthPark spots such as Cafe Monte, Chuy’s, The Cowfish and Wolfgang Puck’s; eeZ in Huntersville; and the ever-open Amelie’s in NoDa, which expected no delay in pastry-etc. orders for Valentine’s.
Haven’t reconfirmed a reservation? Be smart and call to check. Some places, such as Harper’s, now plan to extend Valentine’s specials through Sunday.