Restaurant News & Reviews

Sweet ideas for your sweetheart on Valentine’s Day

Red wine and chocolate is a popular pairing.
Red wine and chocolate is a popular pairing. MCT

Valentine’s Day is probably the busiest day of the year for restaurants, and reservations are recommended. Here are a few ideas, but for more, go to our calendar,, or scroll through our homepage,, and scroll down to “Bellingham Things to Do.”

Vartanyan Estate Winery, 1628 Huntley Road, hosts some valentine-ish wine tasting events this month. The winery is open from 1-5 p.m. Fridays through Sundays, until 6 p.m. Saturdays.

Saturday-Sunday, 1-5 p.m.: Valentine’s Glintwein and Chocolate Ganache. Last Thanksgiving, staff made the Glintweins, a Russian traditional drink made using honey, lemon and a lot of different spices including cinnamon, and drunk warm; they were so popular that there’s making them again. There’ll be making two glintweins to choose from: Red Glintweins made with the winery’s red wine Carousel, or White Glintwein made with their Chardonnay. A cup of Glintwein is $6 per person. The event is free for the wine club members. No reservations are required.

Tuesday, 6:30 p.m.: Valentine’s Date and Paint. Bring your someone special and enjoy a romantic evening sipping wonderful wines and painting a masterpiece together. Cost is $25 per person. Please RSVP at Date and Paint for reservations, 360-325-2457, or reserve online at The event starts with tasting some tasty wines, and then staff will give step-by-step fun instructions while you paint your masterpiece. As a couple, you will paint the picture “Paradise Sunset.” Each person will do their own part, which will be then combined into one canvas.

Feb. 17-19: Valentine’s Day: Wines and Chocolate. Bring your Valentine for a wine-and-chocolate tasting. This year Tempranillo wine 2014 will be paired with chocolate ganache that has a filling made with the same wine, Vartanyan Tempranillo 2014, by Chocolate Necessities; there’ll be five wines and five chocolates for tasting. Tasting fee is $5 per person, waived with the purchase of bottle of wine per person. Free tasting for wine club members and their family and friends.

Details: Tasting Room: 360-756-6770.

Local Lovers Tour

Sustainable Connections hosts a Local Lovers Tour the day before Valentine’s Day from 5-7 p.m. Monday.

Participants will start at Sustainable Connections’ office at 1701 Ellis St., Suite 221, for cookie decorating with Gathered Confections and make a love-plant terrarium with Pozie by Natalie.

Participants will then walk to Ragfinery to sew, glue, cut and create upcycled Valentines using paper, fabric and other fun materials. The next stop is Veritas Massage Studio, located inside 3 Oms Yoga studio, for a massage demo and sample massage oil from owner Traci Soriano. Snacks and beverages will be provided throughout the evening.

Cost is $25 per person for one terrarium, $30 for two; reservations are necessary.

Details: 360-647-7093,

Romance at Chuckanut Brewery

Chuckanut Brewery & Kitchen, 601 W. Holly St., offers a three-course prix fixe dinner with beer pairing suggestions starting at 5 p.m. Tuesday. Share one appetizer with your loved one, choose two entrees and finish with a shared dessert for $41.95 (not including tip and tax). The regular menu also will be available on this romantic evening for those that prefer ala carte options.

Appetizer choices for the Sweetheart Dinner are either Carnitas Stuffed Poblano Peppers with Spanish tomato sauce (Alt Bier) or Herb-Baked Brie on Croute with fruit preserve, crackers and grapes (Kolsch). Each sweetheart gets to choose their own main course. The options are Malt and Porter-Braised Shortribs with twice-baked potato (Rauch Marzen Lager) or Truffled homemade Gnocchi topped with Butter-Poached Wild Coho Salmon (British Brown Ale). Dessert choices are Chocolate Malted Turtle Cake (Robust Porter) or Warm Red Berry Cobbler with house made lemon ice cream (Doppelbock Lager or Schwarz Bier). Beer pairing recommendations for the menu are suggested in parenthesis for those wanting a special beer with each of the courses. Details: 360-752-3377,

Fall in love with oysters at the Cabin Tavern

Urchin Oyster Parties and Seafood will offer a variety of fresh shucked local oysters and traditional oyster shooters during happy hour from 5-8 p.m. Friday at the Cabin Tavern, 307 W. Holly St. The Cabin will provide oyster-friendly beer and wine, as well as the regular menu and full bar.

Urchin is Bellingham's newest, premier oyster party company specializing in on-site events. It is comprised of Amber Clifton, professionally trained chef, and current Temple Bar manager, and Chelsea Farmer, former Temple Bar owner. They share a love of fresh seafood and the bountiful Pacific Northwest.

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