Skip the prix-fixe money-pit and instead hit these classy joints, all offering a la carte/regular menus -- because Valentine's isn't about blowing hundreds on five courses you don't want, it's just about keeping your girlfriend from getting mad.
Bailey's Prime Plus (8160 Park Lane, Ste 130; 214.750.8100) Squire your chick to the elegantly chandeliered steakhouse for its novel-sized wine list, dry-aged beef, and inventive dishes like lobster-stuffed avocado and jalapeno onion bass, also the name of the scion George W. Bush considered "too politically caliente" to appoint head of Texas Parks & Wildlife.
Explore your meaty romantic future at baileysprimeplus.com.
La Fiorentina (4501 Cole Ave; 972.528.6170) The Lombardi family's rustic wood & wrought-iron farmhouse has a fine list of Prosecco cocktails to compliment Tuscan specialties like center-cut, aged filet mignon in veal jus & thyme, though with enough juice and time, you could get a hotter girlfriend, because that Deca-Durabolin is totally working.
Fleetwood Mac loves Tusk-an food, and so will your lady friend. Hit lafiorentinadallas.com for more.
Decanter (408 North Bishop Ave. Ste 108; 214.948.0644) The just-launched Bishop Arts bistro brings it with its inviting Mediterranean vibe, creative West Coast-influenced cuisine, and eponymous method of pouring wine to leave behind the bad flavors and highlight the good ones, so expect to find more Hoopz, and less Somethin'.
911 is a joke, but decanterrestaurant.com is not
The Second Floor (In the Westin Galleria Hotel: 13340 Dallas Parkway; 972.450.2978) The sophisticated lounge/bistro, which will thrill/baffle you and your date with 100 different Scotches and a six page wine list, will be cooking up the likes of prosciutto flatbread pizza and chamomile-seared Scottish salmon, because for those duffers it's always about tea-ing off.
Climb up to thesecondfloorrestaurant.com
Trece (4513 Travis Street; 214.780.1900) Bask in the upscale Mexican resto's color-shifting LED panels and soft lighting while you dig into a tasty a la carte menu; be sure to venture up to the tequila bar for their 120 selections, including five-degree taps like El Viejo and Riazul Silver -- but not Ria-Zuul Silver, as even haunted refrigerators don't go down to five-degrees.
Trace Armstrong was an underrated football player, but that's not important right now. Get tequila'd at trecerestaurant.com.
Toulouse (3314 Knox (Next to the Katy Trail); 214.520.8999) The intimate Belgian-French Knox bistro's trotting out their seared foie gras chaud, spiced-crusted roast, and lobster Thermidor, as well as Champagne cocktails like the "Green Dragon". If you point out that the Green Dragon is but one of the Chromatic Dragons in the Dungeons and Dragons realm, this handy Valentine's guide probably isn't for you.
Make the Lau-trek to toulousecafeandbar.com