Sunday, February 17, 2013

Dine or Dash?

Mike and I decided to do a little experiment for Valentine’s day this year. Why go out and spend tons of money to sit in a over-crowded restaurant barely able to hear each other, when you can spend some quality time preparing a meal together and increasing the romance at home.

Welcome to our restaurant – Chez Maison

I must say, this experiment was a huge success. Mike and I started our day in the morning planning our menu together and coming up with a shopping list. Our first thought was let’s just take a Valentine’s menu and recreate it at home. However, that was not ideal because we didn’t like any of the menus in their entirety. So instead, we went through and cut out pieces of different menus from restaurants we have eaten at in the Niagara Region. 

We then went out for the afternoon and did all of our shopping, not only for our meal but also for the week ahead. We spent about 2 hours in the afternoon doing all of our errands for the weekend and goofing around together. Honestly, this was so much more fun than running around and doing it all by myself.  

Finally, it was off to cooking… in less than two hours of cooking and a half a bottle of wine, we made this:

Our menu was inspired by local restaurant menus including, the Keg, Sandstone Grillhouse and Lounge, Bravo Pizzaria-Grill, among others. Don’t get me wrong, the food at these restaurants is absolutely amazing, but with planning a wedding and getting our budget in check, it is much more important for us to save those couple bucks while still making sure we enjoy ourselves at the same time.

Overall, we had a great day and night preparing for our night of romance and we had a much better Valentine’s Day than any others I can remember. I guess saving $72.15 doesn’t hurt either. This doesn’t just apply to that one special night. Have you ever added up what it costs you to go out to eat every month, well compare that to the situation above and by making that meal at home you can likely save about 50% of the costs (a great idea when budgeting).  

How was your Valentine’s Day this year? Have you ever opted for a night in?

(Oh and that dessert was AMAZING! If you want the recipe leave a comment and I can send it over)


  1. First off - I love the fresh new blog look! It turned out AMAZING!!!

    Secondly, congrats on the dine at home experience, I'm glad it was a success! We did the same thing this year for both Dan's birthday and Valentines. The meals turned out way better than we could have hoped for. Plus it was way more romantic IMO. The only problem? The dishes!!!

    1. Dishwasher Krysta! We shoved everything in there and it worked out great :)