If you’re planning to clink glasses with your significant other this Valentine’s Day, you should reserve a love seat at Blush Restaurant and Lounge.
Set in the heart of beautiful downtown Santa Barbara, this swanky yet sophisticated hot spot will satisfy all your cocktail cravings. The date night destination is suitable for any occasion, but the sultry ambiance provides a passionate environment to impress your sweetheart. Exposed brick walls lend a New York City feeling, but the hanging lights and star-shaped fixtures create a beachy, yet posh sentiment. Nestle up in a leather booth and enjoy the creations served at your table, or take a seat at the brightly-lit bar filled with top-shelf liquor.
A great getaway for the 21+ crowd of UCSB, you can mingle with a crowd of fun-loving young professionals either indoors or outdoors by the fireplace on the patio. Spending a romantic night under the twinkle-lit canopy while listening to the smooth sounds of a live jazz band accompanying top hits in hip hop and techno is the perfect sweet escape for two lovebirds from Isla Vista. Add in a few drinks, and what more could you ask for?
You can forget about your customary plastic handle of Heritage and spouted bag of Franzia, and order off Blush’s cocktail menu of famous martinis and more. For Valentine’s Day, the restaurant is offering their special Blush Margarita ($11), which General Manager Josh Lewis says is perfect for the occasion. “In this drink, we combine Gran Centenario hibiscus-infused tequila, St. Germain Elderflower liqueur, fresh lime juice, agave nectar and top it off with a float of Lillet Rouge — a French aperitif wine,” Lewis says.
The Basil Fragola Martini ($12) is another customer favorite, and you’ll be sure to love the unique blend of strawberries, fresh basil, honey and balsamic reduction accompanying your Ketel One Vodka. In the mood for something sweeter? Try their Passion Potion 42 ($12) and enjoy real cotton candy on top of your passion fruit vodka, elderflower liqueur and refreshing lemonade. Craving something with a bitter bite? The Dirty Diamond Martini ($16) is right up your alley. Belvedere vodka, olive brine and a blue cheese-stuffed olive make this martini a fabulous twist to a classic. Fruity sangria ($9), The New Daisy (a margarita for $10) and the Trinidad Monsieur (a reinvented Mai Tai, $12) are all ordered frequently by satisfied customers. Blush also serves “mocktails” ($8) for all the soberly responsible couples out there.
Being on a college budget, you might want to watch your alcohol fund a little more closely. Not to worry — Blush serves amazing well-drinks for $8 each. Last weekend, I indulged in my personal favorite beverage — the vodka gimlet. This recipe is as simple as ice-cold vodka with a hint of sugary lime juice, and I enjoyed every sip the bartender mixed up for me.
However, if you do want to splurge a bit on this special night, Blush is offering a few fantastic Feb. 14 deals. On the night of Valentine’s Day, you and your fellow lovebird can delve into a specially-picked three-course meal paired with your choice of red or rose wine and a champagne toast for $49 each. Course options include sweet pea soup (for your sweet pea), pear salad with goat cheese and candied pecans, pan-seared bass served with lobster risotto, shallot-encrusted strip steak with bacon-whipped potatoes, vanilla bean crème brûlée and chocolate cheesecake. If you’re trying to avoid the googly-eyed crowds, wait an extra night to hit the town on Feb. 15 for Blush’s Wine Wednesdays where you can enjoy a bottle of wine at half price. Whatever you decide on as the perfect night to remember, if you’re sipping on drinks at this lounge, you’ll be sure to make your loved one blush.