If music be the food of love

Some believe that Valentine’s Day is celebrated in the middle of February to commemorate the anniversary of Valentine’s death or burial (around 270 AD) whilst others claim that the Christian church may have decided to place the St Valentine’s feast day in the middle of February in an effort to ‘Christianise’ the pagan celebration of Lupercalia. Either way, there are plenty of ways to celebrate this feast on 14 February and if you’re planning on taking your loved one out for a special treat, there are plenty of restaurants in Ross-on-Wye pulling out the stops to mark this romantic diary date.

The Pavilion at The Hope and Anchor (Rope Walk): this beautifully renovated riverside venue is celebrating in style this Valentine’s Day with lunch from 12pm-2pm plus a special afternoon tea including homemade cakes and pastries. Later in the evening, you can enjoy a delicious 7-course taster menu from 7pm which includes Bacon Muffin with White Truffle Corn, Scallops, Wye Valley Asparagus, Monkfish, Herefordshire Lamb, Rhubarb & Custard Panacotta and a Golden Chocolate Mousse Dome. Call 01989 477100 to book your table.

Avellino (High Street): if you love Italian food you’ll fall in love with Avellino’s special Valentine Set Menu – enjoy traditional Italian cuisine with a glass of champagne or perhaps a bottle of Montepulciano surrounded by candlelight and red heart shaped balloons. Call the team on 01989 769222 to reserve your table.

The King’s Head Hotel (High Street): this traditional, centrally located hotel, restaurant and bar is offering a delicious Valentine’s menu and a special French Martini cocktail to get you in the mood. For starters, you can choose from Moules Marinière, Applewood Cheese Souffle or Crispy Braised Lamb shoulder. Main courses include 8oz Pengethley Rump Steak, Pan Roasted Hake or Pearl Barley Risotto. If you have room, the desserts include a Hot Chocoloate Fondant, Salted Caramel Rice Pudding or a selection of local cheese. Book your table by ringing the team on 01989 763174.

No 3 (Gloucester Road): you’d better be quick to reserve your table at this popular town centre gastro restaurant if you really want to spoil your loved one! Enjoy a glass of fizz and a lunch for under £9 between 12pm and 3pm or book an evening table from 6pm starting with one of Darren’s signature cocktails. Choose from their Main or Vegan menu and finish off with a delicious dessert or cheese board washed down with a South African pudding wine. Call 01989 564997.

The Mint House (Gloucester Road): if you fancy spicing things up this Valentine’s Day this top quality Indian restaurant is pulling out all the stops with its Valentine themed menu. Their dining-in menu includes a glass of prosecco on arrival followed by a choice of starters, mains and desserts. Call the team on 01989 569930 to book your table.

The Royal (Palace Pound): this hilltop hotel with far reaching views over the River Wye is preparing a special Valentine menu and will also be serving up a range of romantic cocktails, including its signature Strawberry & Rose Kiss creation, perfect for any date night. Log on to their website to check out their special set menu or call 01989 565105 to book.

The Mill Race (Walford): just a few miles outside of Ross town centre, you can enjoy a wonderfully romantic evening surrounded by red roses, fairy lights and candles. Their special Valentine’s menu includes, amongst its starters, a melted camembert dish to share which you can follow with red wine braised beef rigatoni and a chocolate fondue to share. Book your table on 01989 562891.

Check out the Eat & Drink section on our website for the full list of local restaurants, bars, pubs and cafes.