What You Have Been Waiting For...VALENTINES DAY!

Downtown Iowa City

It is that time of year again—pink hearts, red candies, and love letters seem to fill every store isle no matter where you shop.

A little low on cash? In a rut of what to do for that special someone close to your heart? I’m here to help solve those Valentines Day woes Iowa City.

If you’re the more traditional ladies man or woman, take that special someone out for some top notch cuisine. Iowa City’s local restaurants have so many specials your head may be reeling with ideas.

Atlas, like the name, fulfills food options from all over the world. Known most notably for the burritos, wraps, appetizers, and drinks. This is a go to restaurant if your just wanting to having a few appetizers and drinks or to split a main meal before those big Valentines Day plans. Not the cheapest restaurant in town, but come on, it is a special day to splurge a little.

For those aspiring to venture a little on the more wild side, Devotay has a uniquely inspired menu by Chef Daniel Knowles and Sous Chef Morgan Weiss. Let’s just say if upscale cuisine is to your tastes, this restaurant has crème de la crème desserts, seared duck, Gouda, béchamel, and more. Devotay also has assorted wines and beer menus with exclusive tapas for different days of the week. Not only that, wine tastings and classes are also offered at this resplendent location.

Similar to Devotay is Share Wine Lounge & Small Plate Bistro, a tasteful conversation restaurant perfect for savory featured wines by the glass. This quaint building can be a perfect with your sweetheart for relaxing vibes and diverse culinary offerings.

One last deluxe restaurant, Orchard Green, an upscale restaurant with a grand ballroom-style, sets the scene for a romantic dinner for two at a table’s golden glow from the chandeliers above. More on the pricey side if that is what you are looking for. Owner/Chef Bryan Herzic, creates American-Mediterranean cuisine for the artistically prepared seasonal ingredients that are elegant enough to “Wow” your honey. This ornate restaurant’s chandeliered cathedral ceiling set to amaze customers, is definitely a ‘go-to.’

Another option for those who are more of a culinary mastermind, here are some local grocery stores within the downtown area.

Want to be the chef for a night? Stop at the local New Pioneer Food Co-Op, a provider of wholesome nutritious food, to create a perfect meal. Not only can you get unique food not always found at the usual grocery store, but, also, menus for those looking for a meal out of the ordinary.

Similar to the Co-Op is Bread Market Garden, located in the heart of downtown near many of the bars. It allows the option for dates to pick from the magnitude of food from the buffet full of nutritious, wholesome food. Or there are options of unique brands of organic and regular veggies, fruit, and ingredients to make a romantic dinner memorable. For those looking for just a quick grocery store not as close to downtown but a couple streets away, Hy-Vee grocery stores are a more economical option with the same romantic meal results. For some easy go-to ideas on recipes, try fondue for two with either chocolate or cheese to dip bread, fruit, or veggies in. Also, let’s not forget the necessity for an evening of romantic milieu.

If you have decided to skip the dinner and are in the mood for more of a action packed date, why not try ice skating. In Coralville, a short drive from downtown, the mall has a an ice arena people can go to skate, take lessons, listen to some music, and cozy up with your someone special. Check out the website or call first to check out daily specials.

Movies are always an idea to share a bucket of popcorn or try out the “yawn and stretch” to cuddle up next to your date. Venues such as the Bijou Theater, Englert Theatre, Marcus Coral Ridge Mall Theater, and Sycamore Theater offer movies and show times for matinees as well as late evening date times. On Valentines Day the Bijou Theater will host showings of such as The Loneliest Planet, about young love and daring adventure. As well as movie by an Academy Award winner Melissa Leo who gives a fierce performance of a silent misfit in an unfamiliar world titled, Francine.

More of a sweet tooth fan? Plenty of delicate local pastry shops provide a unique array of fine desserts. Aspen Leaf Yogurt partnered with Mountain Chocolate Factory has cheap treats surely to satisfy for your sweet tooth. Not only can you find chocolates galore in the newly established store but also frozen yogurt flavors changing each week. For Valentines Day, customers can place orders for chocolate covered strawberries or other assorted chocolates. Yotopia Frozen Yogurt is also another popular local frozen yogurt destination. The unique aspect about this location is they give back to the community through donations with almost every purchase to different community organizations.

If a pastry fan, under a pinstripe awning, Deluxe Cakes & Pastries, the quaint local café is found. Nestled away with an outdoor patio and old-fashion fixtures of furnishings inside to invite those looking for a homey place to sit while enjoying a cup of tea and slice of scrumptious homemade cake.

No matter where you go remember, this is a day with the intent of love. So remember, it’s not necessarily where you go, but whom you are with matters most. Turn off those obnoxious cellular devices we all tend to get distracted by, and truly enjoy another one’s company. Happy Valentines Day everyone! 


-Address: 127 Iowa Ave.

-Website: http://www.atlasiowacity.com/


-Address: 117 N. Linn St.

-Website: http://www.devotay.net/

•Share Wine Lounge & Small Plate Bistro

-Address: 210 S. Dubuque St.

-Website: http://www.sharewinelounge.com/

•New Pioneer Food Co-Op

-Address: 22 S. Van Buren St

-Website: http://www.newpi.coop/

•Bread Garden Markey

- Address: 225 S. Linn St.

-Website: http://www.breadgardenmarket.com/

•Hyvee Locations

-Addresses: 1720 Waterfront Dr.// 812 S. 1st Ave.

-Website: https://www.hy-vee.com/

•Coral Ridge ice Arena

-Address: 1451 Coral Ridge Ave.

-Website: http://www.coralridgeice.com/

•Bijou Theater

-Address: Iowa Memorial Union, on the corner of Madison and Jefferson St

-Website: http://bijou.uiowa.edu/location/

•Englert Theatre

-Address: 221 E. Washington St.

-Website: www.englert.org/

•Marcus Sycamore Movie Theater

-Address: 1602 Sycamore St.

-Website: www.marcustheatres.com/Theatre/TheatreDetail/151/

•Marcus Coral Ridge Movie Theater

-Address: 1451 Coral Ridge Ave.

-Website: http://www.coralridgemall.com/movies

• Aspen Leaf Yogurt Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory

-Address: 125 S. Dubuque St.

-Website: http://www.icaspenleaf.com/

•Yotopia Frozen Yogurt

-Address: 132 S. Clinton St.

-Website: Find them on Facebook and to check out daily specials

•Deluxe Cakes & Pastries

-Address: 812 S. Summit St.

-Website: http://www.deluxecakesandpastries.com/