Making date night as memorable as possible is a goal for any couple, whether that couple is celebrating a silver anniversary or enjoying their first date. But with the economy struggling, many couples have been forced to improvise when it comes to date night.
One of the most popular ways to make date night memorable without breaking the bank is to have an intimate and elegant evening at home.
Evenings in come with all the good things an enjoyable night out on the town provides, such as good company and a delicious meal, but none of the baggage like waiting for a table, finding a place to park or getting a large bill at the end of the evening.
When in Rome ...
"When in Rome, do as the Romans do."
The same principle can be applied to spending an intimate and elegant night in with that special someone. When on a date, it helps to treat the date just like any other date, even if it is a night in. Dress for the occasion just as you would if you were going out on the town, forgoing those comfortable sweatpants and hoodies for more elegant attire that sets the night apart from a typical weeknight.
Just because you won't be dining at a 5 star restaurant doesn't mean you can't enjoy gourmet cuisine. The Internet is a great place to find easy-to-follow recipes ideal for chefs of all skill levels. Mimic meals you might enjoy at a favorite restaurant, complete with appetizer, entree and, of course, dessert. Especially ambitious couples can even prepare their own desserts the night before.
Make the Perfect Pair
No gourmet meal is complete without the right bottle of wine. Monica Pedersen, interior designer and host of HGTV's Dream Home and Designed to Sell, suggests something from Napa Valley winery Rutherford Hill owned by the Terlato family.
Winemaker Marisa Taylor Huffaker hand crafts a collection of Napa Valley wines that make a perfect complement to a host of gourmet dishes.
"I'm a fan of Rutherford Hill, which was served at my wedding," says Pedersen.
For men and women uncertain of which wine to pair with their meal, uncorked.com has an easy-to-use wine pairing guide that offers suggestions for each course, including appetizers and dessert.
Don't Ignore the Decor
An elegant and intimate night in should extend beyond the meal.
Pedersen encourages couples to be sure to eat by candlelight and dress up the dining room's decor with a bouquet of fresh cut flowers. Fresh cut flowers purchased from the grocery store won't break the bank, but they will go a long way toward creating a romantic date night atmosphere.
Nowadays, the economy has many couples scrambling for ways to save money. Instead of forgoing date nights altogether, it's better to get creative and improvise with a simple, yet intimate, night in for two.