Story by The Editors
So you procrastinated. You got distracted. You were in denial. You just met someone last weekend! Whatever your Valentine’s Day issue, it’s going to be OK. You probably can’t score a great restaurant reservation tonight. But you sure as hell can give your honey some good sweets, adult beverages and other treats.
If you need a last-minute sweet treat: Laughlin’s Bakery
Forget about Valentine’s Day entirely and need something fast? This Short North bakery is a safe bet for something delicious and impressive. You can’t go wrong with Jonas Laughlin’s macarons, shortbread, pates de fruit, or his perfectly lovely Linzer cookies (pictured above). 15 E. Second Ave., Short North
If you have time for just one stop: Weiland’s
Two words: Bistro steak. Head to the butcher counter and buy two of ’em. Stop in produce and pick up some asparagus and a couple of massive russet potatoes. Grab a wedge of Fromager D’Affinois or St. Andre and some crackers. Add to your basket a bottle of something bubbly and a nice bar of chocolate. Feeling lucky? Go ahead, buy a dozen eggs, a loaf of bread and some OJ. Mic drop. 3600 Indianola Ave., Clintonville
If you’re looking for a cozy nook … The Bottle Shop
The knowledgeable bartenders and well-crafted cocktail menu are reason enough to stop in The Bottle Shop. (The wine list and beer selection are pretty stellar, too). But it’s the eclectic-meets-cozy atmosphere that makes this hidden gem worthy of your V-Day plans. After entering through the adjacent convenience store, you’ll find romantic lighting, plush couches and, often, a throwback flick projected on the wall near the bar. 237 King Ave., Victorian Village
If you need to escape the winter blahs: Franklin Park Conservatory
Visit during regular hours today for lunch at the excellent Garden Cafe and a stroll through the lush green biomes. Or snag tickets for a special event tonight including wine and chocolate pairings, dance lessons, live music and the amazing Jazz age-themed orchid show. Don’t forget to get a selfie with your honey in the paper moon! 1777 E. Broad St., Near East Side
If your luvah is a culinary explorer: Tensuke Market
Load up on Japanese cookies, candies and chocolates here. A few suggestions: Green tea-flavored KitKats, almond crush Pocky, Morinaga milk caramels, Koala’s March cookies and a few boxes of ice cream-filled mochi. 1167 Old Henderson Road, Upper Arlington
If you love a diamond in the rough: Bono Pizza
Bono boasts on its Facebook page that it’s “now located in a new spot just a few blocks from the quickie mart we used to be in.” Not to worry! The new space, in an apartment complex, is offbeat in the charming and disarming way the old place was. Share a few of the city’s best pies with your honey (Hulk, Napoli, Palermo, Caroline are always good bets) and wander through a few rooms to find the bar afterward. We told you it was weird—in the best way possible. 1412 Presidential Drive (1420 building), Grandview Heights
If you want to spice things up: Hot Chicken Takeover
Today is for ordering your chicken warm, hot or holy and dousing the flames in sweet tea. After your cheeks are sufficiently flushed, stroll the North Market, making stops at Barrel & Bottle, Pistacia Vera, Market Blooms and Two Brothers Butcher Shoppe to keep the romance going after you get home. 59 Spruce St., Arena District
Art Imitates Love
Three (very) last-minute ways to woo the culture vulture in your life.
- Meet for an #artdate at the Columbus Museum of Art. Wine, cheese & chocolate served at Schokko.
- Sip and nibble among some heavy-hitting contemporary art at Soul Bar at The Joseph.
- Check out work by Columbus artists at the Hilton Downtown, and have a drink or two in the lounge at Gallerie (say yes to a basket of gougeres, too).