Fried sirloin steaks with crispy baby potatoes, salad and a tasty Rhone Valley wine (with decorative rose petals)
We cooked the Heal Farm steaks rare to medium rare (which seemed both easy and appropriate for fairly thin cut sirloin) and dressed the salad simply with jerez vinegar and olive oil.
The steaks were absolutely delicious - a really delicate flavour, almost like veal - we didn't make any sauce, so as to be able to taste them properly, and didn't at all regret that decision.
The wine (Vidal-Fleury Ventoux 2009) was fruity (leafy red fruits on the nose and a nice strawberry taste) but moderately tannic, with a high level of acidity and very good with the food. The high acidity suggests that it might be better after a year or two, but still very drinkable now. It was also quite strong (at 14%) which rendered us both a bit merry - perhaps not a bad thing for Valentine's Day ;-)
We made a pretty good attempt at the mocha pudding (garnished with Forman & Field brandied cherries)
but were defeated about half way through - more for tomorrow, I guess!
It was much nicer than I was expecting (I'm more into fruity puddings than chocolatey, as a rule) - kind of like a coffeey chocolate cheescake filling, lightened by a booze soaked layer of sponge running through the middle.
The meal was all conducted by Valentinular candlelight,
Thanks to Helen and to Heal Farm - we'll definitely be back for more :-)