Could snow threat fizzle restaurants' Valentine's Day sizzle? - wave3.com-Louisville News, Weather & Sports

Could snow threat fizzle restaurants' Valentine's Day sizzle?

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Chef John Varanese Chef John Varanese
Chef  Dean Corbett Chef Dean Corbett

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Chef John Varanese vows to put the "steamy" back in Valentine's Day at the restaurant that bears his name on Frankfort Avenue.

"We have some dishes that contain up to six or seven aphrodisiacs," said Varanese. "I haven't helped you out there, there's pretty much nothing I can do for you."

East Louisville's Corbett's: An American Place was expecting a full house for a five-course, price fixed Valentine's feast.

"It is the most number of tables that we do on any night of the year," chef and proprietor Dean Corbett said.

This year that will be weather permitting.

"Snow in the forecast scares the hell out of us," said Corbett. "Not because we're worried about the snow itself."

"It's that a lot of people are trying to decide whether go or cancel what's even come," said Varanese.

"We have seen the reservations drop anywhere from 40 t0 85 percent just with the prediction," Corbett said.

Unpredictability is a reality in the hospitality business. But necessity has prompted restaurateurs to get creative to get you past the snow, and into the house. Varanese requires a credit card to make reservations.

"It's a security deposit," he said. $25 per person. It's just enough to encourage people that maybe they should put a good foot forward and make an attempt to come dine with us this evening."

Varanese is covering his front-end investment. He's renting more two-tops tables for couples than would be typical for seating on a Friday night.

"I've prepared for 350 people," said Varanese. "There's product in here. There's staff in here."

Regular customers account for about two-thirds of Corbett's Valentine's dinner crowd. He pledged to accommodate those who show up late.

"For us, this forecast is a little sketchy," the Chef said. "We're a little worried about the first seating (4:45-6:15PM).

Varanese will serve his love potions all weekend. "It's exposure for us," he said. "We want to give everybody an opportunity."

Corbett's bet: freezing drizzle won't fizzle love's sizzle.

"It's a wet snow," said Corbett. "It's supposed to immediately get warm tomorrow and melt."

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