Feeling Lucky: Aphrodisiac Dishes Inspired by ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’

If you’re out on a date (and hoping for a “nightcap”) and deciding between ordering the four cheese or truffle pasta, you may want to opt for the latter. Those little shavings of truffles are proven to have aphrodisiac effects. With Fifty Shades of Grey opening in theaters this week, not to mention Valentine’s Day right around the corner, we can’t help but think of all things sexy, including Fifty Shades-insipred lingerie! Not sure where to go for a delicious dinner that will delight your palate… and possibly more? Check out our steamy picks of aphrodisiac dishes below.

Truffles at Marea 

trufflessTruffles have been hailed as an aphrodisiac since the days of ancient Rome. Their strong scent is said to be similar to the male pheromone, androstenone. Male pigs actually have a high concentration of this pheromone, and when it’s smelled by a female pig in heat she gamely assumes the mating stance. Plus, it doesn’t hurt that truffles are high in protein as well.

To satisfy your truffle craving, try Marea’s popular “Rotolo” dish composed of ricotta pinwheels, veal ragu, taleggio fonduta, and a generous helping of shaved black truffles.

Oysters at Aquagrill 

oystersWhile some may argue that it’s simply the texture of raw oysters that put people “in the mood,” but scientific research shows that the raw delights are rich in uncommon amino acids that trigger our sex hormone levels. And who are to argue with science?!

To test this theory for yourself, head to Aquagrill and check out their impressive raw bar, which is updated daily. Featuring more than 18 types of different oysters from Rhode Island, Maine, Connecticut, and beyond, you’re sure to find one that tickles your palette.

Hot chilies at La Esquina 


Chili peppers contain small amounts of the chemical capsaicin that accounts for the hot and bothered way you feel after consuming these little fire crackers. Side effects include sweating, increased heart rate, and even sensitivity… sound familiar? They even have same chemical that stimulates the release of endorphins, which produces that oh-so-good “natural high” feeling.

To get your night started right, head to La Esquina and order the “Bistec Taco.” Made with char-grilled skirt steak, charred onions, cilantro, and salsa de chile de arbor, it’s the perfect appetizer to awaken your senses (and hopefully, your libido).

Salmon at La Bernardin 

Screen Shot 2015-02-09 at 12.19.23 PMChances are, if you live in NYC, you’re already a fan of salmon. Despite it’s heart-healthy benefits, this fresh water fish is also an excellent aphrodisiac. Loaded with omega 3’s that boost stamina and elevate serotonin levels—which are proven to enhance our mood—it’s also the perfect food to, well, get you in the mood. Salmon is also rich in vitamins A, B, D, and calcium, which are said to be natural libido enhancers. 

To get your heart pumping, order the “Barely Cooked Wild Salmon” with savoy cabbage and truffled garbure broth at La Bernardin. 

Pomegranate at Le Cirque 

Screen Shot 2015-02-09 at 12.58.29 PMDrinking pomegranate juice daily is said to have the ability to lower cortisol levels, which coincidentally, increases testosterone. Higher levels of testosterone also lead to heightened mood and sexual desire. Yes, please!

Looking for a night of passion? Skip the little purple pill and head to Le Cirque for the zesty “Red Snapper Crudo,” bursting with cauliflower, and of course, pomegranate.

Chocolate at Spot Dessert Bar

choc cakeThe New York State Psychiatric Institute’s Michael Liebowitz proved that the phenylethylamine (PEA) in chocolate releases the same type of hormone that is released during sexual intercourse. Maybe that’s why it’s so hard to stop after just one piece!

If you’re in the mood for a little “cocoa,” head to Spot Dessert Bar for their signature “Chocolate Green Tea Lava Cake Tapa” featuring green tea ganache and green tea ice cream encrusted in ooey-gooey chocolate.