A lesbian couple have claimed that a rude chef ruined their Valentine’s date by telling them they “need a man” to “heat things up”.

Ellie Parker and her girlfriend Lucy Stenger, of Lafayette, Indiana, had planned a romantic meal out on Sunday to mark Valentine’s Day.

The pair decided to visit Japanese steakhouse Asahi – but were greeted by a chef who initially failed to understand how lesbians work.

Ms Parker vented on Facebook: “Our chef came to grill our food for us and was asking everyone if the person with them was their boyfriend or husband. He got to my girlfriend and I and asked where our Valentines were.

“We told him we were each other’s Valentines. We were holding hands mind you. Clearly a couple.

“He proceeds to say ‘well it is legal, but it’s such a waste to not have a man’.

“Later he continues to insult our relationship by saying he could come home with us to ‘heat things up’.

“I am appalled that I would receive this kind of treatment. I cannot believe I paid over $50 to have my relationship insulted and sexualized.”

She posted a picture of the pair’s receipt on social media, with their message: “Don’t tell lesbians they need a man on Valentine’s Day”.

After the post went viral, Ms Parker added: “Thank you all for the support! The restaurant did refund our money, but nothing can make up for the way we were treated. I hope sharing this helps others avoid this situation in the future.”

However, the restaurant denied the allegations – telling Mic that they had “no idea” about the claims before hanging up.