You’ve scored your first date with a special person, and now it’s time to find a romantic restaurant that will set the stage for you two to bond. After all, you don’t get a second chance to make a first impression. The following are the best spots in Los Angeles to turn that maiden-voyage into a lasting relationship:
You may be sitting on the ground, but your heads will be high in the clouds at Il Cielo, rated the most romantic restaurant in Los Angeles. The ivy-covered outdoor patio makes for a stunning storybook setting as you nestle yourselves beneath the streaming lights that float above you like stars. With a menu filled with Italian mainstays such as pappardelle, rigatoni, and ravioli, creatively paired with eggplant, short rib, and spinach ricotta, you won’t be able to resist plucking a forkful from your date’s plate—after offering a bite of yours, of course. This place is all about the ambiance, so look around if you can spare a moment not looking adoringly into your partner’s eyes. With European-inspired archways and columns, gorgeous floral arrangements, and lit candles, Il Cielo sets the right mood for a well-dressed couple toasting glasses of wine and locking hands for the first time.
For an exquisite and unforgettable first date, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better venue than Providence. Ranked as one of the country’s top restaurants, Providence is a sustainable seafood-lover’s paradise. Beautifully plated and arranged, everything that hits your table is a museum-worthy vision. Its dishes are carefully built, as if by famous sculptors, and are filled with ingredients such as tuna sashimi, mussels, and artfully sliced vegetables. You two may be holding forks, but you’ll feel like Poseidon wielding a trident as you delve into the buttery John Dory fish with kombu-cured Tahitian squash, or the delectable Maine lobster with orient charm eggplant. Ask your server for the perfect wine pairing to complement your entrees as you embrace the oaky, smoky, and salty flavors fit for the gods.
Start your Saturday or Sunday off with a bit of romance by sampling the delicious brunch offerings of Geoffrey’s Malibu, a romantic restaurant overlooking the ocean. Begin with some tropical cocktails, such as the lychee margarita or the elderflower champagne cocktail, then share the famous baked brie in a puff pastry or jumbo coconut shrimp. This sweet and creamy delight, made with pear chutney, melts in your mouth. Letting the conversation linger as you’re bathed in beautiful sunlight, you’ll suddenly feel like you’ve known each other for years.
Brentwood Restaurant and Lounge
Located upstairs at the top of Barrington Avenue and Sunset Boulevard, the more casual and dimly lit Brentwood Restaurant is a great spot for spending time with someone new. You may be getting together for the first time, but the laid-back service and speakeasy vibe will make you feel like you’re already regulars. You can share some serious snacks from its comfort food-filled menu, such as the crispy calamari fritti or spicy buffalo chicken tenders. Grab a few Brown Derby cocktails, bob your heads together to the lounge music, and engage in some light banter before the restaurant’s maple leaf duck tacos and Chimay ale chili arrive at your table. Though these plates will surely leave you stuffed, order some finger-licking homemade donuts with raspberry sauce just to delay the end of your fantastic date.