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10 Most Romantic Restaurants in NYC for a Special Date

How much you spend on a date doesn’t matter when you’re with someone who truly loves you. But when you want to make an anniversary, proposal, or a relationship milestone special, it wouldn’t hurt to treat yourself and your special someone to a romantic date.

There are plenty of romantic restaurants in NYC, and here are our top picks, where to find them, how to make a reservation, and more. Also, take note of the new policies on reservations and meal times during the new normal.

L’Artusi

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228 West 10th Street, New York, NY 10014

For reservations, contact 212-255-5757 or info@lartusi.com

Opened in 2008, L’Artusi was named after the Italian chef Pellegrino Artusi who specialized in modernizing traditional Italian cuisine. The two-story restaurant seats up to 110 guests and includes banquette seating, a traditional bar, a cheese bar, and a chef’s counter overlooking the open kitchen. The cozy restaurant is a great place for a first date or when you decide to treat you and your special someone to delicious Italian food. For more intimate dinners, book a private dining table in their 2500-bottle walk-in wine cellar.

Prior to the new normal, L’Artusi required reservations far in advance. As of writing, the restaurant does not take reservations and only provides outdoor patio dining (weather permitting), to-go orders, and delivery.

Locanda Verde

inside-locanda-verde-restaurant

377 Greenwich Street, New York, NY 10013

For reservations up to 14 days in advance, click here for online reservations or contact 212-925-3797.

Understated, casual, but chic, Locanda Verde is one of the most romantic restaurants in NYC with a great corner view of the TriBeCa neighborhood to enjoy while you dine. It features an urban Italian menu served in a comfortable but leisurely setting. Great for first dates if you want to impress but still remain casual.

Their menu includes authentic Italian antipasti, pasta, and a wide array of main course dishes. For a more romantic dinner, order AC’s Fire-Roasted Garlic Chicken that’s good for two people. Finish it off with some delicious panna cotta or gelato.

Currently, Locanda Verde’s schedule is as follows:

  • Breakfast: Temporarily Closed
  • Brunch: Friday, Saturday, and Sunday from 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM
  • Lunch: Monday to Thursday from 11:30 AM to 3:00 PM
  • Dinner: Monday to Thursday from 5:30 PM to 9:30 PM
  • Pickup and Delivery: Monday to Thursday from 5:30 PM to 9:30 PM & Friday to Sunday from 5:00 PM to 9:30 PM

Shuko

42 East 12th Street New York, NY 10003

For reservations, contact 212-228-6088.

Established in 2005, Shuko may give off the wrong first impression when you spot it on the street. It’s an unmarked door along 12th Street in Greenwich Village, which doesn’t give you much information at a glance. But step inside, and you’re taken to a world of Japanese fine dining in an intimate setting for you, your partner, and all the other guests.

Reservations are a must in this small restaurant. And fair warning: Shuko doesn’t have vegan or vegetarian menus, though it will take note of your serious allergies and dietary restrictions like Kosher and Gluten-free menus. Your food is made in front of you by a team of chefs, using the finest fresh fish and seasonal ingredients.

 Japan Village

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934 3rd Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11232

No reservations, contact info@japanvillage.com for inquiries.

For a more casual first date or for a night out with someone who loves Japanese food and isn’t too fond of formal dining, check out Japan Village, a 20,000 square-foot market in Industry City. The food hall offers indoor and outdoor seating, takeout, and delivery. You can catch several Japanese food stalls every day of the week.

Create your own feast of ramen, sushi, bento boxes, and more! If it’s been a long day for you and your partner, an outdoor table filled with all your favorite Japanese food may just be what brings the spark for the night.

The Grand Salon at the Baccarat Hotel

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28 West 53rd Street, New York, NY 10019

For Grand Salon reservations, contact 212-790-8867 or reserve a table online.

An elegant and luxurious restaurant for special occasions, The Grand Salon stays true to its name and is the perfect venue for grand and lavish occasions. From its Jouffre silk-covered walls, high-back banquettes, and a 64-arm Baccarat chandelier, there’s nothing more romantic than the humming heart of the Baccarat Hotel that is The Grand Salon.

This restaurant is too good to not be on our list. Unfortunately, operations are suspended until further notice.

Le Bernardin

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155 W. 51st St., New York, NY 10019

For reservations, contact 212-554-1515

Paris-born siblings Maguy and Gilbert Le Coze arrived in New York in 1986 and opened Le Bernadin, a simple seafood restaurant. For the next 20 years, the two Michelin-star chefs’ Le Bernardin would be showered with praises from the public and professional food critics.

Taking your date to this sophisticated seafood restaurant is surely to sweep them off their feet. Dress appropriately for the main dining room, as jackets are required for men. While the dining room only offers tasting menus, the lounge offers a more casual line-up of oysters, caviar, and wine.

A three-course lunch meal will fetch you $93 per person, while a hearty four-course dinner menu is fixed at $165.

One If By Land, Two If By Sea

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17th Barrow Street (between 7th Avenue South and W 4th Street), West Village, New York, NY

For reservations, contact 212-255-8649

Established in a 1767 carriage house owned by the infamous Aaron Burr, One If By Land, Two If By Sea ranks high not only on the most romantic restaurants in NYC, but also in the world according to Architectural Digest. Picture a romantic date consisting of dinner by the candlelight, live music, and decadent menus of elevated American cuisine.

It’s so popular as a romantic restaurant that, since its opening in 1973, it’s said that if your partner takes you there, there’s a big chance they’re planning to pop the question. The entire restaurant just screams romance from the menu, to the seating, to the overall ambience.

Shalel Kitchen

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65 ½ West 70th Street, New York, NY 10031

For reservations, contact 212-873-2300

Established in 2000, this Mexican restaurant offers elevated dishes from the city of Oaxaca, the home city of Shalel Kitchen founders Fernando and Alfredo. The cavern-like dining room is dimly lit with candles and lanterns, creating a romantic and intimate feel for parties of two. Try one of their delicious meals or opt for the Tacobar to get your fill of tavcos.

The restaurant is open from Monday to Sunday from 4:00 PM to 10:00 PM. Delivery and takeout is available.

The River Café

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1 Water St., Brooklyn, NY 11201

For reservations, contact 718-522-5200

Found riverside under the iconic Brooklyn Bridge, The River Café treats its guests to a classic American cuisine worthy of its Michelin star along with a breathtaking view of the NYC skyline and river.

The River Café boasts one of the most outstanding wine lists in the world, impressing your date if they have a taste for finer wines. Wine, dine, and enjoy the night filled with live piano music and highly-rated service.

Just remember that The River Café has a dress code: jackets are required for men at dinnertime, though ties are optional. Lunch and brunch practices a smart casual dress.

As of September 22, 2020, The River Café is now offering a three-course prix fixe menu at $125 per person as part of its outdoor dining program. Guests can book a table from Tuesday to Sunday from 5:30 PM to 8:30 PM. Reservations may be booked up to 10 days in advance using credit cards and are a must before entering. Guests are required to wear a mask except when seated. For more information, contact The River Cafe through the given contact information above. So, whether your idea of a perfect romantic date in NYC consists of a formal dinner, a more semi-casual affair, or just a night out in a food-stall marketplace, you’ll find plenty of places to take your special someone for a night they will never forget.

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