One of the great things about the many restaurants we have in Dallas is finding things that are a bit off the beaten track. And, so, as a follow-up to Josh's article of the most romantic restaurants in Dallas, I'd like to put forth a list of date night destinations with a different perspective, with some locations that will make your date (him, her, whatever) say "wow."
If you've got the time to plan ahead, and you're really looking to impress that certain someone, Lucia is the place to go. A newbie to the growing Bishop Arts District dining scene (no comments about the neighborhood's safety here, thanks), Lucia's wine list, authentic Italian menu selections and amazing service have pushed it to the top of the date night list for many Dallas foodies. Caveat: they're already booked for June, so if you're looking to head there sometime soon, you're better off heading to the bar or hoping for a cancellation. The wait, though, is totally worth it.
2. Cane Rosso
Jay Jerrier is an epic pizza maker on a quest to bring a taste of Napoli to Dallas. If you're looking for Zini's, i Frateli or (gasp!) Pizza Hut, this is not your home. But if you're looking to impress a date with a pie made with fresh sauce, crust and cheese - read on, my friend. Cane Rosso, a mobile pizza oven in a previous life, has found a home on Commerce Street in Deep Ellum, complete with a great wine & beer selection and a custom installed oven. Impress your date by sitting at the bar and ordering a pizza with sea salt, and a smores calzone for dessert. Signed, sealed, delivered.
There's something romantic about pizza. Maybe your eyes meet over that final slice, you both reach for it at the same time, and then you stab your date with a fork so you can get to it first. What? No one else has one that? Maybe it's just me.
Eno's, another fantastic restaurant in the Bishop Arts District (yup, still safe), makes for a great date night with its rustic atmosphere and delicious menu options. Start off the evening with their perfect picnic, easily one of the best cheese plates in the city. Then, grab your pie of choice and (if you really want to guarantee that second date) order an Eno's Sundae Sack for dessert. Or, if you're feeling really ambitious, head around the corner to Dude Sweet Chocolate for some of the best aphrodisiacs in town.
4. Times Ten Cellars
Fine, it's not a restaurant. Bear with me for a moment - imagine you and your date, cozied up in one of Times Ten
Cellars' dark corners, drinking wine and snacking on your choice of pizza, Thai, even gelato. Get the picture? Times Ten Cellars has no kitchen, which provides you with one of the best policies known to man - reverse BYOB. It's BYOF. Order in from Scalini's, Cafe Izmir, Nandia, Thai Thai - you get the point. You can even bring over snacks from Whole Foods across the street. The decision, my friends, is yours.
5. Tillman's Roadhouse
If you go, go hungry. Dinner at Tillman's starts with a sampling of truffle popcorn and warm peanuts, and only gets more delicious from there. A trio of fries, fried pickles and skillet cornbread - and those are just the appetizers. Plus, their drink menu was designed by an honest-to-goodness mixologist, resulting in some beautiful concoctions like their blood orange margarita. So, if the date's a bust, at least you'll have the booze, no?
You may have guessed that we're big dessert people. Well, Tillman's is no exception, letting you get hands-on with your dessert, making your own tableside smores. With honest-to-goodness skewers and fire. They're quite trusting folk.
While the phrase "tasting menu" may bring to mind microscopic portions of frou-frou French food, Local's menu defies tradition. Featuring local, seasonal, delicious dishes and spectacular wine pairings, chef Tracy Miller's tasting plates combine beautiful textures with amazing flavors, topped only by this Deep Ellum restaurant's unique and alluring atmosphere and location.
Sushi, done right. That's what Teppo, a Lower Greenville restaurant, is known for. And they do it without breaking the bank - rolls, yakitori and straight up sushi, all on a very reasonably priced menu. Sit at the sushi bar and it's like getting dinner and a show - especially if you order the Teppo Roll, which changes at the whim of the chef.
8. St. Martin's Wine Bistro
St. Martin's is great for dinner - that's a given. Their wine list alone is worth the visit. But for brunch? St. Martin's can't be beat. Their Sunday Champagne Brunch gets you a delicious French-inspired entrée and a mimosa - and this won't isn't made from a bottle of Andre. We're talking seafood crepes, beef stroganoff and poached salmon digonnaise - breakfast tacos, what?
9. Meddlesome Moth
If you want to show your date a more adventurous side, there's no better place to do so than the Meddlesome Moth. Whether you're walking on the wild side of beer, wine, cocktails or food - Meddlesome Moth has some new experience to offer. Reservations are definitely recommended (or you can sit at the bar). For an extra dose of romance, put your heads together and split a couple of their share plate options - you'll both get what you want, and may even discover a new favorite dish! (Bone marrow or chicken liver, anyone?)
I have 4 letters for you: B.Y.O.B. This incredibly popular Dallas restaurant's constantly changing menu comes with a serious cost-cutting benefit - you bring the wine, they make the food. That means not paying $30 for a bottle of Yellow Tail, but bringing a $15 bottle from nearby Stoney's to pair with their delicious dinner options. With small, intimate tables and legitimate Italian entrees, Urbano has all the makings of a great date night destination.
Date night is all about trying something new and exciting - and even taking yourself a bit outside your comfort zone. Pull up a chair, cozy up to that someone special, and give a new restaurant a shot. Who knows? You may even find a new favorite place.
Did we miss your favorite date night destination? Let us know in the comments!