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Mirame Beverly Hills interior with mirrors and bar
Mírame in Beverly Hills.
Rich Marchewka

13 Romantic First Date Restaurants in Los Angeles, Winter 2022

Whether fine dining or with casual activities, we’ve got you covered

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Mírame in Beverly Hills.
| Rich Marchewka

Whether finding a venue or activity for a first date or romantic outing, the simple question is: where is the best place to go? Every date is unique to the participants, but in a region as spread out as Southern California, it’s best to plan wisely, and immediately.

With some restaurants sold out weeks in advance, booking a reservation is proving to be a current challenge. Dining cozily in a low-lit room is the signature option for romantic dining, but more casual settings also prove popular. And Los Angeles is a city full of options that run the gamut of tastes, styles, and activities: some have incredible views, others include bowling. To help with the planning process, below is a handy list of some of the best first date restaurants in Los Angeles from north to south.

Added: Ardor, Portuguese Bend, LA Cha Cha Chá, Mírame, BLVD Market, Swift Cafe, Gardena Bowl, Olivetta

Removed: Highland Park Bowl, M. Georgina (closed), Margot, Found Oyster, Melody, Barcade, Tabula Rasa, Bar Ama, Arts District Brewing, Everson Royce, Fritto Misto, The Sunset, Chez Jay, Sosta

Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; the latest data about the delta variant indicates that it may pose a low-to-moderate risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial transmission. The latest CDC guidance is here; find a COVID-19 vaccination site here.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Mirabelle Wine Bar

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12518 Burbank Blvd
Valley Village, CA 91607
(818) 927-4241
Visit Website

Nestled in Valley Village is the cozy neighborhood Mirabelle Wine Bar, which feels like a fine French hideaway lit perfectly by warm light. The friendly bartenders will take the time to help order the best beer, wine, or menu which sports charred alaskan octopus, burrata and charred baby leeks, or a solid cheese and charcuterie board. The outdoor dining is a fairly recent add, and it’s a special one.

Mirabelle
Mirabelle wine bar
Mirabelle Official

2. L’Antica Pizzeria da Michele

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1534 N McCadden Pl
Los Angeles, CA 90028
(323) 366-2408
Visit Website

It’s bound to be a romantic date at the pizzeria perhaps best publicized by author Elizabeth Gilbert, who mentioned Antica in her bestselling novel, Eat Pray Love. Its notoriety rose when Julia Roberts starred in the movie adaptation in 2010. Antica opened its Los Angeles outpost in 2019 with a pretty patio, fireplace, and birds-eye view into the pizza-making den, and the dates haven’t stopped since.

Antica Pizzeria’s patio in Hollywood
Antica Pizzeria
Wonho Frank Lee

3. Everson Royce Bar

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1936 E 7th St
Los Angeles, CA 90021
(213) 335-6166
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This understated (at least on the outside) Arts District bar can accommodate any type of date, whether stationed on the patio with a bocce ball court, or in the comfy interior. There’s something for every mood here because the cocktails are inventive and the food is delicious. For an easy pick, try the classic burger.

Everson Royce Bar in Downtown Los Angeles [Official Photo]

4. The Sunset Restaurant

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6800 Westward Beach Rd
Malibu, CA 90265
(310) 589-1007
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It’s hard to beat the views at the aptly named Sunset Restaurant in Malibu. The year-round dining destination does require a bit of a trek for anyone living in LA proper, but what better way to end a date hiking or walking on the beach than with a glass of wine, some seafood or pasta, and Instagram shots of the sun going down.

A charming sunset over a plate of spaghetti.
Sunset Restaurant
Sunset Restaurant

5. Sosta

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439 Pier Ave
Hermosa Beach, CA 90254
(424) 391-5959
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For a casual ambiance not far from the beach, it’s hard to beat Sosta in Hermosa. The charming Italian cucina seems perfectly built for handmade pasta, glasses of red wine, and sunset conversation that spills into warm evening dinner. At dusk, there’s nothing but candles to light the interior.

A charming Italian restaurant with wooden table and candle in the middle.
Sosta
Sosta

6. Ardor

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9040 Sunset Blvd
West Hollywood, CA 90069
(424) 310-1572
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Chef John Fraser’s seasonal menu is one of the best in West Hollywood, but the dining room and stunning patio have all the right elements for an intimate dinner. Book a reservation quickly ahead of that special night, though.

A pasta dish at Ardor in West Hollywood, California
Pasta at Ardor
Cathy Chaplin

7. Portuguese Bend

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Sure, there’s plenty of dining options at Portuguese Bend, but there’s more to do at Long Beach’s first distillery and prohibition-style bar. Options include a tasting room or a platform to watch the spirit-making process.

Portuguese Bend distillery in Long Beach, California
Portuguese Bend
Wonho Frank Lee

8. LA Cha Cha Chá

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812 E 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90013
(213) 548-8487
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Walk one flight up into Cha Cha Chá in the Arts District, where the eastern view of Downtown is spectacular. In the kitchen, Mexico City-born, LA-raised chef Alejandro Guzman will prepare something delicious that pairs well with the skyline.

Outdoor patio at Cha Cha Chá in Downtown Los Angeles
Cha Cha Chá
Wonho Frank Lee

9. Mírame

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419 N Canon Dr
Beverly Hills, CA 90210
(310) 230-5035
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With shareable taco plates, stellar cocktails, and a vibrant indoor-outdoor vibe, Mírame has a versatile menu for picking at plates while getting to know someone in Beverly Hills. While a lot of the restaurants in this part of town are overtly pricey or fancy, Mírame has a casual, rustic feel that feels romantic any night of the week.

Indoor outdoor seating at Mirame Beverly Hills.
Mirame
Rich Marchewka

10. Swift Cafe

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4279 1/2 Crenshaw Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90008
(323) 815-4418
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If daytime dates are required, Leimert Park’s Swift Cafe is an ideal space to snuggle up in the corner facing Crenshaw Boulevard while dining on Chef Kyndra McCrary’s fresh menu.

The interior of Swift Cafe in Leimert Park, Los Angeles
Swift Cafe
Sheldon Botler

11. Gardena Bowl Coffee Shop

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15707 S Vermont Ave
Gardena, CA 90247
(310) 532-0820
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One of LA’s best activities is to dine and bowl at the historic Gardena Bowl Coffee Shop. Whether on a date or eating with friends, bowl after filling up the table with options, including the epic Hawaiian royal platter with Portuguese sausage, chashu, green onions, and eggs over a bed of rice with teriyaki sauce.

Loco moco at Gardena Bowl Coffee Shop in Gardena, California
Loco moco at Gardena Bowl Coffee Shop
Matthew Kang

12. BLVD MRKT

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520 Whittier Blvd
Montebello, CA 90640
(323) 863-5566
Visit Website

Imagine walking around BLVD MRKT’s shipping container restaurants, having conversation, while ordering Nola Cajun and Creole’s gumbo, Vcho’s pupusas, or Los Taquero Mucho’s tacos. Try Cafe Santo’s coffee or Alchemy Craft’s watermelon sugar-rimmed Mexican lollipop cider while chatting at one of the cozy communal tables.

BLVD MRKT food hall in Montebello, California
BLVD MRKT
622 productions/Fixè Group

13. Olivetta

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9010 Melrose Ave
West Hollywood, CA 90069
(310) 307-3932
Visit Website

West Hollywood’s expansive Italian-influenced restaurant has a wide menu and plenty of different dining rooms to get into a romantic mood. The spaces feel lush and intimate, but with enough bustle and energy to not make dates feel awkward. The food from chef Michael Fiorelli is easy for anyone, with pastas, vegetables, and grilled meats that are fun to share.

Olivetta in West Hollywood, California
Olivetta
Wonho Frank Lee

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1. Mirabelle Wine Bar

12518 Burbank Blvd, Valley Village, CA 91607
Mirabelle
Mirabelle wine bar
Mirabelle Official

Nestled in Valley Village is the cozy neighborhood Mirabelle Wine Bar, which feels like a fine French hideaway lit perfectly by warm light. The friendly bartenders will take the time to help order the best beer, wine, or menu which sports charred alaskan octopus, burrata and charred baby leeks, or a solid cheese and charcuterie board. The outdoor dining is a fairly recent add, and it’s a special one.

12518 Burbank Blvd
Valley Village, CA 91607

2. L’Antica Pizzeria da Michele

1534 N McCadden Pl, Los Angeles, CA 90028
Antica Pizzeria’s patio in Hollywood
Antica Pizzeria
Wonho Frank Lee

It’s bound to be a romantic date at the pizzeria perhaps best publicized by author Elizabeth Gilbert, who mentioned Antica in her bestselling novel, Eat Pray Love. Its notoriety rose when Julia Roberts starred in the movie adaptation in 2010. Antica opened its Los Angeles outpost in 2019 with a pretty patio, fireplace, and birds-eye view into the pizza-making den, and the dates haven’t stopped since.

1534 N McCadden Pl
Los Angeles, CA 90028

3. Everson Royce Bar

1936 E 7th St, Los Angeles, CA 90021
Everson Royce Bar in Downtown Los Angeles [Official Photo]

This understated (at least on the outside) Arts District bar can accommodate any type of date, whether stationed on the patio with a bocce ball court, or in the comfy interior. There’s something for every mood here because the cocktails are inventive and the food is delicious. For an easy pick, try the classic burger.

1936 E 7th St
Los Angeles, CA 90021

4. The Sunset Restaurant

6800 Westward Beach Rd, Malibu, CA 90265
A charming sunset over a plate of spaghetti.
Sunset Restaurant
Sunset Restaurant

It’s hard to beat the views at the aptly named Sunset Restaurant in Malibu. The year-round dining destination does require a bit of a trek for anyone living in LA proper, but what better way to end a date hiking or walking on the beach than with a glass of wine, some seafood or pasta, and Instagram shots of the sun going down.

6800 Westward Beach Rd
Malibu, CA 90265

5. Sosta

439 Pier Ave, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254
A charming Italian restaurant with wooden table and candle in the middle.
Sosta
Sosta

For a casual ambiance not far from the beach, it’s hard to beat Sosta in Hermosa. The charming Italian cucina seems perfectly built for handmade pasta, glasses of red wine, and sunset conversation that spills into warm evening dinner. At dusk, there’s nothing but candles to light the interior.

439 Pier Ave
Hermosa Beach, CA 90254

6. Ardor

9040 Sunset Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90069
A pasta dish at Ardor in West Hollywood, California
Pasta at Ardor
Cathy Chaplin

Chef John Fraser’s seasonal menu is one of the best in West Hollywood, but the dining room and stunning patio have all the right elements for an intimate dinner. Book a reservation quickly ahead of that special night, though.

9040 Sunset Blvd
West Hollywood, CA 90069

7. Portuguese Bend

Portuguese Bend, California 90275
Portuguese Bend distillery in Long Beach, California
Portuguese Bend
Wonho Frank Lee

Sure, there’s plenty of dining options at Portuguese Bend, but there’s more to do at Long Beach’s first distillery and prohibition-style bar. Options include a tasting room or a platform to watch the spirit-making process.

8. LA Cha Cha Chá

812 E 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90013
Outdoor patio at Cha Cha Chá in Downtown Los Angeles
Cha Cha Chá
Wonho Frank Lee

Walk one flight up into Cha Cha Chá in the Arts District, where the eastern view of Downtown is spectacular. In the kitchen, Mexico City-born, LA-raised chef Alejandro Guzman will prepare something delicious that pairs well with the skyline.

812 E 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90013

9. Mírame

419 N Canon Dr, Beverly Hills, CA 90210
Indoor outdoor seating at Mirame Beverly Hills.
Mirame
Rich Marchewka

With shareable taco plates, stellar cocktails, and a vibrant indoor-outdoor vibe, Mírame has a versatile menu for picking at plates while getting to know someone in Beverly Hills. While a lot of the restaurants in this part of town are overtly pricey or fancy, Mírame has a casual, rustic feel that feels romantic any night of the week.

419 N Canon Dr
Beverly Hills, CA 90210

10. Swift Cafe

4279 1/2 Crenshaw Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90008
The interior of Swift Cafe in Leimert Park, Los Angeles
Swift Cafe
Sheldon Botler

If daytime dates are required, Leimert Park’s Swift Cafe is an ideal space to snuggle up in the corner facing Crenshaw Boulevard while dining on Chef Kyndra McCrary’s fresh menu.

4279 1/2 Crenshaw Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90008

11. Gardena Bowl Coffee Shop

15707 S Vermont Ave, Gardena, CA 90247
Loco moco at Gardena Bowl Coffee Shop in Gardena, California
Loco moco at Gardena Bowl Coffee Shop
Matthew Kang

One of LA’s best activities is to dine and bowl at the historic Gardena Bowl Coffee Shop. Whether on a date or eating with friends, bowl after filling up the table with options, including the epic Hawaiian royal platter with Portuguese sausage, chashu, green onions, and eggs over a bed of rice with teriyaki sauce.

15707 S Vermont Ave
Gardena, CA 90247

12. BLVD MRKT

520 Whittier Blvd, Montebello, CA 90640
BLVD MRKT food hall in Montebello, California
BLVD MRKT
622 productions/Fixè Group

Imagine walking around BLVD MRKT’s shipping container restaurants, having conversation, while ordering Nola Cajun and Creole’s gumbo, Vcho’s pupusas, or Los Taquero Mucho’s tacos. Try Cafe Santo’s coffee or Alchemy Craft’s watermelon sugar-rimmed Mexican lollipop cider while chatting at one of the cozy communal tables.

520 Whittier Blvd
Montebello, CA 90640

13. Olivetta

9010 Melrose Ave, West Hollywood, CA 90069
Olivetta in West Hollywood, California
Olivetta
Wonho Frank Lee

West Hollywood’s expansive Italian-influenced restaurant has a wide menu and plenty of different dining rooms to get into a romantic mood. The spaces feel lush and intimate, but with enough bustle and energy to not make dates feel awkward. The food from chef Michael Fiorelli is easy for anyone, with pastas, vegetables, and grilled meats that are fun to share.

9010 Melrose Ave
West Hollywood, CA 90069

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