Great Tips To Make It A Memorable Romantic Dinner at a Restaurant
Whether you are going out to celebrate Valentine’s Day, on your first date or celebrating a multiple-year anniversary, going out to dinner in a restaurant is one of the most popular date activities. If you want to make this dining out experience a memorable one, we have some great tips for you.
Choose the right restaurant
It is best to choose a restaurant that serves food that your date likes and that you like too. It is romantic to choose a restaurant without asking your date first. This does not mean you have to rely totally on luck as to whether you have chosen well. Here are some things to consider:
You want a restaurant that serves food that your partner loves. There may be a restaurant that has a great reputation that they have not yet visited, or one you would like to return to. Scrolling through their social media pages is a good starting point to find out what your new date likes. Taking your date to a restaurant that you love opens up the conversation and will be more relaxing for you as you know what to expect.
Atmosphere for romance
The atmosphere of the restaurant can affect your date just as much as the food. If you want to gaze into each others eyes and have meaningful conversation, make sure the restaurant has the atmosphere where this is possible.
A dreamy low-lit setting, a crackling fire and an elegant meal of French delicacies with fine wine may fit the bill, or perhaps authentic Italian cuisine in the open-air on a summer’s night where you can watch the sun set. Many cities have hidden gems where you can sit out in the courtyard or where the rustic décor lit with candles makes for a cosy place for you and your significant other.
If you are dining out on Valentine’s Day, ask your favourite restaurant if they have anything special on the day. Restaurants usually have something unusual and unexpected planned that is different to the atmosphere on other days. Some offer free champagne, a special Valentine’s fixed price menu or discounts for early bookings that can broaden your choices. You can be sure that one of your dinner courses will be in the shape of a heart and that there will be candles and flowers.
A food experience
Some restaurants will prepare the food in front of you or you can dine at a sports bar if you are both keen fans of the teams playing. Some restaurants have themes nights, or events, check if there is anything planned on the night of your date. There may be something you would both love, but it is also a chance for you to opt for another restaurant on that particular night.
If the music is too loud for conversation, you will reduce your chances of being able to connect through conversation whilst you eat. However, if the music is something that you both enjoy then it could work. If you are dining out where there is dancing, be prepared to dance. Steer clear of these places if you do not like to dance.
A romantic meal does not have to cost the earth. Once you have a short-list of possible restaurants, consider the ones that are in budget. Most restaurants have their menus published on their website or have been reviewed online so that you can get an indication of how much a meal may cost. Budget for somewhere where you and your date can order a full meal without you having to worry about the cost.
On a first date it is probably best not to bring out the special offer vouchers you have cut out of the paper, although if your budget is minimal it is not a blanket ban if it is a place you really want to go to. The issue with vouchers is that it may look as though you picked the restaurant just because you have a discount, not because you know your date will love it. If you are a couple who have been together a while, the issue of whether or not to use vouchers should not be an issue.
Read the reviews
Reviews give you an idea about the restaurant you are walking into. A restaurant you loved five years ago may have since changed hands and not be at all as you remember. Reviews give you a chance to avoid pitfalls like this. It is also a good way to find out what the restaurant does well. If there is a particular dish that gets several rave reports, tell your date. This is not only helpful, but your date will appreciate the effort you have made to make the dinner the best it can be.
Reserve a table
If it is possible, make a reservation so you do not have to wait for a table, or in the worse case scenario not get a table at all. Ask your date out a few days in advance and say the reservation is for 15 minutes earlier than it actually is, so you know you will be seated in time.
At the restaurant
It is chivalrous for men to open the door for their date and see them seated at the table. If your date offers to go Dutch with the bill, resist. With the research you have done, you will know you have enough to cover the bill.
If she does not like her food, offer to swap plates or have a quiet word to one side with the waiter.
Whether you choose a romantic French restaurant, a friendly Italian joint, authentic Moroccan cuisine, a fun Mexican or a sushi bar (but do not sit at the counter) it is a good idea to dress up for the occasion and for men that means a jacket and add an extra special touch with a tie.