Bite Picks: Best Date Spots Downtown
Growing up in NYC, I was exposed to all kinds of delicious food. Luckily, my boyfriend shares this love of food and it makes for a perfect eating buddy. We usually go out once or twice a week for date night, and we made a pact this year that we would try a new restaurant every week. After weeks of keeping our pact, I have finally decided that these are my favorite spots. Whether it's the food, the atmosphere, or the drinks, these restaurants are always equally romantic, delicious, and fun.
Sushi By Bou Union Square
Sushi by Bou is my absolute favorite spot for a date with your beau. The $50 Omakase is fairly priced for what you get. 12 pieces of warm, melt in your mouth sushi. The atmosphere is super modern and fun. The sushi chefs are always talkative, so you can get to know them. The drinks are delicious, and my favorite sushi roll is the wagyu with toro and truffle. They are super accommodating to a kosher diet and allergies too. Be sure to make a reservation ahead of time, they usually text back pretty quickly and are great at squeezing people in!
Loring Place is a delicious, cozy spot for a date night at any time of the year. My favorite time is in the fall, and the restaurant has a very warm feel to it. The food is delicious, healthy, and quite hearty. The portion sizes were pretty big. This is a great restaurant for vegetarians, as many of their dishes are plant based. My favorites were the butternut “fries” and the burger. I also shared the hummus and radishes with my boyfriend, and we loved them. All of the food was well seasoned, and surprisingly did not feel heavy at all. The ingredients were super fresh and tasted high quality. The portions were perfect; we were comfortably full. It is a little pricey, but for great sized portions and high quality food totally worth it. This is a perfect West Village fall date night spot.
Kazunori is the perfect spot for a quick lunch date if you love sushi. Go early and add your name to the list. The sushi is fresh and the warm rice makes it so delicious. My personal favorite thing to order is the six roll hand roll combo and get the salmon sashimi to start. The fresh salmon soaked in a tangy soy sauce with sesame seeds on top is the perfect appetizer before the hand rolls. Still hungry? Order an extra toro hand roll and get it with scallions; the crunch adds texture to the buttery fish. The best part? Six delicious and large hand rolls cost less than $30. Not bad for a date!
Does your date love ramen? Head to Ippudo on 4th Ave for some hearty ramen, especially as the weather gets cold and comfort food becomes everyday food. Ippudo is a great mixture of chic, modern with traditional Japanese flare. They always have funky music playing, and dimmed lights create a hip vibe. Some of my favorites? I love the pork buns and the original Ramen. I always ask for an extra serving of noodles at the end!
12 Chairs Cafe
Going for a brunch date on a lazy Sunday morning? Head to 12 Chairs Café on MacDougal St. This Israeli spot is so lively and delicious, it basically guarantees a second date. Make a reservation, as they usually have a pretty long wait line. My favorites on the menu were the healthy mint tea, the hummus with sautéed mushrooms, and the chicken schnitzel. My date ordered the shakshuka, a traditional Israeli egg dish, and it was phenomenal. Enjoy your food with the lively Israeli music, and sometimes you may even see a few people dancing on the tables!