Whether it’s an anniversary, first date or just a Saturday night, who among us doesn’t want to make a great impression on a date? You’ve got enough to worry about (what with the outfit and conversation), so let us help you with the meal. No need to chance it on subpar dishes or amateurly mixed cocktails — we’re here to help you find the perfect spot that’s sure to knock some socks off. Here are a few of the restaurants that make our hearts skip a beat.
PEARL & ASH (New York City)
Pearl & Ash is a chic destination for exceptional New American dishes and is known for its sweeping wine list. The modern, elegant dining room is the perfect palette for Chef Richard Kuo’s bright and beautiful small plates, ideal for sharing over drinks. Though incredibly popular with the fashion set, comforting ingredients and down-to-earth hospitality reign supreme.
MELISSE (Los Angeles)
Mélisse is Chef/Owner Josiah Citrin’s Michelin-starred destination for refined, market-driven French-American fare. Seasonally driven prix fixe menus are available, along with a vegetarian tasting menu and a curated French wine list. Located in sunny Santa Monica, this sophisticated favorite never fails to impress.
PORSENA (New York City)
Porsena is Chef/Owner Sara Jenkins’ relaxed and contemporary Italian neighborhood trattoria. The neighborhood gem features a pasta-centric menu — with both classic and imaginative sauces — inspired by memories from Jenkins’ Tuscan and Roman childhood. Hearty main dishes are also available in the intimate, brick-walled space.
MICHAEL MINA (San Francisco)
At Michael Mina’s namesake restaurant, New American interpretations of classic dishes are available on standard or multi-course prix fixe menus. Along with creative cocktails, seasonal small plates are served up at the bar in the sleek, contemporary setting. The wine list features selections from boutique American wineries as well as European vineyards.
Sixteen offers French-inspired American dishes in an elegant space in the Trump International Hotel & Tower. With Chef Thomas Lents at the helm, the restaurant offers a la carte items for breakfast and lunch, a brunch buffet and tasting menus at dinner — all highlighting the best seasonal ingredients. Stunning 30-foot floor-to-ceiling windows offer panoramic views of Lake Michigan, the Chicago River and the Wrigley Clock Tower.
SALT HOUSE (San Francisco)
Salt House spotlights innovative American fare in a warm, lively space. Guests can enjoy the tasty dishes alongside the creative cocktails, local beers or international wines on offer at the marble bar. Located in an old printing press built in the 1890’s, the bustling restaurant channels a rustic vibe with brick walls and wood beams.
COMODO (New York City)
From husband and wife team Felipe Donnelly and Tamy Rofe, Comodo is a brick-walled SoHo gem with unique Pan-Latin plates drawn from Mexican, Spanish and South American recipes. Fresh vegetables, local seafood and inventive desserts are complemented by the vast beverage program. The rustic-chic dining room is candlelit and features communal tables.
Located on Boylston Street, L’Espalier is an elegant, award-winning Back Bay restaurant. Chef/Owner Frank McClelland employs local, fresh ingredients in his sophisticated and modern French fare, offered on a prix fixe menu in four chic dining rooms that feature starburst chandeliers and plush seats. Along with the dishes, the seasonally influenced wine list and by-the-glass selections change almost daily to reflect the latest wine discoveries.
TOSCA (Washington D.C.)
Tosca delivers fine Northern Italian cuisine focused on delectable house-made pastas and fresh local produce. The elegant restaurant features a breathtaking wine display, natural wood accents and luxurious dining seats. To complement the romantic ambience, Tosca offers a variety of delicious American and Italian wines.
QUALITY ITALIAN (New York City)
Quality Italian delivers modern adaptations of traditional Italian‑American steakhouse fare. The restaurant boasts four unique dining rooms on two floors, hand‑blown glass light fixtures and two walls of windows overlooking bustling Midtown. The wine list features over 325 bottles with a focus on Italian, American and French vintages.
At his rustic eleven table dining room located in Center City Philadelphia, Chef Marc Vetri offers authentic Northern Italian fare featuring homemade pasta in a multi-course tasting menu with a stellar beverage pairing of wines, craft and artisanal beers. Exposed wood beams keep the intimate and elegant townhouse setting rustic and reminiscent of Italy.
LE COLONIAL (Chicago)
Le Colonial serves French-Vietnamese cuisine on tropically inspired menus that spotlight fresh seafood, vegetables and herbs. Situated in a charming vintage row house, the grand, two-story space is inspired by tropical Southeast Asia in the 1920’s and boasts soaring ceilings, an all-season terrace and a large mahogany bar.
So go ahead, don’t be afraid to use the Reserve app to try any of these great spots the next time you’re looking to impress that special someone.
The Reserve Editorial Team