10 Best Restaurants To Go To For A Intimate Dining Experience in LA

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Élephante / Photograpy by Bella Marie Adams

Dinner for two or maybe three… I’ve explored LA nights and here’s what I’ve found. 

Los Angeles is the epicenter for glamour, luxury and the entertainment industries. In addition, the restaurant scene in this city never misses a beat, with new chefs and restaurants opening and launching new projects constantly, there is always a new place, ambiance and dish to experience. I’ve gathered our top ten date night restaurants for you, complete with my own recommendations and experience. Call up your crush, your lover, your partner and make a reservation at one of these spots asap! 

Élephante

A Soothing reprieve from the chaos of hectic city life, Élephante is a beautiful chic beach house rooftop style restaurant in the heart of downtown Santa Monica. A southern Mediterranean flare transports guests with an incredible ambiance and curated menu by designer and restaurateur Nicholas Mathers. The cuisine and cocktails take inspiration from light coastal Italian dining. The interior is remarkable, romantic and elevated with custom furniture and finishes surrounded with natural woods, stones and pieces from Northern Africa and Southern Italy. It is a perfect place to feel at ease and relaxed to connect romantically. Stand out dishes are the roasted mushroom pizza, a perfectly balanced flavor with surprising notes of honey are sure to win your date over. Their cocktails are exquisite and have something for every palette. I am obsessed with the Crimson & Clover, light, refreshing and easy…just the way we want our love life. 

DAMA

Located in the fashion district of Downtown Los Angeles , this hidden gem is a latin inspired restaurant and bar that does not disappoint with its lush grandeur of indoor and outdoor seating. Sit underneath canopies of trees and umbrellas and instantly feel transported somewhere far away with your boo. Must haves are the guacamole and seafood tostadas and charred octopus. They really exude decadence with their cocktail offerings, try the Derby Cocktail Tropical for a true Pan American experience, just the right amount of sweet for your sweet. 

Dama

Cecconi’s

A West Hollywood classic with a coastal Italian elegance, this restaurant is the perfect setting to indulge your date. The interior design is unbelievable with ornate details and a garden terrace room with window ceilings for an open and luxurious feeling. Their food and drinks are what you and your significant other will be dreaming about for days to come. Crafted with speciality and innovation, their dishes are served with care and balance. Try the Burrata for a smooth and decadent start to the meal and the Rigatoni Bolognese for a spectacular preparation of a timeless classic.

Melody

This quiet and intimate restaurant in the cute East Hollywood neighborhood on Virgil Avenue does not disappoint. A perfect place to feel cozy and close in a setting that feels just like home. The back patio opens for dinner at 5pm and although they don’t take reservations there is usually not a long wait. It is what you’d expect a summer backyard patio dinner would feel like, set with incredible DJ’s that spin the best vinyl on select nights and twinkle lights that create the perfect relaxed setting. The cuisine is phenomenal and community oriented; with a weekly rotating menu, you always have something new and delicious to try with your number one. 

Melody

Ysabel

For the boujee and for the sophisticated, a perfect restaurant to celebrate an anniversary, a birthday or simply just because it’s date night. A space that is refined and informed by mid century design, the courtyard and outdoor spaces have plenty of beautiful places to lounge fireside with your lover and get cozy with a drink. It’s sophisticated and easy to feel transported like you’re on vacation, so indulge and enjoy. I recommend their cheese platter, it has a few types of cheese with honeycomb, olives, flatbread and seasonal fruits with a winning presentation. The salmon is also an exquisite and interesting dish with a bit Indian fusion with the tiki masala. They book up fast so make a reservation, find your date and enjoy the elegance of Ysabel. 

Redbird

In the heart of downtown, this newly opened New American restaurant is gaining accolades for its design that pays homage to the cathedral next door through its historical architectural gems juxtaposed with modern timeless forms to create a warm and unique dining experience. Their menu is inspired by the multi-cultural influences of Los Angeles with entrees portioned to be enjoyed together. The shishito peppers are a winning starter that is innovatively paired with crunchy quinoa. A lovely relaxed environment perfect for first dates and for anything and everything else.

Spago

The top of the top is Wolfgang Puck’s restaurant Spago, located in the heart of Beverly Hills. These guys don’t mess around and offer impeccable service, quality, taste and experience. A five star experience with rare wines, champagnes, flavors you’ll be talking about for years to come. Take your date here to wow them over with a classic glamorous LA dining experience that is really in the pulse of the fine dining scene of LA. If they have the white salmon, you have to get it. It is prepared in such a unique and perfectly balanced way, cooked to perfection. And for dessert they are the masters of the speciality basque cheesecake, soft & creamy, but not overly sweet and served with a tangerine marmalade and fresh berries.  

Spago

L’Antica Pizzeria da Michele 

An enchanting gem located off the main thoroughfare of  Hollywood Blvd, this restaurant is the perfect place to unwind with the one you love. Their grand midcentury design and open layout and outdoor courtyard transport you to modern Italy, a lovely romantic setting. They have a winning selection of  Italian wines, I loved their Sauvignon Blanc and their cocktails are next level. Try their Paper Plane for a classic and upscale treat. Known for their wood fired pizzas, I can’t emphasize enough how incredible the classic margarita is, but if you’re really trying to spoil and impress your special someone, hit it home with their lavish Truffle pizza, it is truly an indulging delicious pizza topped with shaved black truffle and truffle oil. Food coma cuddles may be in store for you both after that meal.

Bavel 

Hidden in the Arts District under the fourth street bridge, this is the premier spot for Middle Eastern dining. A perfect place to go with yours to enjoy a nice summer evening. Their patio and interior are breathtaking with lots of light, plants and upscale furnishings, it’s easy to feel spoiled here. Their bread and hummus is the perfect place to start, with incredible seasonings and spices; their grilled prawns are great for sharing. The menu has endless things to experience and try, make it a date night classic for you and yours!

Bavel / Photograpy by Dylan + Jeni

Norah

A West Hollywood classic, located right on Santa Monica Blvd, specializing in unique American cuisine, they offer top tier service and an above and beyond ambiance that is magazine worthy. Their selection of oysters are always fresh and have an array of small and large for everyone’s palette. Try sharing the heirloom tomatoes and the Tartufo pizza to leave your date absolutely speechless. This pizza comes with shaved truffle and truffle honey with parmesan and fontina; go spoil your date here and save us a slice.

Favorites in the LA restaurant scene are always changing; however, these are some strong contenders that I consider staples and must trys. Check back in for more restaurant recommendations, updates and announcements and be sure to let us know what you think and what you tried at these restaurants! Go get your summer love on with some exquisite fine dining experience, you deserve it! 

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