Cute and Casual to Fancy and Indulgent: Vancouver's Most Romantic Restaurants



Whether it's your first date or your hundredth, a date night in Vancouver is always appreciated. Take a romantic space and throw in some good food, a solid drink selection and some great conversation and you've got a winning recipe. 

A solid French restaurant is a no-fail choice when it comes to romance. Vancouver is home to some really great French restaurants, but Les Faux Bourgeois really makes the heart (and belly) sing. The food is excellent, the wine list is juicy, and the atmosphere is lovely. What makes Les Faux (as locals call it) so notable is that the price point is very reasonable.

For vegetarians and those who enjoy plant-based eating, The Acorn on Main Street hits the spot. The dishes are beautiful and delicious, the cocktails are creative and tasty, and the space is super cozy. Mains hover around the $20 mark, making for a reasonably priced meal.

If you're really looking to splurge on a special night, Hawksworth Restaurant or Botanist are two great choices. Hawksworth is nice if you're looking for a more intimate atmosphere, while Botanist fits when you want a more lively atmosphere with some live music. After dinner, head down to the Lobby Lounge for cocktails and a band.



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If your idea of a date night leans more towards something a little casual, Rodney's Oyster Bar does the trick. While the atmosphere is laid back, the romance comes to play in the form of some tasty bi-valves, known for their aphrodisiac properties. They offer a simple menu made with fresh ingredients, mainly from the sea. Oysters are their specialty and you can get them on the half shell or pan-fried. An array of condiments are presented to flavor the shucked gems, along with the classics. If oysters aren't your thing, try the crab cakes or the coco curry shrimp. The crab cakes are served with a simple salad and it's big enough for two to share as an appetizer, or one as a main. The Don't ask for mixed drinks, unless it's their signature Caesar. They only sell beer and wine here.


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Yaletown
Lupo


 

As it stands, heritage homes in Yaletown are a rare commodity. When one of these old gems is paired with fine Italian cuisine, you've got Lupo. This homey space creates a unique dining experience that's romantic and inviting. Lupo doesn't take short cuts in the kitchen and they make everything in-house. On the menu, you'll find a contemporary take on traditional Italian fare. From the antipasti to the pasta to the meaty mains, dishes are made from local and seasonal ingredients. For those who can't decide what to get, pastas come in two different portion sizes so you can order it as a starter or a main. If you have a gluten allergy, they also offer gluten free pasta.


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If you prefer your date night to have a buzzing energy, head to Chambar. The room itself features beautiful light fixtures, earthy wood details and touches of leather that make for a vibrant and inviting room. The restaurant is lively, but you can still enjoy the conversation at your table. Chambar's Belgian menu is the creation of Michelin-trained Chef Nico Schuermans. While at Chambar, you have to make sure that an order of the mussels and frites makes their way to your table. The lamb tagine is another favorite dish, featuring a lamb shank that's braised with honey, figs, cinnamon and cilantro, served with cous cous and zalouk. Desserts are made in-house so make sure to save a little room. These guys are also known for their awesome beer list, inventive cocktails, and juicy wine options.


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Nightingale


 

A beautiful room, plenty of ambiance, delicious food and cocktails are the hallmarks of a great date night and Nightingale checks all the boxes. The downstairs lounge boasts soaring ceilings, beautiful decor and a warm buzz, making this a lovely spot to convene over a drink and a bite. The dining room is on the mezzanine (with the open kitchen) and looks down onto the lounge. For some romantic vibes, you'll want to sit upstairs where it's cozy. The food menu's seasonally driven and quite extensive and dishes are best enjoyed shared. Start with creative salads and veggie dishes before moving on to house-made pastas, pizzas and meaty mains. There are plenty of vegetarian options, too. The cocktail menu serves up a selection of hand-crafted thirst quenchers and if it's beer or wine you're after, they've got you.


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East Side

 

Delicious vegetarian and vegan food, a romantic space and craft cocktails make The Acorn a charming spot for a night a date night. As you walk into the dimly lit restaurant, cozy up and order a cocktail while you eye the menu. If you're off the booze, they also have a handful of tasty non-alcoholic options that are fun to sip. Most of the menu changes seasonally, but the creativity from the kitchen and beautiful plating are a year-round mainstay. One of the dishes that you'll always find is their beer battered halloumi cheese with smashed peas, lemon balm, mint yogurt, and a potato and zucchini pancake. It's a delicious vegetarian alternative to fish and chips. Be sure to save room for dessert, they shine here.


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Hawksworth Restaurant
Photo courtesy of Hawksworth Restaurant


 

Not all date nights can be over-the-top amazing, but every now and then it's nice to dial up the fancy factor and splurge. When the time comes, Hawksworth Restaurant is the place to go. Chef David Hawksworth is well known on a global scale and after a meal at Hawksworth, it's not hard to see why. Through dedication, consistency, and a love for food, he creates dishes that are a piece of culinary excellence. Located inside the gorgeous Rosewood Hotel Georgia, Hawksworth's dining room exudes sophistication and style, while the service is gracious and warm. The menu serves contemporary Canadian cuisine that features local and Canadian ingredients to create a fresh and inspiring menu. If you like to try a bit of everything, make your meal an experience and order the tasting menu. There's the option to include wine pairings, too.


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Bao Bei Chinese Brasserie offers a Western twist on Chinese classics that's perfect for a casual date night. The atmosphere is lively and comfortable, and dishes are made to be shared. Their "schnacks" section has small bites that are great to snack on while you enjoy a cocktail or two. Start your meal off with the Sichuan cucumbers; they're refreshing and light. The petit cadeaux and petits plats chinois are larger than the schnacks and ordering a couple per person is the way to go. From the petits plats chinois, you've go to order the shao bing. This sesame flatbread, with cumin lamb sirloin, pickled red onion, green pepper, cilantro and salted chilies, is so tasty. The cocktail, wine and beer list are an added bonus to this delightful spot. The bar area is a great place to grab a drink and snack before heading out for the night.


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There's something about Italian food that just feels romantic. Throw in a wood-fired oven and a warm room and your next date night is about to take it up a notch. Follow your nose along Robson Street and make your way up the winding terracotta stairway to CinCin. Here, crips white table linens set the stage for a beautiful meal. The menu tempts with seasonal dishes that use well-sourced ingredients, making each dish shine. First courses often feature soups, salads and small plates. The risotto and pasta section gives you the option to order as a main or smaller portion. For your main, be sure to check out what's happening on the wood-fired grill. CinCin's wine list is stocked full of beautiful options that cater to varying budgets. Not sure what to order? They'll happily point you in the right direction.


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For an extra special meal, head to Botanist. Walking in here is like a breath of fresh air, literally. Inspired by the principles of botany and the lush landscape of the Pacific Northwest, this vibrant restaurant, bar, lounge and terrace is a feast for the senses. The room's adorned with plenty of greenery, soft peach banquets, brushed gold, and other natural elements throughout. Adding to the ambiance are the melodic tunes coming from the pianist playing the white piano. On the menu, Executive Chef Hector Laguna makes the most of the Pacific Northwest's bounty. Locally and seasonally driven, each dish is made to excite both the eye and the palate. What would beautiful food be without something delicious to wash it down with? The cocktail program blends chemistry with a playful execution, while the wine list features wineries that practice sustainable, biodynamic or organic farming and winemaking.


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Where to start? Les Faux Bourgeois is a favorite for so many reasons. The food is excellent, the atmosphere is so cozy, and the price is right. Most mains are under $25 and the portion sizes are generous, so you won't leave here hungry. The menu features traditional French dishes like canard confit, mussels in white wine, coq au vin and steak frites. Appetizers include boudin noir, French onion soup (as anglophones know it), country-style pork pate, and other crave-worthy options. Daily specials are offered for those looking to try something new. For dessert, how can you say no to a creamy creme brûlée? Much like the food, the wine list is incredibly approachable with plenty to choose from.


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Meet Natasha John

Natasha is not born and raised in Vancouver, but is pretty certain it's her spirit hometown. After jumping around Canada, Texas, Arkansas and the UK, she has her feet firmly planted in...  More About Natasha

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