Not only is this Pan-Latin restaurant and bar located along San Antonio's picturesque Riverwalk, but it has one of the most stunning dining rooms in the country, with a floor-to-ceiling glass wall the opens up when the weather's cool enough to enjoy it. Chef Edward Villarreal is at the helm, serving up an array of Latin-inspired dishes that will make your mouth water, from their famous Chorizo con Queso and handmade Empanadas to Pan-Seared Trout with Shrimp. This savvy chef is also the star of a culinary series, Homegrown Chef, that inspires gourmands to cook, eat and explore San Antonio's delicious food scene. Go for breakfast, lunch, brunch or dinner. They also offer happy hour, and good eats from their downstairs speakeasy-esque bar and late night options, when most restaurants are closing down. The perfect choice before or after an event at the Tobin, as they're within walking distance.
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Ocho is a beautiful restaurant that continuously makes the top restaurants lists and offers a sultry Latin menu you'll love!
Kimberly's expert tip: Make sure to visit the downstairs speakeasy-style bar for a little pre or post dinner canoodling.
NOLA Brunch and Beignets is owned and operated by one of San Antonio's most talented chefs, Pieter Sypesteyn, who originally hails from New Orleans. He introduces those authentic flavors and cuisine at this fairly new eatery, that's sole focus is brunch. What could be better than brunch that can be had on days that aren't typically reserved for brunching? You can enjoy a relaxing "brunchy" meal here every Tuesday through Sunday. The menu is full of such yummy options, it's difficult to choose. You can nosh on Hashbrown Crusted Trout, Eggs Rockafella, Bread Pudding French Toast with seasonal marmalade, a Blue Crab Omelette or Shrimp and Grits, just for starters. You'll definitely want to save room for a plate of beignets for dessert, which come in classic powdered sugar or stuffed with lemon curd or coffee and chicory. Enjoy a meal from the Big Easy in the Alamo City!
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: NOLA is for couples who think nothing's sexier than a good brunch, and few do it better than this New Orleans-style eatery.
Kimberly's expert tip: The beignets are a must! They're made in-house, from scratch and in small batches, with a snow shower of powdered sugar!
The Board Couple ideally illustrates what happens when a couple gets bored and decides to get creative. Although not a traditional restaurant, this hybrid concept has become a local's favorite very quickly and for good reason! Culinary power couple, Monica Nino and Bryan Gonzales, have craftily crafted a business built on phenomenal charcuterie boards, wine and more. They make "lavish" cheese, charcuterie and grazing boards that can be easily delivered or picked up. It makes for the perfect accompaniment on a picnic, outdoor date, special family outing or just a night snuggled up watching Netflix. The boards are artfully curated for two on up to 30 or more and include a smorgasbord of delicacies, such as artisan cheeses, cured meats like hot sopressata and prosciutto, along with dried fruit, ripe fruit, nuts, seasonal spreads, fun add-ons like honeycomb, and so much more! This fantastic couple takes it up a notch by sourcing locally as much as possible to turn this into a farm-to-table feast. They source their produce from a local company, some of the charcuterie, preserves and mustard from Texas Hill Country makers, honeycomb from a Texas farm and the baguettes, cold brew coffee and olive leaf tea are made by craft producers in San Antonio. All of this goes on boards that are created by their in house carpentry team. So, who's ready to get board?!
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: The Board Couple offers a fun and romantic choice for those wishing to dine al fresco, away from the crowds.
Kimberly's expert tip: Make sure to check out their wine offerings to take your picnic next-level!
For a moment of pure bliss, well, head to Bliss. Owned and operated by one of San Antonio's greatest chefs, Bliss is a delight in every form of the word. A perfect option for a romantic date, friendly gathering or family celebration. Located in Southtown, the ambiance is relaxed yet elegant and the service is some of the best you'll find in town. The seasonal menu consists of contemporary American cuisine, from hearty, perfectly-seasoned dishes such as pork shank to more delicate fare such as seared scallops. Their charcuterie, made with premium meats and artisanal cheeses is a must as a starter, and you can't go wrong with dessert here either. Wine aficionados will appreciate their award-winning wine list.
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: This classy restaurant will impress that special someone, from the wine to the off-menu surprises.
Kimberly's expert tip: A great choice for wine-lovers, as Bliss makes exceptional pairings with the dishes that will knock your socks off.
Founded by a woman entrepreneur who was ahead of her time, Ruth's Chris Steak House is well known for its prime cuts. Ruth Fertel showed spirit and determination in choosing her restaurants. The quality of the restaurant steaks is a clear reflection of her eye for the best. Choose from a wide variety of full-flavored classic steaks, such as a T-Bone or Cowboy Ribeye, for an outstanding example of USDA Prime at its best. The steaks come out sizzling on a plate of butter and herb, and the smell alone will have you salivating. Complement your steak with a lettuce wedge salad or lobster bisque. You can wrap it all up with their customer favorite, Chocolate Sin Cake. Ruth's Chris Steak House may be a chain, but they continue to win points with steak lovers around the country for many delicious reasons.
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Ruth's Chris has made an artform out of cooking and serving the perfect steaks. Meat lovers will be in heaven!
Kimberly's expert tip: Ruth's Chris offers spacious dining with outdoor options as well.
Gwendolyn, located downtown along the Riverwalk, is a fine-dining American restaurant that, like the Grandmother, it's named for, inspires deep love and devotion. A cozy, romantic venue, Gwendolyn is an ideal place for a first date, anniversary or if you're simply a foodie who appreciates impeccable food. Gwendolyn is committed to serving handmade food made from local ingredients. Chef Michael is a devotee of the Slow Food Movement which emphasizes eco-awareness. Even more impressive, Gwendolyn refuses to use all the modern gadgetry that most restaurants can't seem to live without. The menu is small, offering a three course or five-course prix fixe menu with two options for each course that changes daily. You can check the website to see what the current day's menu will be, and you'll want to call ahead to book your reservation.
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Gwendolyn provides an intimate atmosphere and an exceptional prix fixe menu that stimulates all the senses.
Kimberly's expert tip: The menu changes from day-to-day based on seasonal availability so be sure to check out the website for details.
Biga on the Banks has earned a stellar reputation. Request table 31 when you make a reservation at Biga on the Banks, and you'll end up with the best view in the house. You won't be gazing at the river, but you will have an eye on chef Bruce Auden as he concocts lobster ravioli on arugula and guinea ham in guajillo sauce. Steak lovers will enjoy their Griddled Angus Beef Ribeye or their Grilled Beef Tenderloin, but you cannot go wrong with their Eleven-Spiced Hill Country Venison and Grilled Quail. The tasting menu is highly recommended, but the cuisine is equally as interesting when ordered a la carte. The loft-inspired space is airy and light, but don't worry, you'll have plenty of elbow room when you dig in.
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Biga on the Banks is one of the oldest and most popular fine dining restaurants along the Riverwalk.
Kimberly's expert tip: For dessert, try the Sticky Toffee Pudding for a few after-dinner kisses.
Rebelle Restaurant in the newly-renovated St. Anthony Hotel has finally come to fruition and oh what a plump, juicy treat it is. Once, years ago, the restaurant at the St. Anthony was the place to go for dinner... and now it is once again! Executive Chef Stefan Bowers along with restaurateur Andrew Goodman, have already proven their talents at the successful Feast Restaurant in Southtown, San Antonio. With Rebelle, they're now well on their way to earning national attention. With Chef Bowers' gift for blending scintillating flavors and Goodman's aesthetic grace, this duo is a match made in heaven - which is what Rebelle looks like, if heaven is an enchanting, purple-hued dreamscape where the lusty libations and seductive cuisine never end. For Chef Bowers, it's all about the flavor. While the dishes are certainly thoughtfully put together, you quickly lose sight its beauty once you taste it. Chef Bowers calls it "high-risk" cuisine because if even one component of these highly composed dishes is not on point, it throws the entire dish off. The concept is shared plates of elegant, extraordinarily fresh and diverse cuisine. Rebelle is French for rebel and is their acknowledgement of the common use of French techniques used in the dishes, even though the menu is quite global. It's also the perfect description for these two men who are true to their own vision and no one else's. The menu includes the most succulent Char-Grilled Spanish Octopus with braised corona beans and basil pistou; a decadent 32 oz. Cote de Bouef (bone-in Ribeye with tarragon butter); perfectly-cooked Veal Sweetbreads with black trumpets and lobster knuckle butter and Rosemary and Red Pepper Spiced Goat Shank, to name a few. Bon appetit!
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: With sexy decor, boozy drinks and a uniquely delicious seafood menu, you're sure to get a second date!
Kimberly's expert tip: Try the "Funday," a pitcher of rum, pineapple, orange juice, pomegranate and lemon.
Fortunately, if you're staying on the north side of the city you don't have to drive all the way downtown to enjoy a superb meal, and frankly, even if you are downtown, Valeria is worth the drive. This exceptional Italian restaurant is everything you would expect from an upscale restaurant. Don't let the casual atmosphere deter you. Owner and chef, Keith Kuhn is one of the most versatile and talented chefs in the San Antonio area. He's dedicated to serving his customers traditional yet creative scratch-made fare made with the freshest, most authentic ingredients. Arancini, or fontina cheese-stuffed risotto fritters, are one of their signature starters. Main dishes range from Spaghetti Alla Carbonara to Ragu of Confit Rabbit with housemade Pappardelle pasta and exceptional seafood specials. If you're looking to treat yourself or your significant other to something truly special, Valeria is the place!
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Valeria, in a word, is exceptional! This quaint Italian restaurant is makes the perfect treat for someone special.
Kimberly's expert tip: Ask about their ticketed wine dinners and other special events.
The restaurateurs of the hugely popular neighborhood oyster bar, Little Em's Oyster Bar, took it next level with their newest Southtown restaurant, Up Scale. The owners took inspirations from their world travels to curate a divine menu fit for a king and queen. Up Scale promises to bring sexy back to the culinary realm with an eclectic menu that's sure to seduce even the most reluctant diner. The menu is a little bit sushi, a little bit seafood and a little bit steakhouse all rolled into one. Guests can start off with some Akami Tuna and Ora King Nigiri, fun rolls like the Up Scale Roll, made with toro, asparagus, kizami wasabi, yuzu kosho, red onion, cavier and gold flakes. Appetizers range from Cavier Deviled Eggs with white truffle oil to Wagyu Carpaccio with candied pistachios for an umami flavor blast. Entrees range from New Zealand Dover Sole with foie gras buttered farro to 60 Day Dry Aged Tomahawk steak. Keep in mind, the menu aims to be seasonal, so dishes may change. Are you ready to dig in?
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: With an evocative menu and posh atmosphere, Up Scale may just be a sure bet for wooing your loved one!
Kimberly's expert tip: Parking can be a challenge in this neighborhood, so make sure to plan ahead and keep an eye out for no parking signs.