The Local newsletter is your free, daily guide to life in Colorado. For locals, by locals. Sign up today!
Dim lighting. A sultry soundtrack. Menus that double as conversation starters. A location near other cocktail or dessert bars so you can extend the evening if things are going well… There are so many elements that make a place the right choice for date night. Whether you’re on the hunt for a spot to impress a first date, celebrate an anniversary, or simply enjoy a long overdue night out without the kids, Denver has no shortage of restaurants that deliver on romance and fun. Here, in alphabetical order, 11 of our favorite date night spots in Denver.
Editor’s Note: This is a living list of the best date night restaurants that was last updated on February 15, 2022. Did we miss your favorite? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
French is the language of love, and Brasserie Brixton leans into the romance with a charming, modern space that transports diners to Paris with its relaxed ambience, expansive wine list (which, as you might have guessed, is heavily French), and exacting dishes. Sidle up to the marble-topped bar or chef’s counter for small plates that were designed to be shared, like miso carrots and steak tartare. Do as the Parisians do and linger over a touch of sweetness—may we suggest the ricotta doughnuts?—and a digestif before calling it a night. Heads up, day daters: Brixton’s weekend brunch is just as delicious, thanks to sourdough pancakes and a.m. burgers topped with Gruyère and bacon. 3701 N. Williams St.
Edge Restaurant & Bar
There’s nothing sexier than a 21st-century steak house—except when it’s paired with the immaculate service of a Four Seasons. Edge, the bustling, upscale restaurant inside the downtown Denver hotel, is where you take a date to impress: The food is great, and the service will make you both feel like royalty. Start with one of the seasonal craft cocktails and the oysters du jour before tempting your taste buds with Wagyu beef cooked at the table on a hot stone. Choose your surf and/or turf entrée and then have fun picking out which of the fancy mac and cheeses (there are five) and sides you’re going to share. Pro tip: Save room for one of the expertly crafted desserts. 1111 14th St.
The Fifth String
When the weather is cooperating, there’s nothing like sitting under the twinkle lights on the Fifth String’s patio. The energy behind the back-lit bar (opened to the outdoors courtesy of a garage door) combined with the hubbub of LoHi creates the sense that you’re in the middle of it—the excitement of a city at its peak. There’s also chef-owner Amos Watts’ menu, which showcases his fine-dining pedigree alongside his Nebraska roots. Our suggestion: Start the meal with house-made bread that you swipe through beef tallow as it melts from a candle, and then settle in for the relatively affordable three-course prix-fixe menu. You’ll find something to pair at each stop on the exquisite cocktail list. 3316 Tejon St.
Jovanina’s Broken Italian
Descending the candle-lit stairs at Jovanina’s Broken Italian feels like you’re walking toward a private dining retreat. While you likely won’t be dining alone, Sotto Voce—the downtown eatery’s Prohibition-style lounge—does have an intimate vibe, especially if you can nab the two-top in a restored nook of one of the space’s original tunnels. Libations are served from a roving cart, and many of the dishes are kissed by the wood-fired oven upstairs, including the oysters and pizzas. You won’t go wrong with any of the handmade pastas either. If you’re not ready to call it an evening, saunter over to the nearby Cruise Room or Cooper Lounge for a nightcap. 1520 Blake St.
Nocturne Jazz & Supper Club
At RiNo’s Nocturne Jazz & Supper Club, your date will be set to a soundtrack of smooth—or, perhaps, lively—jazz music. Make reservations for dinner and a show at the restored, brick-walled warehouse and you’ll enjoy a full live set alongside a three-course meal, with optional wine or cocktail pairings. From cider-braised pork belly to sweet potato pilaf to goat cheesecake, the dishes are sumptuous without being heavy. And the performances—featuring Nocturne’s own artists in residence—provide plenty to talk about…and an excuse to pause the conversation if you need one. 1330 27th St.
No matter how many times you dine at the Plimoth, a New American eatery on an unexpected corner in Skyland, you’ll always be surprised. That’s mainly because the seasonal menu changes so often, but also because every meal leaves you wondering exactly how executive chef and owner Peter Ryan is able to turn something as simple as mushrooms or florets of broccoli into the most delicious thing you’ve eaten in, well, forever. Yes, the Plimoth has serious cooking chops, but it feels like a neighborhood hangout—a place where you can both impress your date and be totally yourself. Snag a seat at the bar for the best people watching and easy to access to the A+ booze lineup. 2335 E. 28th Ave.
Love is at the heart of Restaurant Olivia: The elegant Wash Park trattoria is named after the daughter of co-owner Heather Morrison (and stepdaughter of her husband, fellow co-owner Austin Carson). Fair warning: After one bite of chef Ty Leon’s pastas, you may start to fall in love, too. The hand-cut carbs change with the season, and you’re certain to find a new-to-you shape on the menu, such as garganelli or chitarra. Pair your choice with a creative take on the Negroni (recent examples: a green chile version and one made with roasted beet gin). If you want to show off your own cooking prowess, pick up a package of fresh pasta to make your special someone at home. 290 S. Downing St.
Surprise your date with a visit to Retrograde: The futuristic cocktail lounge is hidden behind a freezer door at Frozen Matter/Sweet Action ice cream parlor. Neon lighting sets the mood in the small space, which is accessible only on a first-come, first-serve basis. Not only will you look in-the-know, but you’ll also be treating yourselves to some of the city’s most creative cocktails; we suggest picking your drink by the name instead of getting caught up in the ingredients. Or, tell the bartender what spirit you’re in the mood for and let them work their magic. 530 E. 19th Ave.
Not every date calls for candlelight and a Harry Styles streaming station. Sometimes, you just want to have fun, and Somebody People’s bright, tropics–inspired space and exciting zero-waste menu definitely brings the joy. The cocktail list has just as many nonalcoholic options as it does full spirits (as they refer to boozy options), and the Overland eatery’s vegan menu is so good, even carnivores won’t miss their favorite proteins. Ward off the Sunday scaries together during the $25, five-course Sunday Supper special—don’t worry, dessert is included. 1165 S. Broadway, Unit 104
You know why so many couples honeymoon in Europe? Cheese. (OK, yes, there’s also the history, beauty, and culture, but we’re certain the dairy offerings factor in too.) Truffle Table’s charming corner spot in LoHi has everything you want during an evening out. It’s casual (no reservations needed). There’s booze to cheers with, with all the wines coming in under $11 a glass. The food is shareable and also affordable, and the artfully arranged cheese and meat board will give you something to talk about when an awkward pause hits. If you’re trying to be a bit more romantic, order the fondue for two. We told you cheese could be charming. 2556 15th St.
Everything about Uchi feels designed to set the stage for a perfect date night: The high-energy atmosphere of a restaurant in one of Denver’s hippest neighborhoods (that’d be RiNo). The warm lighting and crystal brick wall that appears to glow in the background. The balanced cocktails with smart Japanese twists. And, of course, the impeccably presented—and sourced—seafood. To make the evening extra-special, order the six- or 10-course omakase menu and let the chefs take care of the menu so you can focus on the conversation. 2500 Lawrence St.
14 of Denver’s Best Ramen Spots
Metro Denver’s Best Food Halls
Denver’s Best Thai Restaurants
Denver’s Best Bars
The Best Burgers in Denver and Beyond
The Best Sandwiches in Denver, According to Colorado’s Favorite Stoner Foodie