Five Fab Date Spots in Los Angeles

Spice up your next date with an impressive meal and a memorable experience. The location and food are a crucial part of any rendezvous. Wow your date with one of these hip and happening LaLaLand locations.

Castaway in Burbank

Los Angeles’ latest “it” venue provides a dramatic setting with views of the city. Situated on the hillside above a golf course in the Verdugo Mountains, surrounded by canyons and palm trees, find a seat on the grand terrace or indoors at a cozy booth. Romance your loved one with a brunch date and bottomless mimosas. Start with an exquisite charcuterie board of artisanal meats and cheeses, then indulge in the Lobster Tempura and Waffles (with a smoked syrup blend of star anise, cinnamon and vanilla) and the Wagyu Eggs Benedict. To really impress, book a seat at the 10-person Chef’s Table that allows behind the scenes kitchen action and chef interaction.

Barbette in West Hollywood

The stylish and classy French-inspired bar and bistro is filled with intimate booths and has a lavish bar. Barbette is donned in decorative motifs reminiscent of the Belle Epoch era and is perfect for that after-work drink meet-up or a long enjoyable dinner. You may prefer to dine out back in the covered patio area that feels like a funky cafe or French greenhouse garden. The menu, created by Executive Chef Robert Flaherty, includes French classics as well as gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan options. Loosen up with an absinthe cocktail or a spicy Mezcal with turmeric. Share Ouefs Nicoise (soft cooked eggs with anchovies), Crab Rice mixed with saffron, spring garlic, and basmati, and plump juicy Moules Marinière – mussels soaked in a flavorful white wine sauce.

Nerano in Beverly Hills

The cozy mod white tablecloth Nerano is inspired from the owners’ vision of their Amalfi Coast trips to the village of Nerano. Share a fresh crudo tasting or the Porchetta Pizza, a special menu item with truffle, burrata, and mozzarella and thinly shaved porchetta on wood-fired oven dough. Order the Gnudi – gnocchi-like dumplings made with ricotta cheese instead of potato – complimented with chanterelle mushrooms, toasted sage, and black truffle. Pastas are a must, like the signature Spaghetti all Nerano made with sauteed Italian zucchini and squash blossoms, Spaghetti with Clams, or Bolognese with Black Angus Beef Ragu. Enjoy a romantic nightcap upstairs at their new swank BG Lounge reminiscent of Bemelmans Bar at New York’s Carlyle Hotel or Bar Hemingway in Paris.

Chaya Modern Izakaya in Venice

Chaya Venice has transitioned into Chaya Modern Izakaya with a new menu, a new culinary team, a new beverage program, and a new interior look 28 years later. Sip sake cocktails, Japanese beers, or rare Japanese whisky. The Kaiseki Chef Counter allows guests to enjoy an up close and personal experience and order a 5-course omakase experience for $65. Some of the best shareable dishes include Grilled Peach with Burrata, Prosciutto, and Shishito peppers, Caramelized Miso Tofu, and Pork Chop Katsu, a crispy fried cutlet with dollops of peanut mole and karashi mustard. Hand rolls like the Hamachi, Smoked Soy, and Wasabi Hand Roll are served open for guests to roll, wrap, and bite. Find a lighter version of ramen – with chicken, tequila, and pork chashu – while the Wagyu Chazuke comes with a hot water pour over to cook the thinly sliced meat resting above rice, dashi tea and shiitake.

Inko Nito in Downtown LA Arts District

For a sensational interactive dinner, sit at the bar and watch the chefs prepare your meal in this beautiful open space with the grills as the focal point. The Japanese robatayaki restaurant has elements of Korean food but reminds me of fresh grilled skewered seafood, meats and veggies from Tulum, Mexico. Inko Nito has perfected the smoky flavor with grilled chili butter corn, tender yellowtail collar with a crisp fish skin, and beef cheek with spicy Korean miso. Try dungeness crab tartare served in a tin with chicken skin crisps and nigaki, a new sushi style with roasted seasoned nori, sushi rice, and toppings. Save room for the sweetest ending – coconut ice cream with red chili flakes, soy, Pocky Matcha sticks and Japanese granola.

Five Fab Date Spots in Los Angeles

by Monique Reidy


P.O. Box 1435 | Thousand Oaks | CA | 91360


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