12 top restaurants for every kind of date in Denver

At Call Me Pearl, a proposal hotspot in downtown Denver, you can add a caviar bump to any cocktail for an additional fee. | Credit: Call Me Pearl
Caviar service at Call Me Pearl in Denver with house potato chips and crème fraîche

When it comes to romantic occasions, Denver’s restaurant scene has it on lock. First dates get a flirty and fun setting at an award-winning distillery. Shareable Mexican soul food makes for especially lively group dates. And for when you’re ready to go all in, a caviar and martini bar downtown is a dream proposal spot.

This guide pairs Denver restaurants with romantic occasions from first dates all the way to milestone anniversaries. These are Denver’s 12 best date-night restaurants.

For a first date

The Family Jones Spirit House (LoHi)

A custom copper still sits directly above the bar at The Family Jones Spirit House in Denver
Housemade spirits like gin, rye, and bourbon play starring roles in the cocktails at The Family Jones Spirit House. | Credit: The Family Jones Spirit House

Woo your beau-to-be at this award-winning tasting room and distillery. Housemade spirits like gin, rye, and bourbon play starring roles in cocktails, and the bubbly drinks go well with imaginative bar snacks including lemon-miso Caesar salad, a seasonal charcuterie board, and deviled eggs. If the evening is going especially well, consider taking a bottle to-go to stretch your date a little longer.

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Kawa Ni (LoHi)

Izakayas, or informal Japanese bars, were made for laid-back hangouts, so it’s not surprising that Kawa Ni hits all the right notes for an early-in-the-game date. The Denver edition of this Connecticut favorite lives in a former LoHi fire station and specializes in hot and cold small plates. Chat it up over dumplings, sushi, and pickled tofu bao, best paired with cups of warm sake.

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For a second date

Gattara (Uptown)

Add some whimsy to your second date by heading to this cat-themed Italian spot at the Warwick Hotel. There are feline accents for days, including cats hidden in the wallpaper and a whiskered mural by the bar. But you’re really here for the blistered Neapolitan-style pies with locally accented toppings like Colorado lamb chop and elk pepperoni. For an al fresco date, book a table on the freshly renovated patio, complete with a year-round fireplace. 

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Blue Island Oyster Bar & Seafood (Cherry Creek)

The seafood menu at Blue Island Oyster Bar is impressive but understated, just like a good second date should be. Share fried calamari with Thai chile sauce, Manila clam linguine, and Alaskan red king crab legs and take in the nautical-chic vibes. If you’re not ready for a full-fledged dinner just yet, come for the daily happy hour known for some of the city’s best oysters and refreshing elderflower basil martinis.

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For an intimate and cozy night out

Jovanina’s Broken Italian (LoDo)

The interiors at Jovanina’s Broken Italian in LoDo feature exposed brick walls and flickering candles.
Jovanina’s Broken Italian radiates romance thanks to flickering candles and exposed brick walls. | Credit: Jovanina’s Broken Italian

Snuggle up at a table for two at this Italian favorite—the spot by the wood-fired oven is the sweetest seat in the house. Rest assured, even if that’s taken, the whole space radiates romance thanks to flickering candles and exposed brick walls. Add comfort food like elk bolognese with fresh pasta and grilled lamb chops with sweet corn farro, and you’ve got a winning formula for a restaurant you and your date won’t ever get enough of.

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For an anniversary or romantic milestone

Le Bilboquet (Cherry Creek)

Exquisite French plates, refined service, and fine wines keep couples returning to celebrate at this fine-dining faithful. Like the restaurant’s sibling locations in New York, Atlanta, and Palm Springs, the Denver version is a pro at French classics like duck confit and juicy steaks, ideal for lunches or dinners. Add on beef tartare or a pile of crispy fries for the full French effect.

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A5 (LoDo)

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This stylish steakhouse was made for romantic celebrations. | Credit: A5

Save this stylish steakhouse for a special occasion. Chef Max Mackissock’s phenomenal menu was made for celebrations, thanks to innovative starters like the beef tartare katsu sando—not to mention a show-stopping main selection that includes thoughtfully sourced cuts of beef and the crowd-fave mac-and-cheese croquettes. Luckily, the dining room is far from stuffy, splashed in lively greens, and is a great preview for the restaurant’s contemporary spin on classics.

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For a group date

Comida-Stanley (Central Park)

Grab your best friend and their SO for a night of tacos and good times. Chef and owner Rayme Rossello’s festive restaurant makes a vibrant destination for a relaxed group hangout. The menu is packed with Mexican soul food, like quesadillas loaded with spicy shrimp, pimento cheese-stuffed jalapeños, mushroom fajitas, and more. Pair any dish with a jar of the house margarita, or spice things up with the pineapple habanero version.

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For an evening of eatertainment

Ace Eat Serve (Uptown)

Oval-shaped red plates with whole-carved duck, mu shu crepes, and assorted jams and accompaniments at Ace Eat Serve in Denver
A Peking duck spread makes up the pan-Asian menu at Ace Eat Serve. | Credit: Ace Eat Serve

There’s nothing quite like playing around during dinner, especially on a date. At Ace Eat Serve, it’s all about ping pong and creative dim sum, including four types of chicken wings, pork shoulder-stuffed pot stickers, and more (there are larger plates, too). If it doesn’t mess with your backspin, consider the restaurant’s sake flight to round out your fun evening.

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For an adventurous and transportive date

Matsuhisa Denver (Cherry Creek)

It’s not just the world-class sushi and sashimi that bring couples celebrating a big night here. Renowned chef Nobuyuki Matsuhisa’s Japanese Peruvian menu also includes beloved hits like the miso-cod plate and uni tempura with shiso and curry. From its Zen garden entrance to the ornate, cut-out screens and custom-designed chopsticks, Matsuhisa is a stunning 7,800-square-foot escape that delivers a transportive meal worthy of any romantic milestone.

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Urban Village Grill (Parker)

A plate of basil lamb chops at Urban Village Grill in Denver
Innovative Indian dishes featuring non-traditional ingredients make this suburban South Asian spot a go-to for transportive dates. | Credit: Urban Village Grill

Chennai-born chef Charles Mani puts his own spins on South Asian classics at this innovative Indian restaurant, bringing in non-traditional ingredients like kale and butternut squash. But the real fun happens on the outdoor patio, equipped with grill stations where you can DIY your own brisket, scallops, and paneer for an especially adventurous meal. For a daytime date, come for Mani’s clever mashups like penne tikka masala and Indo Chinese bowls.

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For a proposal-worthy place

Call Me Pearl (Downtown)

Plush banquettes, round leather lounge chairs, and a dramatic chandelier made with glass orbs make up the interiors at Call Me Pearl in Denver.
The focal point at this sleek cocktail and oyster bar is a dramatic chandelier made with 1,350 iridescent glass orbs. | Credit: Call Me Pearl

This sleek cocktail, oyster, and caviar bar inside the Rally Hotel is as elegant as it gets. Plush banquettes and round leather lounge chairs make it super proposal friendly, and so do exquisite cocktails and sophisticated snacks like wagyu sliders and oysters Rockefeller. But the focal point is most definitely a dramatic chandelier made with 1,350 glass orbs that look like pearls—the only thing that can rival them is a diamond.

Freelance journalist Linnea Covington lives and eats in Denver, the best place for green chili and epic hikes with fantastic sandwiches.

Tried them all? Check out other options here.

Find your table for any occasion