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Romantic dinner for teen couple?

A young man of my acquaintance (17 years old) wants to take his girlfriend (16 years) out for a nice "fancy" dinner on their one year anniversary of being boyfriend/girlfriend in two weeks.

He has asked his friend, my daughter (17), who knows nothing of course, for advice as to where to go. I am trying to help.

As far as I can tell, it's important to the young man that the young lady be suitably impressed and to him that means, at the very least, linen cloths on the tables. Money appears to be no object to him (he's in love). But of course, as they are not buying wine, his bill will be nothing like any chowhounder's.

To my mind, the quality of service is crucial here, even more important than quality of food. I think it's of utmost importance that this young couple not run into any snooty or indifferent or intimidating waiters. This would drastically undermine the young man's intention, set the young woman (a fiesty one) off, and ruin their night.

These are east end/beaches kids and I've been trying to think of a suitable resto for them in the area, but I have a feeling the young man would travel to wherever it takes to make his loved one happy.

So, I'm asking for recommendations for places that would provide reasonably good food and a classy ambience but most important, respectful and supportive service for a young under-age couple on an important milestone date. Starting in the Beaches/east end and then beyond.

Any suggestions?

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  1. I can definetly recommend the globe bistro on danforth www.globebistro.com, I had a great bday meal there with good service and delicious food and there are things on the menu that aren't too "exotic" so since they're young they can still find things they're familiar with.
    Perhaps another good choice is Batifole, but the girl (depending on how open minded she is), might not be able to get past the neighbourhood and sometimes a first impression can ruin the impression of the food (I'm assuming theyre not exactly "foodies" and if theyre like my younger sister and her friends, ambiance is reallly important!). Hope that helps!

    1 Reply
    1. re: hungryabbey

      My little cousin took his GF (same ages) to Brassaii for Valentines Day and loved it. They were blown away by the grand room and the cool younger adults. The next day he called and asked me if I could sneak them into any of the clubs around there because they were so excited about the night life and all the cool dressed people.

      I have always experienced gracious servers at Brassaii that I think will make them feel comfortable and cool.

    2. Brassaii and Globe are both great ideas. At Globe, a discreet mention of the occasion to GM / Maitre d' Adrian Amara or owner Ed Ho would, I'm sure, result in some kind of special treatment.
      Another option, if the young woman is partial to sushi, is Blowfish. Stylish, fun and a great menu to boot.

      5 Replies
      1. re: estragon

        The service at Blowfish is ok, but not great. And there is no linen cloths on the tables. The table are very close to each other too. Food is average IMO except the Tiger Shrimp on Hot stone with truffle sauce.

        1. re: skylineR33

          Alright, then. Too crowded and noisy -- good point. Strike it from the list. We had great service and a great meal on our visit, but perhaps it's not the place for a special romantic dinner.

          1. re: estragon

            Pasta Bar is a good option. Can be very romantic and the service is usually good.

            1. re: acd123

              On second thought, Pasta Bar does not have much of a hipness factor, so I'll keep thinking. Food is good, view is great, decor is elegant, but they would likely bump into people their parents age and not people in their twenties and thirties.

              1. re: acd123

                George would be a very good pick, as would Cava (both trendy and quite cheap without wine {although they both do corkage as an alternative as well}), as they are modern, chic, and I have had great service at both (perhaps the best in Toronto at Cava).

                If you want somewhere a little less formal but still fun, the Patio at Boba is a great place, mention the occasion to Bob (he and his wife Barbara own the place, though he is usually more out and about) and he will likely do something special.

      2. Maybe not cool/impressive enough for this occasion as the decor & menu are dated, but as teenagers who liked a good meal out we were always treated as valued customers at Michelangelo's on Gerrard.

        3 Replies
        1. re: julesrules

          Yeah, I know what you mean about the cool/impressive factor. I've added Michelangelo's to the list as well the other excellent suggestions. And in the same vein as your comment, I think I'll throw in Bibiche Bistro. The food is good and the service will make them feel comfortable.

          1. re: JamieK

            I wouldn't recommend teenagers go to Bibiche. The food is good, but the decor is hideous... I felt slightly embarrased to be there. It smelled too strongly of incense or Glad plug-ins as well.

            1. re: Tara9000

              Thanks, I haven't been there for a few years, it wasn't like that then. I'll take if off the list.

        2. Batifole... the servers there know how to do it right!

          1. ha, so wish i'm 17 again, anyway, how about la maquette? The interior is elegant, but it's french, ha~ I've heard some good feedbacks from my friends but I've never been to the place. Hope it helps