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Special night out recommendations?

My husband and I are going to line up a sitter next Saturday and celebrate the anniversary of our first date. We'd like to get out of our UWS neighborhood and it's are rare night out, so, I thought I'd ask here for recommendations. Some place with wonderful food, cozy, warm, intimate. Perhaps the LES (though not essential), special -- but not feeling the need to blow the budget on a visit to Per Se. We're open to different kinds of cuisine. We've been to Babbo, the Modern, Nougatine, Le Gigot (our usual go-to place) and would like something new. We're all ears! Thanks in advance.

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  1. Romantic, good menu, davidburke & donatella on the UES.
    Ditto Gotham Bar & Grill.

    1 Reply
    1. re: idia

      I absolutely love Gotham but don't think that it is romantic at all in the traditional sense. We did a recent birthday at Fleur du Sel which was just lovely.

        1. re: goodhealthgourmet

          A Voce is one of the least cozy and romantic restaurants I can think of. And then, there's the insanely high noise level!

          My first thought was Fleur de Sel. Tocqueville is also a good option. For Italian, I'd recomment L'Impero.


          1. re: RGR

            sorry, i was so focused on the food i didn't think about the noise. retract that vote...go to il buco instead.

      1. My husband and I have small children and also live on the UWS-we went to David Burke and Donatella several weeks ago for an anniversary dinner-DO NOT GO! While I will say the food was very good we had to wait and hour for our table and it was such a scene. It was not romantic at all. We just went to Tocqueville and that was lovely...warm, great food and a wonderful night. Also, I love the Little Owl. That is very cozy!

        1. It's a no-brainer: Il Buco. It's romantic, transporting, and delicious. Hint: I would stick to a lot of starters and tastings, instead of the entrees.

          3 Replies
          1. re: picklesister

            Agree! Great call! Very romantic and delicious.

            1. re: picklesister

              I second (or third) Il Buco. Savoy on Prince is also really nice and you can have a conversation without yelling. All their food is delicious and very good service.

              1. re: pattinyc

                ooh, i forgot about il buco and i used to live right around the corner!

                good call...cozy, romantic...perfect ambience.

            2. In the east village, I love Jules. It has live jazz and low lighting so I find it romantic, especially when you have a glass of champagne at the end of the meal!

              1 Reply
              1. re: cricri7

                It might be romantic, but the jazz is often so loud, that I can't hear what my companion is saying to me!

              2. I'm lovin' the suggestions! Thanks all! I forgot to include a voce to the list of places we've already visited. Little Owl is in keeping with what we had in mind -- but no reservations to be had, alas. I'm going to look into the others you've recommended. Keep 'em coming. The research is half the fun...

                1 Reply
                1. re: amyleechen

                  If you like Little Owl, you might try Market Table.

                2. Hearth, you can even sit at the kitchen bar and watch them cook your dinner which will be fabulous! And the wine list is top notch to go with the food.

                  1. My mate and I consider Giovanni Venti Cinque on the UES a very romantic little Italian walk-down like what you might find right off the streets of Verona or a scene from a Mario Lanza movie. It is pricey but the Dover sole was excellent and worth the price.
                    Just another thought...

                    1. How about a place like Hearth, Blue Hill, Peasant, August....incredible.