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Suggestions for a good date place?

i've done some searching of previous threads, and the frontrunner thus far is fig & olive...but i was wondering if anyone has other suggestions.

looking for: sexy vibe, conducive to conversation [maybe cozy, lounge-y seating], good selection of wines by the glass, and decent food. one is traveling in from LI, so prefer recs that aren't buried in the depths of downtown...although if a place is a real find i'd love to know about it for future reference.

oh, and it'll be a wednesday evening.


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  1. this is more of a post-dinner bar date place... but I just went to angel share last week. http://newyork.citysearch.com/profile...

    my gawd. it's so romantic, you'd want to take off your pants even if you're not into your date. it gets a little busy though, we had to wait about 10-20 minutes (totally worth it).

    1 Reply
    1. re: dandandan

      I like the choice of your frontrunner Fig & Olive. I can add nothing to a perfect choice.

    2. Mermaid Inn, though that's a little downtown..great neighborhood though

      1 Reply
      1. re: Jel212

        Degustation. Totally romantic and unique. Bar seating , not so cozy as a lounge- but it's very conducive to intimate conversation. Great food too.

      2. I was in NY in August and my date took me to a fabulous little restaurant near the finance district in Manhattan - Acappellas. I'd suggest reservations. It was on the high end for price, but it was fabulous. The restaurant is dark, with most of the light coming from candles. For a quiet and peaceful evening, the ambience is perfect. After the meal they serve a homemade blueberry moonshine. (don't eat the berries, they are like the worm....)

          1. I agree with LeahBaila re: La Lanterna (Macdougal and w. 3rd in the W. Village), though be forewarned, the food isn't great for the most part. The wood-fired oven pizzas are fair, and the desserts are very good, but otherwise, the menu is mediocre. Wines by the glass selection is good. Also, seating isn't loungey -- they really only have regular ol' seats -- but it's a dark, romantic place and no one will blink if you pull the seats close together.

            Grayz in midtown is overpriced, but it's sexy (despite being pretty well lit), has good food and drink, and is conducive to convo. It's better for cocktails than wine.

            Since it's fresh on my mind from another post, Snack (Bedford and 7th in the W. village) would probably fit the bill, too. Food is decent, there are a good number of Greek wines by the glass (though reds are kept too warm, whites too cold), and the place is nice and dark, conducive to good conversation.

            If you go on the early side, Casellula in midtown west / hell's kitchen would be great (excellent food and wine), but it gets very crowded, later (after 7ish?).

            Divine Bar has is sexy in a low-key, grad student kinda way. It has a fair selection of wines by the glass and wine flights (lots of fun), decent bar nibbles and plates for sharing. It's mildly threadbare, not a glitzy place, but in my book, in a charming kind of way. Plenty of loungey seating upstairs.

            5 Replies
            1. re: cimui

              i'd love to go to N, it would have been my first choice...i just don't want to make him schlep all the way down there. good call on divine bar, though. east side location over west? at this point i'm thinking either there, fig & olive, or pipa.

              la lanterna's out because we're both gluten intolerant...if our best bets for food are pizza & dessert, we're sorta screwed if we're hungry :) i'll keep snack in mind for myself for another time [he's not much into greek wine].

              thanks for all the great suggestions!

              1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                oh shoot--i should've remembered the gluten intolerance from your other posts, i'm sorry. (is it wheat intolerance or gluten intolerance, btw?)

                i don't have a strong pref for divine bar west or east in terms of decor. i go west more often because it's closer to me. but i think the menu is slightly more expansive at the western location, so you may want to pick based on that.

                i apologize for being a little dry for ideas, today. just one more you could think about, tho: russian vodka room. the focus is on infused vodkas, clearly, and i don't know if you like drinking those. (many aren't all that strong.) but what really recommend the place are the food (excellent, gluten-free small plates to share... tho you and your dining companion are going to have to be ok with each other having fish breath) and the ambiance (darkly, grungily romantic). i love it as a non-first date spot. it's doable as a first date spot if you avoid all garlic and fish on the menu, but unfortunately those are some of the tastiest items.

                can't comment on fig & olive or pipa, since I've never been to either.

                p.s. one place i've been meaning to check out for a while based on chowhound suggestions is xai xai, a south african wine bar. http://www.xaixaiwinebar.com/about_sp...
                from the website, it looks perhaps like the kind of thing you're looking for, tho the menu might be a bit bread-dependent.

                1. re: cimui

                  don't be ridiculous - i wouldn't have expected you to remember that i'm gluten-intolerant! oh, and unfortunately it's all gluten, not just wheat...for both of us.

                  i love the xai xai idea because i adore SA wine...and it seems like the vibe is totally up my alley. i may call them to ask about the food.

                  thanks again for all the great ideas. you're making my decision that much harder :)

                2. re: goodhealthgourmet

                  As much as I like pipa, I don't think it makes a great date place as it can get really noisy sometimes

                  1. re: kelea

                    good to know - noisy is definitely not what i'm looking for. thanks for the heads-up.