10 Best First Date Restaurants: Austin

Some of the best first date restaurants in Austin are French. It's the language of love, after all, and first dates are all about l'amour. But even if you're more Tex-Mex than French, there are plenty of great first date restaurants to try in the state capital.

  1. Justine's. About as French as it gets here in Austin, Justine's is a popular spot for first dates. Ladies and gents alike love their elegant menu (heavy on the steaks for the men, and salads for the women), as well as its simplicity. You won't have to plow through page after page trying to decide what to get while you stare into each other's eyes. Relax, enjoy a glass of wine, and soak up the atmosphere, mon amour! Justine's: 4710 East Fifth Street.

  2. Alamo Drafthouse. As one of the "Austin Chronicle" favorite picks on a yearly basis, the Alamo Drafthouse is, indeed, a movie theater. However, they also serve food here. And not just stale “buttered” popcorn, my friend, but honest-to-goodness food and even alcohol! Where else can you literally get dinner and a show, brought straight to you and your sweetheart? Only at the Alamo Drafthouse, peeps. With three locations, it's also easily accessed no matter where in town you live. Alamo Drafthouse: 2700 W Anderson; 1120 South Lamar; 320 E Sixth Street.

  3. Kerbey Lane Café. If your first date is actually a breakfast, then you've got to hit up Kerbey Lane Café. Their early-bird special is great for cheap dates (only $3.45 between 4 and 7 a.m.), and Kerbey Lane is an Austin institution. Check out all four locations to find your favorite. Kerbey Lane Café: 2700 S Lamar, 13435 Hwy 183 N (Suite 415), 2606 Guadalupe, 3704 Kerbey Lane.

  4. Romeo's. An aptly named spot for romance, Romeo's has been serving up great Italian food for Austin's first dates for years. With live music every evening, get your sweetheart in the mood for love at this local favorite. Romeo's: 1500 Barton Springs Road.

  5. The Driskill. If you're looking for luxurious, then you've definitely got to dine at The Driskill. Here you'll find an authentic piece of old (monied) Austin, compete with linen tablecloths and fine china. The 1886 Café and Bakery at The Driskill is known as Austin's “original socializing parlor,” and with casual wine tastings and $10 lunch specials, it's also not totally out of the realm of possibility, even for dates on a budget. And if you hit it off, maybe you'll be spending the night! The Driskill: 604 Brazos Street.

  6. Uchi. Love sushi? Then bring your first date to Uchi for some of the best sushi in town. A cozy sushi bar located in a renovated house, Uchi offers both a permanent and a daily menu, presented by Chef Tyson Cole. Sample your favorites and try something new. Uchi: 801 South Lamar Boulevard.

  7. Hudson's on the Bend. With such outlandish appetizers as wild boar quesadillas and Diamond Back Rattlesnake Cake, Hudson's on the Bend is a great place to take an adventurous first date. Sample all manner of untamed animals here, and be sure to top your meal off with a decadent dessert. Hudson's on the Bend: 3509 Ranch Road 620 N.

  8. Zoot. If you're into seasonal cooking, you'll love Zoot. With a menu that changes with the leaves, this is a great way to impress a foodie first date. Try something new every time you visit, or share a tasting menu with your new friend. Don't forget to sample their wines, which are taken seriously enough to be described as “a living, breathing creation.” Zoot: 11715 Bee Caves Road.

  9. Wink. Part restaurant, part wine bar, Zoot's sister restaurant Wink is aptly named. With a light menu that changes daily and a flirty atmosphere, dinner and a drink at Wink is a great way to break the tension of a first date. Wink: 1014 North Lamar Boulevard.

  10. Fino. This patio restaurant and bar is a fantastic place to bring a first date in the spring and summer months. With a Mediterranean-influenced menu and great atmosphere, you'll find yourself relaxed, refreshed and ready to meet your date. Fino: 2905 San Gabriel Street.

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