First Date Restaurants in London
So, you’ve worked up the courage to ask out your crush, and now you’re looking for a show-stopper of a restaurant to impress. Discover some of the best restaurants for a first date in London with our recommended picks; it’s a handy pocket-sized list featuring bustling tapas bars, interactive dining experiences and intimate seafood eateries guaranteed to leave a lasting impression. Take your pick from this curated list, then get planning for next time if romance is on the cards!
Looking for more inspiration? Check out our definitive guide to eating out in London hub page.
Whether you're looking to prove yourself a wine connoisseur, or just looking for a relaxing spot in the city, this unique bar just shy of Bank station offers an extensive selection of beautiful wines, alongside a fantastic menu of seasonal British eats that is sure to keep you and your date quenched and sated throughout the night.
Stillwater is a fun-loving cocktail bar and kitchen in Wandsworth that serves only massive nights out to South London's crowds. Chef Brett Milligan has worked tirelessly to produce an enticing menu of Cajun food, while cocktail masters Dan Priseman (from NOLA Bar in Shoreditch) and Simon Webster have produced a line-up of classic concoctions that can compete with any in London.
With a buzzy atmosphere and a massive selection of food, craft beer, wine and cocktails stalls, Mercato Metropolitano is a great first date choice. Share a pizza on one of their communal tables, slurp down a ramen in their outdoor terrace or head to the more intimate den where you can turn on the charm over a bottle of vino or two.
Meeting someone special for the first time and hoping to find a restaurant to match. Hidden in the heart of Stoke Newington, head on down to Victory Mansion for small plates and cocktails that are sure to keep the conversation flowing by candlelight.
If you want to prove you're a cool kinda person, you need a cool venue: cue Little Blue Door, your flat outside of your flat, with chilled and fun vibes, great food for you to tuck into, and a mischievous party spirit once the sun goes down.
Contemporary violently clashes with tradition at the Cinnamon Bazaar in Covent Garden. Working with an arsenal of different spices, exotic ingredients and fresh meats, the team of talented chefs serve a menu that bursts with flavour and heat. Each dish served here originated in the various trader towns found along the trade routes between the old and new world. Bursting with charm, this is a great spot for a cheeky first date.
Worried it might be a touch awkward to start with? Inamo's interactive dining experience will take uncomfortable silences out of the equation, as you set your own digital placemats and watch the kitchen team do their thing via chef cam. Perfect for an innovative, playful first date meal in London, enjoy pan-Asian cooking at its finest then head for Oriental-themed cocktails in the intimate basement sushi bar.
If you're looking for somewhere cute and cosy in Central London, look no further than Rosa's near Carnaby Street. This tiny little venue only has a handful of tables and serves up delicious Thai food as well as a cocktail list that will melt your heart.
After a date night spot that will really impress? Make your way to this stunning restaurant where you'll find gorgeous interiors that'll dazzle and plush interiors for you to get cosy in. The food and drink is just as good as the space, so you'll be guaranteed a pretty feast.
Cool, calm and relaxed, this interesting and eclectic Shoreditch eatery is a great first date restaurant in London. With seasonal small plates to dine on, delicious cocktails and even a spot or two of live music, Iron Bloom is a perfect way to impress a potential love interest.
If you're looking for a good old-fashioned trip to the pub for the big first date, The Fellow is a stylish and friendly place to get started. Located just around the corner from King's Cross, discover a romantic retreat with a focus on the finer things, some wholesome gastro foods and great cocktails.
With gorgeous venues across London, you're never far away from a Dirty Bones. Perfect for a fun first date, these cool but relaxed venues front a range of delicious American-inspired eats, quirky cocktails and a killer playlist.
Slick, contemporary and offering bundles of personality, the Haymarket Kitchen offers a fun setting for a first date in the West End. It's part of the Tiger Tiger party set-up - so expect a bustling vibe - and you can get everything from BBQ beef short ribs to burgers and 17oz Tomahawk steak at this indulgent venue. All great food needs great drinks in support, and the Haymarket Kitchen offers a lovely array of cocktails to help ease those first date nerves.
Meat People makes for the ideal 'first date location' - it's sure to impress with its endless character and charm, and it's casual enough to keep the conversation flowing freely. The menu here is sure to please too - tuck into the likes of 'Slow roasted pork belly' or share the 'Spiral cut rib eye (800g)'. Accompany you meal with bottle of vino (of which there is an exceptional selection) and enjoy getting to know each other.
This summer, head to one of Vagabond's unique urban wineries to charm a potential partner over a bottle and sharing plates. Offering a stunning array of handpicked bottles in undoubtedly sleek surroundings, it's no surprise that this place is one of the city's faves for a first date.
Perfect for a fun first date meal in London, Blues nails that balance between indulgent foods, strong cocktails and live blues tunes. Forget playing it cool and politely nibbling your way through dinner; get stuck into stacks of the juiciest, most tender Texan BBQ going, then make for the bar where there's over 100 bourbons to top up your cocktail. Finish a cracking first date with a sing and a dance to some of the best live blues, funk and soul music.
Already one of the most popular restaurants in Battersea, step back in time for a first date stirring up the best memories from your school days. A rustic and intimate space with a confiscated collection of over 60 craft beers and a science lab of weird and wonderful cocktails, The Schoolhouse offers a playful and nostalgic date night dinner in London.
They say the way to love is through the stomach, and that may very well be the way with Andina as Martin Morales returns with another hit restaurant. Following on from Ceviche, Andina is another hot Peruvian spot complete with a pisco bar, grill menu and private games room.
Located in the oh-so trendy area of Farringdon, Firebrand Pizza Clerkenwell promises to deliver on your first date. As well a toting some pretty impressive interiors, their menu of affordable Italian dishes includes incredible pizza, pasta and more to sweep your date off their feet.
With its aqua-blue walls, pop-art pictures and tin roof, Ceviche Soho is bringing the sunshine vibes of South America to central London. Join the venue for a delicious menu, from fresh seafood to moreish tapas, all washed down with one of the special piscos from Europe's only dedicated bar.