It’s Friday. Not a big deal? For many couples, that means date night. The amount of planning that entails may depend on if your chromosomes contain a bunch of Xs or if it’s a little more diversified. If there’s a Y squeezed in there somewhere, you know the countdown has begun, the outfit has been picked out. If you’re full of Xs, you’d better hitch some giddyup to those and get to planning. This Friday you’re in luck! No matter what kind of night is right for you and your date, I’ve got you covered. I’ve compiled our list of what I think (and the survey has confirmed) are some of the best, well thought out date nights in Pasadena. What do you have to do? Buckle up, read on and oh yeah! Maybe grab some flowers and a reservation – the rest has been taken care of for you!
Best Date Night Ideas in Pasadena
Arroyo Chop House – 536 South Arroyo Parkway, Pasadena – www.arroyochophouse.com
It doesn’t take more than one dinner here to see why they won the 2014 Diners’ Choice Award for Best Overall, Best Food, Best Service, Most Romantic, Best Special Occasion and Notable Wine List. Should I keep going? From the perfectly cooked steaks and fresh oysters to the incredible wine and desserts – this place promises not to disappoint and will leave a lasting impression for many Friday nights to come. Valet parking. Reservations required.
The Cultured. The Traveler.
Norton Simon Museum – 411 W. Colorado Boulevard, Pasadena – www.nortonsimon.org
1810 Argentinian Restaurant – 121 W. Colorado Boulevard, Pasadena * www.1810restaurant.com
Why stop at just dinner? The Norton Simon Museum is of the greatest attractions and with ever changing exhibits, there’s always something new to see. Admission to the Museum is only $12 for adults and they are open until 8:00 pm on Saturdays so it can be done before a late dinner or added as a romantic surprise after an early one. But where to have dinner, you ask? I’m so glad you did. Just down the street is 1810 Argentinian. This is an excellent place if you’re looking for a dinner that’s not your typical steakhouse or Italian eatery. With an authentic menu full of items that will take your taste buds to South America and put your language skills to the test, this romantic spot is a great way to satisfy your taste for the world and a little cultured adventure. Call for reservations.
The Movie Lover.
iPic – 42 Miller Alley, Pasadena – www.ipictheaters.com
Considering dinner, drinks and maybe a movie on the agenda? This place has it all! You can have cocktails, dinner and then make your way to a recliner with a blanket and snuggle up for an evening movie. This is a great option as a new experience if you haven’t done it before and a nice way to break the ice if a 5 course, wine paired dinner may be something you’re not sure your newly blossomed love interest (and conversation) can sustain on its first Friday night out. Things are looking up? Stay awhile! This place is open until 11pm! Tickets can be purchased in advance.
AltaEats – 1860 North Allen Ave., Pasadena – www.altaeats.com
Love, love, love this place. Tapas, plates to be shared, ‘chef-inspired fresh cuisine’, beautiful food, exquisite presentation, Sunday “Rosties” that are Sunday night, chef prepared dinners you can take home – this is a food lover/adventurer’s dream. Although this isn’t the dimly lit, high booth type of restaurant, it does offer an ambiance and vibe that is very special. The desire for the solitude of a high back booth is all forgotten once you’re sharing plates and that favorite bottle of wine you brought with you. What’s that, you say? That’s right. This restaurant allows you to bring your own wine with no corkage fee as they don’t have a liquor license. Imagine a romantic stroll to this delight of a restaurant, favorite wine in tow and linger, sharing plates and conversation until while the sun goes down. Call for reservations.
The Ultimate Romantic.
The Royce – 1401 South Oak Knoll Ave. Pasadena – www.roycela.com
You’ve shared a beautiful, four course, chef-prepared (and wine paired dinner if you choose) and things are winding down, and it’s time to go. Or is it? Outside of being an exquisite, fine dining restaurant, perhaps one of the most appealing attributes of this restaurant is that it sits inside the Langham Huntington Hotel. With dinner alone being well worth the visit, the draw of not having to ever leave (ok, well at least extend your stay one night) makes each bite more incredible (not that it needed any help!). The Australian Wagyu and authentic Japanese Kobe Beef can more than stand on their own to make this an exceptional choice for a romantic dinner, but I will just call the elevator ride to your room the added bonus. Call for reservations.
Give me music, or give me death.
Bistro 45 – 45 S. Mentor Ave., Pasadena – http://bistro45.com
Music, dinner, exceptional service: game, set, match. Bistro 45 requests that you, “let us take care of you like others may not” which is precisely the type of service an exceptional Friday date night dinner requires. Their menu always is prepared to impress; Lobster, beef tenderloin, Chilean Sea Bass, wine and more – they aimed to impress and they came through. The occasional live band is the perfect way to add ambiance and entertainment to your evening without it overwhelming your intimate table for two. Call for reservations.
Best of luck! For more ways to explore and get the most out of Pasadena living, keeping checking back for more, updated blog posts!