Whether you’re newly twitterpated, celebrating decades you’ve spent together, or somewhere in between, you and your sweetheart will appreciate the enchanting atmosphere at these romantic restaurants in Phoenix.
1 Lon's at the Hermosa
The tiled patio at Lon's makes for a lovely desert setting, with outdoor fireplaces and lush greenery and blooms. Plus, the tables are set apart far enough for you and your date to enjoy some privacy as you sample some of chef Jeremy Pacheco's artful American dishes, featuring the use of wood-grilling, smoking and roasting to produce tender meats and vegetables full of flavor. And Lon's is part of the Hermosa Inn, a luxury boutique hotel that recently underwent a $2 million remodel in order to make its guest accommodations even grander -- so after your meal, the two of you can take a stroll on the grounds and then retire to your suite.
5532 N. Palo Cristi Road, Paradise Valley, AZ 602.955.7878 web
2 Coup Des Tartes
What says "romance" better than a cozy French bistro-style restaurant with eclectic decor, candlelit dining rooms, hardwood floors, coved ceilings and yes, exquisite cuisine? At Coup Des Tartes, you and your guest can enjoy some elegant French specialties -- such as Brie brulee, Roquefort salad, filet mignon, duck breast and others -- before getting to what we all know you really came for: dessert. The tartes here are on the short list of the Valley's finest and come in mixed berry, chocolate, strawberry and other varieties. And while some may find the restaurant's BYOB policy to be less than ideal, we think it's a great opportunity for you to treat your date to his or her favorite champagne, or for a couple to break open that vintage they've been saving for a special occasion.
4626 N. 16th St., Phoenix, AZ 602.212.1082 web
3 Vincent on Camelback
Chef Vincent Guerithault's eponymous restaurant on Camelback has been a Valley favorite for more than two decades, with its European-style decor, stone walls, elegant lighting and colorful wall art. Many people have opinions as to the chef's secret for success, but we're of the mind it has everything to do with his talent for applying French techniques to the flavors, ingredients and attitudes of the Southwest. Open for dinner only, the restaurant pulls out all the stops -- feast on such stellar dishes as rack of lamb with thyme, rosemary, garlic and spicy pepper jelly; sauteed salmon with chipotle beurre blanc and roasted vegetables; duck confit with candied citrus sauce and sweet potato gratin; and grilled wild boar loin with celery root puree and habanero sauce. That ought to spice things up a bit.
3930 E. Camelback Road, Suite 204, Phoenix, AZ 602.224.0225 web
4 Quiessence at South Mountain
Having won more awards than you could shake a breadstick at, Quiessence is a phenomenal choice for a dinner date. In fact, just the act of getting outside of central Phoenix turns the evening into more of an affair to remember. And then once you arrive at South Mountain, you''ll discover The Farm, 10 acres of land once owned by Dwight Heard (for whom the Heard Museum is named) and now used as a mix of gardens, markets and restaurants that utilize the very best locally grown produce. Fare at Gregory LaPrad's Quiessence can best be described as contemporary American farm cuisine -- simple, sustainable food that doesn't sacrifice quality or flavor. And all the while you'll feel as though you're dining in the most charming little farmhouse ever. Whether you choose to be seated indoors or out, you and your date will enjoy looking beyond your table to the gardens and scenic landscaping.
6106 S. 32nd St., Phoenix, AZ 602.276.0601 web
At Sassi you'll have the pleasure of dining in a multimillion-dollar, Tuscan-styled villa replete with Old World architecture nestled at the base of Pinnacle Peak. Take a seat indoors at a table with high back chairs beside one of the grand fireplaces, or outside on the patio and under the stars. Regardless, you'll be treated to Sassi's exceptional rustic Southern Italian cuisine, such as veal chops, octopus and freshly made flatbreads and pastas. And with lots of dark woods, leathers and stone, plus honey-colored candles and light fixtures throughout, you'll feel the romantic ambience at practically every turn.
10455 E. Pinnacle Peak Parkway, Scottsdale, AZ 480.502.9095 web