As area families begin sending kiddos back to school, and as patio season reaches full pitch, there couldn't be a better time for a romantic evening out.  There are all sorts of couple-friendly options around town, but if you're hunting for the perfect place to wine and dine your significant other (or even pop the question!), here are five romantic restaurants to consider.


Photo Courtesy of Lyndsay Israel

1. Reserve

Located downtown on the corner of Monroe and Lyon, Reserve is an easy walk from anywhere in the downtown neighborhood.  Reserve not only boasts one of the finest and most extensive wine lists in the city, but they also do a wonderful job pairing with their menu specialties.  Reservations are easy to make online and Happy Hour is Monday-Saturday from 3-6.  This would be a great appetizer stop before a concert or show or a spot to spend hours.  The knowledgeable staff can recommend for any level of wine connoisseur!

2. Snug Harbor For a view of an even bigger lake, check out Snug Harbor, an iconic stop in Grand Haven on the Lake Michigan coast.  Whether you’re in the mood for cocktails, sushi, mussels, or a filet, the menu has had rave reviews from locals and visitors alike.  Catch a Lake Michigan sunset to really set the mood for date night.

Snug Harbor

Photo Courtesy of Experience Grand Rapids

3. Roses on Reeds Lake

For a water-front view, there is no better place than Roses on Reeds Lake.  Gaslight Village is a quiet pocket of East Grand Rapids and is a fun place to stroll before or after dinner with your loved one.  If you can snag a patio seat then enjoy an up close view of Reeds Lake, but even if you don't make patio, the inside is cozy and you'll still feel the breeze with the open air windows.  The menu has both Mediterranean and Italian influences so share a few dishes (to me, that's the ultimate romantic gesture).  As a unique touch, Rose's serves small caramel corn cups with the bill, but you can still save room for dessert in the neighborhood!

4. Chop House

For a special occasion, Chop House Grand Rapids may be the perfect dinner stop.  Like Reserve, Chop House is also on Monroe, making it easily walkable from all over downtown.  On the day of your birthday, you can even get spoiled with the Birthday Meal Deal!  Make a reservation online to guarantee your dinner spot, or relax in the La Dolce Vita dessert and cigar lounge while you wait to dine.

Chop House

Photo Courtesy of Experience Grand Rapids

5. Amore Trattoria Italiana

A friend of mine who recommended Amore said, "You can't get more romantic than a place called 'love'".  Chef Jenna is at least making people fall in love with her food, if not with each other.  Her and husband Maurizio (born in Italy) have been creating authentic Italian dining experiences for Grand Rapidians to brag about since 2010.  Amore is located in the northern destination neighborhood of Grand Rapids and is open Tuesday-Sunday.  Have a meal (and wine) that you can really talk about with your significant other…and plan on taking your time while you’re there!