LA's Best Romantic Restaurants
By Brittny Gastineau
CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT: Chateau Marmont; Dan Tana’s; The Tower Bar at Sunset Tower Hotel; Mastro’s Steakhouse, Beverly Hills; Il Ristorante di Giorgio Baldi; El Carmen
With Valentine’s Day on the horizon, Brittny Gastineau picks the best romantic restaurants in Los Angeles.
Being a single female in Hollywood I’ve learned a thing or two about how important the right selection of a restaurant is to the outcome of a date. Guys, I can’t make any promises, but finding a place with flattering lighting, acoustics that don’t sound like a broadcast booth, good food and attentive service will definitely put you on the right track. Now behave and follow these recommendations.
Chateau Marmont The patio dining here is classic Hollywood “cool,” and it has the best sexy lighting for a first date. If you’re not into the person you’re with, there is always someone else beautiful to look at. 8221 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood, 323-656-1010; chateaumarmont.com
Il Ristorante di Giorgio Baldi I’m Italian and a pretty good cook (thanks, Mom), but I still don’t understand how Giorgio Baldi’s tomato sauce is that good. Be sure to try a few different pastas—perfect for sharing with a special someone. 114 West Channel Road, Santa Monica Canyon, 310-573-1660; giorgiobaldi.us
Mastro’s Steakhouse, Beverly Hills How could a place with a piano player crooning Frank Sinatra and Lionel Richie tunes not be romantic? Between the Smoking Cosmo (there’s dry ice on the bottom), sizzling pepper steak, lobster mashed potatoes and sexy atmosphere, this is the place for romance in the City of Angels. 246 N. Canon Dr., Beverly Hills, 310-888-8782; mastrosrestaurants.com
El Carmen This Mexican spot is loud and boisterous but has kick-ass watermelon margaritas and fabulous tacos. The lighting is dark, so ladies, no need to put on a lot of makeup because it won’t matter. 8138 W. Third St., Los Angeles, 323-852-1552
The Tower Bar at Sunset Tower Hotel The vibe here is beyond sexy, with a stunning view overlooking all of LA. Try the grilled pork chop with fennel and orange glaze. I promise you won’t be disappointed. 8358 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood, 323-654-7100; sunsettowerhotel.com
Dan Tana’s If a guy chooses this on a first date, he gets instant points in my book. The shrimp Parmesan and Caesar salad are to die for, but they have plenty of garlic, so arm yourself with strong mints if you plan on kissing your date. 9071 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood, 310-275-9444; dantanasrestaurant.com
PHOTOGRAPHS BY JORDAN STRAUSS/WIREIMAGE.COM (GASTINEAU); TIFFANY SMITH (DAN TANA’S