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A table full of food dishes.
A meal at Justine’s.
Justine’s

18 Splendid Date Night Destinations in Austin

A guide to the perfect restaurant for every romantic occasion

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A meal at Justine’s.
| Justine’s

Whether you’re looking for an impressive — or casual — first date spot, a place suitable for an anniversary, or just a night on the town with your significant other, there’s definitely an art to choosing a date spot. Eater is here to help you work your wooing magic with the best date night restaurants in Austin.

Below are the best places to take the object of your affection for every occasion. Hit happy hour destinations like Radio if you’re more interested in nibbling on appetizers than a full-blown meal, and reserve heavy hitters like Jeffrey’s for anniversaries. Slay your first date with Lenoir, or keep it casual (but still delicious) with Bufalina Due. This update adds Odd Duck, Birdie’s, and Better Half.

For more options, check out Eater’s guide to fine dining restaurants in the city or first date spots with an escape route.

Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; it may pose a risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial COVID transmission. The latest CDC guidance is here; find a COVID-19 vaccination site here.

This map was originally written by Ashley Wright.

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DipDipDip Tatsu-Ya

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The Tatsu-ya team offers their upper-scale take on Japanese hot pot with this intimate Crestview restaurant. Order, dip, and cook an array of meats and vegetables, or opt for the omakase servings to make things easier. Even better: each individual gets their own pot of broth so you don’t have to share necessarily. There are indoor dine-in services.

A table with a pot of soup and lots of condiments and dishes.
The shabu-shabu setup at DipDipDip
Courtney Pierce/Eater Austin

Bufalina Due

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The close seating and convivial crowd at the Brentwood Neapolitan pizza restaurant make it a lively setting for a post-drink pizza. Watch the wood-fired oven where perfect Neapolitan-style pies are made while sharing the buttery smooth burrata and an excellent bottle of wine. Takeout orders can be placed online. There are indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

Chosun Galbi

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Activity-pegged dates are always fun, and Korean barbecue is always a people-pleaser. The Highland Korean restaurant lets you mix and match grill-your-own meat sets (the marinated short ribs are particularly great) or share the larger barbecue set while adding in classic Korean dishes and stews. There are indoor dine-in services.

Musashino Sushi Dokoro

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If your date is a sushi purist, this Japanese restaurant in the Heritage neighborhood is the place to go for classic sushi. Indulge in the a la carte array and make sure to ask the bartender which of the myriad sakes would be the best accompaniment. The secluded interior ambiance is perfect for long-time lovers and seafood fans alike. There are indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

Dai Due

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The Cherrywood restaurant and butcher shop — aka a meat lover’s paradise — is ideal when you want to please the carnivore in your life. This butcher shop knows its way around everything from bierwurst to wild boar. Err on the side of adventure and order something different from the usual fare. Venison ceviche, anyone? Takeout meat orders can be placed online. There are indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

Jeffrey's

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The Clarksville restaurant should be reserved for big occasions, like a 10-year anniversary. The elegant surroundings, top-notch service, and delicious classic American menu make the restaurant a destination for memories. There are indoor dine-in services.

Clay Pit

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Head to the downtown restaurant for a take on contemporary Indian cuisine. Definitely try the coconut curry shrimp and the creamy tikka masala, making sure to pair both with pillowy garlic naan. Takeout orders can be placed online. There are indoor dine-in services.

Birdie's

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Want a great date night but forgot to secure a reservation? Head to the patio at Birdie’s for great pasta, steak, fish, and seasonal vegetable dishes alongside an exciting wine selection. There are indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

Lin Asian Bar + Dim Sum

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The Clarksville Chinese restaurant offers an adorable backdrop for a date, with cute decor, tasty dishes, and of course, those famed dumplings. Don’t miss the beautiful desserts. Takeout orders can be placed online. There are indoor dine-in services.

Better Half Coffee & Cocktails

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Unsure how a first date is going to go? Better Half is a casual spot for drinks and appetizers that can evolve into more serious plates like a burger, great seasonal salads, or Big Kid Spaghetti-Os. It has a great outdoor patio, opportunities for separate checks and ordering, and open seating. Takeout orders can be placed online.

Kalimotxo

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Pintxos and cocktails are a tried-and-true date combination. Test your compatibility by creating your own snack board or go for a larger plate like the wood-grilled flatbread or a burger at this downtown Spanish restaurant from the Emmer & Rye team. Don’t miss some of the best desserts in town — the burnt cheesecake and Kali sundae (a pool of salted cream with hidden treasures inside). There are indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

Il Brutto

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An Italian date night is never a bad idea, especially at the East Sixth restaurant. Share a pizza or go Lady and the Tramp on some handmade pappardelle. Sit outside on the patio for great people-watching. Takeout orders can be placed online.

Long considered the most popular sushi restaurant in town, the Zilker Japanese spot is the number one spot to take a date when you want to impress, whether it's the first time you’re stepping out together or you’ve been holding hands for years. Uchi’s modern take on Japanese cuisine emphasizes small shareable bites, perfect for splitting. Splash out on the omakase to let the chef surprise you and your date with the day’s most innovative offerings. Takeout orders can be placed online. There are indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

Odd Duck

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The ever-rotating menu at quintessentially Austin restaurant Odd Duck is always creative and always full of hits. Share small plates like cast-iron cornbread, quail, or corn ribs. There are indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

Justine's Brasserie

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The Govalle restaurant does its inspirational home country France proud. Flickering candlelight, red walls, and music provided by a record player playing anything from its wide collection will help set the mood. Make sure to finish the evening by sharing the impeccable crème brulee. Takeout orders can be placed online. There are indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

Perla's

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The South Congress seafood restaurant with a giant patio is the place to indulge in East Coast oysters and people-watch. There are indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

The wine garden at this New American Bouldin Creek restaurant makes for an impressive first-date venue with a beautifully romantic ambiance. Avoid decision fatigue by opting for the five-course tasting menu, freeing up the rest of your time to chat away. There are indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

Radio Coffee & Beer

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The South Austin coffee shop and bar has all the ingredients for a great casual first date: alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverages, and truly excellent food options. Try some of Austin’s best tacos courtesy Veracruz All Natural, get spicy with Thai truck Dee Dee, or try a daytime biscuit sandwich at Briscuits. Lounge on the large outdoor patio or cozy up inside.

Food and drinks on the table.
Margarita at Radio Coffee & Beer.
Jenn Hair

DipDipDip Tatsu-Ya

The Tatsu-ya team offers their upper-scale take on Japanese hot pot with this intimate Crestview restaurant. Order, dip, and cook an array of meats and vegetables, or opt for the omakase servings to make things easier. Even better: each individual gets their own pot of broth so you don’t have to share necessarily. There are indoor dine-in services.

A table with a pot of soup and lots of condiments and dishes.
The shabu-shabu setup at DipDipDip
Courtney Pierce/Eater Austin

Bufalina Due

The close seating and convivial crowd at the Brentwood Neapolitan pizza restaurant make it a lively setting for a post-drink pizza. Watch the wood-fired oven where perfect Neapolitan-style pies are made while sharing the buttery smooth burrata and an excellent bottle of wine. Takeout orders can be placed online. There are indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

Chosun Galbi

Activity-pegged dates are always fun, and Korean barbecue is always a people-pleaser. The Highland Korean restaurant lets you mix and match grill-your-own meat sets (the marinated short ribs are particularly great) or share the larger barbecue set while adding in classic Korean dishes and stews. There are indoor dine-in services.

Musashino Sushi Dokoro

If your date is a sushi purist, this Japanese restaurant in the Heritage neighborhood is the place to go for classic sushi. Indulge in the a la carte array and make sure to ask the bartender which of the myriad sakes would be the best accompaniment. The secluded interior ambiance is perfect for long-time lovers and seafood fans alike. There are indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

Dai Due

The Cherrywood restaurant and butcher shop — aka a meat lover’s paradise — is ideal when you want to please the carnivore in your life. This butcher shop knows its way around everything from bierwurst to wild boar. Err on the side of adventure and order something different from the usual fare. Venison ceviche, anyone? Takeout meat orders can be placed online. There are indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

Jeffrey's

The Clarksville restaurant should be reserved for big occasions, like a 10-year anniversary. The elegant surroundings, top-notch service, and delicious classic American menu make the restaurant a destination for memories. There are indoor dine-in services.

Clay Pit

Head to the downtown restaurant for a take on contemporary Indian cuisine. Definitely try the coconut curry shrimp and the creamy tikka masala, making sure to pair both with pillowy garlic naan. Takeout orders can be placed online. There are indoor dine-in services.

Birdie's

Want a great date night but forgot to secure a reservation? Head to the patio at Birdie’s for great pasta, steak, fish, and seasonal vegetable dishes alongside an exciting wine selection. There are indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

Lin Asian Bar + Dim Sum

The Clarksville Chinese restaurant offers an adorable backdrop for a date, with cute decor, tasty dishes, and of course, those famed dumplings. Don’t miss the beautiful desserts. Takeout orders can be placed online. There are indoor dine-in services.

Better Half Coffee & Cocktails

Unsure how a first date is going to go? Better Half is a casual spot for drinks and appetizers that can evolve into more serious plates like a burger, great seasonal salads, or Big Kid Spaghetti-Os. It has a great outdoor patio, opportunities for separate checks and ordering, and open seating. Takeout orders can be placed online.

Kalimotxo

Pintxos and cocktails are a tried-and-true date combination. Test your compatibility by creating your own snack board or go for a larger plate like the wood-grilled flatbread or a burger at this downtown Spanish restaurant from the Emmer & Rye team. Don’t miss some of the best desserts in town — the burnt cheesecake and Kali sundae (a pool of salted cream with hidden treasures inside). There are indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

Il Brutto

An Italian date night is never a bad idea, especially at the East Sixth restaurant. Share a pizza or go Lady and the Tramp on some handmade pappardelle. Sit outside on the patio for great people-watching. Takeout orders can be placed online.

Uchi

Long considered the most popular sushi restaurant in town, the Zilker Japanese spot is the number one spot to take a date when you want to impress, whether it's the first time you’re stepping out together or you’ve been holding hands for years. Uchi’s modern take on Japanese cuisine emphasizes small shareable bites, perfect for splitting. Splash out on the omakase to let the chef surprise you and your date with the day’s most innovative offerings. Takeout orders can be placed online. There are indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

Odd Duck

The ever-rotating menu at quintessentially Austin restaurant Odd Duck is always creative and always full of hits. Share small plates like cast-iron cornbread, quail, or corn ribs. There are indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

Justine's Brasserie

The Govalle restaurant does its inspirational home country France proud. Flickering candlelight, red walls, and music provided by a record player playing anything from its wide collection will help set the mood. Make sure to finish the evening by sharing the impeccable crème brulee. Takeout orders can be placed online. There are indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

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Perla's

The South Congress seafood restaurant with a giant patio is the place to indulge in East Coast oysters and people-watch. There are indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

Lenoir

The wine garden at this New American Bouldin Creek restaurant makes for an impressive first-date venue with a beautifully romantic ambiance. Avoid decision fatigue by opting for the five-course tasting menu, freeing up the rest of your time to chat away. There are indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

Radio Coffee & Beer

The South Austin coffee shop and bar has all the ingredients for a great casual first date: alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverages, and truly excellent food options. Try some of Austin’s best tacos courtesy Veracruz All Natural, get spicy with Thai truck Dee Dee, or try a daytime biscuit sandwich at Briscuits. Lounge on the large outdoor patio or cozy up inside.

Food and drinks on the table.
Margarita at Radio Coffee & Beer.
Jenn Hair

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