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Frenchie
Photograph: Mark Dunn

16 most romantic restaurants in Boston

Romance isn’t the only thing on the menu at the best spots in Boston for a date or celebration.

JQ Louise
Tanya Edwards
Edited by
JQ Louise
Written by
Tanya Edwards
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No matter what time of the year it is, romantic restaurants with intimate surroundings, effortless service and stellar food are always in demand. We’re here to steer you in the right direction with our tried and true favorites for every chapter in your love story, from early in the game dates to 25th anniversary celebrations. Looking to make the most out of a romantic occasion? Get a room at one of the best hotels in Boston and follow up with one of the best brunches in Boston in the morning. 

RECOMMENDED: Full guide to the best restaurants in Boston

Most romantic restaurants in Boston

  • Restaurants
  • French
  • South End
  • price 3 of 4

If you’re all about a vibe, Frenchie’s greenhouse has plenty to spare with year-round, almost-outdoor dining that gives off a lush garden feel in warmer months and is reminiscent of a twinkling jewel box in the winter. The easy-going wine bar is perfect for a third date or a special celebration. The spots shareable plates are organized by “hot” and “cold,” and they’re all marvelous—try the drumsticks coq au vin and the pommes aligot, if available.

  • Restaurants
  • French
  • Back Bay
  • price 3 of 4

The recently renovated restaurant—you’ll love the newly brightened space—occupies one of the city's most enviable addresses, right across the street from the Public Garden. The sweeping views, impressive wine list and sophisticated,New England-inspired French fare all make for a delightfully romantic meal. Order the chocolate soufflé for a perfect finish.

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Add this New England izakaya to your date night lineup. The snug Cambridge spot serves Japanese seafood dishes, fried rice bowls and veggie sides, plus sake flights that the staff will help you navigate. Besides the fresh from the ocean seafood, the  restaurant amps up the romance with a picture perfect fireplace – with a booth – you’ll love cozying up to with a date. 

  • Restaurants
  • American creative
  • Back Bay
  • price 4 of 4

Deuxave’s glamorous, chandelier-lit dining room creates a special occasion-feel, as does its location on one of the most picturesque corners in town—but there isn’t a hint of stuffiness at this welcoming Back Bay eatery. Complemented by a lengthy wine list, chef-owner Chris Coombs’s talent for hospitality and sumptuous dishes translates to a sophisticated tryst with lobster gnocchi fricassée, crispy-skinned giannone chicken and the restaurant's famous nine-hour simmered French onion soup.

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  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Restaurants
  • Japanese
  • Leather District
  • price 4 of 4

Most of us will probably save a trip to O ya for a special occasion, like a big number anniversary, and deservedly so. While the price tag is high, you’ll get over-the-top touches of truffles, caviar, and gold leaf to go with perfect cuts of fish in an intimate space. Still have doubts? Celebrity couple Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds had a first date here, and celebrated their tenth anniversary at the luxe sushi spot. If that’s not a good omen for anyone looking for a long term relationship, we don’t know what is.

  • Restaurants
  • Contemporary American
  • Inman Sq
  • price 3 of 4

Led by chef-owner Will Gilson, Puritan & Co.’s dining room is somehow intimate yet bustling at the same time, filled with a warm light that works wonders in making everyone look attractive. Factor in the kitchen’s modern takes on classic New England dishes with ingredients sourced from local farms—the truffled crab toast is a standout—and friendly, informed staff, and you’ve got just about the perfect night out.

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  • Restaurants
  • French
  • Beacon Hill
  • price 4 of 4

A timeless classic, Barbara Lynch’s flagship establishment sits nearly atop Boston Common, offering floor-to-ceiling views in its front dining room (a must for a romantic dinner). The former mansion's good looks are only bolstered by exquisite service—from the remarkable bartenders to the splendid sommelier, Cat Silirie. The French-Italian cuisine is elegant and ever-changing, and worth the splurge for the five course tasting menu.

  • Restaurants
  • American creative
  • Seaport District
  • price 4 of 4

Set in the Seaport, Woods Hill Pier 4 offers one of Boston’s best outdoor dining backdrops. Waterfront views set the mood with sunsets and starry nights. Adding to this restaurant’s stunning vista and harborside ambiance is chef Charlie Foster’s innovative farm-to-table menu, which sources many of its ingredients from Woods Hill’s own farm in New Hampshire.

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Chef Michael Serpa opened this deliciously chic restaurant last year, pivoting the Back Bay space previously occupied by Grand Tour into a ridiculously perfect New England focused seafood spot. Pop in and grab a seat at the bar for a romantic post-shopping lunch or dinner from the all day menu that includes favorites like oysters (natch), lobster rolls and lots of local fish and a glass of Chablis or Sancerre.

  • Restaurants
  • North End
  • price 3 of 4

You can’t get much more romantic than the North End for a fun night out in the city, and Bricco is one of the best spots to dine after a stroll around the neighborhood. Reserve a seat in the back room for a perfect cozy dinner by the fireplace, and share some zucchini flowers and the restaurant's beloved ricotta pillows.

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  • Restaurants
  • Italian
  • Harvard Sq
  • price 3 of 4

Situated between Central and Harvard Squares, this beloved trattoria—from the husband and wife team of Chris and Pam Willis—gives a slightly retro feel, thanks to the amber glow of its globe lights. The Italian-accented, prix-fixe menu includes a mix of creative handmade pasta dishes and intricate small plates ripe for your choosing. Grab a romantic leather banquette, or huddle by the white ceramic, double-sided fireplace and sample from a well-curated wine list featuring small producers from both the New and Old World.

  • Restaurants
  • Italian
  • Porter Sq
  • price 3 of 4

Brick walls and candlelight keep the mood cozy at this Cambridge gem run by chef Michael Pagliarini and his wife Pamela Ralston. Savor one of the delicately handmade pastas, such as pappardelle with wild boar or spaghetti alle vongole, and end the night on a sweet note with the sumptuous chocolate terrine.

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  • Restaurants
  • American creative
  • Seaport District
  • price 4 of 4

Another fine dining option from Barbara Lynch, the plush Menton will make you and your date feel utterly pampered. Treat yourselves to a multi-course meal or custom chef’s tasting menu at this Relais & Chateaux fine-dining establishment, which takes its name from the Côte d’Azur town near the Italian border. The tasting menu changes at the chef’s whim, but expect luxurious bites like foie gras torchon or dry-aged Vermont Wagyu.

  • Restaurants
  • Contemporary American
  • Harvard Sq
  • price 4 of 4

Since 1975, this refined Harvard Square stalwart has led the local farm-to-table charge, celebrating regional ingredients with elegant, seasonal menus. The kitchen takes a sophisticated approach to New England dining; locally sourced seafood and meats, plus homemade pastas, are all meticulously and imaginatively prepared. You’ll want to reserve a seat on the garden terrace, if weather permits, and don’t miss the incredibly creative desserts.

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  • Restaurants
  • American creative
  • Jamaica Plain
  • price 3 of 4

If being seated in the center of a cozy kitchen at one of ten tables sounds like the perfect romantic night, you and your partner will love the intimate experience at this Jamaica Plain eatery. Enjoy a local-centric, seasonal menu—house-made pastas are a highlight— by candlelight, as aromas waft your way from the open kitchen. The spot’s regularly scheduled wine dinners showcase wonderful varietals from different regions throughout the world and sell out fast.

  • Restaurants
  • Contemporary American
  • Harvard Sq
  • price 3 of 4

The most romantic move at this beloved Harvard Square hideaway is to reserve a table in the atrium, which is tucked away from the main dining room and filled with florals that muffle the hubbub. Sip cocktails while picking a few of Chef Michael Scelfo’s creative American dishes to share (i.e. seared bluefin tuna crudo or hickory smoked carrots), and your date night will be off to a great start.

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