Best date spots: Chinatown and Little Italy

RECOMMENDED: More best date spots by neighborhood
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The How I Learned Series at Happy Ending
 (Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz)
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Photograph: Paul WagtouiczNom Wah Tea Parlor
 (Photograph: Jeffrey Gurwin)
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Photograph: Jeffrey GurwinPeasant
 (Photograph: Tatsuya Morita)
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Photograph: Tatsuya MoritaWinnie's
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Bars, Cocktail bars

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icon-location-pin Nolita

Get cozy in this subterranean cocktail hub, which slings French Colonial–themed drinks and other globetrotting concoctions. If the spot’s romantic, dim lighting entices you to stay for another round, keep your wits about you by sharing a dish like lamb meatballs.

Bars, Lounges

The How I Learned Series at Happy Ending

icon-location-pin Lower East Side

Head to Happy Ending, a space that was once an erotic-massage parlor, for this monthly storytelling show. In each installment, scribes, comedians and musicians (some of whom have appeared on This American Life and the Moth podcast) tell true-life tales about that month’s topic, which ranges from date-appropriate icebreakers (sex, splitting up) to quirkier fare like TV obsessions.

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Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz
Restaurants, Chinese

Nom Wah Tea Parlor

icon-location-pin Chinatown

You and your date can cross an NYC must-do off your list by visiting this Chinatown institution, which—upon opening in 1920—was the city’s first dim-sum house. A 2010 renovation helped refresh the ’20s-era dining room—checkered cloths cover Art Deco tables, and couples huddle beneath an old poster of glam Chinese movie stars.

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Photograph: Jeffrey Gurwin
Restaurants, Italian

Peasant

icon-location-pin Nolita

Share a few plates at this chic, rustic Italian eatery. Kick off your meal by splitting a dish that emerges from the wood-burning oven. Then choose among the succulent proteins, like the fork-tender porchetta or gamey lamb with smooth polenta, for your main course.

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Photograph: Tatsuya Morita
Bars, Dive bars

Winnie’s

icon-location-pin Chinatown

If you’re looking for an after-hours date where you can show off your killer crooning skills, duck into this Chinatown dive. Down some drinks to warm up both of your pipes, and then take turns singing classic love songs, such as the Bee Gees’ “How Deep Is Your Love” and Percy Sledge’s “When a Man Loves a Woman.”

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