These Are the Most Romantic Restaurants in Houston & Aspen

best restaurants in Houston

From the hustle and bustle of Houston to the serene mountain air of Aspen, LUDC’s twin hometowns offer a plethora of charming restaurants perfect for a memorable date night. The ideal date night spot? Think mouthwatering cuisine, cozy corners with flickering candlelight, gorgeous interiors, and service that makes you feel like the only two people in the room. From Casa D’Angelo to Xochi, let’s explore some of the most intimate and enchanting eateries in both Aspen and Houston. Fall in love all over again—with your city and your partner!

The Most Romantic Restaurants in Houston & Aspen

Casa D’Angelo in Aspen

First on LUDC Founder and CEO Laura Umansky’s list is Casa D’Angelo. Casa D’Angelo is an Italian restaurant located in Aspen, Colorado. Led by acclaimed chef Angelo Elia, Casa D’Angelo is known for its authentic Italian cuisine and warm, inviting atmosphere. The restaurant offers a menu that celebrates traditional Italian flavors while incorporating locally sourced ingredients and seasonal specialties.

Dishes at Casa D’Angelo often include homemade pastas, fresh seafood, and expertly prepared meats—all crafted with a focus on quality and flavor. The restaurant’s commitment to using fresh, high-quality ingredients shines through in every dish.

The ambiance at Casa D’Angelo is elegant yet relaxed—making it an ideal spot for both intimate dinners and celebratory gatherings. The restaurant’s welcoming atmosphere—combined with its exceptional cuisine and attentive service—has made it a favorite among locals and visitors alike in Aspen. 

Catch Steak in Aspen

Another of Laura’s recommendations is Catch Steak—a contemporary steakhouse also located in Aspen. Part of the Catch Hospitality Group, which has other acclaimed restaurants in New York City and Los Angeles, Catch Steak brings its signature blend of upscale dining and vibrant atmosphere to the Rocky Mountains.

This restaurant is known for its innovative take on classic steakhouse fare—featuring high-quality cuts of beef, fresh seafood, and inventive appetizers and sides. Catch Steak offers a modern twist on traditional steakhouse favorites, with dishes that celebrate bold flavors and creative presentations. Their Wagyu Tartare and Classical Carpaccio are favorites at both Catch Steak Aspen and Catch Steak LA.

The restaurant’s sophisticated ambiance—with sleek decor, upscale furnishings, and a lively atmosphere—makes Catch Steak ideal for date nights. Whether you’re enjoying a perfectly cooked steak in the main dining room or sipping cocktails at the chic bar, the restaurant offers an elegant setting for a memorable dining experience that you and your date certainly won’t forget!

Matsuhisa in Aspen

Of course, Matsuhisa made Laura’s list of romantic restaurants in Aspen! Founded by world-famous chef Nobu Matsuhisa, the restaurant is part of the Nobu Hospitality group and is known for its exceptional Japanese-Peruvian fusion cuisine—lovingly dubbed “Nobu style.”

The menu at Matsuhisa Aspen features a diverse selection of dishes that blend traditional Japanese techniques with South American flavors and ingredients. Signature dishes include Nobu’s famous black cod with miso, yellowtail jalapeño, and tiradito (a Peruvian-style sashimi)—among others. The restaurant emphasizes the use of fresh, high-quality seafood and seasonal ingredients to create dishes that are both flavorful and visually stunning.

In addition to its outstanding cuisine, Matsuhisa Aspen offers a sophisticated and intimate dining atmosphere. The restaurant’s sleek design and stylish ambiance make it a favorite among Aspen’s discerning diners and visitors alike.

Keep an eye on their Instagram for the next Aspen Sushi Club pop-up—hosted upstairs at the recently remodeled restaurant.

MARCH in Houston

MARCH is first on LUDC COO Melissa Grove’s list of date night spots—followed by Le Jardinier, Bludorn, and Nancy’s Hustle. This upscale restaurant is known for its elegant ambiance, innovative cuisine, and impeccable service. Situated in a historic building in the heart of Houston’s Montrose neighborhood, MARCH offers a refined yet approachable dining experience perfect for a memorable date night.

The restaurant’s menu is inspired by French and American culinary traditions—featuring seasonal ingredients and boasting creative flavor combinations. Dishes at MARCH are expertly crafted by Chef Felipe Riccio, who brings a modern sensibility to classic recipes.

What makes MARCH a good date night spot? It exudes elegance and charm, with a beautifully appointed dining room featuring plush seating, soft lighting, and gorgeous decor. The intimate atmosphere sets the stage for a romantic evening. Plus, the staff at MARCH is attentive and professional. From the moment you arrive until the moment you leave, you’ll feel well taken care of.

Le Jardinier in Houston

According to Patricia Sharpe in an article for Texas Monthly, Le Jardinier is “the best restaurant in Texas, and one of the best in the U.S.” Le Jardinier is a sophisticated fine dining restaurant celebrated for its elegant ambiance and inventive vegetable-forward cuisine. The restaurant is part of the acclaimed Le Jardinier group, with locations in New York City and Miami as well as Houston.

Led by Michelin-starred chef Alain Verzeroli, Le Jardinier offers a menu that celebrates seasonal and locally sourced ingredients, with a focus on vegetables as the star of the show. Dishes are artfully plated and thoughtfully composed. The restaurant’s name—which translates to “the gardener” in French—reflects its commitment to sustainability and environmental stewardship. Le Jardinier strives to minimize waste and maximize flavor, with a menu that highlights the bounty of the earth in creative and unexpected ways.

The restaurant also boasts a sleek and modern dining room designed by award-winning architect Joseph Dirand. The restaurant’s chic decor and attentive service create a memorable dining experience that is perfect for special occasions or intimate dinners.

Bludorn in Houston

Melissa also recommends Bludorn—an acclaimed restaurant located in Houston that is known for its inventive and refined American cuisine. Opened in 2020 by chef Aaron Bludorn—who previously worked at the three-Michelin-starred restaurant Per Se in New York City—Bludorn quickly gained attention for its exceptional food, warm hospitality, and elegant ambiance.

The menu at Bludorn showcases a creative approach to classic dishes, with an emphasis on seasonal and locally sourced ingredients. Chef Bludorn’s culinary expertise is evident in every dish—from beautifully plated appetizers and inventive salads to expertly cooked meats and seafood entrees. The restaurant also offers a thoughtfully curated wine list and craft cocktails to complement the menu offerings.

Nancy’s Hustle in Houston

Melissa and her husband love sitting real close and cozying up to the bar at Nancy’s Hustle. Nancy’s Hustle is a popular neighborhood restaurant located in Houston known for its inventive and eclectic cuisine, laid-back atmosphere, and welcoming hospitality. It has garnered widespread acclaim since opening its doors in 2017. 

The menu at Nancy’s Hustle offers a creative blend of flavors and influences, with dishes that range from elevated comfort food to inventive small plates. Highlights include their famous Nancy Cakes, a savory take on pancakes served with house-made butter and caviar, as well as dishes like crispy fried chicken thighs, wood-grilled octopus, and a variety of seasonal salads and vegetable sides.

In addition to its innovative cuisine, Nancy’s Hustle features an impressive beverage program, with a curated selection of natural wines, craft beers, and creative cocktails to complement the menu offerings. The restaurant’s cozy yet stylish interior, with exposed brick walls, dim lighting, and an open kitchen, creates a relaxed and inviting atmosphere perfect for casual dining and socializing.

MF Sushi & Katmai in Houston

LUDC Marketing Manager Michelle Naik recommends MF Sushi & Katmai, Nobie’s, and Coltivare for your next date night! To start, MF Sushi is a renowned Japanese restaurant that is known for its exceptional sushi and traditional Japanese cuisine. Led by Chef Chris Kinjo, the restaurant offers an extensive menu featuring a variety of sushi and sashimi, as well as hot and cold small plates, robata-grilled dishes, and omakase tasting menus. 

Nobie’s in Houston

Next on Michelle’s list is Nobie’s—a cozy and intimate restaurant that is beloved for its inventive New American cuisine and welcoming atmosphere. The restaurant features a menu of creative and globally inspired dishes, with a focus on seasonal and locally sourced ingredients. 

Diners can enjoy dishes like smoked trout rillettes, lamb tartare, and roasted bone marrow, as well as a curated selection of craft cocktails, wines, and beers. The intimate setting, attentive service, and delicious food make Nobie’s an ideal spot for a cozy and memorable dining experience.

Coltivare Pizza & Garden in Houston

Lastly, Michelle recommends Coltivare. Coltivare is a charming Italian-inspired restaurant known for its cozy and intimate atmosphere and farm-to-table cuisine. The restaurant features a menu of rustic Italian dishes made with locally sourced ingredients, including house-made pastas, wood-fired pizzas, and seasonal salads. 

The warm and inviting ambiance—with a rustic dining room and a bustling open kitchen—adds to the charm of Coltivare and makes it a popular spot for date nights and special occasions. Additionally, the restaurant offers an extensive wine list featuring Italian and domestic wines—as well as craft cocktails and beers. All are perfect for pairing with the delicious food.

Xochi in Downtown Houston

LUDC Associate Designer Megan Thomson recommends Xochi—a Oaxacan restaurant by James Beard Award-winning Chef Hugo Ortega in Downtown Houston. Xochi is lauded by critics and foodies for its authentic cuisine inspired by the flavors and traditions of the Oaxaca region in southern Mexico. As previously noted, the restaurant is led by Chef Hugo Ortega, who is celebrated for his expertise in Mexican cuisine and has received numerous accolades for his culinary skills.

Xochi’s menu features a diverse array of dishes that highlight the rich culinary heritage of Oaxaca including favorites like Barbacoa de Res de Zaachila and off-menu specials like Chilean Sea Bass with tamarind mole. From traditional mole sauces to tlayudas (Oaxacan-style pizza), chapulines (grasshoppers), and delicious seafood options, the restaurant offers a unique dining experience that honors the depth and complexity of Oaxacan cuisine.

Perfect for romantic date nights, the ambiance of Xochi is warm and inviting, with décor that reflects the cultural heritage of Oaxaca. The restaurant’s name—”Xochi”—is derived from the Aztec word for flower, which is fitting given the restaurant’s commitment to celebrating the vibrant flavors and ingredients of Mexican cuisine.

Julep in the Theater District of Houston

According to Megan, Julep is the ideal date night spot for cocktails and light snacks. It’s a perfect place to grab drinks before attending an event in the Theater District. Julep is in fact known for its expertly crafted cocktails—alongside delicious Southern-inspired cuisine and a welcoming ambiance. The bar was founded by Alba Huerta—a celebrated mixologist and expert in the art of craft cocktails.

At Julep, guests can expect a menu of creative and inventive cocktails that showcase both classic techniques and modern twists. The bar specializes in Southern-inspired libations, with a focus on bourbon, whiskey, and other spirits that pay homage to the rich cocktail traditions of the American South.

In addition to its exceptional cocktails, Julep also offers a menu of Southern-inspired small plates and snacks, perfect for pairing with your drink of choice. From oysters and fried chicken to charcuterie and cheese boards, the food menu at Julep complements the bar’s beverage offerings and adds to the overall experience.

The ambiance at Julep is warm and inviting, with a stylish yet relaxed interior featuring cozy seating areas, exposed brick walls, and vintage decor. Whether you’re stopping by for happy hour with friends or a romantic evening out, Julep offers a laid-back yet sophisticated setting for enjoying expertly crafted cocktails and delicious Southern fare.

Turner’s in Houston

LUDC Director of Residential Design Megan Strasburg recommends Turner’s, Backstreet, and Bistro Menil. Another steakhouse, Turner’s is one of our team’s favorite restaurants in Houston, Texas. Their expertly-prepared steaks and seafood are complemented by an extensive wine list and attentive service. We love their delicate soups, Daurenki caviar, and buttermilk-fried quail.

What sets Turner’s apart is its live piano music, which adds to the ambiance and creates a romantic atmosphere perfect for a date night. The live piano performances enhance the dining experience—providing background music that sets the tone for an elegant and intimate evening. 

Whether you’re celebrating a milestone or simply looking to impress your date, Turner’s offers a memorable dining experience complete with live piano music that adds to the charm and allure of the evening.

Backstreet in Houston

Every Houstonian knows about Backstreet Cafe. Backstreet Cafe is a beloved Houston institution known for its eclectic American cuisine, charming atmosphere, and picturesque location. Situated in a renovated 1930s-era house with a lush patio garden, Backstreet Cafe offers a unique and inviting setting for diners.

The restaurant’s menu features a diverse array of dishes that showcase fresh, locally sourced ingredients and innovative flavor combinations. From hearty brunch options and creative salads to flavorful seafood and expertly grilled meats, Backstreet Cafe offers something to satisfy every palate.

In addition to the delicious food, Backstreet Cafe is known for its warm and welcoming ambiance, with cozy indoor dining spaces and a charming patio surrounded by greenery. The restaurant’s relaxed yet refined atmosphere makes it a popular choice for everything from casual brunches to romantic dinners and special celebrations.

Backstreet Cafe also offers a robust wine list, craft cocktails, and decadent desserts to complement its menu offerings. Whether you’re stopping by for a leisurely meal with friends or a romantic evening with a loved one, Backstreet Cafe promises a memorable dining experience that celebrates the flavors and hospitality of Houston. If celebrating a special occasion, keep an eye out for their private wine dinners.

Bistro Menil in Houston

Perhaps the best date night spot on this list, Bistro Menil is a charming restaurant located in the heart of Houston, adjacent to the Menil Collection Museum. This bistro offers a relaxed and sophisticated dining experience—combining French-inspired cuisine with a modern twist.

The menu at Bistro Menil features a variety of dishes crafted from locally sourced ingredients, with an emphasis on seasonal produce and artisanal ingredients. From classic French bistro fare like steak frites and coq au vin to inventive salads and sandwiches, the menu offers something for everyone.

One of the highlights of Bistro Menil is its unique atmosphere, with a cozy dining room adorned with contemporary artwork and an airy patio shaded by oak trees. The restaurant’s relaxed mood and attentive service make it an ideal spot for a leisurely lunch, intimate dinner, or weekend brunch.

Bistro Menil also boasts an impressive wine list—featuring a curated selection of French and American wines, as well as craft beers and handcrafted cocktails. Whether you’re exploring the nearby museum or simply looking for a delicious meal in a beautiful setting, Bistro Menil promises a memorable evening.

Where Will You Dine With Your Date?

Whether savoring Southern-inspired delicacies in the heart of Houston or indulging in Italian-inspired fare amidst Aspen’s mountain backdrop, each restaurant we explored offered a unique blend of culinary excellence and romantic ambiance. From the first bite to the last, these date night spots reminded us that the most cherished moments are often shared over a delicious meal and heartfelt conversation. 

Our culinary journey through Houston and Aspen has come to a close, but we still need your feedback! Let us know which restaurants you frequent in the comments below.

We Value Your Privacy.

We use cookies to enhance your browsing experience, serve personalized ads or content, and analyze our traffic. By clicking “Accept”, you consent to our use of cookies.