ADVERTISEMENT

Favorite Romantic Restaurants in the West

Enjoy an intimate dinner with your loved one at these spots with stunning views, delicious fare, and maybe even a ghost.

Plates and cocktails on the table at El Corral steak house in Tucson, Arizona.
El Corral steak house in Tucson, Arizona.
Courtesy El Corral

El Corral Steakhouse in Tucson, Arizona, is set amidst authentic desert landscaping, which can be viewed from the spacious windows. The interior is old-time Western Hollywood glamor with large photos of Western cowboys from movies on the walls. The service is excellent and the atmosphere is relaxed. It is the most original restaurant in all of Arizona. Really worth a trip to Tucson.” —Gail Saunders

“Our favorite spot is Fandango Restaurant in Pacific Grove, California, a place we have been enjoying for over 30 years. Each time we visit, we are treated to excellent service and amazing food. The restaurant has a few dining room options, some large and others more intimate. No matter where you sit, though, it will be a treat. If you visit Pacific Grove, be sure to eat at this charming restaurant a quick walk from the beautiful and scenic Monterey Bay.” —Debra Ceremony

Grand Union Hotel in Fort Benton, Montana, is the oldest operating hotel in Montana. Enjoy dinner in the historic and restored riverside dining room and look out over the fabled Missouri River.” —Michael J. Ober

The outside dining space at La Gare French Restaurant is lit with string lights.
Outdoor dining space at La Gare in Santa Rosa, California.
Courtesy La Gare French Restaurant

“My absolute favorite romantic restaurant is La Gare in Santa Rosa, California. This family-run French restaurant is a gem, with delicious food, a romantic ambiance, and outstanding service.” —Sue Shepherd

“A romantic place to visit is in Ione, California. Stay at the historic Ione Hotel, and step back in time to the Gold Rush era. Inside the hotel is the Burke Family Restaurant, with homestyle cooking—don’t miss the steaks. After dinner, explore all there is to see in Ione: the majestic Preston Castle, antique shops, casinos, and wineries. If you spend the night at the Ione Hotel, ask about the Black Rose: A mysterious image of a black rose once appeared on the wall. When they washed it off, the image came back. Legend has it that in the early 1900s, the room was occupied by a damsel nicknamed the Black Rose and she still loves that room.” —Paul Dale Roberts

ADVERTISEMENT

“The Waterfront Depot in Florence, Oregon, is hands down my favorite. An intimate atmosphere, great location, and knock-yourself-out great food. Ask for a table in the bay window for a great view of the Siuslaw River and its historic bridge.” —Charley Williams

“While there are many romantic eateries in California, our favorite is the Tower Café in Sacramento. We love to sit outside in its urban jungle, enjoying eating amongst other patrons while blissfully holding each other’s hand. Sharing a dessert from the wide selection tops any meal off. The quirky interior with its art from around the world, while wonderful, doesn’t generate the same feelings of love that the outside does but is fantastic in its own right.” —Miles Constantine

Inside the dining room at Shadowbrook in Capitola, California.
The dining room at Shadowbrook in Capitola, California.
Courtesy Shadowbrook Restaurant

“For romance in Capitola, California, visit Shadowbrook Restaurant, a 75-year-old eatery overlooking Soquel Creek, with a cable car that drops you at the restaurant’s entrance. Business casual or your Sunday best will fit right in, whether it’s a benchmark anniversary or a weeknight out. From the storybook entry to the massive stone fireplace, the mood is set for fun, food, and romance.” —David Schwoegler

“Our all-time favorite wonderful romantic restaurant in the west is the Beach Tree Restaurant at the Four Seasons Hualalai in Kona on the Big Island of Hawaii. Relax in gentle, warm breezes for lunch or dinner. The food is always predictably delicious. We are lucky to have this when in the islands.” —Lougene Baird

“The most romantic restaurant in the West has to be the Monte Vista Inn, a historic roadhouse one hour from Tahoe in Dutch Flat, California, along Highway 80. Owned by a local family for more than 50 years, the cozy fireplace room and friendly bar are seasonally decorated. The fabulous food makes it a great date night spot, plus they offer fun activities such as cribbage tournaments.” —Debby McClatchy

“A favorite restaurant for dinner for my wife and me is Different Pointe of View at the Hilton Phoenix Tapatio Cliffs Resort in Phoenix, Arizona. The restaurant sits at the edge of a bluff, so we always ask for a window table where we can look over Paradise Valley and Camelback Mountain, with its rusty rock formations, and the downtown Phoenix lights as the evening progresses. At the same time, we can watch the sun slowly set, painting the clouds in shades of red, yellow, and orange, setting the mood for a romantic evening.” —Jim Cullison

Next Question

What are your favorite places in the West to view wildflowers and why? Email us at [email protected] and you may be quoted in a future issue.