Looking for a great date night escape in Tampa?  Here are 20 of some of the best Romantic Restaurants in Tampa when seeking to enjoy an evening of conversation over an intimate dinner. Chosen for their cozy atmospheres, spectacular views, or fantastic cuisine there is something for everyone on this list of date night restaurants from casual to elegant, waterside to strip-mall,  hip and classic to chichi.

Rediscover fun places you may not have thought about for some time for your date night dinners and, learn about restaurants Tampa locals like to keep secret.

Ava SoHo District South Tampa

"Food that takes you home." Is how Ava describes its energy and they could not be more right.  When you dine at Ava, you share plates, just like at home, but as a diner, in the restaurant, you feel a sense of community.  Ava is a lovely place with an exciting MENU, including items like warm ricotta with grilled bread and fennel pollen for starters to braised lamb shank.  Pizzas are made in their wood-fired pizza oven, and if you want to bring your pup on your date night, Ava accommodates four-legged friends on the patio out back. If you are searching for a relaxed vibe, great food, and a good beer and wine selection, Ava is one of the restaurants you need to try this year!

Cask SoHo District South Tampa

Shorts and flip-flops in your date night plan? Cask is a sweet date destination where the food is creative and delicious, and the crafted cocktails shine. Unpretentious and unhurried Cask SoHo is the perfect place to unwind and dine in Tampa. Inside, or out on the patio, you will find yourself in a cute and clean environment where the focus is on fun and treating you to an enjoyable experience.  Their candied bacon and honey popcorn are addicting, beware!  The MENU is full of surprises making it hard to decide what to order, so definitely plan on going back again and again!

Haven South Tampa Bayshore Area

Where Yelper Amara wrote," This was a date like no other." As part of the Bern's family of bars and restaurants, you expect the best, and Haven delivers.  Formerly SideBern's the place was gutted to the bare walls and Haven rose from the dust.  A vision, it is enjoyable to all the senses.  Executive Chef Chad Johnson's MENU is extensive, offering traditional Mediterranean cuisine with modern technique emphasizing wild caught fish, fresh game and organic vegetables and herbs.  Their dinner menu changes daily to match fresh available ingredients. Haven is a place for excellent meals, superb wines, and spirits, a place to relax, get comfortable and to retreat from life’s challenges, a place to celebrate your date.

Osteria Natalina South Tampa South Tampa Bayshore Area

Tampa has little pieces of Italy tucked away within its borders, five places made this list,  Osteria Natalina is one of them.  Italians know how to dine, and dinner here is an experience!  You can connect with friends and family or get to know your date as Osteria Natalina brings Rimini Italy to your table in a casual atmosphere with great homemade food. The strozzapreti pasta is a Rimini favorite found on Osteria Natalina's Menu. Consistently ranked as one of the Top Italian restaurants in Tampa Bay if you have not been, now is the time!

Ruth's Chris Steak House Westshore Area

It's time to LIVE LIKE RUTH!  Ruth knew to take time and celebrate the small things in life and the importance of living life well.  Her philosophy spilled over to her cooking, and is found in her time-honored recipes; recipes served today at Ruth's Chris.  Known for excellent steaks the MENU at Ruth's Chris is complete. From steaks served sizzling on a 500-degree platter to her famous creamed spinach you will quickly realize she knows what her guests want and how to treat them. Choose Ruth's Chris Steak House and make the night memorable.

The Melting Pot Carrollwood

Would it surprise you to know that The Melting Pot is often voted one of Tampa Bay's most romantic restaurants?  The Melting Pot is fun and interactive, and the chocolate fondue is just plain sexy when shared. You know a place is getting it right when they are open 30+ years; so why not satisfy that fondue fix during your next date night in Tampa and plan your evening at The Melting Pot. The entree MENU includes seafood, steak, gluten-free and vegetarian options and of course their famous chocolate fondue!  

Donatello Mid-Town Tampa

 Serving fine Italian cuisine since 1984 stepping into Donatello's is like stepping into another time. The Italian staff greets you in tuxedos as you are welcomed you into a rose-colored atmosphere rich with the aroma of authentic Italian food. Seeking perfection in all they do, Donatello's pampers you the moment you walk through the door right down to the roses you'll receive at the end of your experience. Donatello's is an excellent place if you enjoy people watching, this restaurant never fails to please. Their extensive MENU has something for everyone.

J Alexander's Restaurant West Tampa

Known for its wood-fired cuisine J. Alexander's mission is to provide you with the highest possible quality dining experience, perfect for a date night!  Their dinner MENU features American classics including prime rib of beef, steaks, fresh seafood, sandwiches and entrée salads including a rotating selection of features like Seafood Czarina, Tuscan Steak, Grilled Fish with Mango Papaya Salsa and Chicken Milanese.  The gorgeous dark wood and low-light make this restaurant a favorite spot for romantic dinners in Tampa with someone dear.  

Mise En Place Downtown Tampa

Mise en Place is sure to delight and excite you and your date with their seductive decor' and the dynamic flavors reflecting Chef Marty Blitz's love of food and Tampa Bay. Marty offers a unique experience at Mise En Place, called "Get Blitzed', a five-course dinner featuring a sample of Marty’s favorite dishes from the previous week. Or choose from Chef's extensive seasonal MENU to taste this award-winning chef's creative genius. 

La Terrazza Ristorante Ybor City 

Owned by talented Chef Andrea Fenu, La Terrazza is another of the best Italian restaurants in the area. A master of Northern Italian classics from the Emilia Romagna region of Italy Chef Andrea created an understated, unpretentious atmosphere giving her diners a feel for what it's like to dine in Italy. Great food, exceptional menu selections, and friendly service suit La Terrazza well for a romantic date night dinner. Chef's MENU can satisfy the most delicate palates and the heartiest of appetites.  La Terrazza is a pleasant and memorable experience. Reservations are accepted though never required.  Valet parking is available behind the restaurant.

Kona Grill International Mall Area

Indeed an escape from the everyday Kona Grill is a sushi lover's dream. From the seductive lighting to the sensual food KG offers you everything you need for a spectacular date night out in Tampa. If the weather is nice, sit on the patio overlooking the water for a more intimate evening. Kona has both a dinner MENU and a sushi MENU. Be sure to share the Crab Crunch Roll; it is unusual and delicious!

Trattoria Pasquale South Tampa Gandy Area

Word of mouth spread quickly when Chef Luigi Cavallaro made a move from catering to a fixed restaurant in South Tampa.  In this nondescript, store-front strip mall on Manhattan Avenue, you taste his passion for food and discover some of the best Italian food you can imagine eating outside of Italy. Chef prepares everything from scratch, including the tender, melt-in-your-mouth noodles in his famous Lasagna.  Likely to run into old friends you are sure to make new ones in this cozy no-frills setting serving fresh dishes originating from Luigi’s hometown of Bolzano. Build-your-own antipasto, enjoy fresh seafood, lamb chops or the daily specials. Signature dishes on his MENU include homemade Pâté, Cauliflower Milanese, Luigi's family recipe Lasagna, and homemade pork sausage.  This restaurant quickly developed a following of loyal customers so be sure to call ahead and let Chef know you are coming, and when, otherwise you may not get in!

Oystercatchers  Mid-Town | Courtney Campbell Causeway | Airport Area

Some of the best views of Tampa Bay make Oystercatchers a delight for the eyes as well as the palate!  An excellent choice for a quiet date night dinner in Tampa on the bay you can dine al fresco or inside surrounded by décor designed to complement the beauty of their surroundings.  

You can't miss when it comes to romance at OC! Oystercatchers' MENU features fresh, wild, line-caught fish only, select Caviar, Oysters, Salmon,  Lobster Mac and Cheese, a fantastic Stuffed Whole Snapper and a beef filet or chicken dish too. If you and your date like wine, Oystercatcher's has a complete wine cellar including Reserve Bottles if you want to impress!  

Michael's Grill Carrollwood

Quiet and quaint, warm and inviting are the first things you will notice about Chef Michael Reily's place in Carrollwood.  The unfussy, casual environment disarms you then the MENU arrives, and you can't decide! Famous for his food Chef Michael is in the middle of it all skillfully preparing the perfect meal for his guests, and the choices do not get more romantic!  Creamy She-Crab Bisque spiked with cognac, Escargot in Puff Pastry, Chicken Nouvelle and Steak Au Poivre. Plan to make Michael's Grill a favorite date night destination this year!

Sacred Pepper

Located in the heart of Greater Carrollwood, Sacred Pepper offers a variety of fresh and tasty food. Sacred Pepper focuses on high-quality ingredients, proving they find meal time to be sacred. All pasta and sauces are made from scratch, and all meat products are selected at their freshest. Sacred Pepper is a great date night restaurant in Tampa, assuring a delicious meal to match your romantic evening. 

Vino E Pasta South Tampa

Another gem in Italian dining in Tampa at Vino E Pasta your meal is carefully prepared from scratch, using the freshest ingredients to ensure authentic Italian Dining at it's best.  They have a full MENU and nightly specials determined by what was fresh at the market earlier in the day.  Committed to an excellent dining experience this small restaurant at the corner of Gandy and Himes offers big flavors in dishes like Filet Mignon with Gorgonzola sauce to Snapper Livornese. Have fun creating your classic pasta dish by choosing from their extensive list of homemade noodles, traditional and specialty pasta sauces. The location isn't always everything! Thousands of people drive by each day not knowing what they are missing at Vino E Pasta, but the locals know!

Bern's Steak House South Tampa

This iconic restaurant should be on everybody's bucket list! Romantic and fun, be sure to tell your waiter you want to tour the kitchen and wine cellar following dinner.  A few of the rarest bottles of wine on the planet are stored at this date night restaurant in Tampa! After one of the most elegant meals and the tour head upstairs to a private booth for dessert.  It's dim, you choose the mood music, enjoy the atmosphere, as you experience Bern's.  

Elevage @ The Epicurean Hotel SoHo Bayshore Area

If you are epicurious about what all the fuss is about at Elevage it's pretty simple, the chefs at Elevage speak to lovers through their food. People who love life, adventure, food, and wine will fall in love with Elevage.  If you have not had the pleasure of celebrating life at their establishment, it is one of those things you do not want to miss!  Date night is for indulging, so now is the perfect time to experience Elevage!  Their dinner MENU is refined and elegant. Whether you try the Cobia, the saffron risotto with heirloom tomatoes and chorizo, or the crispy duck your night out will be impressive. 

Eddie V's Prime Seafood

Eddie V's is a prime steak and seafood restaurant in Tampa's Westshore District. At this date night restaurant in Tampa, you find the freshest seafood in the Tampa Bay area as well as live jazz in the lounge, USDA prime steaks, sexy desserts and an atmosphere where you can easily communicate and enjoy your time together. From the excellent menu, to the refined ambiance, Eddie V's, is a local favorite.

Council Oak Steaks & Seafood

Another great getaway bound to delight anyone on date night is Council Oak Steaks & Seafood located at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa. An innovative and sophisticated fine-dining experience offering the finest USDA steaks from its butcher shop, seafood from local waters, and live Maine lobsters flown in daily is sure to please.  Have fun at any number of bars before or after dinner, enjoy the slots together or grab a seat and play a little poker. Not feeling as if you want to concentrate quite that hard? No worries, you can even bet playing the card game we all played as kids, War! This date night restaurant in Tampa adds fun to the equation like no other restaurants in Tampa can.

These are but a few of the best date night restaurants in Tampa you can try this year.  Be sure to check back often as we share more information about the choices you have for great places to dine as well as the BEST places to grab a unique cocktail in Tampa.

We love hearing from you!  Where is your best date night restaurant in Tampa?