The Best And Worst Places To Eat On A First Date

A first kiss isn’t the same without a little BBQ sauce to sweeten the deal.

When I get ready for a date, especially if it’s the first, I make sure I look my absolute best?I get my nails done, my hair’s all fresh and I’ve gone over potential date-night outfits at least 10 times. You want to show your date the best you (without giving too much away) and then you reel them in for lazy nights at home in your sweats sans makeup. You worry about making sure those pesky fly-aways are safe in the coop, or that there’s no lipstick in your teeth, and for the most part you have complete control. But when it comes to your place of dining, that’s where it can get complicated.

A lot of girls (and guys, for that matter) stress about where to go for dinner because of the food choices, not because they may not like the menu but because of the effort it will take to eat it (the food, not the menu). I can’t tell you how many restaurants I’ve vetoed because of the inability to eat my meal without getting some of it on me or for fear of looking like a starved animal who hasn’t eaten in days.

We all have certain rules we like to set for ourselves when going on a date, and then there are guidelines that magazines and “society” tell us to follow. One of these all-important rules is to steer clear of the messy, un-ladylike (ugh) foods for the fear we may come off as undesirable. To that I say to hell with it. We shouldn’t have to say no to our favourite foods because they require more than a napkin or two.

Now, do we (men and women) want to go the whole date with food all over our face? Probably not. But here at The Verso, we’re giving you the encouragement and support you need to proudly go forth and make a mess. If you decide to brave these appetizing yet messy meals on a first date, let us help you pick the perfect place to dive right in. We’ve come up with a few places that we love with unbelievable food?and awesome settings?great for a first date but will have you screaming for a Wet Nap.


Pho at Mi Mi Restaurant
688 Gerrard Street East, Toronto, ON | (416) 778-5948

There’s nothing more attractive than trying to enjoy a romantic dinner while your date slurps his/her way through a bowl of pho. It’s an aphrodisiac, don’t you agree? There are no breaks eating pho, just as there is no crying in baseball. But if you decide to throw caution to the wind and dive into your pho head first (because your face will be an inch away from it), Mi Mi Restaurant in Leslieville is the place to do that. Coupled with friendly and attentive service, Mi Mi’s served me the best pho I’ve ever had and I recommend whether you go with a date or by yourself, you also get the spring rolls.


Wings at St. Louis
Literally everywhere

I’ve done it. Am I ashamed of it? Nope?I’m sure as hell proud. Look, eating wings on a first date isn’t for everyone. In fact, you probably shouldn’t go because there’s no way you can eat a basket of them without getting sauce all over your face. Not only do you wear the remnants but your hands get dirty and perhaps get some in your teeth. On the other hand, seeing you attack a basket of wings like a champ might be exactly what turns him on, and in that case you’re good as gold. I’ve had wings at a lot of places and the selection at St. Louis is top notch. You have your choice of different flavours, the way that it’s cooked, and it’s always tender. You can’t go wrong at St. Louis I can promise you that.


BBQ at Aft Kitchen & Bar
686 Queen St East, Toronto, ON | (647) 346-1541

Unless you’re like me and tend to use a knife and fork to eat (and get slack for it every singe time), this is typically what a night of eating tender, BBQ, juiced up ribs will look like. It’s the same concept as diving in to that basket of wings, it’s messy and you’ll end up looking exactly like Elisha Cuthbert in Happy Endings. I mean she’s hot so it’s not really a loss, but if you’re with a man or woman who loves that you enjoy your food more than how you look while eating it, head to Aft Kitchen & Bar on Queen Street East. It’s small and intimate but with damn good food and never have I left unsatisfied. Caution: You can’t use a knife and fork with these bad boys.

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Sushi at Sushi California
1238 Saint Clair Avenue West, Toronto, ON | (416) 658-1238

Sushi restaurants make the biggest f’ing rolls and it’s physically impossible to eat the whole roll without looking like you’ve shoved a jaw breaker in your mouth. As hard as I’ve tried, you can’t not take the entirety of the roll at once because it’s structure doesn’t allow for anything otherwise. Between the struggles of trying not to choke and look half decent while doing it, it is also incredibly difficult to maintain a conversation without sufficient pause. But then again, I’m sure some of the greatest and most successful of projects have come out of a sushi date. Sushi California was recommended to me by a friend for the great food at a great deal (sushi for two + wine + apps for $40) and if you don’t eat fish, not to worry. There are a lot of options that will satisfy the vegan and vegetarian customer.

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And the list goes on…

Other than the kick ass dish that I personally make at home, going for Indian on a first date actually isn’t a bad idea unless you tend to react to the spice like Ben Stiller here. Braving Indian food on a first date isn’t about how you’ll look while eating it or what it may mean, but it quite possibly could be more about how you will feel. Many people do not respond well to some of the spices that accompany some Indian dishes and on a first date (well any date, really) the last thing you want to worry about is digestion issues, or in Stiller’s case, uncontrollable sweating. Choosing just one restaurant to recommend Indian food for is unfair, so I’ll recommend a few thanks to the generous friends of Facebook:

Click on gifs for image source

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