Will sparks fly on your next date night in Grand Rapids, Michigan? While the chemistry is up to you and your date, dining together at one of the most romantic restaurants in Grand Rapids will undoubtedly set the mood.
Especially if you are celebrating Valentine’s Day, your anniversary, or a special night out with your sweetheart, I highly recommend dining at one of the romantic date night restaurants in Grand Rapids.
My recommendations are based on my own dining experiences in Grand Rapids. I lived in West Michigan for nearly nine years, including five in downtown Grand Rapids. So, I’ve been on my fair share of Grand Rapids date nights.
Though Michigan’s second-largest city is better known as Beer City USA, Grand Rapids is a food lover’s destination, too. With more than 300 restaurants, the Greater Grand Rapids area boasts a diverse dining scene to explore with your significant other.
During your next Grand Rapids date night, you and your boo can share Spanish tapas, inventive sushi rolls, gourmet cheese and charcuterie spreads paired with wine flights, or an artisan pizza at James Beard Award-winning chef Paul Berglund’s restaurant.
Now, let’s take a closer look at the romantic Grand Rapids restaurants that will have you falling in love — at least with their food and drinks!
Disclosure: This local guide to Grand Rapids romantic restaurants contains some affiliate links. I may earn a commission when you click on and make a purchase through one of these links. Of course, this is at no extra cost to you.
With its dim lighting and beautiful wine cellar as the central focal point of the intimate dining room, this romantic restaurant in downtown Grand Rapids is just the place to win a wine lover’s heart.
In addition to a wine list with selections from top wine regions around the world, the full bar mixes fantastic craft cocktails and has several Michigan craft beers on draft.
Among the main dishes featured on the globally inspired dinner menu are filet mignon, wild mushroom risotto, and grilled salmon.
For beginnings, start your date night by sharing a bone marrow, mushroom bruschetta, or another savory appetizer from the chef-driven menu.
Later, end your date night by ordering dessert for two paired with a round of espresso martinis or dessert wines. If it is on the menu when you dine, I highly recommend the baklava cheesecake.
Divani is located downtown at 15 Ionia Ave SW, Grand Rapids, MI 49503.
Several public parking garages are located nearby, but the Ottawa Fulton Ramp, Monroe Center, and The Gallery on Fulton Ramp are the closest options with short-term parking rates of $2 per half hour on non-event nights.
Additionally, street parking is free on Friday evenings after 6 p.m. and all day on Saturdays.
Bistro Bella Vita
This modern Italian and French restaurant in downtown Grand Rapids may be my absolute favorite romantic restaurant. Every time I walk into Bistro Bella Vita, the dining experience transports me to the Italian countryside.
On date night, start by sharing an appetizer of burrata or gluten-free sea scallops with cauliflower gratin. Then share a gourmet pizza or indulge in a rich, heartwarming pasta dish or modern take on the classic French beef bourguignon.
The wine list has California, French, and Italian vino to pair with your food, but I recommend trying one of the Bistro martinis, negronis, or other artfully crafted cocktails.
First Date Tip: Keep it fun, flirty, and casual by taking your date to American Apéro! During “happy hour” from 3 to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, you can share a pizza for $11 and pair it with a $4 beer, $6 glass of wine, or an $8 Bistro martini.
Bistro Bella Vita is located at 44 Grandville Ave SW, Grand Rapids, MI 49503.
The closest non-event parking lot is Ellis Parking’s 90 Market lot ($3/half hour).
If you are going to a movie before or after dinner, you can get the first four hours of your parking in the Studio Park(ing) Ramp ($3/half hour) validated inside the Celebration Cinema Studio Park with the purchase of a movie ticket.
The Chop House Grand Rapids
When celebrating a special occasion in Grand Rapids, The Chop House Grand Rapids is the place to dine.
During your own birthday dinner or anniversary celebration, order oysters on the half shell or pan-seared diver scallops to start.
Then, if you are still in the mood for seafood, order the jumbo South African lobster tail or salmon Oscar.
Otherwise, prime steaks are an excellent choice. Together you can share the 36-oz. porterhouse steak, or order your own Beef Wellington, Australian Wagyu ribeye, or surf & turf of filet mignon paired with lobster tail poached in saffron butter.
Like most fine steakhouses, you can expect exceptional service, a high-quality wine selection, and delicious a-la-carte side dishes for the table. All of this makes dining at The Chop House wonderful for celebrating, but nothing more so than the house-made desserts.
Decadent doesn’t even begin to describe the desserts here. You’ll certainly want to share a cookies-and-cream cheesecake topped with crème brûlée or a flourless chocolate cake with an espresso ganache and hazelnut-cappuccino gelato.
The Chop House Grand Rapids is located across from the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel at 190 Monroe Ave NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49503.
You may find street parking nearby. Otherwise, there are numerous parking structures within walking distance. Ellis Parking’s Midtown Parking Garage ($3/half hour) is one of the closest options.
Reserve Wine & Food
On a warm summer night, sipping a glass of rosé with someone special on Reserve’s rooftop patio would be my ideal date night in Grand Rapids.
This romance-ready patio looks directly out to the beautiful and historic Amway Grand Plaza Hotel in the heart of downtown.
In winter, nestle in at the bar to sample a flight of wines or share a bottle of one of the 900 wines.
To turn your date into a wine-tasting experience, pair your flight with a charcuterie and cheese plate. You can customize your grazing spread with Proscuitto di Parma, Jamón Serrano from Spain, and cheeses sourced as locally as Fennville in West Michigan and as far off as Greece.
Otherwise, you can begin your date night with oysters, or splurge on caviar and sparkling wine when celebrating your anniversary.
Then farm-to-table fare — like a dry-aged bone-in Black Angus ribeye with Shady Side Farm bean and mushroom ragu in winter — will follow.
For the perfect ending to your romantic evening, share a rich chocolate cake, sticky toffee pudding, or house-made ice cream.
Reserve Wine & Food is located downtown at 201 Monroe Ave NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49503.
Nearby parking garages include the Government Center Ramp ($2/half hour) and Ellis Parking’s Fifth Third and Midtown Parking garages ($3/half hour).
Consistently named one of Grand Rapids’ best restaurants, grove offers “modern, progressive cuisine” inspired by and crafted with ingredients from family farms and sustainable providers.
On the menu, you’ll find unique dishes like grilled octopus with sunchoke and a beet carpaccio with avocado, blood orange, fried capers, quinoa, and mint.
Like the beet carpaccio, some menu items are vegetarian, and grove also accommodates gluten-free and vegan diets.
Though the farm-to-table cuisine is to be savored, the beverages are equally impressive. Selections include Michigan craft beers, tantalizing cocktails, and wines by the glass or bottle.
For your Grand Rapids date night at grove, I recommend the Tasting for Two dining experience. This five-course dinner for two, which includes bread and dessert, is offered Tuesday through Saturday.
A mainstay in the East Hills neighborhood, grove is located at 919 Cherry Street SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49506.
Maru Sushi & Grill
With multiple locations around the Great Lakes State, Maru is a Michigan chain of Japanese fusion restaurants with unique sushi rolls, shareable plates, craft cocktails, and delectable desserts.
Based on my own date nights at Maru, I had to include it on this list of romantic restaurants in Grand Rapids. Not only did I once have a fun first date at this location just down the block from grove in the East Hills neighborhood, but the Kalamazoo location became a favorite for date nights with my husband.
What I love most about Maru is the inventive sushi rolls. For bacon lovers, I recommend the sexy bacon roll with smoked bacon in it. I also enjoyed the blue mango roll featuring spicy tuna, kampyo, shrimp, eel sauce, honey wasabi aioli, and wasabi tobiko.
Since the sushi rolls are on the larger side, you can make a meal out of sharing two rolls and an appetizer. Edamame is a classic choice, or you could spice up your date night with honey garlic or firecracker shrimp.
Looking for a drink to pair with your sushi? The beverage menu features a variety of cocktails, sake, and wine.
Maru Sushi & Grill is located at 927 Cherry St SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49506.
Where to Stay in Grand Rapids
Are you planning a romantic getaway in Grand Rapids? Or, are you a local wanting to turn a special date night into a staycation for two? If you are wondering where to stay, here are some of the most romantic hotels and bed & breakfasts in Grand Rapids.
Amway Grand Plaza, Curio Collection by Hilton is a historic hotel in downtown Grand Rapids with Grand River views. Romantic amenities include an indoor pool, an on-site spa, and numerous restaurants and bars, including the groovy rooftop bar IDC and Spanish restaurant MDRD with sweeping city views. [The Epicurean Traveler Approved: My most recent stay was in January 2019.]
JW Marriott Grand Rapids is a luxury hotel in downtown Grand Rapids with Grand River views. Among the romantic amenities are an indoor pool, a full-service spa, the French restaurant Margaux, and the year-round patio Jdeck at Margaux with wintertime igloo dining.
PrairieSide Suites Bed & Breakfast is a romantic bed & breakfast in nearby Grandville, Michigan, with whirlpools and cozy fireplaces in its suites. Couples staying here will also enjoy the seasonal outdoor pool, breakfast for two delivered to their room, and couples’ massages. [Recommended by friends who honeymooned here in August 2015]
Not quite what you were looking for? Use the map below to search for other lodging in Grand Rapids!
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What is your favorite romantic restaurant in Grand Rapids?
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