Love is in the air and Valentine’s Day is just around the corner. If you’re looking for a special place in Ottawa to bring your Valentine, we’ve got you covered.
From upscale restaurants to more laid-back locations and a variety of cuisines, we’ve put together a list of the 20 best spots in Ottawa for a romantic dinner. Now all that’s left for you to do is call and make a reservation!
Adventurous couples may want to reserve a table at Atelier restaurant for Valentine’s Day. This popular spot offers ‘New Canadian’ cuisine using innovative culinary techniques and technology. Dinner consists of a 12-course tasting menu that changes regularly, and meals average around 3 hours.
Atelier is owned and run by chef Marc Lepine, who has been voted Ottawa Chef of the Year twice by the Canadian Culinary Federation and worked in places like Toronto, France, and Italy. Customers love the creativity of dishes served here, from Mackerel and Blood Orange to Beef and Kimchi.
Address: 540 Rochester St., Ottawa, ON, K1S 4M1
Phone Number: 613-321-3537
Situated in a unique location in the ByWard Market and featuring beautiful stone walls that catch guests’ attention, e18hteen is a great setting for a date night. At this restaurant, Executive Chef David Godsoe shares his love for Canadian cuisine with a twist in a great tasting menu.
Restaurant e18hteen also offers a dinner and desert + cheese menu, along with an award-winning wine list. Satisfied customers have raved about the beef carpaccio and like that the portions are a good size here. If you’re looking to get serious, this location also doubles as a wedding venue!
Address: 18 York St., Ottawa, ON, K1N 5T5
Phone Number: 613-244-1188
Always delicious and inventive, guests can choose from small plates, like Lavender Almonds or Beef Tartare, and larger dishes including Lamb Bolognese or Ricotta Stuffed Meatballs. Another thing people love about this restaurant is that they only use fresh, seasonal ingredients.
Address: 296 Elgin St., Ottawa, ON, K2P 1M3
Phone Number: 613-695-8696
Located in the trendy Sparks Street pedestrian mall in downtown Ottawa, Riviera is a favorite for those who enjoy creative Canadian food. The renovated former bank building makes for a unique setting with plenty of ambiance for a date, and the restaurant’s staff always contribute to a great dining experience.
Riviera’s menu features raw seafood like oysters and caviar, with mains such as Lobster Spaghetti, Glazed Duck Breast, and Dill Pickle Chip Crusted Halibut. This restaurant features an extensive drink list, including cocktails by Stephen Flood with quirky names like ‘Purple Rain’ and ‘Happiness is a Warm Gun’.
Address: 62 Sparks St., Ottawa, ON, K1P 5A5
Phone Number: 613-695-8696
Mati is a restaurant that serves crudo, or raw food, and uses charcoal cooking methods passed down for generations in Greece and Italy to create a memorable dining experience. They are named after the evil eye, a talisman that is used to protect its wearer from negativity.
If you want a date spot with stylish décor and great service, Mati is an outstanding option. Their specialities include steak and seafood, along with creative entrees like Kale Caesar Salad and Grilled Calamari. If a laid-back date with coffee and mimosas is more appealing to you, they serve brunch too.
Address: 428 Preston St., Ottawa, ON, K1S 4N2
Phone Number: 613-680-3860
Considered one of the most romantic restaurants in Ottawa and a leading venue for weddings and events, Courtyard makes an ideal place for a date on Valentine’s Day. Courtyard occupies a heritage building from 1827 and offers its customers an exceptional fine dining experience.
The wine list at Courtyard features a variety of Canadian wines, as well as other wines from around the world. The dinner menu shows great attention to detail and has something for everyone. Some dishes that are popular with customers are the Short Rib, Salmon, and Duck Tortellini.
Address: 21 George St., Ottawa, ON, K1N 8W5
Phone Number: 613-241-1516
7. Das Lokal
Das Lokal is a contemporary bistro located in Ottawa’s trendy Lower Town. The European-inspired menu with German favorites, live piano music, and unique cocktails make this a go-to date spot for many couples who enjoy a cozy atmosphere.
The menu at Das Lokal features great appetisers like Bratwurst and PEI Mussels. The main menu has a variety of options like Flank Steak, Mushrooms Three Ways, and Viennese Pork Schnitzel. Make sure you try one of their signature deserts, like the Authentic Black Forest Cake or Austrian Apfel Strudel.
Address: 190 Dalhousie St., Ottawa, ON, K1N 7C7
Phone Number: 613-695-1688
If you don’t mind heading a little out of the way to Gatineau, Sterling is a prestigious fine dining establishment that specialises in Silver Sterling steak, seafood, and wine. They are located in a quaint heritage building by the Gatineau River, making this restaurant a great setting for a special date.
Sterling uses only the highest quality beef in Canada, which you can even take home in a variety of cuts from their butchery. Their 2020 Valentine’s Day menu includes a choice of Foie Gras or Fresh Cornish Crab and Asparagus Salad to start and options like a rack of lamb or filet minion as main courses.
Address: 835 Rue Jacques-Cartier, Gatineau, QC, J8T 2W3
Phone Number: 819-568-8788
9. Beckta Dining & Wine
Located in a modernised heritage building, Beckta offers two different dinner menus: a delightful à la carte menu, or a “five-course, interactive chef’s tasting menu with optional wine pairing for our most elaborate experience.” Customer favorites include the Parsnip Bisque and Beef Tenderloin.
Address: 150 Elgin St., Ottawa, ON, K2P 1L4
Phone Number: 613-238-7063
10. La Roma
Located in Ottawa’s Little Italy, La Roma gives us a modern twist on contemporary Italian cuisine. Open since 1962, the restaurant features contemporary décor and a menu that changes seasonally. The family that runs the restaurant works with local farmers to source ingredients.
The wine list at La Roma is carefully chosen and imported from different regions in Italy to give a complete, authentic Italian experience. This year’s Valentine’s Day menu features a variety of hand-made pasta dishes like Pappardelle or Gnocchi, Filet Mignon, and Oysters available as add-ons.
Address: 430 Preston St., Ottawa, ON, K1S 4N4
Phone Number: 613-234-8244
11. Aroma Meze
Aroma Meze is a Greek-inspired pub that specialises in small plates paired with wine, tapas style. The plates are to be shared between two people, and it’s recommended that tables order between 6 and 8 small plates. This quaint location is a favorite for people who love Mediterranean food and culture.
Aroma Meze’s recently revamped menu includes options ‘From the Garden’, ‘From the Sea’, and ‘From the Earth’. There are a variety of dips that you can choose from and the dessert menu is aptly named ‘Sweet Conclusions’. Customers love that this place is vegetarian and gluten-free-friendly.
Address: 239 Nepean St., Ottawa, ON, K2P 0B7
Phone Number: 613-232-1377
12. Supply and Demand
Supply and Demand is a food and raw bar with a modern look and an open kitchen overlooking the dining room. This Westboro restaurant is run by accomplished local chef, Stephen Wall, and his wife Jenn along with a talented and dedicated team of professionals.
The menu at Supply and Demand changes frequently, but their specialties are innovative raw seafood dishes and handmade pasta (they even offer pasta classes!). Their ingredients are sustainably sourced from local farmers and suppliers, plus they have a great wine selection.
Address: 1335 Wellington St. W., Ottawa, ON, K1Y 3B7
Phone Number: 613-680-2949
13. Prohibition Public House
Prohibition House is a New York style gastropub offering modern Canadian dishes with a great selection of craft beer, wine, and cocktails. The décor features wood and vintage accents with stone walls and soft lighting that makes for an excellent location for a date night.
Chef Jesse Bell specialises in house made, artisan charcuterie and makes Canadian dishes with a Nordic influence using locally grown, sourced, and produced ingredients. The menu is divided into small plates, sharing plates, and mains. For adventurous couples, there are dishes with wild boar, venison, and elk.
Address: 337 Somerset St. W., Ottawa, ON, K2P 0J8
Phone Number: 613-565-2704
14. Amuse Kitchen & Wine
Amuse Kitchen offers its customers and modern and innovative eclectic dining experience. This casual and cozy restaurant focuses on shareable plates, seafood, and meats along with an excellent drink selection. If you’re looking for an elegant spot for a Valentine’s Day date, this is a great choice.
Don’t be fooled by the location lacking curb appeal, this place comes highly recommended by customers who love the passion put into each meal. The dinner menu at Amuse Kitchen & Wine features snacks, charcuterie, raw food, sharing plates, and mains. From chicken to octopus, Amuse has something for everyone.
Address: 500 Eagleson Rd., Kanata, ON, K2M 1H4
Phone Number: 613-880-8883
Gezellig is a stylish bistro located in Westboro in a former 1950s bank building. The name Gezellig (gah-zell-ig) “is a Dutch adjective for convivial, cosy, or nice atmosphere, but also belonging, general togetherness, or time spent with loved ones”. Their beautiful space is ideal for a date night.
When it comes to the food, Gezellig takes its inspiration from different places around the world. The team at this restaurant does their best to use sustainable, local ingredients directly sourced from farmers and suppliers. Their wine pairings are great, and customers really like the duck and calamari.
Address: 337 Richmond Rd., Ottawa, ON, K2A 0E7
Phone Number: 613-680-9086
16. Fraser Café
Fraser Café, located in New Edinburg, is a seasonal kitchen that uses fresh local ingredients to make world-inspired dishes. The location is casual with stone accents, and a great place for couples who prefer a livelier date night over a quiet dinner.
At Fraser Café you can choose from a long list of starters and a few main courses, with vegetarian options available. Customers have many favorites here including the beef tartare and braised rabbit pasta. They also have a large selection of deserts and specialty coffees.
Address: 7 Springfield Rd., Ottawa, ON, K1M 1C8
Phone Number: 613-749-1444
Social is an upscale restaurant located in the ByWard market that serves creative Canadian and French cuisine with craft cocktails. The space is comfortable and luxurious, with live Jazz music or DJs on certain nights and dinner served after 5pm.
The menu at Social has options for everyone. Starters include things like Roasted Beet Salad and Steak Tartare, or you can grab one of the Sociables plates to share, like Oysters or a Cheese Board. Mains include everything from chicken, steak, and pasta to duck and seafood options.
Address: 537 Sussex Dr., Ottawa, ON, K1N 6Z6
Phone Number: 613-789-7355
Like many local gems, Fairouz is known for using local, farm fresh ingredients whenever possible. They have an extensive beer and wine list, along with a creative selection of cocktails. Customers enjoy the homemade bread and dips here, and the lamb comes highly recommended.
Address: 343 Somerset St. W., Ottawa, ON, K2P 2P1
Phone Number: 613-789-7355
Giovanni’s is a classy restaurant serving seasonal Italian cuisine. This is an excellent spot to bring a loved one on Valentine’s Day due to their romantic atmosphere and well-curated wine list. The restaurant was opened in 1983 by Lisa Cocco Pollastrini who originally came from Pescara, Italy.
If you’re looking for a place with great service and extras like valet parking, you’ve found it. The menu at Giovanni’s is extensive; it includes appetizers, soups, salads, pastas, rice dishes, main courses, and veal dishes – something for every palate.
Address: 362 Preston St., Ottawa, ON, K1S 4M7
Phone Number: 613-234-3156
20. Jackson Café
Located inside the New Ottawa Art Gallery, Jackson Café is a great place if you want to bring your Valentine out for a nice dinner and date all in one. Take in some art and culture before heading over to this beautiful, open-concept café with floor-to-ceiling windows.
Fraser Café specialises in savory small plates, along with a selection of wine and cocktails. A few popular staples at this restaurant are the Jackson Club, olives, and fish.
Address: 10 Daly Ave., Ottawa, ON, K1N 6E2
Phone Number: 613-680-5225