RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — It’s Date Night, y’all. What do you do?
Planning a date can be challenging (whether it’s with a friend or otherwise). How do you get creative? Keep it casual? Get romantic without breaking the bank? In the next few #8OnYourPlate segments, we are highlighting some great spots that cover all the bases.
You could always hit the old dinner-and-a-movie standby. It’s the perfect tried and true combination for a supreme night on the town. But why not mix it up a little? With weather being uncharacteristically hot, why not hit one of Richmond’s gorgeous pocket parks? Fortunately, several great restaurants are close to a couple of those parks — almost planning your date for you. You could even still get to that movie.
We enlisted the help of RVA food and beer writer Robey Martin to find some Date Night options you might not have thought of because, frankly, few Richmonders know food and beer better than she does.
THE DOG AND PIG SHOW
The Dog and Pig Show in Church Hill is quaint and picture perfect for an easy, creative night on the town (or at the park). The living plant wall, short and sexy menu and top-notch food are certain to please. Try the luscious Shrimp and Grits, large enough to share with a hefty hand on the shrimp. Or stay closer to the traditional with their (shareable) grilled cheese. Any way you order is the right way. Then, have them bundle the whole thing up to go (with something sweet from their milk and cookie bar) and walk the fifty yards to the park for an alfresco feast.
STROOPS HEROIC DOGS
Stroops Heroic Dogs (also in Church Hill) is fun and different for a casual night out and won’t strain the pockets. A rotating menu of seasonal bespoke hot dogs like the Oaxacan Dog with orange glazed pork belly, squash butter, pepita, queso fresco, and cilantro or the Pastrami dog, sauerkraut, Stroops special sauce, and Gruyere cheese elevate the “fast food” frankfurter to a whole different level. At $6 bucks each, delicious dinner for two can clock in under $20. During “happy hour” till 6 p.m. on weekdays, your dogs are $1 off, making the whole dinner and a movie thing a really tasty bargain.
Arianna’s Grill in Devil’s Triangle/Museum District has those date night pizza cravings covered. On Monday night, they fire up their brick oven and churn out a Neapolitan pie with gusto. Using all imported Italian ingredients like San Marzano tomatoes and oregano, each pizza takes a little over a minute in the hot oven. To make things easy for daters, Monday night happens to be pizza and pint night. For $8, you and your companion can get a twelve inch Margarita (fresh mozzarella, basil and tomato) pizza and a brew. Sixteen dollars for dinner and a drink? Per favore.