My love language is without a doubt, Quality Time. While fun and creative “Date Nights In” are trending, sometimes I just need to get a babysitter and get out of the house to truly disconnect from the chaos of motherhood.
Getting out of my house creates less distractions and makes it so much easier for me to really relax and enjoy time with my husband. here are numerous other benefits…
No food prep.
No high chairs.
Sounds good, right?
No high chairs.
Sounds good, right?
I might be going out on a limb here, but I guess I’d consider myself an amateur “foodie”.
Both my husband and I absolutely love trying new places for date nights. Here in the East Valley we are fortunate to be close to so many AH-mazing local spots and we love to support local, small businesses.
No matter what type of food or vibe your looking for, there is something nearby…and for that, we should consider ourselves pretty dang lucky. In the town I grew up in, all we had was a Dairy King, so I definitely do.
I’ve done my best to put together a list of my 5 Favorite Local Date Night Spots, and a few extras from other contributors, from all over the East Valley that I’ve tried (and tried again) and promise will not disappoint.
East Valley Moms
1. Hidden House, Chandler
I’ve heard so many rave about his place and was excited when we ended up here on NYE for dinner. The menu has so much to offer, some of my favorites were the Scottish Salmon and Brussels Sprout Salad.
We got there early enough for Happy Hour which included some hand-crafted cocktails and appetizers.
Looking for something to try? We decided on the Tempura Cauliflower and I had Semovente to sip on. It was the perfect starter.
This restaurant would be great for a special occasion and the Chef will be preparing a special Valentines Day Menu.
2. Postino, Gilbert and Tempe:
Near and dear to my heart, Postino, is tried and true and my list would not be complete without it. Great for a Mom-Date, too, is perfect for a night out. The happy hour is incredibly affordable and their bruschetta boards are top-notch.
They have a bright and airy mixed-indoor and outdoor space with a cozy back patio area.
I prefer to head there early evening and enjoy a glass of Holly’s Way Chardonnay and a board of my favorite bruschetta variety:
-Warm Artichoke Spread
-Salami & Pesto
-Burrata, Bacon, Arugula & Tomato
-Brie, Apple & Fig Spread
3. 12 West Brewing Co., Mesa and Gilbert:
This mom loves herself some craft beer. A pint of their Frontside IPA is one of my favorites of the house-brewed beers. I’m also loving the Hazy IPAs and can’t wait try their Paralell Bubbles version.
Make it a date-night in and grab a growler to-go and pair with some of your favorite take-out or stop in for a mini- date and enjoy a quick pint.
I’ve also heard the location in Downtown Mesa is pretty incredible and offers a dog-friendly patio and a full kitchen with an amazing menu. I will definitely be trying their Baja Fish tacos.
4. Caldwell County BBQ, Gilbert:
I literally kick myself for driving past this place so many times and not stopping in because it is now in the regular rotation of restaurants.
The BBQ here is phenomenal. I think I even have our out of town guests hooked; its always requested when we have family in town. Although we’ve done a lot of carry out lately, they have an adorable picnic style patio so you can sit outdoors while enjoying lunch or dinner.
This Texas-style BBQ gives me small town country vibes and its perfect for a casual dinner. Just make sure to get Aunt Susan’s Corn Casserole and the Lemon Poppyseed Coleslaw and pair it with any of their smoked meats. These are must haves! Plan a romantic Valentine’s Date and take it to-go to one of your favorite parks or lookouts.
5. Baci, Queen Creek:
Deep down I must have some Italian heritage because I am a lover of pasta and vino. I found out about this place from a friend and we’ve been many times throughout the past few years. The owner of this italian bistro is always there and seating customers and checking in on everyone.
The first time I went, he literally offered to hold our fussy baby a carry her around the restaurant until she calmed down. Although my husband thought I was crazy for handing our baby off to a complete stranger, I was just happy to enjoy my Chicken Parmigiana is peace, even if only a few bites.
Baci is family owned from with roots in Calabria, Italy, and will satisfy for craving for some Italian comfort food. They don’t typically take reservations, so I try to join the snowbirds for an earlier dinner before it gets too busy…this place is popular so get there early.
There you have it my friends, these are some TOP places for date nights in the East Valley, and here’s a quick list of some of our other contributors favorites:
Amy’s pick: Board & Batten
A hidden gem tucked away in Northeast Mesa, this is a lovely, splurge worthy secret spot nestled in the groves for date night or galentines. Especially wonderful during patio season, they have a seasonal menu that changes every few months.
Kristen’s pick: Peacock Wine Bar
This local wine bar is also a book shop! We like to plan a reading date there; we bring books, order a charcuterie board (and wine!) and spend time together reading while noshing.
Andrea’s pick: Pour Wine & Taproom
Located near Ellsworth and Guadalupe, this local owned bar is a cozy date destination with friendly bartenders. If you can get away on a Monday, they host trivia nights here, too!
Jenna’s pick: Osaka
Our favorite double date spot, this Gilbert teppanyaki restaurant is fun for a larger group! They do recommend reservations–so this is more of a plan ahead type date!
Tiffany‘s pick: Queen Creek Olive Mill
During patio season, their outdoor seating is so romantic, we just love it. Occasionally they offer special events that are great for dates as well, like their sangria socials, or their pizza making classes.
*Planning a date night is not always easy and convenient. If you’re looking for a last minute babysitter, or just haven’t found a good sitter yet, read our blog post on How to Find a Last Minute Babysitter.