This photo is a bit of a throwback! Shortly after moving to Lafayette in 2015, we scheduled a photo session with Pearl Photo & Design to celebrate moving to our new city!
Looking for a date night spot in Lafayette, Indiana? If so, I’m excited to share a few places Zach and I love to spend Thursday and Friday evenings! (Since I’m often photographing weddings on Saturdays, we tend to schedule date night for Thursdays and Fridays.)
One of the things I appreciate most about Lafayette is that it’s made up of countless small businesses. As a result, people take pride in their work and don’t hesitate to go the extra mile. And, this is certainly true for all of the restaurants listed below.
Between their incredible food, drinks, and customer service, here are five small business restaurants that I want to encourage you and your significant other to check out on your next date night!
When it comes to choosing a date night location, there’s a 90% chance Zach and I are going to choose The Cellar Wine Bistro. Between the staff’s excellent wine recommendations and a rotating cheesecake option, The Cellar Wine Bistro has everything I want in a date night!
While we regularly order dinner from their tapas menu, which changes with the seasons, a typical date night for us includes sitting at The Cellar Wine Bistro’s bar, ordering dessert or a cheeseboard, and sharing a bottle of wine.
And, being Wine Club Members allows us to easily budget for this! When you become a Wine Club Member, you pay approximately $60 a month for two bottles of wine selected by The Cellar Wine Bistro’s staff. You can pick these bottles up and drink them at home, or you can enjoy your bottles in the restaurant (which is what we tend to do). So, essentially as Wine Club Members, we’re prepaying for two date nights each month!
As a Wine Club Member, you also receive discounts on bottles that have been featured in Wine Club previously. So, after Zach and I have had our Wine Club bottles for the month, we typically look at the Wine Club menu (1) to take advantage of the discount and (2) because we know that the staff is very selective about which bottles they put in Wine Club, meaning every bottle is wonderful.
Whether you’re looking for a meal of delicious tapas or incredible wine and dessert, Zach and I highly recommend The Cellar Wine Bistro!
East End has done an incredible job of towing the line between casual and fine dining, making it a great place to spend an easy-going evening with your significant other or an ideal location for a double date.
East End sources fresh ingredients locally, and many items on their menu are comfort food with a little flare. You’ll find more of our recommendations below, but I can’t help sharing that this is one of a few restaurants in Indiana where you can get great grits (I was born in Alabama.), and I regularly dream about East End’s flourless chocolate cake.
If you’re looking for a not-so-casual, not-so-fancy date night spot with great food and cocktails, East End is the place!
On a date night in the summer, you’ll likely find Zach, Hattie, and I at Teays River because their beer is great and their patio is dog friendly!
Teays’ menu is full of delicious smoked meats, handcrafted beers, and—surprisingly—excellent pizza.
In the summer, Zach and I love to sit on the patio with Hattie drinking seasonal beers and either having a meal (often splitting a sampler platter and having plenty of leftovers) or splitting an app or dessert. The Cookie Skillet (a cookie baked in a skillet and covered in ice cream) is pretty great.
Plus, when we pull into the parking lot, Hattie’s tail wags so hard, because she knows she’s about to get treats. Using the remaining grains from making beer, peanut butter, and a few other ingredients that dogs love, Teays makes their dog treats in house, and the wait staff keep the treats coming for our puppy girl. Needless to say, Hattie is a BIG fan!
Whether you’re after great local beer or smoked food or if you simply want to include your dog on date night, check out Teays River Brewing & Public House!
Now, if we’re in the mood for original cocktails, The Black Sparrow is where we’re going.
Black Sparrow’s eclectic menu features fish and chips, Asian-inspired dishes, and even great pizza, and it’s all wonderful. But, like I said, the cocktail menu is what keeps Zach and I going back.
The cocktail menu rotates seasonally (possibly more) and features truly original combinations with often very pretty comical names.
Again, the food is great, but if you’re looking for great cocktails in Lafayette, Indiana, you’re going to want to spend your date night at The Black Sparrow!
Also, if you get a chance, you won’t regret going to Black Sparrow’s Sunday Brunch! It only happens once a month, and it’s hard to get in, but it’s worth the wait!
When we really want to eat or for a special occasion, we’ll often cross the river and go into West Lafayette for dinner at The Bryant Food & Drink Co.
Now, a lot of people will tell you that you should go to The Bryant specifically for their gorgeous milkshakes or great steak. But, as funny as this sounds, Zach and I agree that we would be just fine to eat nothing but The Bryant’s Mascarpone Mashed Potatoes. Everything on the menu is great, but the potatoes have my heart.
If you’re looking for an upscale dinner date option with great steak, whiskey, cocktails, and Instagram-worthy milkshakes, The Bryant is an excellent date night choice!
Now, Lafayette, Indiana has all of your typical date night chain spots (e.g. Olive Garden, Longhorn, etc.). But, I love that our city has so many small, original restaurants that take pride in what they do, including the five restaurants mentioned above.
So, the next time you and your spouse/fiancé/boyfriend/girlfriend/significant other want a night out, I want to encourage you to (1) support a local business and (2) check out one of our favorite date night spots in Lafayette, Indiana! Because, I think you’ll love these places too.