Now we all know how difficult dating can be during COVID-19 and going out for a meal or a coffee might seem impossible with all the social distancing, face masks, lockdowns and hygiene protocols. It might all seem too hard and not worth the effort.
But love conquers all and going out on that first date is still a fun thing to do and still possible even during this horrible COVID!
Following are some COVID friendly Sydney restaurants ( that the team at Blue Label Life absolutely love ) for our busy professionals that you might consider for your first date.
Also read: Dating in the world of COVID-19
This cosy wine bar in Holt Street Surry Hills is a must-visit for that intimate first date. It’s the same owners as the super-popular Porteno ( see below ) so you know it’s going to be good. It’s busy, has a great vibe and will surely impress. It serves tapas-style delish food that complements its extensive wine list.
Visit Wyno – 50 Holt Street Surry Hills – Phone 02 8399 1440
Porteno serves amazing Argentinian food in a very busy hip and fashionable part of Surry Hills ( Holt Street). It’s shared freshly cooked meats that are brought to the table and it’s oh so delish! It’s a great venue for a first date as the ambience is fun, fast and exciting. It has a great selection of wines as well.
Visit Porteno – 50 Holt St, Surry Hills – Phone: (02) 8399 1440
Another Surry Hills favourite, Nomad has a certain sense of sophistication yet it’s fairly laid back with a casual vibe. They have a woodfire oven, charcoal grill and an open kitchen where you can see your food being prepared by the skilled chefs. Have a cocktail before dinner and enjoy each others company in this COVID safe restaurant.
Visit Nomad – 16 Foster St, Surry Hills – Phone +61 2 9280 3395
Dear Sainte Eloise
Tucked in a quiet lane in Potts Point Dear Sainte Eloise has all the hallmarks of a great first date. Great food, friendly staff, not over the top prices and a good selection of wine, beers and cocktails. By the way: The name, Dear Sainte Eloise, is a reference from George Orwell’s memoir, Down and Out in Paris and London. ( just in case you were wondering).
Visit Dear Sainte Eloise – 5/29 Orwell Street, Potts Point – Phone (02) 9326 9745
Make your way over to Enmore and enjoy modern style Turkish food. The great thing about this place is not only the food and wine list ( plus the Turkish beers ) but the way it’s been decked out. The restaurant is located in a hair salon shop and still retains some of its character. It looks like a mix between a traditional bathhouse and charming a Mediterranean bar. For a date, this is a great place to meet in an informal atmosphere and get to know each other. And yes, it is COVID friendly!
Visit Stanbuli – 135 Enmore Road, Enmore – 02 8624 3132
Timbah in Glebe is attached to the Glebe Liquor Bottle Shop and has an intimate and quiet vibe which is perfect for the two of you to get to know each other better. Plus it has Sydney city skyline views. It has a relaxed wine bar feel in the residential area of Glebe. Why not give this little gem a try?
Visit Timbah – u1/375 Glebe Point Rd, Glebe – Phone: (02) 9571 7005
Great pub on Oxford Street in Paddington with an extensive wine list. Have a drink at the to settle the nerves for the first date then tuck into a meal in the restaurant. It’s a very lively pub with music and tends to attract crowds in their 20’s, 30’s and early 40’s. The food is meat and seafood-focused and it’s reasonably priced. There are also a few vegan options.
Visit Paddo Inn – 338 Oxford Street, Paddington – Phone: (02) 9380 5913
Still in Paddington, Ten William is an intimate, cosy & warm wine bar where you can also have a bite to eat. The menu is not extensive but you come here for the ambience and massive wine list.
Visit 10 William St – 10 William St, Paddington – Phone: (02) 9360 3310
If you want to meet in the city centre for your first COVID friendly date head to the popular wine bar and restaurant Monopole. They have an extensive wine list complemented by a menu that will surely please most pallets. You can book online but I do recommend that you read their cancellation policy. The vibe is buzzy with an open plan kitchen which offers an ideal venue for a great date experience.
Visit Monopole – 20 Curtin Place, Sydney – Ph: (02) 8080 9144
The Pacific Club – Bondi Beach
Located on the ground floor of the very popular Pacific Building right opposite the super-famous Bondi Beach is the Pacific Club. Open 7 days serving lunch and dinner this venue has all the hallmarks for a romantic date. With a large wine list and an extensive menu plus a very laid back vibe with a touch of sophistication, you will definitely enjoy a few cocktails and great conversation here. Afterwards, stroll along the beach promenade or perhaps browse the shops nearby.
Visit The Pacific Beach Club – 182 Campbell Parade, Bondi Beach – Phone: (02) 9057 5775
The Manly Greenhouse
Let’s head over the bridge to Manly and take a look at The Manly Greenhouse. It’s in a prominent location in South Steyne and has a decent selection of wines and food opposite the beach in a chilled setting. Great to meet a date there in this COVID safe environment and enjoy a few vinos, cocktails while the sunsets.
Visit The Manly Greenhouse – 36-38 S Steyne, Manly – Phone: (02) 9056 3388
Icebergs in Bondi
What a fabulous location for a romantic night for the two of you. Overlooking Bondi Beach, The Icebergs is a Sydney icon when it comes to high-end dining. Feel the ocean breeze on your face as you tuck into some oysters have a few delish cocktails. Try to get here early for the sunset atmosphere.
Visit The Icebergs – 1 Notts Ave, Bondi Beach – Phone: (02) 9365 9000
The Bathers Pavilion at Balmoral Beach
With a gorgeous view over the secluded and uber picturesque Balmoral Beach, The Bathers Pavilion is one of the most popular meeting places for a bite to eat ( lunch or dinner ) for a COVID safe date. The mood is relaxed, chilled with a touch of sophistication. Afterwards, walk on the beach or if your coming for lunch in the summer have a dip – it’s all about having fun!!
Visit The Bathers Pavilion at Balmoral – 4 The Esplanade, Mosman – Phone: (02) 9969 5050
Bella Brutta in Newtown
Who doesn’t love pizza and wine at a cosy restaurant in the heart of King Street Newtown? Well, you get it all here at this hip and happening new pizza joint. In a convenient location where the two of you can easily meet enjoy the tastiest pizzas from an oven while sipping on some red wine. The perfect first date!!
Visit Bella Brutta – 135 King Street, Newtown – Phone (02) 9922 5941
The Buena Mosman
The Buena has been an iconic landmark for the lower north shore and is the perfect place to meet for a COVID safe date. Have a few casual beers then get stuck into some casual dining. The vibe is relaxed, informal and I say that if you are meeting for a lunch then you could not find better in Mosman.
Visit The Buena – 76A Middle Head Road, Mosman – Phone (02) 8287 2968
This article was written by Robyn a foodie who knows all the great venues to go for a first date in Sydney. She’s the head matchmaker at Blue Label Life and is helping Sydney singles find a partner during COVID-19.