We've all been there. You finally get the sparks of a possible, new relationship, and when the time comes to pick a restaurant, you either can't decide or can't find a place that meets expectations. Here are a couple of places that you go on a first date in Raleigh.

Smashed Waffles

Ella Siev

Smashed Waffles is a restaurant located on Hillsborough Street, just across the street from NCSU Campus. It's perfect for a first date because of the chic, modern design, and the fact that the main thing on their menu is waffles. Smashed Waffles offer both sweet and savory waffles for whatever time of day you go. These waffles aren't too messy, and their coffee is a great compliment to the menu if you decide that this is the brunch spot for you. The set-up also gives this restaurant a friendly feel, making this a low-pressure place for a first date in Raleigh.


Gabriella Agnello

Rise is a local restaurant in Cameron Village, which is only open for brunch (7 am-3 pm). Their creations are sure to fulfill your need for carbs, since their menu is made of things that, well, rise (biscuits and donuts). The donuts give you a sweet aspect, and their biscuits add in a savory element. This restaurant one place for a first date in Raleigh where is acceptable to share with your date, just to make sure you get the full experience. Even if your first date doesn't end up exactly as you pictured it, the food will be something to remember and you'll start your day off with a delicious creation.

Two Roosters

Gabriella Agnello

Two Roosters is a local ice-cream shop that serves delicious ice cream year round. They have rotating flavors constantly, which makes this a first date spot in Raleigh that always has something new. They also have individual ice cream flavors, like Roasted Strawberry and Honey (pictured above) and Rumchata Horchata. The ice cream goes down smooth and has vibrant flavors, hopefully, to accompany the vibrant conversation you are having on your first date.


Gabriella Agnello

PokeBar is a restaurant on Hillsborough Street, right across the street from D.H. Hill Library. If you are looking for something a little more wholesome and are craving something with an Asian touch, this is your first date spot in Raleigh. The staff is so helpful when you make your own Pokebowl, and you get as much stuff as you want, most of which are extremely healthy. Personally, this is one of my favorite restaurants in Raleigh. The setup is modern and it's really easy to take your food out if your date goes extremely well.

Raleigh is full of unique, first date experiences that just take some exploring. If you are struggling, there are some guaranteed spots. Hillsborough Street and Cameron Village are filled with restaurants, each one with their own theme and each one will give you a different feel. First dates provide a great opportunity to explore local eats, especially around Raleigh, where there are so many places to experiment with.

coffee, date
Becky Hughes