Where should you go in Toronto on a first date?
Good first date spots makes a terribly awkward situation slightly less terribly awkward. They might actually make the experience — dare I say — fun? We all know the dinner date is just an interview with bruschetta (and no one likes to talk childhood memories when they're trying not to spill the tomatoes) so it's about time we lay this painful process to death. Some of my favourite first date spots in Toronto often get you active, get you thinking, and give you topics to discuss, allowing you to let that sparkling personality shine through instead of trying to read the talking points penned under your arm. These places will set you on the right track.
Here is the list of some places I'd recommend for a first date spot in Toronto. Please add your own recommendations to the comments below.
Snakes and Lattes
The perfect first date spot. Snakes and Lattes' liquor license lubricates the initial "Hello," and awkward silences are gone once someone calls out the first roaming stereotype during a hot game of Guess Who. Best of all, you can find out right away if your date is one of those jerks who steals money playing the banker in Monopoly, immediately eliminating the question of whether to pursue a second date. Helpful hint: if your partner remains good-natured all throughout a game of Cards Against Humanity, he or she is a keeper.
Ontario Science Centre
While the Science Centre is nothing new, I believe it to be a sorely underappreciated wonderland for adult nerds. Buttons, bells, tiny rides, sound chambers, and more information on electric charges than you could ever imagine. If the date's going well after the music room and the ball machine, you can head over to the Human Body exhibit to see what the two of you will look like growing old together, granted you make it through the dreaded, "So what are we?" conversation.
Cruda CafÃ© Cooking Class
Chef Claudia Gaviria's hands-on cooking class in the St. Lawrence Market Kitchen offers a more creative take on traditional dinner date. Hosted about once a month, the class provides the opportunity to impress your beloved with your apparent interest in all that is organic, local, and good. Of course, not if your date is a steak-and-potatoes sort of guy. A $50 per person, it's not the cheapest option on this list, but potentially the most delicious.
Toronto Climbing Academy
The Toronto Climbing Academy (or any of the rock climbing gyms in Toronto) provides several great first date moments: the look of shame and associated hilarity when you first slip into your harnesses; the inevitable bonding that results from learning to belay; the supportive shouts of "Put your right foot there!"; and the joy of knowing you both made it out alive. Though if one of you drops the other, it's all over.
My favourite is the Hippo. Yes, those awful, unsightly looking buses that crawl around the downtown core. But a sightseeing tour can actually be a good way for a pair of city natives to (re)discover their hoods, while feeding them geography-related talking points to tackle over coffee once the ride is over. Fabricating an elaborate story about being emigrants on the run will only enhance the experience.
Steam Whistle Tour
Lest one of you be branded a total souse for making the suggestion, a Steam Whistle Tour might bring you two together over stories of hops and railway histories. Think of it like an abbreviated wine tour on a budget, with a few more 20-year-old punks who are just in it for the cheap booze. I'm not really selling this, am I? Ah well; you get a bottle opener.
Like the Science Centre, ping pong is one of those things with an underserved lame rap. Time to reclaim the game. SPiN Toronto allows you to treat your date to an active, competitive evening out, without resorting to the creepy suggestion of playing on your aunt's rec room table. Win.
Live or onscreen--either will do. Might as well get the vices out there from the get-go (drinking, gambling, unnecessary shouting) and go for something a little out of the box. Best if neither of you has ever laid a bet before, so you can bond over clumsily trying to find your way. Set limits, buy a beer, and never bet on the horses with cute names--they never win.
Photo by Chewie2008~ in the blogTO Flickr pool
Join the conversation Load comments