Date nights during a pandemic might look much different than normal, but there are plenty of creative ways to keep the romance alive. From taking a virtual ghost tour together by candlelight to setting up a speakeasy in your living room to indulging in a luxurious weekend brunch, the ideas below will inspire a date night to remember. Whether you’re celebrating a special occasion or angling for an active adventure together, keep reading for all the ways Alexandria’s businesses have you covered.
For the casual couple looking for a laid-back evening:
With a bit of strategic planning, you can transform a casual evening into a toast-worthy occasion. Start with an at-home happy hour as you and your significant other sip through a Port City Brewing Company tasting with their curated variety pack. Or, create your own pub atmosphere with pints-to-go from Murphy’s Grand Irish Pub or Daniel O’Connell’s.
Order creative comfort food, from a mouth-watering barbecue platter via Rockland’s BBQ to Bugsy’s one-of-a-kind, thick-crust pizzas. Take a chance on something new, like bison burgers from Ted’s Montana Grill, or go classic with a rack of ribs from Glory Days Grill. Wrap things up on a sweet note with to-go scoops from Pop’s Old-Fashioned Ice Cream Co., or silky-smooth frozen custard from The Dairy Godmother, preferably in the form of their whimsical, rotating custard cookie sandwiches.
For a romantic evening celebrating a special occasion:
Make it an anniversary or milestone to remember with an elevated at-home experience. Bleu? Bloomy? Let the toughest decisions of the night be which types of cheese to include on a custom board curated by the experts at Cheesetique. Pick up a bottle of red, white or rosé from Alexandria’s signature wine purveyors, including Planet Wine, Sonoma Cellar and Wine Gallery 108. Or, dim the lights and turn your home into a speakeasy with Captain Gregory’s to-go cocktail batches. Then, light a couple candles and share a shrimp linguine from The Wharf, carve into a New York Strip from Oak Steakhouse, order a grill kit from Junction Bakery & Bistro or opt for Italian with Laporta’s or Landini Brothers’ pasta plates to-go.
After dinner, take in a virtual Alexandria exhibit from the Torpedo Factory Art Center, Del Ray Artisans or Kyo Virtual Gallery. As the candles flicker, savor the moment with a luscious slice of Virtue Feed & Grain’s Peanut Butter & Chocolate Icebox Pie, or specialty cupcakes courtesy of Lavender Moon Cupcakery or Alexandria Cupcake, from French vanilla and lavender honey to rosewater and beyond. Looking for a fresh look for the night? Order a chic, minimalist necklace or earrings from She’s Unique, and check out the summery dresses in stock at Mint Condition.
For the creative duo ready to send sparks flying:
Get your artistic energy flowing by crafting yourself a brand-new statement piece with one of Wear Ever Jewelry’s DIY kits. Then, grab your partner and roll up your sleeves to whip up a couple of The Peoples Drug cocktail or spritz kits. Sip your libations as you get creative (or competitive?) together while designing your own home décor with one of AR Workshop’s DIY-To-Go kits.
For dinner, customize your own pies with a pizza-making kit from Mia’s Italian Kitchen or The Italian Place, or build your own lobster rolls with Fish Market’s meal kit. Then, fill your house with the aroma of fresh-baked cookies with Hummingbird’s ready-to-bake cookie jars, doughnut decorating from Elizabeth’s Counter or cupcake-decorating packs from Buzz Bakeshop.
For a slow Saturday morning soiree:
Cue “Sunday Morning” by Maroon 5 as you lounge in one of Bloomers’ silk kimono robes beside your partner, savoring a cup of joe made with your favorite neighborhood coffee beans from Misha’s Coffee or Swing’s Coffee. Later, build your own Bloody Mary’s from The Peoples Drug. Sip alongside takeout fare from one of Alexandria’s beloved brunch staples. Pick up a trio of brunch tacos or huevos rancheros from Chadwicks, a flapjack stack from Table Talk or savory breakfast sandwiches from Junction Bakery & Bistro. Don’t forget a few sweet pastries, like Junction’s cinnamon-spiced monkey bread or buttery croissants.
For an at-home (or physically distant) adventure:
For the active couple, challenge yourselves to a virtual class from Sculp’d—try your first class together free. Or, rent a bike from Pedego or Unlimited Biking for a spaced-out spin around your neighborhood. Try out an athleisure aesthetic courtesy of Pacers Running or Donna Lewis. After you’ve worked up an appetite, enjoy NRG Provision‘s Friday Date Night dinners to-go. The rotating, multi-course menu is chock-full of surprises; past menus have ranged from Israeli cuisine to a Turkish feast. Or, enjoy “Take-and-Bake Fridays” with a ready-made entrée from Tequila & Taco paired with Lost Boy Cider’s refreshing libations.
Have a porch, balcony or backyard? Imagine you’re in Taverna Cretekou’s garden courtyard as you savor their moussaka or lamb shishkebab. Or, pick up a few sushi rolls or poke bowls from The Handover along with a pair of their sake punches, with rotating ingredients ranging from marshmallow chai to lavender bitters. Wrap things up with authentic Argentinian gelato pints to-go from Casa Rosada Aristan Gelato, in adventurous flavors from harozet (infused with wine, apple-cinnamon, walnut flavors) to Samboyan, a classic Argentinian blend of port and Marsala wine.
For an out-of-the-box rendezvous:
To really mix things up, cuddle up as you uncover the secrets hidden in the city’s streets during Alexandria Colonial Tours’ Virtual Ghost Tour. Further immerse yourself in centuries past with a takeout meal from Mount Vernon Inn. Or, opt for the innovative with Meggrolls’ crunchy and creative fried egg rolls. Dare to share a Frito pie from Chop Shop Taco, before diving into their fresh-made tortillas and salsa. Order from Haute Dogs & Fries for or a few dogs with eccentric add-ons or avant-garde grilled cheeses from Arlandria’s Hops N Shine, plus a couple bottles of their beer or moonshine on tap. Aslin Beer Co. also has you covered with quirky cans like Master of Karate and Pew Pew Pew!
For dessert, travel back in time to your childhood with Holy Cow’s “cereal milkshake” series, whose mix-ins have included Cinnamon Toast Crunch and Reese’s Puffs. Or, make it boozy with a couple of Yagút St.’s bubble tea quarantinis. For a look to match the date, try the whimsical offerings at Vintage Mirage or Imagine Artwear.
Tag your at-home date nights using the hashtags #ALXatHome and #visitALX for the chance to appear on our feed: