Robyn Lane

Robyn Lane

Robyn Lane

(Photo by General Photographic Agency/Getty Images)

I thought putting together a list of the most romantic restaurants in Monmouth County was going to be easy. I was wrong.

During the course of my research, and when I say research, I mean asking people from New Jersey about their favorite romantic restaurants, I quickly found out two things:  Number one, romantic and intimate are not mutually exclusive, and number two, romantic dining seems to be a state of mind between couples.

How so? I’ve had a handful of people suggest local pubs and bars as places they go for a romantic evening without the kids. That’s cool!

 I really did my best to come up with a list of restaurants from the folks who have offered more traditional suggestions. In some cases, where you eat is less important than who you are dining with. Ain’t love grand?

  • La Pastaria - 30 Linden Pl, Red Bank, NJ 07701

    Jenn B. thinks it’s the perfect place! She commented; “Valentine’s Day is my 25th Wedding Anniversary! We have gone to La Pastaria in Red Bank a few times over the years and I think it’s romantic and the food is amazing Never disappointed ❤️” Others who’ve suggested this place said it was romantic, cozy, and the food presentation is beautiful.

  • Scarborough Fair Restaurant - 1414 Meetinghouse Rd, Sea Girt, NJ 08750

    Several people had this on their list and I can’t disagree. I took my husband here for his birthday and it was stellar. I mean everything! The ambiance, the food, and the service. Highly recommended! Enjoy Frank, the resident pianist on Thursday nights, filling the restaurant with beautiful music. Now that’s romantic!


  • Piccola Italia - 837 W Park Ave, Ocean Township, NJ 07712

    Bruce took me  here on our very first date. He was nervous, and I was hungry. This place was also suggested by Cheryl and Natalia. It really is lovely.

    Piccola Italia

    Piccola Italia is an Italian Restaurant located at the Jersey Shore in New Jersey. Fine wines and Classic Italian food.

  • 618 - 618 Park Ave, Freehold Township, NJ 07728

    Alicia let me know there are little lamps on the tables! Nice touch for sure. Her husband made reservations for their anniversary and the restaurant took note at the time of the booking. They received complimentary champagne and dessert. While Alicia was excited about the table lighting, Marybeth was admiring the overhead lighting fixtures. I’m happy to say both ladies thought the food and service were exquisite. 618 made the list of the top 100 most romantic restaurants in 2023.

  • Amelia's By the Sea - 1505 Ocean Ave N, Spring Lake, NJ 07762

    Bareli’s By The Sea is now, Amelia’s By The Sea, located inside the Grand Victorian Hotel across from the Atlantic Ocean in beautiful Spring Lake, New Jersey. A lovely spot with lovely decor, and according to Barbara T. excellent food and service. 

    Fine Dining In Spring Lake | Amelia's By The Sea | Spring Lake

    Amelia's By The Sea, located inside the Grand Victorian Hotel across from the Atlantic Ocean in beautiful Spring Lake, NJ, is the perfect blend of old-school Italian and contemporary continental cuisine. Every dish is specially made to order with only the freshest, locally sourced ingredients.



  • Istanbul Bay Premium - 190 US-9, Englishtown, NJ 07726

    Alev B. says this romantic place opened just a few weeks ago. I just looked at the decor online, and it looks really nice. Good Turkish -Mediterranean fare is romantic as far as I’m concerned . My brother in-law is from Turkey, so I’ve eaten many authentic Turkish meals over the last few decades and I’m looking forward to eating here.

  • The Wine Loft - : 32 Laird St, Long Branch, NJ 07740

    Upscale spot for wine by the glass or bottle served alongside eclectic tapas in a refined setting. I guess you can make a full meal out of tapas I love a good cheeseboard.. Some of the words Gene C.used to describe this place were, cozy, comfortable, and relaxing. 

  • Pascal & Sabine - : 601 Bangs Ave, Asbury Park, NJ 07712

    Fabulous French food with a really cool vibe. Caviar, duck cassoulet, and massively cheesy French onion soup. I have to mention the incredible adult beverages and the delectable desserts.  I’ve been here and so has Gloria C. who gave 2 thumbs up for romance mixed with fabulous food.

  • Salt Creek Grille - 4 Bingham Ave, Rumson, NJ 07760

    Upscale casual is the best way to describe this place with a view of the Navesink River. Billy E proposed to his wife here 15 years ago, and they return for more romance and great food a few times a year. I had brunch here several years ago and I really enjoyed the food and the ambiance.

  • Il Nido - 184 Route 9 North, Marlboro, NJ 07726

    I cannot believe I have never heard of this amazing restaurant until today! Several people have commented on how magical the food is. Organic and sustainably sourced ingredients prepared by a creative and cultured chef. Masterfully crafted cocktails, desserts that send you into another dimension, and service second to none. Romance, ambiance, and authentic Italian food with a contemporary flair.



  • Anjelica's Restaurant - 1070 Ocean Ave N, Sea Bright, NJ 07760

    Gabriel warned me that it’s difficult to get a reservation here. I’m guessing you have to call months in advance to get a table at this cozy BYOB Italian restaurant. It’s described as high end dining with a casual vibe. If you’re looking for romance, and a staff that focuses on great Southern Italian food and attention to detail, this is the place.

  • La Cipollina - 16 W Main St A, Freehold, NJ 07728

    This made several people’s list as a favorite romantic dining spot. Excellent food, great service, and the owners are always on hand to make sure everyone has a pleasant dining experience.  Their motto is: “We Cook it…We Live It…We Love It.” They also offer cooking classes! How romantic is that? Each class is filled with laughs, instruction and hands-on participation, as well as a delicious dinner. Learn from start to finish how to shop, prep, cook and present a sophisticated, eye-appealing 5-course dinner. Raffles and live music add to the festivities.

    Reservations required
    (Events are limited to 35 guests)
    To reserve, call Matt Higgins at 732.308.3830 or
    email [email protected]

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