If you live in Vancouver and managed to (against all odds) snag yourself a date, we applaud you. Seriously, this city is as dry of dating options as Hugh Grant's sense of humor. All jokes aside though, you're going to want to impress them, and we've got just the spot for it.
Located at 263 East Pender Street, Kissa Tanto is tucked deep in the shadows of Chinatown. Just voted 'Best New Restaurant' for 2016 by Air Canada enRoute, it's been described by the owners as "a secret hideaway that nobody else knows about". As a cozy, intimate space for second-date snuggling, you'll feel as though you've been transported to a 1960s jazz bar, with glossy ceilings and bankers lamps. Oh, and suave 60s jazz bar setting is met with suave 60s jazz music to help set the mood (because, you know, a jazz bar without the music is really just a bar).
But onto the food. As the brainchild of Tannis Ling, Joël Watanabe, and Alain Chow, Kissa Tanto's food blends two unexpected cuisines: Japanese and Italian. The dishes know no boundaries, showcasing the connectedness of two countries by love of mushrooms, noodles, and umami. The proof? Chef Joël's tajarin egg pasta ($25 CAD/$19 USD), with butter-and-Marsala roasted porcini, shiitake mushrooms, and miso-cured egg yolk grating. Sounds like gibberish, but it's damn delicious.
Bonus points if your date is a foodie, because the tiramisu is like none other you've ever tasted — think plum wine, espresso, and fluffy mascarpone, perfect for sharing. And because every good date involves a little alcohol (interpret that how you want), the sake and cocktails can keep things interesting. Dine (and drink) on, friends...