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Let’s Make a Date!

Six itineraries that take the guesswork out of date night
The LOT La Jolla | Photo by Jay Reilly

By Claire Trageser

1 Culture Date in Balboa Park

6:00 p.m. Dinner and drinks at Panama 66. Eat among the Museum of Art’s sculptures and choose a local beer or try the Cuba Libre, made with Ballast Point rum.

7:45 p.m. Stroll along Balboa Park’s lit plaza and head to The Old Globe for a show. Reserve tickets online in advance. This month features playwright Anna Ziegler’s new play about tennis, The Last Match, and David Ives’s comedy The Metromaniacs.

10:30 p.m. Walk across the Laurel Street bridge to Extraordinary Desserts. If there’s a line, it’ll give you a chance to talk about the show. Share a slice of dulce de leche cake and salted peanut butter chocolate chip ice cream.

2 Waterfront Date in Coronado

4:00 p.m. Ride the Coronado Ferry from the Broadway Pier (leaves every hour on the hour).

4:15 p.m. Rent bikes at Holland’s Bicycles and pedal down F Avenue to the ocean. Watch the sunset from the beach.

7:00 p.m. Dinner at Candelas, an upscale Mexican spot with skyline views. Reserve a table on the patio and order the mole and street tacos.

9:30 p.m. Catch the last ferry.

3 Active Date in Alpine

11:00 a.m. Hike or do a trail run in Laguna Meadows, which offers sweeping views of wildflowers in early spring. Or try Sunset Trail off Sunrise Highway (county Route S1) for a 3.25-mile loop.

1:00 p.m. Start driving back on Interstate 8, but stop in Alpine for lunch at Alpine Beer Company, a rustic hole in the wall that has internationally renowned beers. Sit on the patio and sip the award-winning Alpine Ale or Irish Red with a French dip sandwich.

4 Movie Date in La Jolla

7:00 p.m. Dinner at Finch’s, a tiny bistro and wine bar tucked in an alley. Reserve a table outside and share a plate of balsamic Brussels sprouts.

8:15 p.m. Walk two blocks to The Lot, a new luxury movie theater. Settle into the leather reclining seats (which must be reserved in advance), then order a drink from your seat.

5 Gluten-Free Date in Ocean Beach

5:00 p.m. Window shopping on Newport Avenue, which has antiques and unusual boutiques. (Make sure your partner is into this!) Go on a Wednesday to browse the O.B. Farmers Market, with live performances and craft stalls as well as produce and samples to try. Pick up gluten-free cookies or caramels from the Cuban patisserie Azúcar.

6:00 p.m. Walk down the O.B. Pier for a sunset view, then down Bacon Street to BO-beau Kitchen + Bar, a charming French spot with a separate gluten-free menu. They don’t take reservations, but call an hour ahead and they’ll put you on the waiting list. Grab a drink at The 3rd Corner while you wait.

8:00 p.m. Head back down Bacon Street to get a nightcap of gluten-free beer at Raglan Public House.

6 Casual Date in North Park

5:00 p.m. Drinks at Coin-Op, a lively spot that combines cocktails and video games. Sip on a Bodeo Revolver or Sled Dog while going head to head on old-school video games like Ms. Pac-Man.

7:00 p.m. Cross University Avenue for dinner at Urban Solace, a cozy bistro focused on comfort food. Share the famous warm cheese biscuits and shift down from cocktails to their extensive wine and beer menu. Save room for sweet potato pecan pie.

Let’s Make a Date!

The LOT La Jolla | Photo by Jay Reilly

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