From fine dining to fun outings, there’s no shortage of romantic evenings to be had in the 109. The area’s unique dining and entertainment opinions offer fun plans for any budget.
Whether you’re looking for candles on the table or just a good place to spread your picnic blanket, the 109 is the place to take your date this weekend.
Bonnell’s | 4259 Bryant Irvin Road (5 candles)
For the classic dinner date, Bonnell’s Fine Texas Cuisine is ranked one of Zagat’s Top 3 Restaurants in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex. The menu features Texas dishes such as wild game and gulf seafood with Southwestern, Creole and Mexican influences. The restaurant prides itself on purchasing from local farmers and ranchers across the state. A full list of the restaurant’s game and produce providers is available online.
The chef, Fort Worth’s own Jon Bonnell, studied at the New England Culinary Institute and then moved back home to open Bonnell’s in 2001. He has been featured on NBC’s Today Show and on the Food Network.
Price: $31 to $50
Hours: 11 a.m.–2:30 p.m., 5:30–9 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday; closed Sunday and Monday
Reservations: Call 817-738-5489 or go online.
Bonus: Chef Bonnell shares his recipes through the restaurant’s website upon request, so date No. 2 can be prepared at home.
Café Bella | 3548 South Hills Avenue (3 candles)
It’s the classic hole-in-the-wall Italian restaurant, serving up delicious pasta dishes from a less-than-eye-catching location.
Tucked away in a half-empty shopping center near Bluebonnet Circle, Bella’s is a diamond in the rough. It’s run by an Italian couple who seat, serve and double as cashiers at the exit. Their Italian accents create a romantic atmosphere as they run down the night’s specials.
The menu is an extensive list of home-style Italian dishes, all very reasonably priced. The restaurant seats inside as well as out on the patio on cool summer nights.
Their BYOB helps keep the cost down with a corking fee of just $1.
To impress your date with your wine savvy, drop by Put a Cork In It wine shop at 2972 Park Hill Drive to have a wine expert help you select a bottle to take along. Better yet, drop in for one of their weekly wine tasting before dinner so you can select a bottle together. Tastings are offered Thursday through Saturday from 3 to 9 p.m.
Price for Café Bella: $7 to $12
Reservations (not necessary): 817-922-9500
Dress is casual, but it’s not uncommon to see customers dressed up for their evening plans.
Greenwood’s German and European Restaurant | 3522 Bluebonnet Circle (2 candles)
For a more adventurous date, Chef Peter Gruenewald’s restaurant, Greenwood’s, in Bluebonnet Circle is a cultural experience that’s meant to be shared. The atmosphere is casual, but the authentic German food has critics like Fort Worth Weekly drooling. Gruenewald began his cooking apprenticeship in Offenbach, Germany in 1972, and achieved his "Meisterschaft" or the equivalent of a master’s degree in the craft of cooking.
You and your date will be entertained just trying to pronounce the names on the menu. A translation is provided below, the dish but we suggest the Schweineschnitzel, or pork loin. Between the beer and accents, it’s the next best thing to booking a trip to Neuschwanstein.
Dinner hours: Tuesday-Saturday 4-9 p.m. (additional hours for lunch Thursday and Friday)
Reservations (not required): (817) 921-6777
Forest Park at the corner of McPherson and McCart (3 candles)
For the perfect picnic date, check out the finger of Forest Park that runs along South Forest Drive. The park features several picnic tables along the creek and a stone gazebo with a fire pit. The park closes at 11 p.m. and no alcohol is allowed inside, but the scenery gets our vote for romance.
Hours: 5 a.m. – 11 p.m.
Yo Frozen Yogurt Lounge | 3021 S University Drive (2 candles)
Finish the date at the 109’s late-night yogurt venue. Open until 11 p.m., Yo offers 12 rotating flavors daily, including unique flavors like spiced apple pie and red velvet cake.
Sample cups let you taste as many flavors as you want, and the fruit and candy topping bar offers endless combinations. You and your date can exchange yogurt topping creations or make your own and share bites while dining at the bar seating overlooking University Drive.
Hours: 11 a.m. – 11 p.m.
Price: Less than $5