The Local Dish: Best Restaurants in the Western Finger Lakes for Date Night


I have a confession to make. I actually struggled longer with the title of this post than I did actually writing it!

Initially, I was thinking about going with “Best Restaurants in the Finger Lakes for Date Night”, but after I made my list it was obvious, we typically dine out close to home. So I thought about  “Best Restaurants in Ontario County for Date Night”,  but a couple of our favorite spots were just in Monroe County.

So I settled on a region in the Finger Lakes, the “Western region”.

Yes, I know. I have never heard of the Finger Lakes Region as defined by anything other than the Lake regions either. But that clearly wasn’t going to work for me either, as one of my spots is on Canandaigua Lake and the other Seneca. Can you see my predicament?

So, Let’s pretend I didn’t just make up new geographical boundaries in the Finger Lakes 😉

Now that we’ve got all that out-of-the-way let’s get down to the important stuff, date night! I love a good date night and now that we have teens that doesn’t happen all that much, so we like to stick to our tried and true spots.

All these restaurants are fabulous places to eat, most have sentimental value for my husband and I,  and there is a pretty much a restaurant for every budget.

Price Range key:
$: Inexpensive (ie: I don’t want to cook)
$$: Moderately expensive
$$$: Expensive
$$$$: Very expensive (otherwise known as Birthday or Anniversary Date)

The Local Dish: Best Restaurants in the Western Finger Lakes for Date Night

Exterior View of Belhurst Castle, Geneva NY

Belhurst Castle
Belhurst Castle, built in 1885, has been voted one of the most romantic places in New York State. But that is only partly why this place made the top of my list, when my husband and I were both working for a local company they had a company Christmas Party at the Castle, this was when my husband and I, who then worked in different departments got to know each other, the rest, as they say, is history! Gourmet food, a charming setting, unique architecture, and stunning lake views make this my top pick for date night.

* Address: 4069 West Lake Road (Route 14S), Geneva
* Phone: 315-781-0201
* Price: $$$$

This photo of Richardson’s Canal House is courtesy of TripAdvisor

Richardson’s Canal House

Richardson’s Canal House is a high-end restaurant with all that you would expect when you are looking to splurge on date night. Great service, white tablecloths, gourmet seasonal food, in a unique setting. Originally a tavern built in 1818 along the shores of the Erie Canal in Pittsford, this quaint historic building served as an Inn and maintains much of the original layout, and the seating is scattered among the various rooms of the Inn, making for a cozy and intimate dining experience. While the building is old, it is nicely maintained and well taken care of.

* Address: 1474 Marsh Rd, Pittsford, NY
* Phone: 315-781-0201
* Price: $$$$

Interior View of seating at Casa de Pasta.

Casa de Pasta
Am I the only one who thinks Italian food is just generally romantic?  If the amazing food isn’t enough to convince you to give Casa de Pasta a try on your next date night, maybe the warm, cozy Italian trattoria ambiance will. This is a restaurant on the smaller side, making for a more intimate dining experience. During the summer months, after dinner, a quick drive down the road to stroll the Canandaigua city pier is the perfect way to wrap up date night, and prevent a food coma (the portions sizes are large at Casa de Pasta).

* Address: 125 Bemis St., Canandaigua
* Phone: 585-394-3710
* Price: $$

Saks Thai Cusine Photo Courtesy Yelp

Saks Thai Cuisine

So, I have heard awesome things about the new Thai restaurant in Canandaigua, but we know and love Saks, so haven’t been tempted to stray. Don’t let the exterior of Saks Thai cuisine fool you. Yes, it is in a strip mall that also houses an oil change shop, but I swear, once you go through the doors you will forget you are actually in a plaza. Udon noodles are a perennial favorite for my family, but my husband prefers stuff a little spicy and opts for the Pad Thai, which has a substantial kick to it.

* Address: 7374 Pittsford Palmyra Rd, Fairport, NY 14450
* Phone: (585) 421-9010
* Price: $$

Warfield’s Restaurant & Bakery Photo Courtesy Facebook

Warfield’s Restaurant & Bakery

I have gushed on and on about my love of the charming little village of Clifton Springs, and I can not imagine a more fitting restaurant than Warfield’s for this adorable town. You can find Warfield’s right off Main Street, in a stately brick building,  complete with covered sidewalks, and a sign reading “Warfield Block 1871”, the atmosphere is very welcoming and cozy.  The Prime Rib is outstanding, but there is also an onsight bakery that is worth the trip by its self.  The amazing food and great service make this restaurant a popular dining spot, reservations are recommended.

* Address: 7 W Main St, Clifton Springs, NY 14432
* Phone:  (315) 462-7184
* Price: $$

There are so many more wonderful places to dine in the Finger Lakes area, but the above are our favorites. Which restaurants would you add to the list?


This post was written as part of the Social Fabric Local Restaurants Blog Hop. Look for another post coming later this month with a compilation of top restaurant picks from cities located all across the country.


Our favorite tried and true dining spots in the Canandaigua and surrounding areas for date night.


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