Plan a Successful First Date in Metro Detroit

By: Scott Davis | January 20, 2014

As a man who has been on a lot of first dates (and let’s just say not as many second dates), I feel I am qualified to at least tell you what not to do. I am also here to give you fun date ideas, where to go and maybe even help you put together a classy outfit for the occasion.

You’ve finally built up enough courage to ask out that cute girl with blonde hair from the coffee shop. Or ladies, maybe that guy at the gym finally asked you out. That was actually the easy part. Now the question of where to go, or what day works best for both of you comes into play. This can get difficult. I mean, what if you plan to go to dinner and one of you is a vegetarian while the other prefers strictly meat and potatoes? First dates are always going to be slightly awkward, but it is also a good way to get to know somebody, and afterwards it’s easier to tell if there is any sort of connection.

First Date Restaurants Options in Metro Detroit

Joe Muer, located in Suite 1404 of the Renaissance Center in Detroit, is where you should go if you want to make a great first impression. It was voted “Restaurant of the Year” by Hour Detroit in 2012, and often tops the list of best places to go on a first date in Metro Detroit. Be careful— it is a little bit pricier than your average restaurant, but if you have ever eaten there I don’t think you’ll complain too much. Just make sure both parties like seafood, though Joe Muer does have plenty of other options including vegan.  Check out the menu.

Compari’s on the Park, 350 S. Main, in quaint Downtown Plymouth is a great place to go on a first date. Plymouth kind of exudes a certain “romantic” feel. I am pretty skeptical about romance, but I can even see it shine in this town. Fellas, I don’t think I’ve met a girl who doesn’t love Italian food, and ladies I don’t think I’ve met a guy that doesn’t love to eat. Here’s a secret—the true way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. Afterwards, take a walk through DTP and enjoy all the lights, art and ice sculptures.

The Whitney is located at 4421 Woodward in Midtown and is an icon of Detroit. This mansion-turned-restaurant often appears near the top of the list on where to take dates in Detroit. It is elegant and offers award-winning cuisine, along with an award-winning wine cellar. Guys, a lot of girls seem to love wine. Take them to The Whitney and try to avoid spilling any wine on your date and I think it is fair to say you both will enjoy the night.

Options other than Dining for First Dates

Dave and Buster’s, with locations in both Livonia and Utica, it is fun for all parties involved. I don’t think it is possible to not have a blast here—an arcade for grownups, a bar and food that is actually good. Hone your skills on the game floor and win enough tickets to buy your date a nice shot glass or coffee mug. Nothing quite says “I’m into you” like spending all your hard-earned tickets on your date. A little friendly, flirty competition can be a good way to break the ice.

Entertainment events: Comedy shows, plays, concerts, or movies are all good first date options. Metro Detroit is full of comedy clubs, movie theaters and concert venues. I’m sure there is at least one place the two of you can mutually agree on.

What to Wear

The answer to this really depends on where you are going. If you’re going to a place that has a dress code, then a dress shirt, perhaps a tie (depending on how classy the establishment is), pair of slacks and nice shoes should usually get the job done for us guys. I can’t speak from experience here, but girls wearing a dress, or nice blouse and slacks and I believe you girls call them wedges? You’ll be breaking hearts in no time.

If you’re like the rest of us and go to places where you can wear normal clothes, just follow a few guidelines for your first date. Remember you want to make a good impression, so make sure your shirt is free of wrinkles, your shoes are clean and your hair is brushed. I would avoid shirts with a lot of graphics. I’m no fashionista, but these are good rules to start with.

Do’s and Don’ts

Do (guys):  Hold the door open for her (major brownie points for opening the car door for her as well).

Do (both): Make eye contact while talking to each other.

Do (both): Ask questions. Doesn’t have to be too personal, but get to know each other. How else are you going to know if you two click? Be inquisitive, but not on a creepy level. Find the balance.

Don’t (both): Be on your phone the whole date. Let them know you are engaged and interested by paying attention. Unless you need to send that emergency text to have your friend call you and come up with an excuse to end the date early!

Don’t (both): Talk about exes. Nobody wants to hear that. Seriously, don’t.

Don’t (both): Try too hard. All you have to do is be yourself. Let your sense of humor and your serious side come out when necessary. If the person you’re on the date with isn’t feeling it then it isn’t going to work out anyway.

I have broken some of those “don’ts” before, but I also have been successful in scoring second dates when I followed the “do’s,” and just being myself.

If you didn’t know, when I’m not writing articles I double as a date doctor. If you need to reach me please call 1-800… just kidding, but I hope I was able to give you useful advice for your next first date!