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dates that won't make you cringe

Jemima BoostComment

I'm sorry but there is no avoiding the dreaded V-Day - wherever you turn you'll see special menus, hilarious 'knob' cards and red hearts everywhere. And we're not going to make your life easier because we're jumping on the bandwagon too, news-jacking we like to call it, it sounds more sophisticated. 

But instead of suggesting where you can get your Lady and the Tramp on and slurp up over-priced pasta with your loved one, we thought we'd share some dates that won't make your stomach turn - feel free to go on them any day of the year, not just Valentine's Day. 

 

1. A Great Bar

It might sound obvious. It does sound obvious but nothing beats a great date at a really great bar. It's the age old adage, "if it ain't broke..." People see through concepts and gimmicks, no one wants to reveal how bad they are at Ping Pong or how Paint balling makes them cry on a first date, so steer clear of 'fun' activities and head to the likes to Scarfes Bar at The Rosewood London, Mark's Bar at Hixster, Punch Room at Berners Tavern, Gordon's Gin Bar or Opium China Town. 

Scarfes Bar, Rosewood London

Scarfes Bar, Rosewood London

2. Watch a sport

Pick your sport very carefully. There is a huge difference between wrapping up warm, clasping a hot cider and cheering on a local rugby match and having to defend your date from over-boozed toothless football fans. Rather than heading to a Premiership game on the weekend, opt for something like tennis, rugby, horse racing or cricket. Not golf, you don't want to bore them to death. 

3. Roller Skiing 

This is obviously not advised if you are A. Clumsy B. Terrible at Skiing/Skating and C. If your date is any of the above. But if not, then this is an awesome idea for an unusual date and one that should have you both panting by the end... Essentially the idea is that you scoot around Hyde Park on a miniature pair of skis powered by wheels. Rollerski holds classes on Saturday mornings for £32 per person. Once you've showed off, head somewhere nearby for a casual brunch. Easy.

4. Arcade games

Peckham's The Four Quarters is a blast from the past. Slushies, American-style burgers and retro arcade games. Challenge your date to a Pac-Man tournament or if Sega Rally is more your thing pick your car, your terrain and off you go. Not only will this be a test of how fun your date is but nostalgia is a strong emotion, she/he won't be forgetting this outing soon. 

 

Vagabond Spitalfields

Vagabond Spitalfields

5. Go wine tasting 

Wine tasting is no longer just a past-time of the snotty-nosed-know-it-alls, it has gone mainstream and there are plenty of relaxed, low-key places to try before you buy. Places like Vagabond (Fulham, Clapham, Soho and Spitalfields) offer Oyster card-style vouchers, which you top up and allow you to taste as many wines as you like for a small cost, using enomatic wine dispensers. You just tap and top up your glass as you wish. Both hold sessions on various wine varieties and beginner workshops on how to taste wine, pair it with food and understand the regions. Plus they have delicatessen dishes to accompany the drinking - cheese, charcuterie, breads and olives.