With a million holiday parties and cuffing season upon us, it’s definitely time for another installment of our Philly First Date Hacks series! As Tribe 12’s in-house matchmaker, it slightly kills me to share my trade-secret best first date ideas. My guidelines: somewhat unconventional, not too pricey, and a low time commitment.
Dessert at Max Brenner, 8pm
1500 Walnut Street (Center City)
It’s the classic first date conundrum — dinner feels like too much of a commitment, drinks too little. Let me tell you, oh wise ones, of the lost art of the dessert date. With an 8pm dessert date on a work day, you get a few hours of decompression after work with a guaranteed stop time of around 10pm. And, the same “so what should we order?” banter and leisurely enjoying of food-related items without the painful pregnant pauses of a date that already felt too long after the appetizers were served. How is this not more of a thing? Max Brenner also holds the distinction of being a restaurant you can frequent on pedestrian hubs both in Israel and stateside — Jerusalem’s Ben Yehuda Street and Philly’s Walnut Street.
Waterfront happy hour at Chart House
555 S. Christopher Columbus Boulevard (Penn’s Landing)
You know that episode of Friends where Joey’s dad says “I could make a meal just out of the appetizers”? That’s Chart House’s happy hour menu. It’s cheap, delicious and hearty enough to count as dinner. You get the benefit of a posh location with a waterfront view without breaking the bank, and you can go any weekday from 4:30pm to 7pm.
This date is a three-for-one: pizza for dinner, a museum for an activity, and ice cream for dessert — with the unique benefit of all of those things being inside the same four walls. Pizza Brain houses the world’s first pizza museum, and no joke — they have the GUINNESS WORLD RECORD for the largest collection of pizza memorabilia. Enjoy a pie, then wander through the “museum” which brings you right into the hilariously named Little Baby’s World Headquarters (it’s one of… two locations) for an ice cream dessert. What a great winter date — all the changes of scenery without having to put your coat on! The bonus of this date is it could go for 20 minutes or three hours, just depending on how good a time you’re having.
Happy dating, and get excited — next time I’m sharing my last and inarguably best first date idea!
Our in-house matchmaker is a nerd about love. As the only “non-profit matchmaker” in the country, Danielle blends traditional Jewish matchmaking with modern sensibilities. To meet up with her for coffee, email firstname.lastname@example.org.