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Food

Where Not to Woo: Sorry, Urbanspoon, These Are Not the 10 Most Romantic Restaurants in L.A.

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Photo by RTimages via Shutterstock
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These days, when it comes to dining out, where you're booking a cozy table for two for everyone's favorite made-up Hallmark holiday is the hot topic. While the other day we looked at the 5 Most Romantic Restaurants in L.A. according to national OpenTable users, today we have been handed Urbanspoon's user-generated list of the 10 most popular romantic restaurants in Los Angeles.

First, the list:

1. Osteria Mozza
2. Il Cielo
3. Spago Beverly Hills
4. Susan Feniger's Street
5. Campanile
6. Providence
7. Green Street
8. Crustacean
9. Il Sole
10. Gordon Ramsay at the London

And now...our reaction. Okay, they nailed it in the to-be-expected category with Il Cielo, Spago, and Providence.

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However, some of the picks might have great food, but "romance" isn't necessarily on the menu. Osteria Mozza, while fantastically delicious, serves up pricey pastas in a noisy room where rock music often pumps from the sound system--perfect for couples who perhaps have no desire to talk to each other, or, even better, hear each other. Susan Feniger's Street is a fun, vibrant, and culinarily diverse dinner choice, but is far better suited for tables of friends sharing several small plates in a bold, bright, and boisterous space.

Green Street, a longstanding casual Pasadena cafe, is pretty short on romance. (To be candid, we went there in high school when we were posing as civilized diners.) It's where you take your mom for lunch after shopping, or where your co-workers take you for a company birthday lunch. No swooning here.

We love Urbanspoon, and we even love most of the restaurants on this set of ten, but this list will likely leave would-be woo-ers a little hungry in the romance department. Of course, a romantic dinner is only one part ambiance; it's often the couple who make the mood--two people in love can have a pretty spectacular evening of strip mall pho, street hot dogs, or at an unassuming vegan cafe. But if you're searching for inspiration, take this list with a grain of salt, and keep searching.