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LIKE THE COUPLES who frequent them, a romantic restaurant gets that lovin’ feeling from all sorts of different things. Here’s a selection of Ottawa’s culinary offerings that are sure to impress anyone your heart is set on.

The spontaneous afternoon out: Stella Luna Gelato Café (1103 Bank St.)

To explain what makes this restaurant special, take a gander at the tagline on its website: “Gourmet, Artisan Italian Gelato …  made on site, from scratch every single day!” If you don’t think that’s enough to win your beloved’s heart, Stella Luna also offers delicious selection of lunch foods and a complete European coffee bar. It’s the ideal place to unwind together after a busy morning.

The “something a little different”: Absinthe Café (1208 Wellington St. W.)

Absinthe Café is noted for three things: Its excellent ambiance, delicious menu, and, of course, fantastic absinthe cocktails. The combination is a great way to add some unconventionality to a classic dinner date.

The lunch date: Raw Sugar Café (692 Somerset St. W.)

Quaint. There’s really no other word to describe this little café, with its casually mismatched furniture, walls of locally made art, and great music scene. The food is standard but well-made lunch fare, accompanied by a solid beverage selection.

The food-lover’s pick: Oz Kafé (361 Elgin St.)

Sometimes a dinner date is just that—a delectable meal savoured with someone special. The perfect choice for the foodie in your life, Oz Kafé delivers a variety of quirky, mouthwatering food choices without breaking the bank.

The showstopper: Vittoria Trattoria (35 William St.)  

This place is a classic romantic restaurant. With great service, timeless decorations, and quality Italian fare, you and yours can share spaghetti by candlelight, Lady and the Tramp-style, and top it off with a wine out of their excellent selection.

—Julia Riddle