Everybody knows that Valentine’s Day is all about love, and it remains the single busiest restaurant day of the entire year. Especially in Prague, one of the world’s most romantic cities.
Many couples, especially those with kids, don’t get to go out so often, so this is a good day to pull out the stops and go whole hog on a romantic dinner for two. And sure, cynics will say that the whole thing has been manufactured by the Hallmark greeting card company, which is not actually true (though they do sell nearly 200 million Valentine’s Day cards each year).
When thinking about where to go in Prague, there are obviously lots of options, and each couple will have a different idea of what is “special”. But we all sort of have a certain thing in mind when thinking about where to go on a day that celebrates love – great food (probably higher end stuff), nice atmosphere, not loud, impeccable service, candles, dim lighting, and so on.
These are the kind of places in Prague where a person could propose marriage, or a couple could reaffirm their love for one another. That’s the sort of aesthetic that informs this list to consider for a special night out with your special person. It’s very much “in-the-box” thinking, for the most part. If you’re “outside-the-box” people, then you can certainly come up with someplace appropriate all by yourselves.
It’s almost impossible to come up with an actual ranking of “best”, “second best’ and so on, since individual tastes differ, so we’ve simply put them in alphabetical order. Places where the main feature is the terrace are also excluded since it’s, you know, February and you are not going to want to sit out there. And yeah, a lot of these places are at the higher end of things, price-wise, but come on, live a little. Reservations at all venues will almost certainly be essential.
Bon appetit, bon chance, bon courage (if you need it) and vivre d’amour. Choose wisely, and have a great evening out with your special person.
(Bellevue, recently named best restaurant in the Czech Republic, is not included here because it is already booked out solid. Though you could always try. This one does not count in the list; just an FYI in case you were already thinking of it.)
Norská 14, Vršovice
This is one of those truly special places in Prague. Basically, back in 2018, the well-regarded Bistrøt 104 won itself a Bib Gourmand from Michelin, but apparently shortly after the inspectors’ visit, a lot of the staff left to start their own place, which is Benjamin 14.
Bistrøt is gone now, and Benjamin has a Michelin Plate, so they clearly did something right. It’s tiny – 10 seats around a horseshoe-shaped counter of light wood. It’s really all about the food here.
There are two options. You can come earlier (17:20-19:40) for a five course tasting menu for 1290 Kč, and add a wine pairing for another 530 Kč. Or go the whole hog later (20:05-22:55) for an eight-course menu for 1890 Kč, with wine pairing at 990 Kč or 1790 Kč if you want to include some truly high-class wine.
So, it’s kind of up to you what you do. The current menu has things like cauliflower with cheese and rosemary, celery cooked in chicken jus with egg yolk, veal in a parsnip consommé; duck with chestnuts, marjoram and garlic; and even a donut made from sea buckthorn and tarragon. Very Nordic inspired stuff. Very innovative. And very tasty.
Le Dégustation Bohême Bourgeoise
Haštalská 18, Staré Město
For high-end dining, you really can’t go wrong at this Michelin-starred restaurant run by Chef de Cuisine Oldřich Sahajdák. The food is innovative modern takes on classic Czech dishes, the wine list is out of this world, the service is impeccable and the whole experience is just about perfect. And the interior is an interesting mix of fine dining and cosy.
An 8-course tasting menu is 3450 Kč each, and you can pair that with wine for each course for 2100 Kč, or with juice for 750 Kč. So, yeah, not cheap. But totally worth it. You will talk about this meal for years to come. If your beloved is a foodie, then this is really a special treat.
Ginger & Fred
On top of the iconic Dancing House building
Rasinovo nábrezí 80, Nové Město
This used to be Celeste Restaurant, which got some pretty mixed reviews. That closed and reopened as Fred & Ginger, and it is much, much better.
Okay, first off, the views, right? You can’t really beat eating way above the river with the castle in the distance for atmosphere, can you? But the food has certainly gone up a notch or two as well, focusing on local products and getting the best out of each and every ingredient.
For Valentine’s Day, chef Rudolf Doležal has prepared a special three-course menu for 1395 Kč, with wines for each course at 145-165 Kč a glass. If you drive in for dinner, you can park in the Václavská parking garage for three hours for free (show your restaurant bill).
Štěpánská 14, Nové Město
Chef Christian Chu hit the ground running on Prague fine dining scene with his high concept Vietnamese-Nordic fusion cuisine restaurant. Yes, you read that correctly. It must be pretty good, since he got a Michelin Plate last year.
This basement spot is small – only 22 seats, but the interior is lush, filled with plants and a nature sounds soundtrack. It feels clean and yet intimate.
The food is gorgeous – you are going to want to take plenty of pictures. Everything is super fresh and a huge amount of work goes into each and every dish. There are three menus to choose from. There’s Fauna, which is meat-forward with things like locally-certified Wagyu beef, five spice duck with garlic or foie gras dipped in hot chocolate with taro chips.
There’s Aqua, which is all about fish and seafood prepared using Nordic techniques and Asian spices. And then there’s Flora, which is all about the veg, but with some serious molecular gastronomy to add flourish. Menus are 3000 Kč per person, with wine pairing available for an extra 2400 Kč, or juice pairing for 1200 Kč. So, no, not cheap but it’s a fascinating place and one we hope sticks around.
Týnská ulička 6, Staré Město
It’s certainly getting easier and easier to find vegetarian- and vegan-friendly places in Prague, and while many have pretty decent food, the atmosphere doesn’t exactly scream “date night”. Maitrea is one exception. It’s a pretty high end feeling place, especially for being a vegetarian restaurant.
They are associated with the Lehká hlava folks, so they’ve been doing this style of food for a while. The interior feels a bit like a fancy Buddhist retreat spa, with fountains, a fireplace and some serious feng shui. Yet modern.
Same with the food. Yes, vegetarian but it sure looks like high-end stuff, with great care going in to each plate. There’s a lot of Asian influence, but not just that. There’s a lot to choose from – many dishes are also vegan, and some are even raw food.
They even do a veggie version of traditional Czech Svíčková! And the prices are awfully reasonable – it’d be hard to drop even 700 Kč per person before drinks. They’re currently doing a big shake up of their menu, so who knows what surprises they’ll have ready?
Masarykovo nábřeží, right by Mánes
Dinner on a boat! A classic boat, too – all wood and brass and deep, rich colours. It’s Italian-inspired dining, and very high quality. Great service, great food and yes, those views. A nice surprise and sure, one of the many restaurants on a boat along the river. But this one is really very good.
They have a four-course Valentine’s Day menu for 1500 Kč per person that features choice of burrata with Parma ham and tomatoes or Angus beef slices with cauliflower and truffle salsa, followed by saffron spaghetti with grilled shrimp, then grilled octopus or steak with portobello mushroom and truffle sauce, and then the big finish is an incredible sounding lemon panna cotta with raspberry sauce and mango sorbet.
Novotneho lavka 9, Staré Město
Located right next to the Charles Bridge, the views alone would be worth a mention on a Valentine’s Day list. But the food is superb, the service is friendly yet professional, and the atmosphere is modern yet classic at the same time.
You can get a tasting menu with four courses for 1390 Kč, and add another 790 Kč for wine pairing. Or you can go a la carte, with starters in the 300-500 Kč range; mains 500 Kč and up and desserts for around 250 Kč.
It’s a place that just oozes “special”, and is quite a pleasant surprise, considering that it’s smack dab in the tourist zone.
If duck is your thing, then you really can’t go wrong here. Czechs are already well known for doing duck right, and this place just might be the best in town.
It’s Old World romantic, perhaps a wee bit stuffy and a little twee, but once that food comes, who cares? It is fantastic. And the atmosphere is pretty fun after a couple of glasses of wine. And yeah, they have two locations, but we’re only counting it as one entry.
The flagship location in Malá Strana has a five-course duck tasting menu (1090 Kč, 1690 Kč with wine pairing) as well as a six-course house tasting menu that includes duck but also other goodies, like pheasant (1290 Kč, with wine pairing 2390 Kč).
You can also go off the menu, and they even have a couple of vegetarian dishes. The more atmospheric secret here is to try and reserve seats in the upstairs section. The Old Town one, which gets quite a bit more tourist traffic, has a four-course tasting menu for 1090 Kč.
Mahlerovy sady 1, Žižkov
The restaurant up in the Žižkov Television Tower used to be on the “Gosh, What a Shame” list. For years people would go there, hoping for something special, and instead be treated to mediocre food, outrageous prices and service that ranged from indifference to outright hostility.
Well, no more! Young Moravian Chef Thomas, who worked at Allegro back when that was the first Michelin-starred place in town, and then for Chef Zdeněk Pohlreich at Next Door, has combined his love of classic Czech food with French techniques to create a truly modern European restaurant.
Sommelier Milan Krejčí also chooses the best he can find to complement the food, ranging from Moravia to France and back again.
The food’s super pretty, and expertly prepared. Things like whipped goat cheese with truffle honey on a beef rillette, pepper crusted tuna with marinated cucumber, quail egg, peanuts and caviar; lemon oil poached cod, glazed quail with foie gras, Iberian pig cheeks with curried cauliflower and grilled chicory, and pumpkin cheesecake with passionflower and cinnamon cream are just some of the dishes they are now offering. They have weekly special dishes as well.
Prices aren’t too outrageous, especially once you factor in the view and the high-end ingredients. Apps usually run 315-450 Kč, mains 545-675 Kč and desserts for 135-225 Kč. So, probably about 1300 Kč plus wines per person. They also do some pretty serious cocktails, taking inspiration from around the world. Plus, you’re 66 meters above the ground, with what are probably the best views anywhere in Prague. All in all, a very worthwhile spot to romance and be romanced.
Rybná 13, Staré Město
Chef Jan Kracík’s high-end French restaurant is totally committed to giving customers an incredible experience. The place looks deceptively simple, but once you spend time in it you understand what they’re going for. The interior is made of all locally-sourced materials carefully selected and placed, and features oil paintings by Russian surrealist Victor Safonkin.
It’s small, only 30 seats, so “intimate” might be an appropriate word. The menus are also small, but perhaps “focused” is the right word here, and there are a couple of options. All this work has earned them a Michelin Plate.
You could choose from the menu for starters ranging from 200-400 Kč, mains in the 425-700 Kč range and desserts (for which they are justly famous) for 145-165 Kč (or a cheese plate for 225 Kč).
Or you can choose a menu option – the five-course Menu Pot au Feu for around 1000 Kč, a seasonal two-course menu for small appetites at 630 Kč or go three courses for 830 Kč. Pretty good prices, all things considered.
Petrská 25, Nové Město
British chef Paul Day’s flagship restaurant is often one of the first places that comes to mind when you think “special night out”. The “casual fine dining” Asian fusion dishes are out of this world, the service is precise yet friendly, and the atmosphere is a bit more relaxed and informal than some of the other places on this list.
It has a Bib Gourmand from Michelin, which is pretty high praise indeed. The food is all locally sourced, including the meat (Chef Day is also the man behind the Real Meat Society).
The tasting menu is six courses, and you choose from the various dishes on hand. Some of their more famous dishes include an incredible salmon sashimi with lemon vinaigrette, jasmine tea smoked trout salad, pork belly with watermelon and hoisin, soft shell crab sliders on steamed bao buns with wasabi mayo (!! – the dish here), clams with beef tendon and yuzu, slow-cooked Malaysian lamb rendang, British sticky toffee pudding (!!) and green tea ice cream, chocolate chip cookie ice cream sandwiches.
You can customize your menu to include anything and everything, no red meat, or purely vegetarian. Prices range from 900-1200 Kč per person, depending on what you pick, which is kind of a steal, considering the quality of what you get. Or you can eat ala carte, if you prefer.
Krymská 24, Vršovice
Easily one of the best vegetarian restaurants in Prague, with food so good that meat-eaters will honestly not miss a thing. The focus is on freshness here, as well as flavor and presentation.
The interior is sort of curated-rustic, with lots of nice deep brown wood and exposed brick. It’s more of a bistro vibe than a restaurant and as such very approachable. The back room is especially nice.
The menu constantly changes here, depending on the season and availability of ingredients. But their roasted vegetables dish is one of their classics. It seems deceptively simple – roast a bunch of vegetables, but each one is cooked is its own way, especially to bring out the best flavours and textures from that specific ingredient.
Honestly, it’s a bit of a revelation. Most of their stuff is vegan-friendly as well, so that can help make that choice easier. Whatever they have on offer, it will be great, and the prices are very reasonable.
Betlémské nám. / Liliová 1, Staré Město
One of the first high-end restaurants to open after the Velvet Revolution, chefs Igor Chramec and Ramesh Mamgain collaborate to offer an intriguing blend of modern takes on Czech dishes (mainly Southern Bohemian), Continental food and haute Indian tandoori.
The idea is high-quality, high-skill interpretations of “home” cooking. The interior is by Czech designer Barbora Škorpilová and is a fusion of different ideas and attitudes that all work, somehow, together. Like the menu.
They’ve got three five-course tasting menus – the Zátiší menu for 1490 Kč (wine pairing 790 Kč), the Czech menu for the same prices and the Indian menu for 1390 Kč (wine pairing 790 Kč), as well as a four-course seasonal menu for 1190 kc (wine pairing 690 Kč).
If you’d like a little bit of Europe, a little bit of Bohemia and a little bit of India, you could go ala carte – starters are 245-395 kc, mains are 495-745 Kč and desserts are 245-295 Kč. You can also do wine pairing with ala carte – two courses for 490 kc, three for 590 kc and four for 690 Kč.
Jindřišská věž on Jindřišská ulice, Nové Město
Located in the 7th and 8th floors a Gothic tower that still holds the Bell of St. Maria (which was cast in 1518), this is a place that has had a recent renaissance and is much talked about. The interior is gorgeous – all wooden beams, the kitchen (located above the seating area on the 9th floor) has gone modern, with high-tech devices as well as a modern food approach to classic dishes.
The ambiance is truly something special, and there are some pretty great views as well (including one side that looks out on both the Týn Church and Prague Castle). There’s really nowhere else like it anywhere in Europe. It’s small – only 25 seats. The menu is straight-up old-school Czech (but really old school – like First Republic and before) with a lot of game meat, lamb, things like veal cheeks and so on.
It’s all ala carte here, with a pretty wide range of dishes. Starters run 200-420 Kč, light dishes and salads with meat are 650-695 Kč, mains go up to 900kc and desserts are 335 Kč each. So certainly not cheap. But hey, you’re worth it.
Bonus Extra Veggie Place (surprise!)
Opatovická 17, Nové Město
Though there are more and more veg-friendly places in Prague these days, it can still be something of a challenge in the city that Anthony Bourdain once called “Porkopolis” to avoid animal flesh, so here’s another fantastic vegetarian place that we’d be remiss in not mentioning. Plus, it’s Valentine’s Day, and who doesn’t like an extra little surprise?
It’s another small space, not super fancy, more casual with a feeling more like being in someone’s country home than a restaurant. But the food is spectacular, the wine list is among the best in town and the service is so warm and friendly, you’ll want them to adopt you. It’s a pretty special place, and their love of what they do is infectious.
Things like a pate made from portobello mushrooms and smoked tempeh, eggplant tartare, saffron risotto with pumpkin, a BBQ jackfruit bun and lavender panna cotta are some of the innovative treats they’ve been cooking up since 2012.
Appetizers are 125-150 Kč, mains are between 245 and 295 Kč and desserts go for 105-125 Kč. Everything on that wine list (with offerings from CZ and Spain) is exceptional, and they also do some cocktails and mocktails.