It is a universally acknowledged truth that first dates can get awkward. Things get even more dicey when you factor in that college budget and the fact that not every 19-year-old wants to take his lab partner to a five-star steakhouse on a first date. But have no fear. I've made a list of five diverse, low-commitment eateries in Dallas, TX that will not only impress your latest Tinder match, but also your wallet.
1. Shake Shack
Located in the heart of Uptown, this burger joint has just the right ambiance. What better way to enjoy a cheeseburger and some crinkle-cut fries than under a canopy of twinkle lights? Be sure to save room for dessert, as Shake Shack not only features milkshakes, but also frozen custard that you can add mix-ins to.
#SpoonTip: Not sure about the cheese fries? Ask for cheese sauce on the side.
2. Eatzi's Market & Bakery
Perfect for a quick lunch, Eatzi's really does have something for everyone. Whether you're in the mood for some freshly-made sushi, a sandwich, or some comfort food, this quaint Italian market satisfies every craving. Enjoy your salad and your date outside on the patio, while opera music softly plays in the background. The free cookie, bread, and cheese samples are also 10/10 (never pay for dessert — just go for the cookie samples). This lunch destination is also on Lover's Lane, just a quick drive from SMU's campus.
Olivella's is an authentic pizzeria on McFarlin, just a quick walk from SMU's campus. The low-key atmosphere and convenience of Olivella's is optimal for a first date. Don't like pizza? The menu features a number of sandwiches, salads, and pastas to choose from. Stop by on Monday's after 5 pm for half-priced bottles of wine, or come during their happy hour for 2-for-1 pizzas.
4. Velvet Taco
Add a little Tex-Mex flavor to your first date by opting for some Velvet Taco. Open until 2 am (or even 5 am on Fridays and Saturdays), Velvet Taco serves up tacos ranging from buffalo chicken to shrimp and grits. Do NOT leave this place without trying either the red curry coconut queso or the tots topped with cheese and fried egg deliciousness.
5. Cow Tipping Creamery
Not sure if your date deserves an entire meal in your presence? An ice cream outing is the perfect mix of interest and low-commitment. Cow Tipping Creamery is known for their "Stackers," consisting of soft-serve frozen yogurt layered with a variety of sweet toppings and sauces. You can even build your own Stacker if the options like "It's Your Birthday" and "Gimmie S'More" don't do it for you. Look at it this way: if the date goes poorly, at least you've got an Insta-worthy shot of your ice cream treat.
I know it may come as a shock to some, but dating does in fact entail more than what Tinder can give you. I hope that you use these suggestions to get out there and make the most of your first date. Or you could be like me and just go to all these places on friend dates with your besties #relationshipgoals.