The dating pool of Adelaide is a mysterious place. It’s hard to meet someone totally brand new, because you can discover within about 10 minutes of meeting that you both know John/Jane through some various facet of your lives. If you do meet someone with no previous connection, there’s that scary aspect of figuring out who they are and what their taste may be. It can be incredibly hard to decide the right place for that first meeting. Should it be intimate so you can get to know each other, or crowded so that there’s not too much pressure to get deep & meaningful? Do you choose somewhere expensive to show them you’re a big grown up with lots of money, or go cheap so that neither of you feel bad for not paying? There are many different ‘types’ of first dates, so I’ve tried to narrow it down to a few kinds and match them up with the ideal venue. Whether you met them on Tinder or at the gym, a first date is always in order.
You want to talk politics: Botanic Bar
An intimate setting where the aim of the game is to have a substantial conversation, not to get rekt. A variety of cool calm and collected people can be found in the East End, and often they enjoy congregating in accepting surroundings. Botanic Bar has a good mid-range price point as well, so no one has to end up too far out of pocket. It’s also a bit dark, which is good, because sometimes first dates can be incredibly different when the lights are turned up bright.
You want to do everything but… : The Collins Bar
Cocktails or a nice bottle of red in this intimate setting says sensuality, which doesn’t necessarily say let’s go home right now. The thought of having hotel rooms just metres above your heads may give you both the subtle idea that that’s your end game, but not too outrageously obvious. People watch together sitting in the main bar area, or retire to the comfortable surroundings of the lounge room and play the ‘how close should we sit next to eachother’ game.
You met them on Tinder and you’re unsure whether it’s going to turn out: The Austral
This is a tricky one. Meeting someone on Tinder, depending on how long you’ve been talking, doesn’t give you an amazing idea of who someone is. I think The Austral is a happy medium in terms of prices and general surroundings. It’s not a club where you have to yell in someone’s ear, but it’s also not so small and quiet you can hear the bartenders’ conversation. Start here, and if it’s a goer you can easily move on to a more intimate setting in bars nearby. If they’ve Catfished you, hope they quickly get sick of how loud/rowdy the Austral is and want to head home early.
You want to appear really sophisticated with your taste in alcohol: Clever Little Tailor
Not only is this venue an appropriately intimate setting for a date, but it’s got an outstanding selection of beverages for all you alcohol aficionados out there. Make it into sort of a ‘tasting’ date, with each new beverage bringing a new topic of conversation. There’s also little chance of seeing someone you know and having that awkward interruption.
You want to know that someone else you know will be there to join if it goes bad: Pirie & Co. Social Club
Picture this, you meet up for your date and all is well for the first hour or so, but then a deal breaker is revealed or it turns out your ex used to be their good friend, so you don’t necessarily want to run but shit is getting awkward. Enter friend. Invite them to join in and you have an instant buffer for the conversation, and afterwards tell your date that you felt rude not inviting them to join. How nice are you?!
You want to show them you’ve got dolla billz to spend: 2KW
Yes yes, the view’s great, but it comes at a price. The newest roof-top venue in Adelaide is a gorgeous setting, but it’s not the cheapest. I’d say this is a celebration kind of venue, but it’s also a great place to go when you feel like treating yo self. Taking someone here for a couple of share plates and drinks will show them you have no qualms dishing out a couple of hungies – I guarantee they’ll be impressed.
You want to see if they can dance: Rocket
I’m pretty sure the ‘good on the dancefloor means they’re good in bed’ concept is a totally made up thing fed to us in American rom-coms, but nevertheless, it’s worth trying. Rather than getting too serious with an intimate wine-bar, why not relive your glory days and hit up one of the cooler clubs on Hindley Street and see just how fun they are. Down a Jaeger-bomb and a couple of vodkas together as the conversation gets progressively silly, then hit the dance floor and see how well you move together. It’s a pretty intense way to first spend time together, but life moves pretty fast right?
cover photo via Darling Magazine