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The Best Romantic Restaurants in Columbia, Maryland

Restaurant table at sunsetNothing begins a romantic evening quite like an intimate meal together. Of course, the overall atmosphere of the establishment and the quality of the food are just as important. During your stay with us at The Wayside Inn, a visit to one of the romantic restaurants in Columbia, Maryland may be in order. To help you decide which one is best for a lovely evening, here are just a few of our personal favorites.

For even more dining options like the romantic restaurants in Columbia, Maryland, be sure to claim your free copy of our Howard County, Maryland Vacation Guide.

Iron Bridge Wine Company

Located on a scenic country road, the Iron Bridge Wine Company was designed as a wine country retreat that offers patrons great food, great wine and great service in an environment that’s comfortable enough they will feel at home. The cozy atmosphere includes dark wood, exposed beams, and dark colored walls, perfect for a candlelit meal.

The food is described as modern American with international influences. Local produce, meats, and seafood are center stage at the restaurant that employs a farm-to-table concept. Every ingredient is prepared fresh daily and the menu changes depending on what ingredients are available.

The wine menu is varied, as well. Iron Bridge focuses on quality, rather than quantity. While it has a smaller inventory of wines (about 300), the wines they carry are mostly small vineyard, small production wines that are hard to find and highly recommended. Iron Bridge Wine Company has been a Top 50 Restaurant in Baltimore Magazine eight times. It’s also been featured in USA Today and The Wine Enthusiast.

The King’s Contrivance

Upon arriving at The King’s Contrivance, you may think the exterior and setting has the look of an old mansion – and you would be correct. The restaurant is located on a former 370-acre farm granted by The Lord Baltimore to Rev. James Macgill. The original Federal Period mansion built on the property burned and was replaced by the current structure in the 1890s. The home stayed in the Macgill family until the 1960s, when it was transformed into a fine dining restaurant.

The menu at King’s Contrivance reflects New American cuisine with European and Asian influences. Their dinner menu includes Jumbo Lump Crab Cakes, Pepita-crusted Norwegian Salmon, Roasted Duck Breast and Filet Mignon Forestiere. The restaurant features a fine wine list, as well and has won Wine Spectator’s Best Award of Excellence for the last 10 years. A favorite spot for weddings and special occasions, The King’s Contrivance has been voted Howard County’s finest dining for more than 20 consecutive years.

Stanford Grill

Whether you’re looking to celebrate a special occasion, or are planning a romantic evening “just because,” the ambiance at the Stanford Grill should fit the bill. Stanford Grills’ atmosphere includes a warm, cozy dining room with wood paneling, earthy tones, soft lighting and a large fireplace. There is outdoor seating, too, which is kept warm on chilly evenings by fire pits.

The restaurant’s expansive menu includes their specialty Wood-fired Rotisserie Chicken, Eastern Shore Crab Cakes and a Fresh Vegetable Platter, to name just a few. Sides include Lobster Mac & Cheese and Seasonal Vegetables. Standford Grill’s wine selection is also extensive.

Seasons 52

Seasons 52 offers a casual yet sophisticated setting and a menu that plays on the chef’s rustic cooking techniques, such as oak fire grilling and brick oven roasting to bring out flavors in an array of dishes. The menu focuses on seasonally inspired cooking with each menu item totaling 475 calories or less.

The wine list has been hand-selected by the restaurant’s Master Sommelier, one of fewer than 250 Master Sommeliers in the world. In addition to time-tested fine wines, the wine list also includes several selections that you can try “before they’re famous.”

Wayside Inn

The Wayside Inn in Ellicott City is the perfect place to serve as your home base while you’re in the area. Our bed and breakfast offers six inviting rooms, and a stay includes a freshly-made breakfast every morning. Ellicott City is adjacent to Columbia, making The Wayside Inn a very short drive from some of the most romantic restaurants in Columbia, Maryland.