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Best Romantic Restaurant Phoenix 2000 - Convivo

For some folks, a romantic restaurant means being insulated from the world, tucked in a tiny space, preferably sitting in the dark.

That's all well and good, but we can get that at home, especially when we don't pay our APS bill. No, for us, romance thrives in a little more open setting, where we can show off the love of our lives, and catch just a smidgen of adrenaline from the universe. It helps us connect, knowing that through the craziest of times, we always have each other.

Convivo is perfect for us, combining coziness with the camaraderie of our fellow guests, to mysterious success. The cafe is basically a little box, set with white cloth tables. But it's been made romantically slinky, with sensuous, curving carpet-to-tile borders, and serpentine coffered ceilings. The soft flowing layout makes us want to glide.

The lighting is dark, in a soft, filtered kind of way. It makes us feel gentle, sultry. There's a quiet hum of people talking all around us, but it's a respectful restraint that's somehow soothing.

And the food -- it swells our hearts with passion for life and each other. Northwest Golden Chanterelle mushrooms in porcini tarragon cream are luxurious. Even a simple chicken breast rises to grace, grilled with balsamic onions and mustard butter, creamy Yukon Gold potato and goat cheese gratin.

Love is a many-splendored thing. For us, it's Convivo.

Readers' Choice: Mary Elaine's

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