London Lite Tuesday, 10 November 2009 21 buddingromance? POSH DATE Posh nosh: Japanese restaurant Aqua SUSHI and rooftop bars are two of my very favourite things, so I was over the moon when my date ushered me into the swish lobby of Aqua (240 Regent Street, W1, 020 7478 0540, aqua.com) and up to the fifth floor. I knew I was in for a real treat. Aqua is the glamorous new London outpost of the Hong Kong and Beijing restaurant group. It is on top of the former Dickins & Jones department store and has two sides -- Aqua Nuevo, which serves Spanish food, and Aqua Kyoto, the Japanese side. After a mood-setting sake cocktail in the cool, dark Kyoto Spirit bar, we sat down to work our way through the mouth-watering menu, taking in the tataki sushi platter (32) -- a meal in itself, not that it stopped us eating more! -- plus prawn tian (8.50), halibut (10.50) seaweed in delicious sesame sauce (5) and the most incredible beef in Japanese mustard sauce (19). I protested that dessert was entirely unnecessary, but was talked round, and thank goodness, or I would have missed out on the green tea tiramisu (5). Between shovelling the delicious, seemingly never-ending morsels into our mouths, we nipped out on to one of the three rooftop terraces to smoke and gaze across the London skyline. This was the most romantic and stylish dinner Ive been treated to for a long while. I hope he takes me back again soon. ELLEN, STOKE NEWINGTON Minas profile that made me keen to date her -- she just sounded interesting, intellectual and was good-looking. I think you have to have someone who can hold their own in conversation. Over dinner at Devonshire Terrace we talked about lots of different stuff, from her family background to reality TV. We had amazing steaks for main and shared a pudding and a bottle of wine, it was a wicked venue. Mina is half Iranian and she was telling me lots about that country as she goes back to visit family about once a year. It sounds a great place to go on holiday and not somewhere I would necessarily have considered if I hadnt met her. I love going abroad and so does Mina, so we had some things in common. I worried before the date that Id end up with a teetotaller, as sometimes drinks can make conversation easier. It was a relief that Mina likes a tipple, but I neednt have worried as conversation was never awkward between us. We found each others company very easy and perhaps that is what threw me a little when trying to decide what I felt for her. I could definitely hang out with her on a night out and I know wed have a good laugh, but there was no point in the night at which I knew I definitely wanted to see her again in a romantic way. We swapped numbers, but kept it casual when we said goodbye. Its been a few days with no contact so I think its fair to say that we both had a great night, but well leave it at that. Lucy The Florist at The Luxe, 109 Commercial Street, E1, lucytheflorist@theluxe.co.uk for info on Christmas wreath-making class on 12 December, 65 per person. Devonshire Terrace, 9 Devonshire Square, EC2M 4WY, devonshireterrace.co.uk INTERVIEW BY SHARON BRENNAN Ivedecidedto commitwith goodGrace... Twosingletonsshare theirsearchforlovePlaying thefield A CURIOUS thing has happened... all my best girlfriends suddenly have boyfriends. Ive gone from being one of a group of mainly single girls to being surrounded by couples. Dont get me wrong, I love couple friends, even when I am single -- there is something comforting about hanging out with a couple, it reminds you relationships can be great. Plus theyre a captive audience and live vicariously through your tales of single life. But to go from having tons of single girlfriends to almost none has set me off-kilter. There are times where you expect them to be available -- impromptu Thursday nights, Sunday DVD afternoons. Next weekend Im off to Rome, the perfect mini-break for two single girls... instead Im going with my dad, which Im very happy with (he is my favourite man after all). But I have to admit to a moment of weakness. Prompted by the current situation, I agreed to go on a date with a guy I dont fancy. You know one of those boys who always drops hints about you getting together and you smile and nod and wriggle out of his grasp. But in a moment of madness I thought I was being too harsh and should give it a go. Within the first few minutes, I knew my instincts had been right -- 20 minutes in and he was talking about pensions. My eyes wandered and I spotted my friend and his girlfriend at another table. I thought quickly. I just realised how late it is, I said, flashing him an apologetic smile and ushering him outside. Once he was round the corner, I nipped back into the bar and over to my couple friends. Hello! they grinned in unison. Any stories for us? Of course! Hanging with couples: definitely more entertaining than a bad date. A FTER finally getting around to our first date, things have been going eerily well with Grace. Usually with girls that I think about constantly I manage to mess things up, but so far Ive kept my childish tendencies at bay (except for stupidly snapping at her for teasing me about Spurs losing) and Ive not done my usual thing of trying to act cool by feigning lack of interest. Ive also not found myself getting itchy feet. The last two years have been filled with brief hook-ups torpedoed by a sudden, inexplicable urge to jump ship, so when I had to go down to a nightclub in Cardiff last week for a booze-fuelled evening full of amateur models, I wondered how Id react. Not that I expected lots of proposals of no- strings wild sex, but I wanted to know if Id be tempted. And sure enough, as the night progressed and the drinking became more frenzied a few girls let it be known they wouldnt mind extending their Welsh hospitality. And to be honest I wasnt interested, so, I politely declined and explained I have a girlfriend. Calling Grace my girlfriend out loud (albeit not actually to her) should have freaked me out. But instead, I liked the sound of it. Back next day, I offered to cook Grace dinner at my place. Once she had negotiated my attempt at spaghetti bolognese, I decided to broach the girlfriend/boyfriend issue. So, have you been asked out by anyone else recently? I enquired, half-teasing, half- nervous. Why would that happen? she smiled. Id quite like you to be my boyfriend. Even if Id planned a dessert, we wouldnt have bothered with one... being one of a group of mainly single boys who always drops hints about Romilly Chambers, centre todecidedIve Grace...good honestbetoAndhospitality.Welsh Charlie Parrish Sometimes three is the best crowd Great bowls of flower: Adrian and Mina enjoy flower arranging over a glass of champagne, aided by their instructor, Lucy index.html2.html3.html4.html5.html6.html7.html8.html9.html10.html11.html12.html13.html14.html15.html16.html17.html18.html19.html20.html21.html22.html23.html24.html25.html26.html27.html28.html29.html30.html31.html32.html33.html34.html35.html36.html37.html38.html39.html40.html41.html42.html43.html