An edited version of this post first appeared on the telegraph.co.uk:
The best dates are a delicate balance of the familiar and the intriguing, so why not try a night out in Brixton where the conventional is in constant tension with the exceptional. Start with a film at the Brixton Ritzy, one of London's finest Picturehouse cinemas, which specialises in a mix of mainstream, documentary and art-house movies. Surprise your date with a film followed by a filmmaker Q&A, or something from the NT Live programme.
Post-film, head around the corner where you can reveal your more adventurous side. Seven at Brixton is a funky, low-lit pintxos-and-cocktail place in Brixton Market Row. Go for a table for two upstairs where you can snuggle away among the quirky art and the packing crate chairs, and share some delicious Basque country tapas. Fuel your date's relaxed banter with cocktails at just £5: try the Electric Avenue, a winning mix of apple vodka, pomegranate juice and marmalade.
I enjoyed something similar on a second date a few years ago; Reader, I married him.