Two dogs, a big meatball and a swirly tongue tussle with pasta. It was this moment in cinematic history created by Disney with Lady and the Tramp that cemented one true thing: romance and Italian food have an undeniable bond that no fork could ever break. So, when it comes to a great date night and testing the limits of a relationship, sharing pasta is a vital step, one that cannot be taken lightly. Besides, if you can share noodles and cheese then get your smooch on after loads of garlic, you know it’s pretty special. Here are a few reasons to make Kenny’s Italian Kitchen your next date night destination.

Atmosphere– If restaurants had theme songs Kenny’s Italian would be Louis Prima’s, When You’re Smiling. The people that work here are genuinely happy to see you, no matter how busy. This is especially true for the regulars. There is a familiarity to this eatery that comes from the simplistic red and white checkered tablecloths, thick burgundy curtains, not so fancy wooden chairs and photograph filled walls. If you are coming during dinner, it is usually a bit dim, creating a rather romantic environment, despite the dated décor. Dated or not, it fits and chances are you’ll be too busy biting on bruschetta to care about anything else around you, including your date.

$5 Martini Mondays– There is nothing wrong with sensibly spoiling your sweetie. If you aren’t too tuckered out on a Monday, wrap your lips on one of the select tasty martinis at Kenny’s. They poor them nicely here, so you two shouldn’t be disappointed. If you’re a grapefruit lover, indulge in the Texas Ruby made with Deep Eddy Vodka and fresh grapefruit juice. By the way, martinis are a big deal at all of the Kenny’s locations, mostly because there’s Grey Goose Vodka on tap that’s always served at 28 degrees . After a few minutes if you haven’t completed your tini, the waiters will come by your table with a freshly chilled glass to replace the previous one, keeping your cocktail cool and your sips stupendous.

Apps are Epic– In this section of the menu, mozzarella really makes a statement. Stare lovingly into the eyes of your sweet thang as you bite down on the Prosciutto Wrapped Fried Mozzerella. Blow a kiss across the table while eating the Garlic Cheese Bread, a true melty mozzarella masterpiece, graced by garlic. Or, get meaty with the massive, tender, flavorful and hearty Kenny’s “Midnight” Meatballs topped with mozzarella and red sauce. Other notable must try apps include the Tomato & Buratta Mozzarella, Bruschetta and Steamed Mussles.

The Best Chicken Parmesan – Chicken Parm is one of those dishes that seemingly has an uncomplicated execution, but can easily go awry. Sadly, this has happened too often in my experience of dining on one of my favorite dishes. If it’s a lightly battered, seasoned chicken breast coated in red sauce and mozzarella your heart desires, then come here. The dish is served with a side of spaghetti that’s been lovingly tossed in olive oil, and garlic, and let me just say it makes all of the difference. And, should you not want spaghetti with your chicken parm, ask for fettucine alfredo. A little red, a little white for you and the boo.

Sicilian Shrimp and Fettuccine- One of the latest items to make their debut on the menu at this Italian joint is the oh so scrumptious Sicilian Shrimp and Fettuccine. This dish is everything you want in pasta. The parmesan sauce is exquisitely creamy and spicy while it engulfs roasted tomatoes, spinach, mushrooms and fettuccine. It’s all topped with blackened shrimp. The portion size for this pasta dish is rather large, and it’s perfect for sharing. Whether or not you’ve gotten to that point on your date or your relationship is a different story. TxMB