Criteria: Someplace off the beaten path with quiet nooks to “hide” in and a discreet waitstaff.
Great choices: Atlas Room in DC; Vermilion in Old Town Alexandria; Addie’s in Rockville.
Criteria: Someplace memorable and romantic; attentive but non-intrusive servers who accommodate requests, such as hiding the ring.
Great choices: Rasika in DC; Inn at Little Washington in Washington, Virginia; Volt in Frederick.
Criteria: Someplace lively to drown out shouts and tears; near the Metro for a getaway; no Chinese hot pots or steakhouses with sharp knives.
Great choices: Food Wine & Co. in Bethesda; Palena Cafe in DC; Liberty Tavern in Arlington.