17 Restaurant Patios With Serious Summer Vibes
These outdoor settings are well-stocked with rose, rockin' tacos and plenty of rays. ☀
Warm-weather days are meant to be enjoyed outside, and meals are no exception. If you’re in search of local spots to sip some rose or share a plate of oysters under the sun and stars, you’ve come to the right place. Here are 17 summer-worthy patios for outdoor dining.
You may know its neon Pasta Power sign near the front, but did you know Thompson Italian also sports a charming al fresco dining space out back? Tables on the 33-seat patio can be reserved online, and feature umbrellas for shade and string lights for ambience. Pull up a chair and feel the summer breeze as you dive into artichokes alla Romana, octopus a la plancha or olive oil cake. // 124 N. Washington St., Falls Church City. Also a location in Alexandria.
Treat yourself to an impromptu garden party at Wilson Hardware’s wonderland-like terrace. The canopied outdoor space features a variety of seating options and a recently revamped menu that includes truffle hanger steak, a caprese sandwich and a garlic shrimp skillet. Sip on cocktails like the rose margarita or lavender lemonade (made with Hendrick’s gin), and grab a seat for happy hour Tuesday-Friday from 3-7 p.m. for $3 off shareable plates and discounted drinks. // 2915 Wilson Blvd., Arlington (Clarendon)
The breezy patio outside this West Coast-inspired eatery in Clarendon has a whopping 125 seats and a natural canopy courtesy of crepe myrtles. Stop by for drinks, dinner, or the leisurely “happy all day” menu, offered Thursday-Sunday from noon to 5:30 p.m. The latter includes bites and drinks such as the tomato and lentil dip, mussels and fries, peel-and-eat shrimp, mimosas, bellinis and iced lattes. // 3033 Wilson Blvd., Suite 115R, Arlington (Clarendon)
With a name that connotes “movement, energy [and] elegance,” this Ballston wine shop and cafe sports a sizeable patio with various seating options and a view of nearby fountains and an illuminated glass sculpture. The full menu is offered outside, including kale Caesar salad, radiatore pasta and wines by the glass, half-bottle or full bottle. // 4000 Fairfax Drive Suite C, Arlington (Ballston)
This Clarendon seafood spot with an emphasis on sustainability features a patio with umbrellas for shade out front, as well as an outdoor bar tucked in the back. Stop by for daily happy hour from 3-6 p.m. and enjoy $5 select beers, $7 select wines, $9 mixed drinks and deals on oysters, blistered shishito peppers, blackened catfish sliders and more. // 2815 Clarendon Blvd., Arlington (Clarendon)
The Salt Line
The Salt Line in Ballston has outdoor seating for nearly 80 diners, including at a covered bar. The al fresco dining area is located on a plaza that is set back from bustling Wilson Boulevard, making it a safe spot to bring your pooch, and it’s outfitted with heaters for cooler evenings. The cocktail menu includes refreshers like the passion paloma, a mix of blanco tequila, passion fruit, grapefruit, lime and agave. Pair your beverage with a plate of rockfish tartare at dinnertime, or hit the patio for weekend “happy brunch” for deals on drinks and local oysters. // 4040 Wilson Blvd., Arlington (Ballston)
You can enjoy the 40-seat, pet-friendly patio any time of day or evening at this congenial hot spot in National Landing. Stop by for “judgement-free” avocado toast in the morning or a glass of rose at sunset. The patio seats—including large tables that are perfect for groups—are covered, and the surrounding greenery makes for cheery environs. Pop by from 4-7 p.m., Monday thru Saturday, for happy hour specials like spicy fried chicken sliders and carne asada tacos. // 2011 Crystal Drive, Arlington (National Landing)
This Ballston taco joint from Ian and Eric Hilton (Cafe Colline, Parc de Ville), a sister outpost to D.C.’s U Street location, has a roomy, L-shaped patio set with colorful chairs and large tables where you’ll find crowds dipping grilled birria tacos into beef consommé and sharing pitchers of lime-infused margaritas or grapefruit-forward palomas. Nested in the heart of Ballston Exchange, the vibrant space is insulated from the street around Ballston Quarter. // 4201 Wilson Blvd., Arlington (Ballston)
This hare-themed Clarendon eatery from Reese Gardner (The Pinemoor, Quinn’s on the Corner, Dudley’s Sport & Ale, Copperwood Tavern) has patio seating for 30 and a menu of “elevated pub fare” with munchies like beer-brined chicken wings and buffalo cauliflower. Pull up a chair outside for happy hour from 3-6 p.m., featuring $8 martinis and apps. Gluten-free diners will appreciate the five lettuce wrap options—including fillers such as soy and miso tuna, crab with tarragon aioli, or Old Bay shrimp with Old Bay and pineapple slaw. // 1210 N. Garfield St, Arlington (Clarendon)
Ready to hoist a stein or two? Gather with a big group on this Courthouse beer garden’s dog-friendly patio, which has 140 seats, more than half of which are covered. Fan favorites on the food menu include a giant Bavarian-style pretzel with beer cheese, bratwurst and fried Brussels sprouts (all of which will help you absorb those beers). A weekday happy hour from 3-6 p.m. features $2 off all drafts, house cocktails and wine. // 2300 Clarendon Blvd, Arlington (Courthouse)
Green Pig Bistro
During the pandemic, this popular Clarendon hideaway on North Fillmore Street expanded its brick patio from a dozen seats to nearly 80. The al fresco space features several lounge-style areas, as well as heaters for cooler days. Brunch outside (which includes tempting choices like brioche cinnamon rolls and crab cake Benedict) feels like an oasis, thanks to flowers and herbs planted by chef Tracy O’Grady. Large parties are welcome. Green Pig serves its full menu outside and can seat parties of up to 16 guests. // 1025 N. Fillmore St., Arlington (Clarendon)
Westover Beer Garden
The craft brews are calling your name. This family-friendly spot in Arlington’s Westover neighborhood has a laid-back vibe and space for 100 at its picnic tables. The adjoining market (which includes an on-site butcher shop) makes this biergarten a local favorite for burgers and sandwiches made with beef from Roseda Farms in Maryland, and chicken from Whiffletree Farm in Warrenton and Fields of Athenry in Middleburg, all served on bread from Lyon Bakery. Check out the live music schedule; local bands play multiple nights a week. // 5863 Washington Blvd., Arlington (Westover)
The newest location of Mike Cordero’s taco chainlet, in Falls Church’s Birch & Broad development, is the largest one yet. The sprawling patio has space for 100, with picnic tables, Adirondack chairs and bar stools covered by an open-air canopy with a massive, wood-burning fireplace for extra warmth on cooler nights. Chow down on house-favorite puffy beef tacos (featuring hot Cheetos) or street corn. Happy hour brings discounts on margaritas, a featured cocktail, wine and beer. // 1116 West Broad St., Falls Church (Birch & Broad). Also locations in Rosslyn and Alexandria.
In 2022, Chef Thomas Harvey opened his namesake restaurant in the Little City in the former Plaka Grill space on Broad Street. The all-day dining spot and market has a 60-seat patio where guests can enjoy a “sage and smoke” breakfast sandwich with smoked tomato chutney, sage sausage and cheddar cheese, or dinner entrees including a burger made with beef from Seven Hills Food in Lynchburg, mushroom “scallops,” or cedar-plank salmon served with rutabaga polenta. Weekday happy hours from 3-6 p.m. feature $2 off all drafts. // 513 W. Broad St., Falls Church City
This vibrant sushi spot in East Falls Church offers seats for more than 50 outside, including large parties. Stop by for dinner service, weekend lunch or weekday happy hours featuring $4 salads, beer, wine, sake and a variety of maki. Choose from spicy yellowtail cucumber, barbecue eel cucumber, chicken tempura avocado cucumber and several other flavorful rolls. Patio tables are offered on a first-come, first-serve basis. // 2121 N. Westmoreland St., Arlington (East Falls Church)
Mattie & Eddie’s Irish Bar and Restaurant
Cathal Armstrong’s Irish pub at Westpost (formerly Pentagon Row) has seating for 100 guests on its wraparound patio, with plenty of space for large clans. The farm-to-table menu is offered both indoors and outdoors, including favorites like fish and chips (featuring seven secret sauces), shepherd’s pie and all-day Irish breakfast. The outdoor seating has heaters for cooler evenings, or you can always add an Irish coffee to your order for a warm-up. // 1301 S. Joyce St., Arlington (National Landing)
This Mosaic District brewpub and coffeehouse boasts one of the largest patios in the area, with seating for 200. Enjoy Lone Oak coffee and fresh apple turnovers for breakfast, then return later for fried pickles and a pint of Surfliner West Coast IPA. The family-and-dog friendliness and versatility of the seating make Caboose a popular destination for after-work gatherings and weekend day drinking. Sail shades help block the sun and white lights provide a festive atmosphere after dark. Outdoor tables are first-come, first-serve, but fire pits can be reserved in advance (email email@example.com). // 2918 Eskridge Road, Fairfax (Mosaic)