The Best Patio Dining in Seattle

The warm weather months are here, so it’s sunglasses on at these al fresco dining spots
  • Marination Ma Kai in West Seattle
Marination Ma Kai in West Seattle

Come warm summer weather, we take every opportunity to sup on the sidewalk or sip wine on an umbrellaed patio. Plan your alfresco dining around these knockout views, waterfront seats, hidden tables under the stars and new patios with vibrant cocktail scenes—and fire pits to keep the chill off.


Brimmer & Heeltap
[SECRET GARDEN] Why here: An already popular neighborhood hangout, Brimmer & Heeltap is upping its summertime cool factor with the expansion of the garden hideaway that flanks the restaurant. A fiberglass-canopied patio will add 10–15 seats outdoors (there were already a few tables); there’s a promise of a fire pit; and owner Jen Doak has revamped a shed in back to include a roll-up garage door and its own bar for private parties (groups of 15-20) and overflow on busy nights. Eat: The prawn cocktail is big enough to share or small enough to devour on your own. Drink: It’s a drink! It’s a dish! It’s the pickled oyster shooter with cucumber, lime and gin! 425 NW Market St.; 206.420.2534;

La Isla
[PUERTO RICAN] Pull up a stool in the snug space under the storefront’s awning and watch Ballardites meander down Market Street while you munch on a plate of empanadillas, those tasty, tiny meat turnovers. Rum fans have plenty to cheer here, including craft cocktails and a salad dressed in a boozy vinaigrette. Set your watch to island time and order the ropa vieja, the shredded skirt steak sauced in spicy adobo. Finish up with a piece of tres leches cake. Lunch and dinner daily. 2320 NW Market St.; 206.789.0516;

Ray’s Café [SEAFOOD] Why here: Ray’s Café (above Ray’s Boathouse) is an iconic, only-in-Seattle experience, especially the deck, where the jagged Olympic Mountains and lapping waters of Puget Sound create an unforgettable backdrop for dinner alfresco. Eat: Start with the outstanding smoked salmon skewers and splurge on king crab legs with drawn butter.  
Drink: The Bloody Mary here is terrific: spicy, strong and packed with veggies. It’s an ideal match for most of the seafood.  
Insider tip: If you don’t have reservations, expect to wait Lunch and dinner daily. 6049 Seaview Ave. NW; 206.782.0094;

Walrus and the Carpenter [OYSTERS] [HIDDEN PATIO] It’s easy to feel cool when dining at The Walrus and the Carpenter, a haven for foodies in the know. The much-celebrated (and small) restaurant offers outdoor communal seating at picnic tables adjacent to the back parking lot. Far from feeling gritty, the small patio with wood picnic tables has an urban industrial atmosphere, with its location adjacent to the back parking lot and overlooking the many commercial shipping operations just off Salmon Bay. With heat lamps overhead, this patio is a sure bet in any weather. 4743 Ballard Ave. NW; 206.395.9227;

Percy’s & Co.
[PUB] This cocktail lounge on Ballard Ave is visually impressive already, but the covered patio out back is something to experience, too. What can only be described as a cross between a porch and a greenhouse, the wooden back perch is filled with hanging ferns and other green foliage. The patio is heated, and wool blankets conveniently hang from hooks at each of the six communal wooden picnic tables, which are made comfortable with olive-colored cushions. Ceiling fans and aroll-up garage door should keep the patio from becoming too hot when the sun comes out to play. 5233 Ballard Ave. NW; 206.420.3750;

Bastille Café & Bar
[FRENCH] [COVERED PATIO] At this Parisian-style bistro, wooden tables are nestled under a clear ceiling that allows in light, but holds back occasional summer sprinkles. With a fireplace on the terrace, heaters and sliding transparent-panel “walls” that open and close at the ready, Bastille is a sure bet anytime of the year for its traditional French cuisine and its focus on Northwest ingredients. 5307 Ballard Ave. NW; 206.453.5014;


Pintxo  [HIDDEN PATIO] [TAPAS] Even folks who have lived in Seattle all their lives don’t realize this tiny tapas restaurant has a charming, New York–style exposed brick hideaway sandwiched in between two brick buildings. The result is an adorable, absolutely utopian slice of Belltown real estate that is the highlight of any evening. The best time to come is at dusk, when the party lights turn on and the tensions of the day turn off. The sherry cocktails and Spanish wine list help, too. 2219 Fourth Ave.; 206.441.4042;


520 Bar and Grill
[AMERICAN] [GARDEN PATIO] The patio out back is popular when the weather is gloomy, but once the sun pops, so do the huge umbrellas at this popular Main Street destination. The outside area is lined with hedges and a trellis to keep it a truly private section of the traditionally busy restaurant. The white-linen-draped tables, which seat as many as 50 sun lovers, beckon customers outside, but if you just want a little nosh while you watch the game (there is a flat-screen TV outside), order one of the signature cocktails, such as the cucumber cooler, and a chicken Caesar salad, and be grateful that the only traffic you’ll encounter here is a surge of folks getting off work to soak up some rays. Bellevue, 10146 Main St.; 425.450.0520;

Scotty Browns
[AMERICAN] [SIDEWALK PATIO] If there was ever a perfect location for a sleek, modern outdoor patio, it’s in the interstitial spaces of downtown Bellevue populated by the well-heeled workers of the Eastside. That’s where you’ll find Scotty Browns—in a hidden-gem urban enclave rubbing elbows (bent with drink in hand) with the likes of The Bravern, Bellevue Square and various Microsoft towers. It’s a prime locale for dining al fresco on your lunch break or grabbing a cocktail after work. Take a seat on one of the beckoning leather couches that surround blazing fire pits (when it’s chilly) or curl up in one of the colorful orange chairs that, along with pretty potted green shrubbery, add a splash of color to an otherwise masculine décor that is equal parts urban and rural, and 100-percent inviting on a sunny day. Bellevue, 958 111th Ave. N.E.; 425.449.8869;


Linda’s Tavern
[AMERICAN] Hard to believe that when this landmark opened on Capitol Hill nearly 20 years ago, it served only potato chips and nuts. Hooray for the lineup of hangover helpers cranked out by this busy kitchen. The bacon, eggs and crispy hash browns platter tastes even better when enjoyed at the perpetual party on the funky, fun patio tucked away in the back. Music fans will want to check out the rad jukebox. Brunch Sat.–Sun., dinner daily. 707 E Pine St.; 206.325.1220;

Oddfellows Cafe [AMERICAN] [HIDDEN PATIO] Why here: Bring your dog and meet a friend at one of the few white metal bistro tables on the sidewalk, then prepare for some of the best people watching within city limits (especially the tony types coming and going at Totokaelo next door). Best table: The one farthest from the door is best if you plan to camp out; that way, people aren’t inching past you quite as often in the narrow space. What to order: The Ploughman’s Lunch covers all your bases: cheese, meat, pickles, salad and baguette. You’ll want a half-bottle of prosecco with that. Insider tip: Check out the “secret patio” out back—tucked between two ivy-covered brick walls with little 2-seater bistro tables and twinkling lights strung overhead. 1525 10th Ave.; 206.325.0807;

Poppy[NORTHWEST] Savory summer herbs and edible flowers destined for the menu gently scent the air on Poppy’s secluded back patio, where a subtle fence surrounds the poppy orange tables and chairs. We love the ever-changing creations arranged on the thali plates, and every meal should begin with a carefully crafted cocktail from the seasoned bartenders. Dinner daily. 622 Broadway E; 206.324.1108;

Terra Plata [NORTHWEST] Why here: In a city not known for its rooftop-dining scene, there’s a treasure to be found atop Terra Plata: a triangular deck that echoes the salvaged-wood sensibility of the main dining room. Best enjoyed with a drink in hand and the sun high overhead. Eat: Carefully blistered shishito peppers get a hit from a squeeze of lemon and dash of sea salt. Drink: Share a bottle of R. López de Heredia’s Viña Gravonia Viura. Extras: Dine amid the edible garden of potted herbs and veggies. 1501 Melrose Ave.; 206.325.1501;

Poquitos [MEXICAN] [ENCLOSED PATIOS] Off the main room at Poquitos, you’ll find a fully glassed-in, atrium-like bar area, complete with high tables and stools, along with a few benches and, of course, several seats at the bar. Although not technically outdoor dining, this oasis of natural light heats up on sunny days and gives the impression of dining in a greenhouse—very tropical, which complements the fresh Mexican dishes, and the house-pressed aguas frescas and seasonal margaritas made with local fruits. Turn up early for happy hour and snag a table, as well as some superaffordable snacks, such as the traditionally prepared grilled corn with crema, lime and Cotija cheese. 1000 E Pike St.; 206.453.4216;

[SIDEWALK PATIO] When the sun comes up, so do the rolling doors of this offbeat Capitol Hill restaurant, located in the courtyard of Chloe Apartments. The absence of walls doubles the size of the cozy spot by extending it onto an adorable little patio dotted with handmade and brightly colored tables and chairs, greenery and pretty flowers. It’s a romantic environment (especially at night when the candles twinkle) that mimics the beloved patio of the original Belltown Marjorie. Up the nostalgia quotient by ordering the signature plantain chips and a rum cocktail. 1412 E Union St.; 206.441.9842;

Café Presse [CHIC SIDEWALK HANGOUT] Why here: There’s always something seasonal and delicious to eat at Capitol Hill’s effortlessly chic Café Presse. And at the handful of sidewalk tables, midday rosé is not only acceptable, it’s encouraged.  
Best table: Any of the small bistro tables will do. What to order: Regulars know that simple omelets and croque monsieur never disappoint, but it’s worth investigating seasonal dishes, especially salads and starters, which always prove original and inspired.1117 12th Ave.; 206.709.7674; 

Cafe Barjot 
[PEOPLE-WATCHING PATIO]Why here: There’s just something happy about this petite neighborhood café, whether it’s the poppy orange accents or the friendly welcome from the staff. It’s nice to drop by for breakfast, lunch or dinner to sit on the sidewalk patio and watch the people (and their dogs) walk by. Best table: Any of them will do, and since there are only a few bistro tables, parties of two will have the most luck scoring a seat outside. What to order: The cured smelt, radish and ricotta toast, with a Campari-and-soda sipper on the side.  711 Bellevue Ave. E; 206.457.5424; 


Big Chickie [south-end sun catcher]Why here: Cheerful wood tables and red chairs sit beneath a huge wood pergola at Hillman City’s family-friendly chicken shack. You’re going to love it. Best table: As long as we’re outside, we’re happy, and thankfully, with so many tables on the all-weather, fence-lined patio, it usually doesn’t take long for one to open up. What to order: A whole charcoal-roasted rotisserie chicken with sides and corn muffins is the best option. Then, share a couple of the cinnamon-spiced brownies and a pint of Full Tilt ice cream for dessert. After all, it’s summer! 5520 Rainier Ave. S; 206.946.1519;


Elliott’s Oyster House
[SEAFOOD] [WATERFRONT] If a little bit of wind and the occasional scent of boating fuel in the air doesn’t bother you, Elliott’s offers one of the most scenic and action-packed patio views this side of, well, Elliott Bay. Not only is the never-ending deck along Pier 56 a front-row seat to a glistening waterfront, you’ll get to watch the hustle and bustle of aqua commuting in all its glory, from tour boats and the water taxi to tugboats and ferries. This is a fair-weather patio—no shelter or shade, and a limited number of heaters. There’s a good chance you won’t notice any intrusive weather elements if you order a dozen oysters. These are some of the best downtown has to offer. Lunch and dinner daily. 1201 Alaskan Way, Pier 56; 206.623.4340;

Six Seven [NORTHWEST] [WATERFRONT] Grab a table situated over the water on this modern, narrow, glass-walled deck hovering above Elliott Bay at the historic Edgewater hotel. Pacific Northwest seafood abounds on this menu, even at breakfast. Try the Dungeness crab frittata and upgrade to organic, local eggs. At dinner, opt for a classic cedar-plank salmon preparation or locally caught black cod. Breakfast and dinner daily, brunch Sat.–Sun., lunch Mon.–Fri. 2311 Alaskan Way, Pier 67; 206.269.4575;

The endless view at Six Seven on Seattle’s waterfront

Hard Rock Cafe [AMERICAN] Pass right on through the touristy main space and head directly up to the rooftop, where the panoramic views of the city and the Sound are truly stunning. We recommend coming here to drink in the vista and a cold brew on the low-slung couches warmed by gas fireplaces, then hit one of the countless excellent restaurants nearby (Matt’s in the Market, Le Pichet, Place Pigalle, Etta’s), where dinner is a better bet. 116 Pike St.; 206.204.2233;

Lola [GREEK] [SIDEWALK PATIO] The Greek-inspired menu at Lola makes for lovely sidewalk fare. This sidewalk patio, surrounded by a wrought-iron railing on the east side of the street, has a handful of small metal tables, which are big enough to hold the many plates you’ll order, but can be chilly in the morning. Bring a sweater to sit on if you’ve set your sights on a plate of huge pancakes and fabulous house-made sausage. The rays warm things up all through the afternoon. 2000 Fourth Ave.; 206.441.1430;


Serafina/Cicchetti [TAPAS] [GARDEN PATIO] On a secluded patio in a sleepy section of Eastlake, Serafina’s linen-topped tables are surrounded by overzealous plants and glowing white lights. While the chairs are typical patio-style folding chairs (thus, not the most comfortable), this romantic escape can’t be beat for special occasions or an intimate dinner for two. The patio for sister restaurant Cicchetti, which offers a shared-plates menu, sits adjacent to the ivy-covered building and looks out over the neighborhood sidewalk and a sliver of Lake Union. This is a cozy cement patio that feels private and open at the same time. 2043 Eastlake Ave. E; 206.323.0807;

Little Water Cantina [MEXICAN] [WATERFRONT] This is arguably the best cement patio the Lake Union waterfront has to offer—all-day sunlight, affordable Mexican-inspired nibbles (such as the popular carnitas tacos braised in coconut milk and cola), and fresh juice in the margaritas all but ensure cocktails will be free-flowin’ well after dusk. Communal picnic tables offer plenty of seating, which isn’t entirely comfortable (are such benches ever?), but works well for socializing. 2865 Eastlake Ave. E; 206.397.4940;


Anthony’s HomePort Edmonds
[MARINA WORTH THE DRIVE] Why here: Four-course dinners are just $21.95 before 6 p.m. weekdays. There’s a sandbox near the patio to entertain kids at the more casual Beach Café downstairs, where lunch is served only. Best table: A corner spot on the deck upstairs affords views of the marina and Puget Sound beyond. What to order: Go for uncomplicated with the Chop Chop seafood salad, packed with fresh crab and bay shrimp, plus avocado, egg and tomatoes, and topped with basil vinaigrette. 456 Admiral Way; 425.771.4400;

The casual café and nearby sandpit at Anthony’s HomePort Edmonds and Beach Café


Hotel Sorrento [NEW KID ON THE BLOCK] Why here: The Sorrento’s revamp, completed this spring, added a new bar and stylish furniture to the Fireside Room, plus a revamped restaurant (good-bye, Hunt Club; hello, Dunbar Room). But it’s the new outdoor dining space built into the former circular driveway, with its imported French café chairs and gorgeous (and huge) magnolia planters, that beckons most this time of year. Eat: Oysters on the half shell, steamed mussels in a tomato and sausage broth, and avocado toast with fresh Dungeness crab. Drink: The Old Cuban, a bubbly summer sipper with prosecco, rum, bitters and mint. Extras: The fire pit area features custom bench seating made using reclaimed mahogany and built—as was the rest of the patio space—by Michael Marian of Marian Built. 900 Madison St.; 206.622.6400;


[BEACHY RETREAT WITHOUT THE SAND] Why here: The equation is ceviche plus rum drinks equal summer, which is exactly what’s on offer on Manolin’s pergola-shaded patio, just to the left of the front door. Eat: Yes, order the ceviche to start. But the dynamite dish here is the steak with caramel-like colatura (caramelized anchovy sauce). Trust us! Drink: The quaffable Columbus—tequila, apple and fizzy celery soda—is in the running for the drink of the summer. 3621 Stone Way N; 206.294.3331;

(New location, see address) Revel [KOREAN] Why here: It’s a scene. First, drop by Revel’s adjoining bar, Quoin, for a cocktail by the fire pit as you wait for a table. And when it’s time for dinner, move to the back deck, which is lit with strings of white lights—still close, but slightly removed from the action. Best table: Any table along the side deck is nice, but for a quieter seat, sit farther away from the fire pit. What to order: The Lazy Gardener, with cucumber, gin, mint and Rachel’s ginger beer, goes perfectly with the savory creative Korean menu. (Don’t miss the corned lamb salad with spicy nuoc cham dressing.) South Lake Union, 513 Westlake Ave N; 206.547.2040;

Uneeda Burger [BURGERS] Why here: Bring the kids and the grandparents. Everyone loves the hand-formed, Columbia River Reserve beef burgers at this upper Fremont hit, where a covered patio is open for lunch and dinner. Best table: There are picnic tables inside, but to bask in the sun, opt for one of the six tables outside the big garage doors (which are opened up in fair weather). What to order: We adore the lamb burger, truly original with its topping of Manchego, fried lemons and cilantro, but even the most basic burgers are stellar; they come with pickles, lettuce and tomatoes, and are a bargain at just $5. 4302 Fremont Ave. N; 206.547.2600;

Joule/the Whale Wins
[CROSSING BORDERS] Why here: The powerhouse patios at Joule and The Whale Wins are separated by a sidewalk leading to the shared entrance of the neighboring restaurants. But the overall feeling is happily communal, as patrons on both sides of the aisle take full advantage of the fresh air on a beautiful day. Eat: Start with the sardines on toast at The Whale Wins, continue with the tender octopus in bacon vinaigrette at Joule. Drink: Try the aperitif of the day at Whale Wins, then opt for the 35 Stone Buck bourbon cocktail at Joule. 3506 Stone Way N: Joule, 206.632.5685,; and Whale Wins, 206.632.9425, 

[OYSTERS] [SIDEWALK PATIO] You know you’ve stumbled upon a sunny deck when the staff dips into a communal well of sunglasses just to wait on tables. When the large, Fremont Avenue–facing wall rolls up to let in the sun, the sun takes note and says, “Game on!” You will definitely get your dose of sunshine here, whether you’re inside or out. But outside is a pleasure not to be missed when it’s warm—especially at night when the gas fire pit, which doubles as a communal table, is lit. The ingenious creation comes courtesy of Mike Marian of Marian Built, who is also responsible for much of RockCreek’s interior fixtures. There is also a long wood banquette, wooden tables and metal chairs, which all reflect the restaurant’s rustic, woodsy interior. Fremont, 4300 Fremont Ave. N; 206.557.7532;


Via Tribunali
[PIZZA] [HIDDEN PATIO] The often overlooked back patio at this Georgetown pizzeria is hidden by a very tall, narrow wooden door next to the pizza oven. Outside is a stone courtyard with a communal reclaimed-wood table that seats about 14. Shade and privacy are secured with a wall of plants and branches—that means nobody will notice if you eat two personal pizzas and a plate of caprese all by yourself. Georgetown, 6009 12th Ave. S; 206.464.2880;

Fonda La Catrina [MEXICAN] [SIDEWALK PATIO] Why here: Georgetown’s best Mexican restaurant has a fun, funky and, thankfully, big backyard patio that’s shaded with sailcloth, lush with climbing vines and decorated with colorful tablecloths. In summertime, it’s margarita central. Best table: They’re all good and all very popular, so expect a line on a sunny day. What to order: The Fresca, a spicy cocktail of tequila, chiles, cilantro and pineapple juice, along with camarones al mojo de ajo (shrimp with garlic butter). Or anything with mole; this is one of the few places in Seattle that makes a good one. Georgetown, 5905 Airport Way S; 206.767.2787;


Le Grand Bistro Américain
[FRENCH] Serving up a thrilling view well worth the cost of crossing the 520 bridge, the two decks of this French bistro are set above Kirkland’s Carillon Point, where white yachts bob on sparkling Lake Washington. At sunset, the Seattle city skyline glimmers. And it serves the best niçoise salad in the city, to boot. Brunch Sat.–Sun., lunch Mon.–Fri., dinner daily. 2220 Carillon Point; 425.828.7778;

Trellis [NORTHWEST] This stylish sidewalk patio rocks it year-round, staying toasty when it’s closeted in clear plastic and warmed by heaters in the winter, but wide open and airy when the weather’s fair. Chef Brian Scheehser’s seasonally inspired menu is ripe with pickin’s from his 10-acre spread in Woodinville during this time of year. We love his tender green salads. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. 220 Kirkland Ave.; 425.284.5900;

Beach Café [WATERFRONT] Sitting outside on the large wraparound concrete patio at this Carillon Point café will make you feel like you’re actually on the water. Breathtaking views of the Olympic Mountains and even glimpses of Husky Stadium and the Columbia Center tower are possible on a clear day and make it hard to leave the sun-drenched dockside spot packed with bistro chairs and tables—usually all filled soon after the café opens. The mac and cheese with crab, spiced and braised lamb tacos, and the café burger topped with guacamole and bacon are fan favorites. 1170 Carillon Point; 425.889.0303;


The Independent Pizzeria [PIZZA] [SIDEWALK PATIO] This slice of pizza heaven in Madison Park seats about 15 people comfortably on its tiny patio, furnished with dark wooden, lacquer-topped tables. The space opens when the weather is warm enough (permanently from July 5 to Labor Day). And while that may sound like a recipe for hypercoziness, this hot spot boasts a nice little view of Lake Washington. 4235 E Madison St.; 206.860.6110;


[WINE BAR] Why here: Fig trees spill over the long, side-yard deck lit with starry white lights; it’s the lush, enchanting patio of your dreams. Eat: The seasonal toasts, topped with combos such as prosciutto, chèvre and figs, and the excellent cheese plate. Drink: On a hot day, rosé by the bottle is the way to go. But Bottlehouse has the most eclectic by-the-glass list in the city—spanning sherry, bubbly and amaro—so consider trying something new to you. Insider tip: The backyard is available to rent for summer parties.Late afternoon and evenings, Tue.–Sun. 1416 34th Ave.; 206.708.7164;

St. Clouds [AMERICAN] We won’t tell if, once you’re sitting at one of the six tables in the secret back yard, you slip your shoes off. Why wouldn’t you? Glass-topped metal tables are set up as if for an impromptu dinner party. Strings of white lights sweep from fence to fence, and the “locals only” vibe keeps things warm and sweet. You’ll probably want to sip that Sauvignon Blanc and nibble those slow-roasted ribs a little slower than usual so that you can stay awhile. Brunch and lunch Sat.–Sun., dinner daily. 1131 34th Ave.; 206.726.1522;


Maggie Bluffs
[WATERFRONT] [SEAFOOD] At this classic spot situated at the Elliott Bay Marina next to Palisade, the food and drinks are your typical pub fare with an aquatic slant (crab cakes, fish and chips, and clam chowder). But what’s anything but typical about this dockside patio is that it has one of the most awesome views in town. On a clear day, the Space Needle, Mount Rainier and the city skyline can all be viewed through the masts of the massive convoy of docked boats. When it gets cold, there are heaters. There are only about a dozen tables, and they go fast—even when the weather is just summer-ish. 2601 W Marina Place; 206.283.8322;


Ivar’s Salmon House
[BOAT-UP SPOT] Why here: It’s classic waterfront deck dining. The shores of Lake Union lap beneath the patio’s attached boat dock, which local boaters and kayakers use to pick up takeout orders of fish ’n’ chips. Here, you’ll sit under umbrellas, enjoying the cool breeze and that skyline view across the lake. Best table: The bright cloth-covered tables on the lowest level of the tiered patio (closest to the water) offer unobstructed views. What to order: Keep it simple and stick to seafood: clams steamed in white wine and butter; or splurge on a Dungeness crab Louis salad, with hard-boiled eggs, tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers and sweet, fresh crab. And to drink: Imbibe one of the 26 Washington and Oregon wines available by the glass. And remember: no tipping! 401 NE Northlake Way; 206.632.0767;

Westward [WATERFRONT] [OYSTERS] Why here: The city glittering across the boat-dotted waters of Lake Union can be fully appreciated from the shade of a striped umbrella or around the oyster-shell-lined fire pit. It’s an absolute wonder no one thought of creating a place like Westward before. Eat: Incredibly fresh oysters, smoked Manila clam dip with house-fried potato chips, and Mediterranean-style roasted trout or branzino. Drink: A glass of chilled Muscadet from the Loire Valley will
do mighty fine. Insider tip: Your best bet for a prime outdoor seat—in one of the weathered, conjoined Adirondack chairs—is midday (3–5 p.m.). Also: select oysters are half-price Sun.–Thurs. from 9–10 p.m. 2501 N Northlake Way; 206.552.8215;


Le Pichet
[FRENCH] [SIDEWALK PATIO] Four small bistro tables on the sidewalk front this downtown French bistro, beckoning passersby to sit and drink rosé for hours. Beware that, although perfect for people watching and feeling cosmopolitan, Pichet’s tables are on the west side of the street and only see sunlight in the morning hours. Ditto for the small sidewalk deck at sister restaurant Café Presse on Capitol Hill, which is perfect for eating a hearty breakfast of oeufs plats—a baked dish of eggs, béchamel, ham and cheese. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. 1933 First Ave.; 206.256.1499;

Maximilien [FRENCH] It’s hard to believe a sweeping vista this brilliant and this unobstructed can still be such a well-kept secret. But we’ve lucked into tables on the large but largely undiscovered deck—perched high above Elliott Bay and framed by the Olympic Mountains, with ferries pushing through the Sound—without even having to wait. Try the eggs Benedict for Sunday brunch, escargot and soup du jour at sunset. Brunch Sun., lunch and dinner daily. 81A Pike St.; 206.682.7270;

The Pink Door [ITALIAN] [COVERED PATIOS] A longstanding fair-weather favorite, the deck at The Pink Door offers an unobstructed view of Puget Sound happenings off the busy piers. The overhead wooden lattice provides shade, making this a perfect venue to watch ferry sailings, tune into the market hubbub below and indulge in the predictable Italian offerings, such as garden bruschetta or cioppino. Lunch Mon.–Sat., dinner daily. 1919 Post Alley; 206.443.3241;

Seatown Seabar [NORTHWEST] Whether you’re hooking a snack—the crab cocktail is spot on—or settling in for a leisurely meal, this sidewalk café (that spills over to the picnic tables at its neighboring Rub With Love Shack when it gets busy) is a prime perch for watching the world walk around Pike Place Market. Tables are set with pretty potted flowers, and if there’s a chill in the air, the servers will bring you a blankie. We love rosé with everything on the menu, including the ahi poke salad and terrific tri-tip steak off the rotisserie. Breakfast, lunch, dinner daily. 2010 Western Ave.; 206.436.0390;

Café Campagne [FRENCH] [SIDEWALK PATIO]If you pick the right seat (face south) at one of the marble-topped tables on the outdoor patio of this Parisian-style café, you’ll have a nearly unobstructed view of Post Alley and its usual flocks of tourists—the unapologetic heartbeat of Pike Place Market during summer months. Order yourself a carafe of the house red or white, some frites or a sexy slab of the pâté, and make an afternoon out of it. 1600 Post Alley; 206.728.2233;


Loretta’s Northwesterner [PUB] A logging tavern from the 1930s, this treasure south of Seattle has maintained a loyal following of adoring fans since before it was considered cool to drink Rainier, Hamm’s and Lucky Lager. With a high roof made of clear tiles, wood paneling and local brewery relics keep this place rooted in history, and the Airstream on the back patio continually draws in new customers looking for a bar that’s full of character (and characters). Order the classic Tavern burger (a pint-size cheeseburger) for $3 and settle in for a while. 8617 14th Ave. S; 206.327.9649;


[WATERFRONT] [HAPPY HOUR] With an expansive northward view over the entirety of Lake Union, the cement deck at Daniel’s is a go-to for summer boaters and water lovers. New-this-June wicker-style chairs and a couch and custom-made tables with ceramic tile and wood trim offer views of yachts and sailboats, making it all the more pleasant to dine on Daniel’s signature surf-and-turf offerings. The deck wraps around the back of the restaurant, has tall glass walls for wind protection and is open to all ages—all the better for partaking in happy hour prices with the kids on a sunny afternoon. And Eastsiders take note: the Bellevue Daniel’s also has a new, glassed-in perch attached to their 21st floor restaurant in the Bank of America Building (10500 NE 8th, 21st Floor) which is a great way to get a bird’s eye view of just how green this “City in a Park” is. 809 Fairview Place N; 206.621.8262;

Row House Cafe [LUNCH OASIS] Why here: You’d never guess from looking at it, but this sweet, ramshackle house turned café in South Lake Union boasts one of the sunniest and most relaxing (and biggest!) back decks in the neighborhood. Best table: Choose any table with a red umbrella, for shade.  What to order: The panzanella salad, with fresh cherry tomatoes, mozzarella, garbanzo beans and lots of torn basil is perfect for hot weather. 1170 Republican St.; 206.682.7632; 


[PUB] This U District fixture is best known for its sports bar vibe, stellar lineup of micros and outstanding sausages served in its expansive space, but there’s a deck out back with a dozen tables and a soothing gazebo-like feel that falls into hideaway territory. If you subscribe to the school of thought that eating something spicy cools you down on a sizzling afternoon, try a bowl of the fabulously fiery gumbo, made from scratch, and chill. Lunch and dinner daily. 4114 University Way NE; 206.548.9461;

Liam's (CLOSED) [AMERICAN] One of the newer restaurants in U Village from the man who brought us Beecher’s, this corner spot, which is kitty-corner from QFC (and just down the block from Din Tai Fung), has one of the cutest and most functional indoor patios around. During the colder months, the logs are stacked and the gas fire is roaring. But when the weather turns warm, the electric walls are raised to create a gazebo-type environment that includes a wood floor and party lights strung overhead. Order one of the incredibly fresh salads, such as the Dungeness crab cob, for a full dose of vitamin D. 2685 NE 46th St.; 206.527.6089;

Agua Verde Paddle Club & Cafe [WATERFRONT] [MEXICAN] Why here: It puts the quintessential Seattle summer spin on dinner, preferably eaten on the popular patio, though even the indoor seats at this homey restaurant are breezy. Eat: Bacalao tacos (beer-batter-dipped Alaskan cod with cabbage and avocado sauce) get a delicious boost from the selection of house-made salsas. Turn your night into a scene from a rom-com, with a paddle around Portage Bay in a kayak built for two (rentals downstairs). Drink: You can’t go wrong with a classic margarita on the rocks. Extras: Much of the patio is covered, though a recently expanded alfresco dining area sits 30 to 40 with full sun exposure. 1303 NE Boat St.; 206.545.8570;


[NORTHWEST] Shaded by umbrellas and surrounded by shrubs and potted herbs, this space has a hidden-garden feel even as traffic whizzes by on North 45th. Sip a glass of rosé while considering Maria Hines’ organic, locally focused menu—it will be a challenge to choose. Fortunately, there are tasting menus of different shapes and sizes, including a sophisticated lineup of vegan fare and gluten-free apps and entrées. Be part of the brunch bunch and you’ll be rewarded by the fluffiest French omelet this side of Paris. Brunch Sat.–Sun., dinner daily. 1411 N 45th St.; 206.633.0801;


La Rustica
[ITALIAN] A destination restaurant for most, this stalwart West Seattle restaurant has been turning out Italian dishes made by a husband-and-wife kitchen collaboration for years. In summer, the patio—bedecked with white, wrought-iron Italianate furniture and homey plants—is a quiet spot to linger over authentic pasta and hearty entrée offerings while taking in the view of the Olympics and both Blake and Vashon islands. Dinner Tue.–Sun. 4100 Beach Drive SW; 206.932.3020; La Rustica Facebook page

Salty’s [WATERFRONT] [AMERICAN] The deck here maintains its legendary status once the sun shows its face during the warmer months. Here’s a chance to sit on a sun-drenched wraparound deck and take in a cold beverage and a seriously stunning, picture-perfect view of the Seattle skyline. The sea breezes and warm evenings make nibbles such as blackened fish tacos, oven-roasted nachos and beer-batter-dipped steak fries taste even better. 1936 Harbor Ave. SW; 206.937.1600;

Marination Ma Kai
[WATERFRONT] [HAWAIIAN-KOREN] Why here: We’re addicted to Hawaiian-Korean food—think Spam musubi and kimchi rice bowls with fried eggs. Marination’s everyday prices belie the million-dollar Seattle skyline view across Elliott Bay. Plus, the roomy, casual patio with orange umbrellas is open all day. Eat: Extra-crisp fish ’n’ chips with crave-worthy miso tartar sauce. Drink: The sweet-tart lychee margarita goes down easy in high summer. Insider tip: Stop by for breakfast (daily, starting at 9 a.m.): Loco moco, the Hawaiian classic rice/fried egg/hamburger/gravy mash-up, is on the menu! 1660 Harbor Ave.; 206.328.8226;


Fireside at Willows Lodge
[NORTHWEST] [GARDEN PATIO] Even if you’re not a guest at Willows Lodge and just want to partake in a glass of wine (some of the smaller wineries in Woodinville are represented here), you will be welcomed with open arms. Nibbles such as an artisan cheese flight and other snacky things are on offer, courtesy of Barking Frog across the way, and best enjoyed on one of the most beautiful backyard patios on the Eastside, complete with fire pit, couches, Adirondack chairs and the sound of a trickling waterfall. Woodinville, 14580 NE 145th St.; 425.424.3900;

The Hollywood Tavern [EASTSIDE COOL] Why here: When Woodinville wine tasting calls for sustenance, there’s no better outdoor pit stop than an Adirondack seat at the stone-lined fire pit (similar to the brilliant pit at Westward) between The Hollywood Tavern and neighboring Woodinville Whiskey. Eat: Mabel’s fried chicken sandwich, an ultra-crispy, well-seasoned, unpretentious nod to the previous longtime tenant, Mabel’s Tavern  Drink: Stick with anything brown from the next-door distillery, even something as simple as one of the house-infused whiskey shots and a schooner. Extras: Lawn games 14501 Woodinville-Redmond Road NE; 425.481.7703;

This story has been edited since its original publication.

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