ATLGuide

Atlanta Restaurants With Heated Patios

When it's cold outside, these heated patios turn into the city's most popular hot spots.
covered, heated patio

photo credit: Cameren Rogers

Atlanta weather can be like a Jordan Peele movie: predictably unpredictable. But just because the weather acts up doesn’t mean we have to ditch our patio plans. If you still wanna go outside, you need a dry, warm patio. Industrial heaters, retractable walls, outdoor fire pits—whatever the occasion calls for, embrace sweater weather and Atlanta’s random meteorological drama with confidence when you check out our favorite heated patios.

THE SPOTS

photo credit: Erik Meadows

Tacos

Upper Westside

$$$$Perfect For:Casual Weeknight DinnerOutdoor/Patio Situation
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The Works’ fast-growing complex can feel like a giant adult playground, with a brewery, cocktail bar, and a number of food options. But on chilly days, the best seat in the house is on Chicheria’s heated patio. Clear tarp enclosures keep in the warmth while also granting you views to all the people-watching—including the comings and goings at the axe throwing studio if you wanted to play a drinking game on who’s most likely to win, lose, or lose a finger. And though ​​Chicheria doesn’t make the best taco on the Upper Westside, their housemade blue corn tortillas and impressive number of options help to inch them above a few other area spots.

Of the three metro Atlanta locations, the Midtown Cafe Intermezzo is our favorite because of their patio. The antique-looking facade could have been plucked from some Parisian sidewalk, but views of a busy, pedestrian-friendly stretch of Peachtree Street make us feel at home. On cold days, a steamy glass of brandy-spiked Café Royale and the overhead heaters are all we need to warm up. And expect the patio to fill up with others chasing the same warmth and semi-alfresco charms. But the coffee menu, the most comprehensive we’ve ever seen in the ATL, is worth braving the crowd.

photo credit: Cameren Rogers

There are just a handful of tables outside on Yeppa and Co.’s small patio. And this trendy Buckhead spot stays so packed the body heat from nearby tablemates is usually enough to ward off any chilly weather. But when a particularly cold patch of weather hits, their heaters emit enough warmth to make the patio feel as if it’s a balmy day. Couple that with a warm bowl of pillowy gnocchi lightly bathed in a hearty garlicky tomato sauce, and you’ll be warmed from the inside out. Plus, when temps tilt toward light jacket season, the heaters provide a nice barrier when the patio’s glass doors are retracted so the interior dining room can catch a light breeze.

Ladybird is a top-tier destination off the Eastside BeltLine. Boozy drink pouches (think adult versions of a Capri-Sun) and favorites like a juicy burger and pulled pork sandwiches regularly divert throngs of scooterists, joggers, and meanderers off the trail path. But the main draw is the large outdoor space dotted with distinct yellow umbrellas and picnic tables that has become synonymous with ATL summers. But on days when we can only dream of sunscreen and flip flops, Ladybird accommodates us with fire pits to ward off the chill. Snag a beer from the Airstream in the corner, huddle around a blazing fire, and allow this pristine patio space to show off its versatility.

The interior of this VaHi bar emits an ‘80s basement aura, from the multicolored neon lights to menu items like nostalgic pizza rolls that run laps around those freezer-burnt ones from our childhood. And we love visiting their bathrooms to peruse the wall of famous dads from sitcoms and movies (we can name ‘em all). But the large, table-packed patio is our go-to spot to kick back with an Old Fashioned and a pile of zesty sesame wings, which are pretty f*cking good (which we can now say as adults). On those chilly days when the heaters warm up the open-air space, don’t make the mistake of taking off your jacket and leaving it behind. Dad would be extremely disappointed.

photo credit: Botica

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Botica, a Buckhead Spanish-Mexican restaurant with a lively, kid-friendly atmosphere, has the same irresistible charm as your life-of-the-party cousin who’s adamant about bringing the family together. We love eating on the spacious patio, which is accented in bright pastels and cuddled by greenery. Chilly nights are no deterrent here. Staff will pull down the patio’s retractable wall, keeping the warmth from the heaters enclosed as you savor your strong watermelon margarita and munch on nachos loaded with corn, black beans, and queso.  

At Little Rey, a fast-casual, counter-service taco spot in Piedmont Heights, the patio practically whispers to you. It’s huge and wraps around most of the building. Secondly, since its opening, Little Rey has been consistently packed. So, despite the ample bench seating inside the funkily decorated space, the patio remains the more popular choice to dig into your whole grilled chicken, salsa, corn tortillas, and cardboard pints of hearty white beans and rice. And when the temperature drops below hoodie weather, the industrial-sized overhead heaters and retractable patio covering keep it comfortable.

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