The Best Restaurant Patios In PhiladelphiaOur 20 favorite patios to eat outside in Philly.
When it gets sunny, everyone in the city immediately looks for somewhere to sit outside, share a meal, and show off their tank tops and shorts. If you're looking for all the best outdoor spots to make the most of summer, this guide has you covered.
THE OUTDOOR SPOTS
Pizzeria Beddia is one of the more fun places to eat in Philly (not to mention one of the best), and their outdoor setup is no different. During the summer, they open up the back patio—filled with long green picnic tables—so you can have incredible small plates, pizza, and natural wines while taking in the rays. Make a reservation or walk up and put your name on the waitlist, and do some Fishtown people watching between bites of a pie stacked with Calabrian cream, mozzarella, Grana Padano, and greens.
Wm. Mulherin’s Sons is one of our favorite restaurants in Fishtown. With hanging lights, tall trees, long picnic tables, and a few umbrellas for sun cover, they have one of the nicer patios in the area where you can share a pizza or plates of ricotta cavatelli and lobster gnocchi. While you won’t get the unique charm of dining inside of a 100-year-old whiskey factory if you’re outside, one of their cocktails, a few plates of pasta, and the sunlight is a solid second choice.
It can take a lot to get people to suffer through the chaos on I-76 just for a meal. But with The Landing Kitchen in Bala cooking up everything from shakshuka to a sausage, egg, and cheese topped with salsa verde, we suggest you make the trip. With the Schuylkill River within eyeshot, an old steel mill aesthetic, and garden games like cornhole on the patio, there’s no other place in Philly quite like this American spot. Plus, the menu makes it much more than a place with a great view and lots of activities (we love their fried chicken sandwich and smoked salmon toast).
La Chinesca has one of the most recognizable patios in the city—and that’s not just because it’s a glowing neon pink. On a sunny day, The Spring Arts Mexican-Asian fusion spot is as packed as the A.C. Boardwalk on the 4th of July. It serves some of our favorite margaritas in town, so you’ll usually see people sipping on them while they split plates of Singapore noodles with shrimp, salsa topped Tijuana street dogs, and smoky kung pao chicken wings. Plus, the patio has lots of overhead coverage, so even a rainy day can’t stop your taco Tuesday, Wednesday, or Sunday.
Like the sun and general happiness, Talula’s Garden is something you probably forgot existed during the winter. But as soon as the weather’s nice again, it’s the only place you want to eat. Their patio is one of the bigger ones in the city and it’s full of trees and plants that might make you forget you’re in the middle of a city. At least for a few minutes, until 15 cars start beeping at each other five feet away from where you’re sitting. Order some wine and ricotta cavatelli, a couple of other dishes from their seasonal, produce-heavy menu, and then stroll Washington Square Park before heading home.
East Passyunk’s Barcelona Wine Bar serves great shareable tapas and their outdoor patio is one of the best (and largest) in the area. There’s about as many seats on the outside as there are on the inside—and you see people on dates, celebrating a birthday, or toasting to the first sunny day in weeks with a Manhattan with a sherry twist. The tapas spot is ideal for grabbing a few plates of patatas bravas, whole fish, good wine, and pretending you’re near the Mediterranean Sea on a sunny day (just surrounded by Philly accents).
The large Sor Ynez parking lot setup is the first thing you’ll see when you walk up, and it’s a pretty lively scene—there are a bunch of people sharing lamb shanks coated in salsa verde and after-work hangouts sipping on Oaxacan Old Fashioneds. The Kensington Mexican spot also has plenty of vegetarian and vegan-friendly dishes, like root vegetable ceviche vegan mixtole, so there’s something for everyone in your friend group.
The perfect outdoor date night spot should include a few things: string lights, a selection of summery cocktails, and an enclosed patio situation where you don’t have to listen to beeping car horns or imagine that there’s any real world outside those walls. Kensington Quarters has all three of those things in its Fishtown home, plus a very good burger that you should at least split with your date (if not order a whole one for yourself and another to take home with you).
What makes LMNO one of the most exciting dinner spots in the city is their outdoor setup that’s perfect for a night where you want to party without paying a cover at some club. The Fishtown spot has bright yellow and purple cafeteria-style seating, a glowing neon-lit bar that stretches from the interior to the exterior, and a few hanging lights that will shine on your round of tacos. When you head here after work with a few people from the office, the snapper chicharrón with tangy salsa verde is the dish you’ll all be talking about while sipping your morning coffee.
After a day of shopping at the Philadelphia Fashion District, you should hit up this Center City American brasserie. We love to pass around carafes of their French 75 while diving into raw bar options like oysters, jumbo shrimp, and tuna carpaccio. On a nice day, you can sit on their large brick outdoor patio and go for the saffron moules and pair it with a refreshing gin cocktail from their long list.
When Queer Eye brought its makeover series to Philly years ago, we got the gift of Alma Del Mar—full of colorful patio furniture and delicious Mexican food. This South Philly spot has a seafood-heavy brunch menu that’s solid across the board. You’ll be satisfied with the shrimp, whiting, scallops, and grits, or the salmon burger, but you should really go for the lobster benedict. It’s covered in a tangy Old Bay hollandaise that's as bright as the yellow seats on their patio. Sit under a few massive umbrellas with a taco or two and then stroll around the Italian Market.
If you’re interested in basking in the sun while eating steak frites, head to Royal Boucherie’s serene outdoor garden on the second floor. The Old City spot has a French-inspired menu that includes things like oysters, chicken cassoulet, and a few other dishes that will make you feel grateful for clear skies that day. And if you’re in the mood to people watch, you can post up at their outdoor setup and eat their Boucherie Burger that’s oozing with gruyère, peppery watercress, and smoky bacon.
Martha is worth a hang all year long, but it doesn’t really get crowded until the first nice day of Spring. As soon as that threshold is broken, Martha stays pleasantly full pretty much every night through late September. Their big back porch is filled with vintage tables with people eating hoagies, and there’s table service outside so you don’t have to walk back to the bar inside every time you want a refill. They also have a bocce ball court if that’s your thing, and, if it’s not, there are usually three or four dogs that you can hang out with instead.
Even during the winter, Front Street Cafe is universally loved. But as soon as they set up their huge back patio for the season, it goes from being universally loved to universally idolized. And that’s because, while you can show up here any time of the year for everything from breakfast to late-night chicken fingers, they take patio reservations all summer long. That’s a game-changer—especially on weekend mornings when literally every other place with more than one outdoor table has a two-hour wait.
Cantina Los Caballitos has one of the best Happy Hours in the city, and it’s even better when it’s warm outside. They have a huge patio right off East Passyunk, and from 4-6PM on weeknights you can get $16 pitchers of frozen margaritas to split between you and a few coworkers. Pair that with nachos or a plate of shrimp tacos and you have the perfect reason to take a summer Friday every week until Labor Day.
Like a lot of other beer gardens in the city, Independence Beer Garden is covered in greenery and has rows of long tables made to support multiple large containers of beer. Unlike most other beer gardens, this one has legitimately good food, and serves lunch and dinner with things like burgers and tacos every day during the summer. Independence also hosts competitive lawn game leagues, in case your casual beach version of corn hole doesn’t satisfy your urge to be overly competitive about everything.
The beer garden on South Street is a vacant lot for most of the year, but during the summer, the Philadelphia Horticultural Society turns it into a full-on forest with big trees, wood-chip floors, a massive patio, and string lights. Inside you can go for any of their frozen drinks (we love the Gritty Marg), a shrimp roll, a burger, or just drink some craft beers in this Narnia-esque garden.
Morgan’s Pier has everything you could possibly want in a beer garden: river views, a ton of seating, over 40 different beers to choose from, and a sandwich and seafood menu with a baker’s dozen of choices. So, not surprisingly, it’s pretty much the biggest day-drinking party in the city during the summer. Even with the huge amount of space it takes up under the Ben Franklin Bridge, Morgan’s Pier still gets crowded super quickly, so your best bet is to head there early, grab a few tables, and order enough pitchers so that you don’t have to get the bartender’s attention for the foreseeable future.
If you’re looking for a party on the water that feels like a music festival, head to The Winston On The Water. On their large bright patio, they have a DJ setup, games, and a few bars where you can get a cucumber jalapeño tequila cocktail. Since it’s right next to the Delaware River, it will probably be packed most days in the summer. But the view plus the burgers, shrimp baskets, and crab cake sandwich makes sharing the same stool with a stranger (almost) worth it.
So those 10 three-day weekends this year destroyed your PTO and you can’t take that trip to Paris. Okay—JFK Boulevard isn’t exactly the Champs-Élysées, but a meal at Cafe Click does its best to make up for it. Located in front of the Comcast Center, sit at any of their wicker bistro seats and split oysters, a smoked salmon tartine, and a warm crêpe topped with comté with the two friends that stayed in town. After a few sips of sparkling wine on their large patio, you’ll still wish you were in France, but at least you’ll be full.