Everything about Nido's Backyard in Oakland makes it a great spot for group hangs. The entirely outdoor space looks like an Airbnb you'd find in Joshua Tree, furnished with colorful murals, cacti everywhere, and hanging string lights. Plus, everyone has a drink in hand, laughing and chatting over music and sounds of trains rumbling by. And while Nido offers a range of Mexican dishes like a quesabirria or duck confit enchiladas, the shared plates are what Nido’s does best. The carnitas surtidas taco kit serves a plentiful supply of right-off-the-grill pork shoulder carnitas, chicarrónes, and juicy, not-too-charred ribs that you can balance with coleslaw, salsa verde, pickled carrots, and pico de gallo. And if the breeze from the Oakland waterfront starts to set in, they have plenty of overhead coverings and heat lamps to keep you warm—or you could just go for the sweet and spicy margaritas. Though you’re here for birthdays or catching up with friends, we’d come up with any excuse to enjoy some cocktails here on a sunny afternoon.