The Best Patio Dining in Seattle

The warm weather months are here, so it’s sunglasses on at these al fresco dining spots
Twilight at Westward on the shore of North Lake Union


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; heathmankirkland.com

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. Kirkland, 1170 Carillon Point; 425.889.0303; thewoodmark.com/beachcafe

MADISON PARK
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. Madison Park, 4235 E Madison St.; 206.860.6110; theindiepizzeria.com

MADRONA
Bottlehouse
[WINE BAR] This charming wine bar in Madrona is known as much for its wine selection as for its beautiful deck, which is hopping during the warmer months. A mix of wooden communal and high-top tables fill early and often in the summer. Late afternoon and evenings, Tue.–Sun. 1416 34th Ave.; 206.708.7164; bottlehouseseattle.com

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; stclouds.com

MAGNOLIA

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. Magnolia, 2601 W Marina Place; 206.283.8322; maggiebluffs.com

PIKE PLACE MARKET
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; lepichetseattle.com

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; maximilienrestaurant.com

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; thepinkdoor.net

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; tomdouglas.com

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. Pike Place Market, 1600 Post Alley; 206.728.2233; cafecampagne.com

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