Summer’s not over yet, which means there are still plenty of places to enjoy outdoor dining in NYC. From rooftop restaurants and beer gardens to courtyard spaces and even boats, here’s our roundup of top spots to sample savory fare in the great outdoors while the weather’s still warm.
Travelers to Midtown East can enjoy Milanese fare at Casa Lever—the restaurant attached to the architectural masterpiece Lever House. If the idea of sampling delicacies like Maine Lobster with homemade squid ink pasta, zucchini and saffron sauce isn’t enough to entice, maybe the thought of enjoying your meal in the building’s spacious courtyard—with views of bustling Park Avenue and the building’s lobby, which hosts rotating art exhibitions—is.
Celebrity Chef Tom Colicchio’s modern American outpost in Kips Bay is the perfect place for a romantic meal while taking in views of the East River. For casual dining, opt for a seat on the terrace, while more formal meals can be had in the restaurant’s patio. Added bonus? The menus change daily and highlight seasonal ingredients from local farms, greenmarkets and the restaurant’s own urban farm—just feet away from the kitchen!
For an unconventional take on outdoor dining right on the Hudson River, Pier 66 Maritime Bar & Grill—often described as a “bar on a boat,” is the current home of the docked Lightship Frying Pan—a historic floating lighthouse. Expect a young, hip crowd noshing on burgers, beer and the like.
You don’t have to travel to Germany to sample authentic Bavarian fare, just head to The Standard Biergarten in the Meatpacking District. Take a seat at one of the wooden tables and enjoy German staples like sausage, pretzels and, of course, beer. You can work off the hearty fare with a brisk walk on the elevated High Line Park, which hovers directly over the beer garden.
In the Flatiron District, Birreria is perched atop the bustling Italian food market Eataly. Patrons can choose selections from an extensive menu of Italian delicacies and also sift through an eclectic list of beer—brewed just 30 feet away from where you sit. The popular spot even boasts a retractable roof, so you can hang out all day—even through the sun showers.
Nestled in Midtown’s Bryant Park and right behind the New York Public Library’s historic main building, diners at this New American eatery can take in views of the park from the outdoor patio garden or enjoy a bird’s-eye-view of their surroundings from the rooftop garden.
Located on the roof of Stage 48 in Hell’s Kitchen, Rooftop 48 is a great place to take in views of Manhattan’s west side. Diners can savor Kobe Beef Sliders and more while trying one (or several) complex cocktails by mixologist Nelson Lemus. If you head there on the weekend, you can enjoy all this while listening to wicked beats by a rotating roster of DJs.
Open at Pier 81 on Manhattan’s western reaches, the North River Lobster Company offers a casual seafood menu from its home on a floating lobster shack. At the restaurant, those that fancy food from the sea can chow down on classic New England lobster, selections from a fresh raw bar and more. Wash it all down with one of the eatery’s signature drinks.
At rooftop garden Gallow Green at The McKittrick Hotel, which offers awe-inspiring views of Chelsea, will have visitors feeling as if they’ve been transported to a secret garden—thanks to an abundant collection of hanging plants that populate the space. The venue features a menu of small plates, as well as a bottomless brunch on the weekends.
This tranquil venue, which rests in famed Central Park, is home to Lakeside Restaurant, with a varied menu of fine-dining fare (think Roasted Colorado Rack of Lamb, with creamed spinach, Maitake mushrooms, roasted Yukon Gold potatoes and more); as well as an outside bar and the Express Café. Guests to this historic venue will feel like true New Yorkers as they watch rowboats drift by on the adjacent lake—a picture-perfect image that city dwellers have enjoyed for more than a century.