As summer in the 6ix sadly draws to a close, it’s no surprise that many of us are kicking ourselves for missing out on the prime patio action that’s been right in front of us all summer long.
Fortunately for Toronto, there are plenty of al fresco dining options available, many of which you might not even know about, as well as a few newcomers.
We’re not talking about rooftops or popular chain restaurants, we’re talking about the crème de la crème of street patios that are tucked away in Toronto’s urban oasis.
Before the warm weather comes to an end, make sure you check out at least one of these lounge-worthy patios.
Tucked away from Toronto’s bustling Queen Street West lies Fonda Lola a funky Mexican bistro. Whether you prefer lunch, brunch or dinner, Fonda Lola has a menu that will satisfy all cravings.
Suggestion: Start with a CocoLoco margarita, dine on tacos and finish with the churros with cajeta foam.
Address: 942 Queen Street West
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What could be more enjoyable than enjoying the company of friends, dining on rich Spanish tapas, while twinkling lights dance above you in the warm summer air? Carmen is a quaint Queen West dining spot with an impeccable tasting menu and patio to boot.
Suggestion: Jicama Con Agucate (avocado purée, corn crisps, pico de gallo, and jicama wrap) or Lomo Adobado Con Pimento de Piquillo y Manchego (marinated pork tenderloin with piquillo jam and manchego cheese).
Address: 922 Queen Street West
The Food Dudes are the masterminds behind Rasa, an intimate dining room with a charming wrap around patio in Harbord Village. The patio is filled with small dining tables, dotted with tea candles, which creates a cozy and inviting atmosphere.
Suggestion: Truffle Gnudi (mushrooms, portobello soil, pickled shimeji and walnut pesto) or the Fish Board (weekly inspired).
Address: 196 Robert Street
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Smith is a three floor venue, but summer is easily the best time to dine there as this Church Street hotspot has a hidden back alley patio. The menu is an eclectic mix of comfort foods that will make definitely your stomach smile.
Suggestion: Brunch. Hands down.
Address: 553 Church Street
If craft beer’s your jam, look no further than this lively patio on Ossington. Bellwoods Brewery doesn’t just serve up some of the best craft brews in the city, it also has an impeccable menu filled with savoury meat dishes. Beer, meat and a patio? What more could you want?
Suggestion: Plenty of beer, and the Miami ribs. You can thank us later.
Address: 124 Ossington Avenue
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If you’re looking for a patio with killer lake views look no further than Against The Grain. This Sugar Beach hotspot is the perfect spot for catching up with friends as you indulge on brunch and sangria. And since it’s a bit of a walk from crowded Queens Quay, you rarely wait for a table.
Suggestion: Brunch, accompanied with one of the 16 beers on draught or one of the many creative cocktails.
Address: 25 Dockside Drive
This award-winning Mexican restaurant is located in the heart of the Distillery District and is hands down has one of the best street patios in the city. If the cobblestone streets, outdoor fire pits, and the vibrant table tops aren’t enough to get you in, the playful menu most certainly will.
Suggestion: Plenty of margaritas, tacos, and churros.
Address: 18 Tank House Lane
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It’s no secret that this King West newcomer is quickly becoming the go-to spot of the summer. Belfast Love is the modern day take on a ‘proper’ pub. Arrive early and you’ll be able to snag a spot on the street side patio.
Suggestion: Use the ‘Cocktail Flavour Grid’ to find a cocktail that meets your needs.
Address: 548 King Street West
This Entertainment District hotspot is home to one of the most lively patios in the downtown core. Known for its big tequila selection and Mexican street fare, the back alley patio is the perfect spot to meet for après work cocktails.
Suggestion: Tequila, and lots of it.
Address: 220 King Street West
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Bar Reyna is new to the Yorkville scene and needs to be at the top of your patio bucket list this summer. This Mediterranean-inspired cocktail bar has a stunning year-round back alley patio that is fit for a queen.
Suggestion: The ‘Her Royal Highness’ cocktail because it’s served in a rose gold pineapple.
Address: 158 Cumberland Street
There’s a new Bandit in town just in time for the weekend! Our brand new Raspberry Session Ale is brewed as a Session version of a Belgian Golden Strong Ale infused with raspberries. Aromatic, dry, refreshing, and everything you need this Friday. Available at brewpub and bottle shop. #SummerOfBandit
This brewery is new to the west-end and has won us over with its impressive list of house brews served in adorable raccoon pint glasses and its welcoming curb side patio. If you’re into craft beer, this energetic patio will easily become your new favourite place to day drink in the city.
Suggestion: Beer flights.
Address: 2125 Dundas West
❄️🍵 #ThisismyToronto @flyingbrussels .Geo Location: Cold Tea | A true hidden gem even for fellow Torontonian’s who know where it is. This is because it is enclosed between tall apartments, with indoor and outdoor seating. Great spot for a sit and talk or even dance at night. Sunday’s feature different themes with barbecued/grilled food on the spot. A must see in Kensington market along with many other interesting eateries and unique, antique thrift style shops.
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Every Sunday, the back patio of this hidden Kensington Market gem is transformed into a lively BBQ party where the drinks are always flowing. If you’re looking for a more lively spot and somewhere to get groovy, this funky hideaway is definitely the place to be. The only trick is finding the place.
Suggestion: Cocktails and the featured BBQ dishes.
Address: 60 Kensington Avenue
Bar Raval has quickly become a College Street institution and is a must-visit spot during the summer thanks to its wraparound street side patio. The patio is the complete opposite of the cavernous, wood-embellished indoor dining area and offers up some fantastic street views, perfect for people watching.
Suggestion: Wet your whistle with a cocktail, specifically the Gothic Quarter (Tanqueray, Kaffir lime, sugar and creole) and finish off with some tapas.
Address: 505 College Street
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From the picture-perfect dining area and the whimsical patio to the mouthwatering dishes and hand-crafted cocktails this Italian eatery is truly a work of art. The patio is the perfect spot to unwind with friends with a glass (or two) of rosé, which is $7 a glass from 3-5 pm everyday.
Suggestion: Rosé all day. And the zucchini fritti. When enjoyed together it’s pure perfection.
Address: 295 Adelaide Street West
Gusto 101’s street level patio is the perfect setting to sip and savour the Italian Trattoria’s notorious drinks and dishes. Surrounded by groomed box hedges, this patio is the perfect people-watching spot.
Suggestion: Sangria, accompanied by the famous Cavolo Nero salad (organic lacinato kale, zante currants, toasted pine nuts pecorino, parmigiano, lemon vinaigrette) and the Mafalde ai Funghi pasta (portobello, porcini, oyster mushrooms, truffle cream sauce).
Address: 101 Portland Street
Amsterdam Brewery is not only known for brewing up some of the city’s finest suds, it’s also home to one of the nicest patios in Toronto. The 350-seater deck is peppered with Muskoka chairs and beach umbrellas and boast some of the most picturesque views of Lake Ontario.
Suggestion: Beer flights.
Address: 245 Queens Quay West