One of the benefits of living in Minnesota is being able to embrace four seasons of weather. As we cruise headlong into summer, it's time to take the fun outside and revel in the glory of long, soft nights and sun-filled days. It's time for outdoor enthusiasts and food obsessives to unite in our singular love of dining experiences. It's time to hit a patio.

This year's guide is our biggest ever: combining years of research and layers of sunscreen into one handy, opinionated guide of our favorite places to dine and drink outside. These patios are so much more than a few haphazard tables and chairs overlooking a parking lot.

These are places that transport us somewhere special inside our cities. Whether starting the day with a little Parisian flavor at a sidewalk cafe, partying the night away on a rooftop above the city, or bringing your pup to a cafe that understands their importance, we've got an outdoor dining suggestion at the ready.

Brace yourselves for our ultimate patio guide.


Blondette's dining room is surrounded by glass that gives open-air views of the city.
Blondette's dining room is surrounded by glass that gives open-air views of the city.

Jeff Wheeler, Star Tribune


The entire roof of Blondette's fifth-floor dining room is a retractable glass ceiling, which means the city sky makes for a gorgeous view, even when the weather isn't cooperating. Stepping onto the terrace feels like a secret oasis, a place to sip a gin cocktail garnished with a bouquet of herbs and savor the French-ish fare from Daniel del Prado. It's lovely for dinner or the newly added brunch service. Plus, there's free valet parking when dining at the restaurant, which is inside the Rand Tower Hotel.

527 Marquette Av. S., Mpls.,

Brit's Pub

For a good swath of downtown Minneapolis enthusiasts, it's not summer without a visit to the rooftop at Brit's Pub. With lawn bowling, English-style pub fare and a vibrant green space in the heart of the city, it's easy to see why. Reserve space for lawn bowling or enjoy watching a match from the sidelines.

1110 Nicollet Mall, Mpls.,


Just a couple of blocks from Xcel Energy Center, Cossetta's rooftop patio in downtown St. Paul is a handy destination to keep in mind when going to an event. Head all the way upstairs to Louis Ristorante & Bar for Manhattans, Italian snacks and a view of the Cathedral.

211 W. 7th St., St. Paul,

Paul Gonzalez, of Vancouver Island, B.C., and coworker Nick Christman, of Lexington, Kentucky, eat an early dinner on the rooftop patio at Gai Noi  in Minneapolis.
Paul Gonzalez, of Vancouver Island, B.C., and coworker Nick Christman, of Lexington, Kentucky, eat an early dinner on the rooftop patio at Gai Noi in Minneapolis.

Aaron Lavinsky, Star Tribune

Gai Noi

Ann Ahmed's newest restaurant has treetop views of Loring Park and glimpses of the Basilica. The rooftop has never been more lush, and the menu is filled with crowd-pleasers like Ahmed's iconic basil wings and new dishes like mok paa, whitefish with herbs and spicy gravy wrapped in banana leaves. If the upstairs patio isn't your perfect vibe, there's plenty of open-air space on the first level.

1610 Harmon Place, Mpls.,

Graze Provisions + Libations

With a bunch of cool vendors inside and a full bar overseen by master drink makers, this food hall in the North Loop is a crowd-pleasing destination for a gang of friends with diverging tastes. Order wraps from Wrap, burgers from Two Mixed Up or anything from Union Hmong Kitchen with a refreshing gin and tonic from the bar. The rooftop patio offers views of the city and it's a short walk from Target Field for a pre- or postgame hang.

520 N. 4th St., Mpls.,


This Italian restaurant has been reborn in the old Amore Uptown, and it's still a gorgeous setting to take in an urban sunset. On the menu are pizzas, pasta and spreads perfect for savoring with fresh focaccia. Plus, there's a full bar and it's possible to time a flight of negronis to last from happy hour until the sun dips down behind Bde Maka Ska.

1601 W. Lake St., Mpls.,

Windows and chandeliers make for an elegant rooftop dining experience at RH Rooftop Restaurant above the Restoration Hardware in Edina.
Windows and chandeliers make for an elegant rooftop dining experience at RH Rooftop Restaurant above the Restoration Hardware in Edina.

RH Rooftop Restaurant

The Restoration Hardware outside Southdale Center has the grandest rooftop restaurant inside a retail establishment — at least locally. Browse your way through the shop and up the stairs to dine. Surrounded by glass and chandeliers, the restaurant overlooks ... well, the parking lot. But you're on the top floor, so it's easy to look beyond the concrete and into the lush green Edina treetops. It's a gorgeous space to sip Champagne at sunset.

6801 France Av. S., Edina,

Rooftop Lounge at Hewing Hotel

There are indoor and outdoor elements of this bar atop the buzzy North Loop hotel. It's a cool hideaway above all the hubbub below, with a lineup of excellent cocktails and a limited, light food menu of boards and dips. Just check before you go to make sure it's a night that is open to the public; it's occasionally reserved for hotel guests.

300 Washington Av. N., Mpls.,


Eat Street Crossing is packed with food options from ice cream to sushi sandos with a full bar and a gorgeous patio on Nicollet Avenue.
Eat Street Crossing is packed with food options from ice cream to sushi sandos with a full bar and a gorgeous patio on Nicollet Avenue.

Photo provided by Eat Street Crossing, Star Tribune


All Saints

Just over the Hennepin Avenue bridge from downtown Minneapolis, this lovely (and large) patio awaits. All Saints is owned by two longtime hospitality professionals, which means everything from food to service to drinks are done with experienced care. Try the exceptional cheeseburger alongside a modernized Gibson.

222 E. Hennepin Av., Mpls.,

Bauhaus Brew Labs

The brewery's already cool patio leveled up when Animales Barbeque Co. moved in with its main trailer. The industrial setting includes a giant tree in a courtyard, a decommissioned crane and views of the occasional passing train. Order a Short Pants shandy to pair with the top-tier barbecue and enjoy city living at its finest.

1315 NE. Tyler St., Mpls.,,

Black Forest Inn

This historic restaurant has lasted generations, and its Beer Garden — one of the Twin Cities' first outdoor dining spaces — has become known as a must-visit during the warmer months. Grab a stein and enjoy the patio's bubbling fountain, art and ambience, and imagine you're visiting a European courtyard.

1 E. 26th St., Mpls.,


The North Loop staple has given its patio a major refresh and expanded the hours. But what remains is that this is the best place to sample the famous Parlour burger, or a more upscale, seasonal entree, and get an ice cold, top-shelf cocktail. New hours mean Borough is open for lunch through the evenings. Plus, if there's a chill in the air, there are heaters.

730 Washington Av. N., Mpls.,

Bricksworth Beer Co.

With patio views of the Northstar rail line, this beer pub possesses one of the more undersung patios of the North Loop. Now that real estate comes with Dorito-crusted wings, Detroit-style pizza slices and more reasons to dip out of work early for a long happy hour.

305 5th Av. N., Suite 105, Mpls.,

Broders' Pasta Bar

The front sidewalk patio feels like an Italian vacation with a trellis and fantastic fresh-made pasta pouring out of the kitchen. Try the linguine vongole, a tumble of egg pasta studded with popped-open button clams bathed in a white-wine sauce seasoned with pancetta — and a glass of wine, of course.

5000 Penn Av. S., Mpls.,

Bungalow Club

A great spot if you've finally found a sitter or if it's a first-time meetup with someone promising, the ivy-covered patio at the Bungalow Club is always the right choice for date-night dining. The cover affords most tables a little extra privacy even on busy nights, and the Italian cuisine from chef/owner Andrew Kraft offers plenty to rave over or savor quietly — depending on the date. Check the website for rotating menus.

4300 E. Lake St., Mpls.,

The 2,000-square-foot retractable beer garden atrium at Butcher’s Tale in Minneapolis is rain-or-shine dining.
The 2,000-square-foot retractable beer garden atrium at Butcher’s Tale in Minneapolis is rain-or-shine dining.

Aaron Lavinsky, Star Tribune

Butcher's Tale

This year-round beer garden — complete with a glass roof and retractable walls — brings all the summer vibes and roasty meat smells without leaving anyone scrambling if the temperamental weather turns. Sausages, all made by chef Peter Botcher, are the star of the show out here, and pair perfectly with the long list of beers on the menu.

1121 Hennepin Av. S., Mpls.,

Café and Bar Lurcat

An undeniably romantic seat at the edge of Loring Park, Lurcat shines on warm summer nights. Gated and under trees adorned with twinkle lights, how could one not fall in love? Entrees are perfect for date night. Start out with a little Wagyu steak tartare and a bottle of wine, then sit back and watch the stars come out.

1624 Harmon Place,


This is indoor-outdoor dining at its finest: Potted cactus and the giant living wall behind the bar have always made Colita feel more like a warm-weather destination than Armatage neighborhood eatery. On warm days, the glass walls fold back and the giant plants come out. Seats are set up outside the dining room and it's almost like a little slice of Los Angeles inside Minneapolis. Order an ornate cocktail alongside the savory mushroom tacos.

5400 Penn Av. S., Mpls.,

Eat Street Crossing

Just when it seemed we couldn't love this new food hall collaboration by the owners of Bebe Zito and Zen Box Izakaya more, they went and opened the patio. The exterior space fits right alongside the historic Old Arizona building. Fire pits crackle on cool nights and the sunshine is dappled by trees during the day. Grab a cocktail and order up the sushi sandos, golden-crusted pizza, or hot honey butter-dipped fried chicken from inside.

2819 Nicollet Av. S., Mpls.,

Fika Café

At the American Swedish Institute, the daytime cafe Fika serves baked goods and light bites — from open-faced sandwiches to Swedish meatballs — and cocktails with access to a gorgeous green space between the modern museum and the Turnblad Mansion. There's also a cart filled with lo-fi games for kids to play, so grown-ups can enjoy their meals while they get the wiggles out. Can't break away during the day? The cafe is open until 8 p.m. on Thursdays.

2600 Park Av. S., Mpls.,

Guacaya Bistreaux

This North Loop eatery is a beguiling mix of Cajun and Panamanian food from chef/owner Pedro Wolcott. Facing Washington Avenue, the patio oasis sets the stage for viewing the thrumming rhythms of the city.

337 Washington Av. N., Mpls.,

James Beard nominated chef Christina Nguyen's food is a vibrant pairing with the lively patio at this Northeast restaurant.
James Beard nominated chef Christina Nguyen's food is a vibrant pairing with the lively patio at this Northeast restaurant.

Tom Wallace — STAR TRIBUNE, Star Tribune

Hai Hai

Sip and snack in tropical style at Hai Hai's cloth-covered tables or indoor-outdoor bar. Drinking here is like a vacation from everyday life. But there's more. Don't miss the fresh herb, shrimp and pork belly-stuffed banh xeo or the banana blossom salad that's a riot of herbs, bright citrus and spice from James Beard Award-nominated chef Christina Nguyen.

2121 University Av. NE., Mpls.,

Hola Arepa

This 10-year-old tropical spot on Nicollet Avenue, also from Christina Nguyen and Birk Stefan Grudem, has emphasized patio life since day one. In addition to having year-round patio seats and a bar with a few coveted seats where the window opens to the outside, there's a stack of affordable munchies, including the signature arepas and a new burger on Brazilian cheese bread. Plus, the cocktails are always a hit; start with a classic margarita. It's worth noting that the entire restaurant is gluten-free.

3501 Nicollet Av. S., Mpls.,

Plenty of patios have green space, but not many can boast an actual babbling brook like Jax Cafe can.
Plenty of patios have green space, but not many can boast an actual babbling brook like Jax Cafe can.

Jax Cafe

Jax has been a Minneapolis dining destination for more than 90 years, and it continues to deliver class and elegance in Northeast. The patio is like wandering into a garden, complete with a babbling stream and tons of blooming flowers. Order a steak or fresh fish and relax amid the finer things in life.

1928 University Av. NE.,


Live like the star of a magazine spread at this stunning patio outside Khâluna. Even the food and cocktails are vying for a close-up with fresh flower garnishes and handmade plates, making James Beard Award-nominated chef/owner Ann Ahmed's dishes almost too gorgeous to eat. Start the meal with the artful rainbow rice that's gluten-free, dairy-free and can be made vegan upon request. Or revisit an old friend with the basil wings, on the menu at each of Ahmed's restaurants.

4000 Lyndale Av. S., Mpls.,


Ann Kim's Korean American restaurant is abuzz in Minneapolis' Uptown neighborhood. The food is punctuated by big flavors and a few homey comforts, like the plump, shrimp-studded savory pancake. Best to bring friends and order the whole menu to share. The restaurant's sidewalk patio is framed by large green plants and is a perfect spot to linger over snacky bites. Be sure to catch the eye-popping "Guardians of the Flame" mural along the alley leading to the basement Bronto Bar.

1432 W. 31st St., Mpls.,

Klassics Kitchen + Cocktails

Brittney and Gerard Klass already won over our stomachs with their first restaurant, Soul Bowl. But their new place really allows this talented culinary couple to shine. From the absolutely stunning cocktails to the gorgeous food — don't miss the crab boil wings — this new restaurant is a welcome addition to downtown Minneapolis. The patio is near the parking lot but off the street, giving it a vibrant urban feel.

428 S. 2nd St., Mpls.,

La Boulangerie Marguerite

Who doesn't love a breakfast patio? This St. Paul bakery expanded to Minneapolis, in the former Mary Ellen's Bistro space, with a menu of sandwiches and coffee along with their baked goods. The little sidewalk patio is a perfect perch to watch the goings on of this expanding neighborhood.

300 13th Av. NE., Mpls.,


During the pandemic, Martina's patio was just a few tables outside the restaurant, but it's grown to a lovely shaded space. The clean wood lines of the seating and the tan and white color scheme carry the restaurant's modern, simplistic aesthetic outdoors. Order up classic Daniel del Prado dishes for enjoying outside, like the irresistible potato churros or spicy spaghetti fra diavolo with lobster.

4312 Upton Av. S., Mpls.,

Monte Carlo

The menu at Monte Carlo isn't the only thing steeped in nostalgia. The eatery harks back to when this part of town was mostly old warehouses. Just like then, the giant martinis are ice cold with a generous pour. Sit back by the fountain on this expansive patio — always a warm-weather destination — and enjoy the urban nightlife.

219 3rd Av. N., Mpls,.

A formerly unutilized patio is now a twinkle-lit gem at Porzana.
A formerly unutilized patio is now a twinkle-lit gem at Porzana.

Sharyn Jackson, Star Tribune, Star Tribune


Judging by this list, Daniel del Prado restaurants clearly understand the importance of a great patio, and his newest North Loop restaurant is no exception. A little brick alleyway with bistro lights is one of the most clamored-for seats in the already busy neighborhood. If you're lucky enough to grab one, sit back and enjoy the downtown night lights and the extensive steak and pasta menu.

200 N. 1st St., Mpls.,


This is one of those restaurants where you almost have to know where you're going to find it on the first try. Set back between two buildings, this upscale pizza restaurant put the work in to transform what was just a parking lot and sidewalk into an outdoor dining destination. Gorgeous landscaping and umbrella-protected tables are the ideal setting for enjoying the wood-fired pizza and fresh fare. Bring your gluten-free friends, too — they have some of the best GF pizza crusts around.

2811 W. 43rd St., Mpls.,

Surly's giant patio is a Minneapolis summer bucket list stop.
Surly's giant patio is a Minneapolis summer bucket list stop.

Star Tribune, Star Tribune

Surly Brewing Co.

This patio is more for picnicking with food from inside the cavernous brewery, but the huge green space is gorgeous. Watch the sun set against the old silos nearby and feast on one of the New Haven-style pizzas from the upstairs pizzeria, or the something-for-everyone menu from the lower-level gastropub. An outdoor bar provides easy access to a fresh pint of Surly's extensive beer lineup.

520 Malcolm Av. SE., Mpls.,

Wise Acres

It's safe to expect that a restaurant fed by an actual farm and owned by the same folks that have the garden center next door would have a nice patio. Wise Acres more than delivers on that expectation. The seats are surrounded by vibrant colors and plants, making it an ideal inside-the-city getaway for weekday brunch or lunch. Grab something from the farm stand inside after enjoying the seasonal menu.

5401 Nicollet Av. S., Mpls.,

Have dinner on the lush patio behind Herbst Eatery & Farm Stand, or sneak away for lunch after picking up something from the grab-and-go farm stand.
Have dinner on the lush patio behind Herbst Eatery & Farm Stand, or sneak away for lunch after picking up something from the grab-and-go farm stand.

Jeff Wheeler, Star Tribune

St. Paul

Brunson's Pub

A neighborhood bar on St. Paul's East Side is no doubt the spot where people stop in after a softball game or gather with friends to nurse a beer and catch the ballgame on TV. However, it's also a fantastic spot to tuck into a green shrouded patio and order some crispy fried chicken thighs coated in a sweet and spicy rub or sip a rhubarb-spiked cocktail.

956 Payne Av., St. Paul,

Centro Highland Park

Centro has built a reputation on tacos, pitchers of margaritas and good times — all on the patio. The just-opened location in St. Paul's Highland Park neighborhood delivers on all fronts. The windows run floor to ceiling and pull back along Cleveland Avenue and Highland Parkway, giving the entire restaurant an indoor-outdoor feel. There are plenty of outside seats for basking in the season. (Centro's Northeast and Eat Street locations also have nice patios.)

750 S. Cleveland Av., St. Paul,


Bask in the Caribbean glow of chef Soleil Ramirez's gorgeous new restaurant just steps away from downtown St. Paul and the Mississippi River. Inspired by her home country of Venezuela and her fine-dining training, the gorgeous plates are something to savor. Meanwhile, the bar leans into high-quality rums and tropical sophistication. The patio sits above the street and affords a few views of those good summer sunsets over the city.

84 S. Wabasha St., St. Paul,

El Burrito Mercado

When was the last time you spent an evening being serenaded by mariachi? The expansive terrace outside El Burrito is surrounded by gothic fencing and joyous Mexican decor. This family-owned St. Paul institution has been serving the city for generations and always makes summer feel like an occasion worthy of weeknight celebration. Grab a crew of friends for a night of margaritas and queso-birria tacos.

175 Cesar Chavez St., St. Paul,

Em Quê Viêt

The white-brick exterior of this Grand Avenue eatery is covered in tumbling wisteria. While there are patio seats on the outside sidewalk, there's also a full patio at the back of the restaurant, shaded and decorated with gardens and greenery. Start with the famous egg rolls and an iced coffee sweetened with condensed milk while perusing the menu, a mix of Quê Viêt classics.

1332 Grand Av., St. Paul,

Herbst Eatery & Farm Stand

Tucked behind the restaurant off Raymond Avenue, this patio with bistro lights feels like an insider's secret, even though it's just a stone's throw from an industrial part of St. Paul. The restaurant delivers a full-service dinner under the lights at night, but it's available by day to enjoy a grab-and-go sandwich from the farm stand cooler, too.

779 Raymond Av., St. Paul,

Joan's in the Park

Pull out the stops for major romance at this patio. The tasting menu is a progressive evening of elegance and outstanding service. There are choices for each course, from bread to mains, but don't miss out on the sumptuous beef tenderloin. The sheltered patio is located along Snelling Avenue, but feels intimate and special with just the right amount of fancy furniture and bistro lights.

631 S. Snelling Av., St. Paul,

Moscow on the Hill

The ice cold vodka just hits a little differently on this classic Cathedral Hill patio. Order a pile of dill seasoned potatoes for snacking or revel in the heartier entrees while sheltered from the hustle and bustle on this deck out back.

371 Selby Av., St. Paul,

Mucci's Italian

Mucci's in St. Paul's West 7th neighborhood has a new patio, off Randolph Avenue into the residential neighborhood, that was built over the colder months. It's a gorgeous setting to enjoy the piles of fresh pasta, which is made and assembled into all manners of hearty dishes, including a lasagna that's billed as "layers of love." There's also prosecco on tap.

786 Randolph Av., St. Paul,

Nico's Taco and Tequila Bar

This Nico's location sports a beautiful patio that overlooks the giant tree-shaded street and adds to the incredible charm of the neighborhood. Order a flight of salsas and any kind of taco your warm weather-loving heart desires, from camaron asado to nopales. (Nico's Uptown and new Minneapolis locations also sport fun patios.)

2260 Como Av., St. Paul,


To call Revival a fried chicken restaurant would be to undersell all the wonderful things this restaurant, from fine-dining vets Nick Rancone and chef Thomas Boemer, does so well. Yes, there is buttermilk-brined fried chicken, but there also are fried green tomatoes with all the Southern charm of an afternoon in Charleston. There's award-worthy wine picks and a patio out back that feels like a haven from the chaos of real life.

525 Selby Av., St. Paul,

W.A. Frost is often cited as one of the best patios in the Twin Cities and it's not hard to see why.
W.A. Frost is often cited as one of the best patios in the Twin Cities and it's not hard to see why.

W.A. Frost and Co.

Without question, W.A. Frost is one of the best patios in the Twin Cities to enjoy a long, warm evening. Sheltered by giant, old trees in a verdant setting accented by twinkling lights in a neighborhood filled with stately old buildings, it's a romantic setting for an evening with friends or partners. Reservations are the pro move, because the few first-come seats often fill quickly and it's hard to walk away from this kind of beauty.

374 Selby Av., St. Paul,

Wrestaurant at the Palace

This is the first full season we get to embrace this slice of St. Paul brought to us by the masterminds behind Wrecktangle Pizza and First Avenue. The historic outdoor mall feels like an urban getaway in the shade of the Palace Theatre. Happy hour is a good one with $10 Old Fashioneds, gimlets and piña daiquiris. There are pizza rolls for $4, pickle roll-ups for $2 and a basket of curly fries for $6. Happy hour is from 2 to 5 p.m. and again from 10 p.m. to close.

33 W. 7th Place, St. Paul,


The waterside patio at 6Smith in Wayzata is peak summer dining.
The waterside patio at 6Smith in Wayzata is peak summer dining.

Leila Navidi, Star Tribune

6 Smith

The rooftop views of Lake Minnetonka are second to none outside of 6 Smith — and those seats are a hot ticket when the weather is on our side. The beet and watermelon salad hits just right on an 80-degree day, and the wine selection is second only to the ice cold cocktails served here.

294 Grove Lane E., Wayzata,

Birch's on the Lake

On a quiet day, you can hear the gentle waves lapping the shoreline and the birds calling back and forth. Sipping a frigid beer in the shade, there's just nothing better. Birch's on the Lake offers a crowd-pleasing menu from weekend brunch to pub grub to supper club fare, so it's not always easy to catch a moment when this gorgeous patio isn't filled with other folks. But it's just as lovely a scene with new friends.

1310 Wayzata Blvd., Long Lake,

Ciao Bella

Enveloped by large trees and an ivy-covered pergola, Ciao Bella knows how to set a lush summer scene. Open since 1997, this restaurant has served the metro long enough that most people who come have a favorite menu item. But if it's your first time, start with the burrata caprese or the ahi tuna spring roll and a glass of chilled chardonnay before deciding if it's a flatbread or entree kind of night.

3501 Minnesota Drive, Bloomington,

Craft and Crew restaurants

All Craft and Crew restaurants treat canine guests like the valued members of the dining crew that they are. Check out the "pawtio" menu at Duke's on 7, Stanley's Northeast Bar Room, the Howe Daily Kitchen & Bar, the Block or Pub 819 — it includes a full menu for dogs, and all get a free peanut butter nilla "woofer" just for showing up.

Duke's on 7, 15600 Hwy. 7, Minnetonka; Stanley's Northeast Bar Room, 2500 University Av. NE., Mpls.; the Howe Daily Kitchen & Bar, 3675 Minnehaha Av. S., Mpls.; the Block Food & Drink, 7007 Walker St., St Louis Park; Pub 819, 819 Mainstreet, Hopkins;

The Craft and Crew restaurants have a special canine menu on their "pawtios."
The Craft and Crew restaurants have a special canine menu on their "pawtios."

Nicole Hvidsten, Star Tribune

Frio Frio

When sweltering temperatures start to feel like personal punishment, icy treats are in order. Behind Angel Food Bakery in St. Louis Park's Texa Tonka strip mall is a cool spot to enjoy them, and it has a lovely patio, too. Order up gourmet ice lollies, ice cream sandwiches, piles of shaved snow and cocktails, served on a tray with sweet treat accoutrements in the beautifully landscaped setting.

8100 Minnetonka Blvd., St. Louis Park,

Grocer's Table

This popular day-into-evening restaurant gives fancy casual vibes and a few streetside patio tables. A fresh, spiked Bootleg just a few steps away from Lake Minnetonka is just the excuse to spend an afternoon tooling around town. Grab a group of friends who appreciate fine aesthetics and order the prettiest veggie tray and charcuterie boards out on the sidewalk patio.

326 Broadway Av. S., Wayzata,


Removed from the main street traffic and covered when the weather turns sour, this patio is utter serenity and serves one of the prettiest martinis, with table ide accoutrements for personalizing. Go casual and enjoy a pizza or opt for a more formal entree. Either way, exhale and let all the real life stresses evaporate for a few moments.

739 E. Lake St., Wayzata,

Las Islas

The views off this cliffside patio are of both the trains and the river below, which suits the largely industrial part of town where it's located. There's a distinctive South St. Paul beauty happening here, and it comes with a bunch of fresh seafood and Mexican fare and giant, colorful cocktails. All in: It's a really good time in a cool, industrial setting.

600 N. Concord St., South St. Paul,

Lat 14

Off to the side of Ann Ahmed's Golden Valley restaurant is a serene refuge from the hectic world. There are lush plants, afternoon sunshine and a menu filled with vibrantly flavored dishes, all inspired by cuisines that land on the 14th Latitude of the globe. The florals and herbs that garnish many dishes and drinks echo the patio aura, giving the whole space a dreamlike quality.

8815 7th Av. N., Golden Valley,


It's not easy to get a seat inside Daniel del Prado's Wayzata restaurant, but it is worth jockeying for one. This tropical Wayzata haven edges right up to the water, with plenty of Lake Minnetonka boats docked nearby. With dishes like ahi tuna tostadas and sesame seed-topped guacamole, it's like Macanda was built for a summer food bucket list. Sip on a heartily spiked spa water and enjoy all the pretty — both people and scenery.

294 Grove Lane E., Wayzata,

Mason Jar Kitchen & Bar

The surprisingly large patio at the end of an Eagan strip mall feels more like a deck at the home of an incredibly hospitable neighbor: Lights twinkle inside Mason jars, and the menu is stacked with crowd pleasers. Order a beer can chicken or charred New York strip steak and Broccolini to complete the vibe. The restaurant also has a bakery, so save room for cupcakes.

1565 Cliff Road, Eagan,

Nouvelle Brewing

Outdoor space isn't new at this Robbinsdale brewpub from the Travail collective, but the patio seems to expand and get better with every season. Surrounded by greenery is an excellent way to enjoy one of their fantastic pizzas. Plus, kid-sized picnic tables make the whole space feel even more family-friendly.

4124 W. Broadway, Robbinsdale,

Osteria I Nonni

The patio outside this fine Italian eatery feels so special. The green preserve, hugged by treetops and nature, is shockingly close to the city. Indulge in white linen-worthy Italian fare and impress wine friends with the extensive selection on the menu.

981 Sibley Memorial Hwy., Lilydale,

Have a favorite patio? Don't keep it a secret — drop it in the comments.