Ballard Avenue is full of new patio structures, including this particularly atmospheric (and ventilated) situation at Gracia. Photograph by Amber Fouts.
Indoor dining is inching back into the picture, but if we’re going to get out of the house, connect with friends, or support restaurants in ways other than takeout, many of us are still doing it outside. Here is our guide to tented tables and covered patios around the city. Please consider this a living document to be updated as necessary.
Outdoor heaters and covered tables at David Orozco’s steakhouse shield you from the elements while you peruse a menu of uncommon cuts of beef and loaded baked potatoes. Reserve a 90-minute slot online.
Ethan Stowell’s relaxed family-friendly pizza spot has a few individual-party tents on Ballard Ave. You can order your pies and beer right from the table via QR code.
The cute little fenced-in streatery on Ballard Avenue is now tented and ready to roll into rainy months (and happy hour runs 4–8).
The charming back garden at this destinationworthy neighborhood restaurant has a covered section with heaters mounted above. By day, the space is available to customers at Red Arrow Coffee, the espresso shop that Brimmer owner Jen Doak opened this summer in the back garden's studio space.
Chester Gerl’s stellar Mexican restaurant made a whole video about the safety protocols in its tented seating area. Which also happens to be lovely.
The Italian restaurant turned its sizable garden into a sprawling tent situation, made cozy with curtains, carpets, plants, artwork, string lights, and a stack of blue blankets to keep you warm.
The beautiful space formerly known as Bastille now feels like a patio village, thanks to a covered structure out front, and the side patio, where customers fire up their laptops and linger over the all-day café menu.
Tents within tents: Beneath a monster-size rain canopy, the brewery has erected two-walled “beer pods” to keep drinkers protected from wind and separated from other parties. A pair of firepits and blankets (for sale) stave off the cold. Even cooler: a private heated greenhouse space that holds up to five people, available by reservation only.
The oyster bar that stunned a city 10 years ago is now Camp Walrus, a cheerful series of tents in the rear parking lot that takes reservations on OpenTable (enter the back way, via Shilshole). Sea Creatures Restaurant Group says the tents will be up at least through February.
A pergola and roof over the charming back patio keeps you dry; space heaters keep you warm. Jerry Corso’s Italian menu keeps you coming back.
The small front garden has a sturdy shelter all set up, an improvement upon the previous tent; Melissa Miranda’s memorably Filipino restaurant can also supply you with a fleece blanket (fully washed between uses).
This neighborly bar serves housemade soups and sauces accompany brunch food, burgers, and even vegetarian and vegan options along with an abundance of cocktails. Outdoor seating gives you a chance to experience the unique street sign tables, too. Reserve one here.
Another covered patio—with firepits—perfect for a happy hour of the original brews on tap (11 to be exact, and one cider).
For when you want a happy hour that feels like a Hallmark holiday film, this spacious tent is already decked for Christmas, with garlands, trees, and white-light reindeer.
The terrace was charming in the Before Times. Even more so now that it’s covered, heated, and serving beautiful Italian food seven days a week. Reservations encouraged.
A corridor-style tent setup befitting the downtown Bellevue address—linens on the tables, foliage, and a surprisingly elegant alfresco vibe.
Diners of all ages can sit on the covered patio—provided they like sushi. No reservations, but heaters are on the way.
This under-the-radar Italian cafe on First Avenue is now decidedly on the neighborhood's radar thanks to an atmospheric pair of front patios, covered and warmed via string lights and space heaters. A TV protected from the elements even shows Seahawks games.
This underheralded Thai spot with an expansive covered outdoor seating area offers warmth, vibrant and colorful decor, and, of course, street food.
A curbside tent on 12th Avenue buffers brunchers and mezcal drinkers from the elements.
Per usual, Eric and Sophie Banh’s Vietnamese restaurant wins on style points with a newly constructed covered outdoor space that looks legit attractive and has six infrared heaters. It seats 36 in two- and four-tops and serves the full menu from 10am to 10pm. Reservations recommended during happy hour.
Last fall, Linda Derschang shut the restaurant temporarily to regroup, and also build a properly sturdy (and covered) outdoor space. Her seminal all day cafe returned March 4 with a handsome pair of structures out front, low walls, and the same considered aesthetics you’ll find inside. The patio opens daily at 9am for coffee and breakfast bowls and serves well into the wine-fueled evening.
The high-tech brewery offers a daily rate for anyone who wants to use its ample space as a remote office, as well as a courtyard with some tented seats and, quite often, a food truck. Request these seats specifically when you make a mandatory reservation.
A parklet turned tented patio on 10th Avenue seats five tables on a first come, first served basis for margaritas, chicken tinga tacos, and enchiladas suizas, which you can order via contactless QR code. All ages (and dogs) welcome up to groups of six. The setup has two hanging electric heaters, but dressing warmly is still a good idea.
Broadway’s haven of self-pour beer and wine has tented its big front patio. Even better: Wandering Goose alum Mike Law is in the kitchen prepping three-course menus, or a more snacky charcuterie and cheese situation. Reserve your table (okay it’s really a barrel) online.
No surprise, the cavernous German-inspired beer hall has gone full biergarten out on the courtyard, with 10 propane heaters (not to mention a firepit) and six outdoor TVs primed for football (or election coverage!). Eight covered tables (and five uncovered) seat groups as large as six.
Ethan Stowell’s house of cacio e pepe and Roman fare on 15th Avenue packs a half-dozen picnic tables into a light-strung mega-tent. No heaters at the moment, so dress (or drink) accordingly.
The original location at 14th and Union has set up tents around each of its patio tables, for a private-ish experience.
This smashing little Lao restaurant on Madison now has a properly constructed patio shelter that protects a handful of tables. No reservations, but you can get the restaurant's full menu (including drinks...and that burger) out here.
The charming neighborhood spot on Cherry converted an underused corridor next to its building into a covered outdoor living room of sorts, with a couch, chairs, Astroturf, and even the occasional outdoor movie.
The beer shop was an early adopter of the glorious makeshift patio (not to mention the comprehensive online reservation system). Here the entire parking lot is tented and lit (but not heated) with a sort of beer garden vibe; meanwhile the side patio has a few walls. The taplist and food truck schedule are online.
Kristi Brown’s new restaurant draws crowds for takeout, but a sizable overhang shelters a handful of outdoor tables around the restaurant’s prime corner perimeter. A firepit table and heaters keep everyone warm.
More getaway than patio, the covered outdoor space at this superb cocktail and noodle hangout is strung with nets and thick with atmosphere.
So much great beer, and an uber-spacious patio, roughly half of it covered, upon which to drink it (the food menu is also legit). As ever, this spot is 21-plus, with no dogs.
The open-air pizza restaurant mastered outdoor dining long ago. Bonus: The covered portion of its picnic table compound is right next to the chicken coop.
A rollicking tent in the brewery’s shared parking lot is all about heaters, beer, and amply spaced tables.
A streetside tent offers good airflow, heat, and a bit of shelter, though teriffic Caribbean-toned soul food warms in its own way.
Brunch, dinner, and happy hour all happen on picnic tables beneath a massive tent erected on the parking lot next to this versatile outpost of the Marination empire. You can even place orders sans contact thanks to the magic of QR codes.
Inside this pair of sturdy patios, Tuesdays mean $20 bottomless tacos and $5 tequila, plus a host of Tex-Mex staples like enchiladas and steak fajitas.
Sixth Avenue Plaza
A stretch of Sixth Avenue between Blanchard and Virginia has become an outdoor dining plaza, a three-block stretch of tents and meticulously cleaned tables adorned with fresh flowers. Plan to grab a seat here if you’re eating at the following: Willmott’s Ghost, Marination, Mamnoon Street, Evergreens, Lady Yum, 2120, Potbelly, Joe and the Juice, Casco Antiguo, and the Amazon Go store. The streatery (sorry) is open 8–8 daily, and nearby Amazon garages let you park free on nights and weekends.
Newly reopen, this location near the Spheres added clear barriers around its covered patio for an extra layer of rain and wind protection.
So many latte combinations and a safe patio seating to try them on. Get an iced, hot, and even soft serve drink or one of their many matcha pastries.
Hang out by the fireplaces on this tented rooftop patio while you try cocktails like the Honeybee or Sugar Plum Kraken. Book a table online.
A big carport-style tent keeps you dry as you hang by the firepit. (The Fremont location has a similar setup.)
Get sunset water views while sipping on a drink from the tiki bar on an outdoor fireside couch or grab dinner from a wide selection of burgers and sandwiches. Eastlake was one of the first patios in town to embrace those clear plastic igloos, so no worries about the tent blocking your view.
The charming bistro offers 90-minute "apres ski" slots on its private two-person patio, where, for $65, they will regale you with fondue, housemade pate, and two glasses of vin chaud, all by the glow of your own personal space heater. Book online.
Tented with ample airflow and margaritas, covered, heated, and—best of all—open seven days a week.
A menu of winter warmers fortify diners in a trio of tents at Heavy Restaurant Group's Italian spot on Stone Way.
Perhaps the only thing more impressive than Fremont's beer is the logistics of its covered beer garden; it even issued an instructional video for would-be users this summer. During certain midweek hours, the space doubles as a remote office, with wifi and sandwiches from Coro (aka Salumi).
New are the patio tent, heaters, and plenty of distance between tables cover your Covid needs. Wonderfully constant are the pizzas and always rad beer and wine lists.
At the rear of this charming modern Indian restaurant (formerly Pomerol) is an equally charming enclosed patio, warm with heaters and scattered with cushions.
Heavy's taco-focused hangout sports three light-strung tents with heaters imminent.
A big carport-style tent keeps you dry as you hang by the firepit. (The Eastlake location has a similar setup.)
The massive gravel patio at Marcus Lalario’s new Italian restaurant now has a massive (and surprisingly attractive) tent to match. The clear roof lets you appreciate those gray skies above. (Note: Mezzanotte is closed until April 1.)
A roomy tent with lights and heaters offers shelter for the menu of chowder and expertly sourced seafood.
This Greenwood co-op brewery has nine brews on tap for when you want to grab a drink (or multiple) on their patio.
While the patio is narrow (as is the roof) these seats are heated, making for an optimal hangout on dry nights for margaritas and inventive Mexican food.
Downtown Kirkland’s new-ish brasserie has set up sturdy, light-strung tents; reserve outdoor seating on OpenTable.
The Heathman’s covered breezeway has heaters, ample charm, and wood-fired pizza.
French fare on this patio comes with string lights, heaters, a roof, and that moody waterfront view.
The patio that faces the Burke-Gilman at this relatively new Renee Erickson spot is fully enclosed and heated (and a great stop if you're on a bike).
A roomy covered area has plenty of outdoor heaters and serves lunch and dinner seven days a week (plus weekend breakfast). The surrounding hedges give Bluwater’s outdoor area a sort of garden vibe.
The lake-facing stalwart has tricked out its outdoor dining with tents and heaters.
Leschi’s most versatile hangout has tented its newly minted parklet on Lake Washington Boulevard, and it’s open from lunch through happy hour into dinner. Heaters reportedly get installed next week.
The newest outpost of HTCAW turned a triangular plaza out front into a pair of sturdy corrugated structures, open on one side and impervious to wind and rain.
A parking lot behind the vegetarian landmark's atrium room now houses an event-size tent big enough for 34 seats. The space is BYOB (that would be "bring your own blanket") and while it doesn't quite have the charm of Flora's plant-filled atrium, colorful chairs and some branch installations from Fortunate Orchard do offer a particular sort of ambience. Meanwhile, the atrium has windows open and floors heated. Both are walk-in only.
One of the town’s best restaurants now serves its Basque cuisine in cozy makeshift breezeway tucked next to the restaurant, with a roof, a couple two-tops, and plenty of heaters.
It’s hard to find a patio experience more considered than this fine dining setup, with tableside space heaters and just two parties seated beneath the covered pergola at the same time. All of which to say: Book those tasting menus well in advance.
Two covered and heated patios shelter wine drinkers (and their kids) from the elements. In colder months, clear sheeting turns the wine bar's popular patio into "the greenhouse," while a new space in the back garden (yes, they call it "the winegarden") debuted in mid October.
The longstanding hangout's walled-in garden is tented up, heated, and ready to roll with classic breakfasts and lunchtime salads.
Ethan Stowell’s steak bistro has traded its mega tent for an impressive semi-permanent patio shelter, plus another one that protects a few individual curbside tables. Reserve patio seats online.
Brian Clevenger’s original restaurant serves an Italian-inspired menu inside a covered sidewalk seating area along with the chance to try a four-course tasting menu.
A large, open-sided and heated tent shelters the largest patio of this neighborly pizza restaurant’s four locations. Bring your own blanket, or buy one from the restaurant.
The historic tavern definitely got with the times; cabana-esque structures shelter each table in the ample rear garden, where heaters dangle over each table and online ordering makes it even easier to summon nachos, burgers, or Moscow mules to your seat.
Inside this heated and covered patio are build-your-own pizzas, mac and cheese (but only on the weekends), and a tap list including nearly two dozen beers and ciders. Check out the menu here.
Sturdily roofed yet open air, the newly constructed structure outside the German beer bar on Greenwood Avenue supplies plenty of alpine vibes.
The Crockett Street Dining Plaza was one of the city’s first streateries to open earlier this year. Now it’s a tented, festive place to gorge yourself on burgers, fries, and kettle corn brussels sprouts.
Some tents out front give a few parties some al fresco privacy (and a surprising amount of atmosphere).
The original tent setup out front gave way to a sturdy shelter with translucent walls and demarcated “rooms.” A ton of greenery and heaters shaped like fireplaces add actual ambience to accompany chef Stephan Bourgond's menu.
The covered waterfront patio keeps you warm and serves homestyle breakfast with a seemingly endless array of drinks. Reserve a table here.
The restaurant’s covered patio, now dubbed Camp Copperleaf, keeps a fireplace (and heaters) roaring and serves a daily evening menu of casual sandwiches and entrees, plus hot cocktails and dessert. Make a reservation online.
South Lake Union
The local modern Mexican chainlet has battened down its sidewalk seating with heat and covers.
A recessed covered patio keeps you secure from rain (and warmed by heaters), but still able to take in the marina views over a bowl of chowder or some rockfish tacos.
A sturdy new shelter turns each outdoor table into an open-air booth of sorts. Each one has a dedicated heater, not to mention the warming properties of margaritas and fajitas.
Tented tables and tall heaters offer shelter for beer and hearty bar fare.
Awww, remember brunch? Let's make that a thing again. One of the town’s most iconic purveyor of pancakes has umbrella-topped sidewalk tables with heaters, and will even provide blankets.
It's a glorious patio under any circumstances, but this restaurant atop 400 Fairview heats and covers a good portion of its rooftop, which is filled with firepits, fun seating, and astonishing city views.
Is it a patio or a village-like tent compound? Either way it’s large, light-strung, and serving a full menu, plus fried chicken by the pound.
Towering burgers, similarly bedecked bloody marys, and a series of tents and heaters currently occupy that prime adjacent courtyard.
The charming seafood sibling to Matt’s in the Market and Radiator Whiskey has gone full event-size tent on its water-facing patio, with lights, picnic tables, and heaters providing the backdrop for oysters, burgers, and poutine-of-the-sea. Reserve on OpenTable.
New striped awnings and an outdoor heater provide shelter for one of the town’s best-loved tavern burgers.
A lovely new-ish all day bistro in a South Park industrial complex has Radiator Whiskey alum Shane Ryan in the kitchen, and a generous covered, open-sided parking lot patio with lights and heaters. Service begins each morning with coffee and breakfast burritos.
The roadway in front of the South Garage is now blocked off to make way for tents for diners at Joey Kitchen, Ba Bar, Din Tai Fung, and Eureka. Go directly to the restaurants to grab a seat. Also: Nearby Mr. West has a covered courtyard on the building's north side.
A trio of red tents house a trio of picnic tables where diners can get after the pasta and seasonal vegetable dishes at this tiny and excellent Ethan Stowell spot.
A “saloon fireside tent” lets you reserve a hangout spot for up to four people. Blankets: never a bad idea.
One of the town's most charming waterfront setups now has heated tents and three(!) outdoor firepits.
Eight tables occupy the back patio, amid a fire pit and heaters. This merry house of smoked meat and brown liquor seats diners at 4, 5:30, and 7:15. Reservations over here.
It figures this charming West Seattle restaurant would have an equally charming covered outdoor space, decked out with drapes and white lights—and, most importantly, heaters. Best of all, though, is the menu of rustic Italian food.
Thirty taps of Washington beer meet a framed-in covered and heated patio that’s been a fixture since Ounces opened in 2016 (though they’ve added a few tents, too).
A sturdy new covered patio structure laughs in the face of wind. Kids and dogs are allowed, and beer is superb.