by Jonathan Baker - 319 Reviews - 185 List
We love Atlanta restaurants, but things really go to the next level when you're able to take advantage of Atlanta's good weather and enjoy outdoor dining. No matter if you're grabbing a burger at TAP (pictured), having a formal meal in the back garden at Sotto Sotto, or just people watching at Brewhouse--here are our top 10 restaurants for outdoor dining in Atlanta.
Updated: June 22, 2011
With the original Memorial Drive location only a few doors down, the re-located Six Feet Under didn't miss a beat. It still boasts a fabulous rooftop deck. The views of Oakland Cemetery are just as beautiful as they ever were. And it still serves one of the meanest fish tacos in Atlanta.
You typically don't immediately associate the Buckhead Life Group with casual outdoor dining, but Nava has one of the best patios in the city. (With a fountain to boot!) It's Southwestern done fancy, so grab a pork belly taco and an expensive margarita, and enjoy the Buckhead life, patio-style.
Located in bustling Midtown West, the combination of Bocado's California-modern back patio and their menu of charismatic sandwiches (and righteous burger) beg for a long lunch. Our personal favorite is the grilled ham and cheese, with thinly sliced apples and spicy mustard.
Straddling the intersection of 14th and Peachtree, TAP is prime real estate. And with skyscrapers towering over you, this is off-street, city-dining at its best. Atlanta's first gastropub, the must have menu item is their cheeseburger (served on an English muffin) with shoestring fries and a mini milkshake.
While the VaHi popped collar crowd floods nearby Hand in Hand, Virginia Highland neighbors in the know turn to Cafe di Sol. With a sophisticated bistro menu, legendary brunch and grapefruit rosewater martinis, it's quietly one of the neighborhood's best spots. That happens to have a beautiful covered patio overlooking Highland.
Because eating fine-dining only gets better when you add gardens, a river and plenty of rolling outdoor space, Canoe has long been an atmospheric go-to for the blazer-sporting crowd. Being located just out of the city's reach (in Vinings) just adds to the ?get away from it? lure.
It's not tough to find a good Mexican joint with a patio (La Fonda, No Mas, Pozole), but for the best combination of patio/food/neighborhood, we like Holy Taco in East Atlanta. With a spacious patio overlooking Glenwood, this spot delivers outstanding street food: tacos, tortas and grilled ears of corn.
Sitting on Peachtree in South Buckhead, the place that forever changed Atlanta's pizza perspective just happens to have a great patio. Sit right on top of Atlanta's most iconic road, snag some ridiculously good pies (our favorite is Nana's special, add sausage) and toast the dude that started our pizza craze.
Sometimes the best patios aren't on the street for all to see, but a surprise once you get in the restaurant. This Italian jewel in Inman Park goes the charming, white tablecloth route on the inside, but the back garden patio is their al fresco secret weapon.
Sometimes the art of dining outside is not based on culinary excellence, but on a decent beer list and people watching. Plus, any outdoor dining roundup should include a restaurant in Little Five Points. Enter: the Brewhouse. Chicken fingers, bangers `n? mash, pain killer cocktails, and a patio right in the heart of L5P.