With elevated views, vibe, and food and drinks, these are some Toronto patios that you'll definitely want to plan your summer around.
“Epic” can mean a lot of different things, but these al fresco settings definitely fit the bill. More than just an outdoor dining spot, some of these must-visit patios lay in plain sight, and others are where you least expect.
The lush and bold greenery of the Amazonian jungle welcomes you in this premier Nikkei-style restaurant that blends Japanese and Peruvian cuisine together. Think sashimi-grade fish infused with citrus notes and spices or Andean meat skewers dressed with sesame and yuzu. Located in the Financial District, the vibrant patio is a tropical paradise that also comes with a great view of the CN Tower. Come here for a highly shareable meal or relax to the beats of a live DJ with friends and cocktails.
TIP: If you can’t decide what you want, the Deluxe Nikkei Menu features their best dishes. For their a-la-carte menu, you need to try their ceviches, Yellowtail “Nikkei Sashimi”, and Pollo Picante. Their Pisco Peach is also on-point! 161 Bay St. (TD Canada Trust Tower)
This Scarborough Chinese seafood specialist is in the business of dropping jaws with their impossibly tall Jenga of lobster sprinkled with crispy garlic and fries. It’s literally called a “Lobster Mountain”. In their covered patio space, be prepared to be transported to the seafood markets of Asia where you’ll have a clear view of live fish, crab, and lobster in their wall of aquarium tanks and have a chance to see the exact lobster(s) they’ll be cooking.
TIP: Rally at least 4-5 seafood lovers so that you can order the Lobster Mountain Dinner. It’s also debit or cash only! 4020 Finch Ave E.
This isn’t your usual sports-themed watering hole on King East. Hailing from Vancouver, this pub is best known for their monstrous and over-the-top caesars. You’ll find their signature caesars with skewers precariously holding together toppings such as onion rings, grilled cheese, nachos, corn dogs, hot wings, and even a peanut butter pie in the case of The Caesar Grande. The outdoor seating here is spacious and the perfect spot to catch a game, hang out with friends, and of course strategically work through the meal that comes on top of your caesar with your crew.
TIP: 95% of the menu can be made gluten free thanks to their separate fryer. And if you’re not a fan of caesars, be sure to ask to substitute with another one of their cocktails.107 King St E
A neighbourhood fixture of St. James Town is this hole-in-the-wall Filipino restaurant. Tinuno means to cook directly on a heat source whether on a grill or open flame. That style is threaded through the smorgasbord of options that is best enjoyed by ordering something called a Kamayan.
Kamayan is the ultimate finger food feast and translates to “by hand” in Tagalog. This is a communal buffet-style meal where grilled seafood, meats, veggies, and rice are served right on the table layered with banana leaf. Simply scoop some rice in your hand, top it with anything that catches your eye, and eat. For dessert, don’t sleep on the leche flan. 31 Howard St
What rooftop patio bar has a view of the CN Tower from all tables, serves an epic ice-cold margarita Towers, and good times? The Porch is a go-to spot in the heart of the Entertainment District.
Their massive margaritas require a minimum of 4 but are guaranteed to keep you cool and refreshed. If you have a smaller group, they also have Bulldogs, where their house punch, mojito, and margarita in a bucket features an upside-down mini Corona. You can also feed your hunger with wings, burgers, dip, and Cali fries. The Porch’s patio is a mix of covered, shaded, and full sun seats, which all have a great view of the city’s skyline. 250 Adelaide St. W
Hidden away behind a storefront that still carries the sign of the previous restaurant, is a magical oasis that you need to know about. Featuring a lush canopy of grapevines, come here to enjoy a care-free afternoon or evening with a glass of wine, beer or cider, accompanied by yummy tapas.
Not to be missed are their handcrafted Paradise Grapevine bottles with standouts such as the Dream of You Pét-Nat that features skin contact pinot-gris. You’ll also love their unique cans of Pep Talk Rosé that come with a sparkle of fizz. There are so many to try that you’ll definitely be coming back a couple of times. 841 Bloor St W
From the brilliant minds of Unboxed Market and Bar Mordecai comes a patio filled with California surf shack vibes. With the name Venice glittering in the sun above the red umbrellas and string lights, come here to chill with fresh eats and a mix of cocktails, wine, beer and ciders. You’ll also find exciting house-canned cocktails by the Bar Mordecai team. What makes this al fresco space unique is that it’s truly a collaborative space, where the food is prepared by a mix of various local pop ups that rotate every several weeks. No two visits will be the same!
TIP: They are not taking reservations, but they do have a patio waitlist feature on their website. Also, pay attention to their hours, as they’re different every day and are closed on Tuesdays.1251 Dundas St W
Caribbean meets Asian cuisine at this popular soul-food joint on the west end. Chef Craig Wong perfectly melds a wide range of cuisines in both cultures with creations such as jerk pork belly yakisoba, Chinese “Pineapple” bun burgers, Trini mac pie and juicy jerk chicken.nIf you’re feeling hungry, they also have “The Whole Shebang” which is a true feast in every sense of the word.
With their patio space open, come here to enjoy low-key vibes that are heightened with flavour-packed dishes and tasty cocktails. 794 Dundas St W
It doesn’t get more iconic than clinking your glasses and having a delicious meal with the backdrop as North America’s only castle. The Gardens at Casa Loma is your exclusive access to this heritage landmark. Surrounded by immaculately manicured flowers and greenery, water fountains, spectacular skyline views and light projections at night, this patio is as picturesque as they come. Also, included with your visit is access to their stunning estate gardens so make sure your camera is ready.
Exploring their menu, you’ll see that they draw on the refined dining you’d expect from the neighbouring Blueblood Steakhouse with dishes such as Yellow Tail Snapper Ceviche, Lobster Ravioli, Grilled Lamb Chop “Niçoise”, and Banana Beignets.
TIP: Reservations are required and they are only open for dinner at the moment. Also, parking costs $15 per vehicle and is not included with reservations. 1 Austin Terrace