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Eat, Drink, Be Outside

The temperature is rising and Washingtonians love to do what we don’t get to do often enough—al fresco dining! There’s everything from sidewalks, patios to expansive terraces with breathtaking views. Visit these hot spots for some fresh air, top-notch dining and cool cocktails for optimal refreshment:

The Louisiana vintage vibe bursts out-of-doors at Bayou Bakery in Arlington. Casual seating for 24 is largely shaded in the afternoon. Enjoy the much-talked about Catahoula (spiced hot dog), Muff-a-lotta and sweets. 1515 North Courthouse Road, Arlington, VA. 703.243.2410.

Bibiana offers a 28-seat patio where guests can enjoy summer dishes like burnt wheat cavatelli with broccoli rapini, fennel-coffee sausage, and chili, and seasonal cocktails such as Lulsa, mixed with Gordon’s Gin, pineapple juice and fresh basil. 1100 New York Avenue NW, Washington, DC. 202.216.9550.

Marcel’s elegant yet relaxed patio space transports you to a seat along the bustling sidewalks of Le Champs Élysée. Feel free to settle in, make an evening of it, and order from the complete dinner menu of Robert Wiedmaier’s fine French cuisine. 2401 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington DC. 202.296.1166.

The exact opening date of PS 7’s outdoor seating for 50 will be announced, depending on weather, but it’s sure to fill up fast—especially at lunchtime, when it offers both shade and the very best house-made hot dogs in town. 777 I Street NW, Washington DC. 202.742.8550.

Cork Wine Bar’s charming patio in one of the trendiest neighborhoods in DC is perfect for sipping signature Cork Spiced Lemonade or a Rosé Flight. 1720 14th Street NW, Washington, DC. 202.265.2675.

Brasserie Beck has space for 70 under a cheerful canopy of massive blue umbrellas, with tempting charcuterie and shellfish signatures. And its own bar with four beers on tap, you can plan on staying for a while. 1101 K Street NW, Washington DC. 202.408.1717.

Café Saint-Ex’s full seasonal menu and signature Poptails, icy booze-infused cocktail popsicles, are available on the patio. 1847 14th Street NW, Washington, DC. 202.265.7839.

Lyon Hall serves classic French brasserie cuisine along with comfort and ambiance on its 60-seat patio. Try carefully crafted cocktails, both traditional and original, including the house favorite “Blood, Sweat and Tears”. 3100 Washington Blvd, Arlington, VA. 703.741.7636.

Enjoy Cuba Libre’s festive Cuban-inspired dishes on the 20-seat sidewalk, like Cuban pesto-marinated grilled shrimp, truffle and citrus grilled baby octopus, and an expansive rum menu including over 75 premium and flavored varieties. 801 9th Street, NW Suite A, Washington, DC. 202.408.1600.

Enjoy a selection of Zentan’s menu items at ADC (Above DC), the exclusive rooftop pool bar at Donovan House, while taking in stunning views of the city. Try the new specialty cocktails such as the Sake Garden Crush, made with cucumber, lemon, ginger, Nigori Sake and Ping Grapefruit Belvedere. 1155 14th Street NW, Washington, DC. 202.737.1200.

Eventide’s spacious rooftop deck accommodates 100 with a menu that focuses on cool and chilled foods, summertime beers, refreshing outdoor cocktails and bright, crisp wine selections. 3165 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA. 703.276.3165.

Enjoy a cocktail on Masa 14’s 14-seat patio on vibrant 14th Street. Sip on Lemon Lager with lemon-basil syrup, elderflower liquor and Dos Equis. Snack Japanese sausage flatbread or Carne Noodles with smoked brisket. A rooftop is planned for September. 1825 14th Street NW, Washington, DC. 202.328.1414.

The bustling patio at Zaytinya not only welcomes you with cocktails like the Greek Sidecar, but your little dog, too. 701 9th Street, NW, Washington, DC. 202.630.0800.

This June Hank’s Oyster Bar will double the size of its patio to 40 seats. Feast on freshly shucked oysters, clams and the famous Lobster Roll. At Hank’s Oyster Bar in Old Town Alexandria (1026 King Street) a small patio accommodating four is a coveted retreat. 1624 Q Street NW, Washington, DC. 202.462.4265.

Score a table outside at 701 with spectacular views of the Navy Memorial fountain, while enjoying entrees such as flash seared Spanish mackerel with sunchoke puree, Eco-Friendly pork loin served with ramp grits and black pepper bacon. 701 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC. 202.393.0701.

Starting April 22nd, enjoy a vibrant, market-based, seasonal menu and handcrafted cocktails on Blue Duck Tavern’s newly renovated 42-seat outdoor terrace. Try the Derby Days with Buffalo Trace Bourbon, honey bourbon, mint leaves and a cherry. 24 and M Streets NW, Washington, DC. 202.419.6755.

Two sister restaurants just steps from the White House also offer a lovely oasis for al fresco dining. The Bombay Club has 35 outdoor seats and a delicious menu of gourmet Indian fare just steps from Lafayette Park. 815 Connecticut Avenue NW, Washington, DC. 202.659.3727.  Across the street, The Oval Room has 40 seats on its lovely patio and serves lunch and dinner. 800 Connecticut Avenue NW, Washington, DC. 202.463.8700.

Outdoor seating is available at all Black’s Restaurant Group establishments. Black’s Bar & Kitchen has a 60-seat patio complete with a serene pond. 7750 Woodmont Avenue, Bethesda, MD. 301.652.5525. Addie’s seats 50 under an outdoor tented patio, plus 20 seats nestled under a shaded back patio. 11120 Rockville Pike, Rockville, MD. 301.881.0081. Black Market Bistro offers a 20-seat dining oasis on the front porch of the restored Victorian post office. 4600 Waverly Avenue, Garrett Park, MD. 301.933.3000.

Ardeo+Bardeo serves dinner and Sunday brunch on the 20-seat rooftop patio. Standouts include braised leg of suckling pig with cheddar grits and black-eyed peas and The Thorny Rose with Patron Tequila, pomegranate, and spicy chili paste. 3311 Connecticut Avenue NW, Washington, DC. 202.244.6750

Dappled sunlight breaks through the shade on the quiet K Street side Acadiana, as the cheerful clinking announces the arrival of buckets of beer at your table. Snag one 60 seats on Acadiana’s sidewalk, the most relaxing seat in the house. 901 New York Avenue NW, Washington DC. 202.408.8848.

The big ol’ picnic tables and umbrellas outside Bethesda’s Mussel Bar reflect the extreme casual essence of Robert Wiedmaier’s upscale dive. Besides the delectable mussels, flat savory Belgian tartes are an option. 7262 Woodmont Avenue, Bethesda, MD. 301.215.7817.

Black's Bar & Kitchen on Urbanspoon

Photo: W Hotel

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Mary Kong-DeVito

Founder + Creative Director. Mary grew up in New York where the food-centric city and her family's restaurants were literally her playground. Instead of eating dirt, she ate duck blood and rotten eggs. You never know what you'll find on the sidewalks.Mary is a veteran of the hospitality industry who's worked with numerous celebrities such as Barbra Streisand, Patrick Ewing, Vanessa Williams, Michael Stipe and Jane Krakowski. Her writing has appeared in USA Today, DC Modern Luxury, Washington Post Express, Eater, Scoutmob, Washington Flyer and Washington City Paper.She eats "normal" stuff too, like cheeseburgers. Kangaroo cheeseburgers.


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  1. Anna 20 April, 2011 at 20:09 Reply

    I wish more people would write blogs like yours! It’s really fun to read. With all the fluff floating around on the internet, it is rare to read a blog like this. Love Girl Meets Food!

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