Chicago Local Life

10 Great Patios in Chicago

As the warm weather finally rolls into the Windy City, Chicagoans are quick to bask in its sunny glory as much as they can. Chicago is notorious for finicky weather so when the sun peeks out for the first time and the temperatures reach balmy status, we waste no time making the most of it. Patio season is more than just a summer activity: it's a sport.

Perfect for socializing with friends during Happy Hour on a cool summer evening, relaxing with a cocktail on a sunny day, or just sitting back and people watching, Chicago takes its patios seriously. Whatever your reason may be, just get out and enjoy the great weather, food, and drinks at these awesome Chicago patios before the winter relegates everyone indoors for months of Netflix binges.

Ada Street - Bucktown

Ada Street is proof that looks can be deceiving. This small restaurant nestled on an industrial street can easily be missed, but behind the dilapidated brick facade lies a quaint dining scene with an outdoor patio that showcases the area's industrial past. Ada Street's rotating menu and innovative cocktail list with names like A Well Respected Man and Accidents Never Happen bring a charm and quirkiness few restaurants can match. The outdoor patio, decked out with an artificial lawn and Ping Pong tables, opens up the space for patrons to make the most of summer in trendy Bucktown.

Big Star - Wicker Park

Wicker Park's Mexican-inspired, bourbon-and-beer-focused restaurant serves up authentic street-fare tacos along with savory and crafty booze in a relaxed yet boisterous atmosphere. The al pastor and walking tacos are legendary with locals and are best paired with their festive patio. It's hard to beat a Big Star margarita in hand and classic country music blaring from the speakers.

Cork & Kerry - Beverly

Located in Chicago's South Side neighborhood of Beverly, Cork & Kerry has the luxury of plentiful indoor and outdoor space. The large patio has its own bar and has a rustic garden vibe to it. Grab a table in a sunny spot and order a locally renowned sandwich and wash it down with a pint of Guinness before playing a round at the Ridge Country Club golf course.

The Orbit Room - Avondale

Who doesn't like to drink tropical cocktails with a little umbrella on a hot day? Known as the city's hidden oasis, The Orbit Room in Avondale combines retro and island decor with a casual environment that serves up comfort food and a great selection of craft beers and cocktails. The outdoor tiki-style patio is spacious enough for large parties and is surrounded by lush plants, soft lighting, and Hawaiian-themed decorations to make you feel like you're in an urban paradise.

Happy Village - Ukrainian Village

If you're looking for a good dive bar with a beer garden serving up affordable drinks, then Happy Village is your summer spot. The outdoor patio at this classic drinking establishment, which has been around since 1964, is open year-round and is a favorite of Ukrainian Village residents. The beer garden features a goldfish pond, a giant tent, and plenty of picnic tables that will make you feel like you're at a neighbor's backyard party. Beers typically run from $2 to $6 and the back hall has two Ping Pong tables if you're looking to burn off some liquid calories.

Parson's Chicken & Fish - Logan Square

Parson's massive outdoor patio is the ideal place to grab some hush puppies and a frozen cocktail on a summer day in Chicago. This Logan Square hot spot has a casual backyard vibe and is packed with picnic tables, striped umbrellas, Ping Pong tables, and greenery. With a menu straight out of a boozy BBQ, Parson's flaunts its casual, carefree summertime atmosphere. The outdoor patio has a small bar that serves up a variety of beers and frozen cocktails.

Sheffield's - Wrigleyville

Wrigleyville is a popular Chicago neighborhood that typically gets flooded with more locals and tourists during the summer and on Cubs game days. Sheffield's is a quiet oasis in the midst of the chaotic baseball season. The beer garden boasts its own bar and serves up a long list of craft brews and cocktails. Sheffield's also offers a delicious BBQ menu with items like beef brisket, Carolina pulled pork, and a smoked chicken platter. The brick-lined patio has towering trees and high walls that provide shade on a bright day and a sense of privacy unheard of in a neighborhood synonymous with unrestrained, all day ragers.

Sportsman's Club - Ukrainian Village

The taxidermy-heavy interior doesn't exactly scream summertime vibes, but the outdoor patio at Sportsman's Club is what makes the season a special one in the city. This Ukrainian Village tavern provides a spacious backyard-style patio full of trees with hanging string lights and picnic tables in an unpretentious setting. The mixed cocktails are curated daily by the bartenders and are affordable for the rapidly expanding neighborhood. If cocktails aren't your style, then you can always order cheap beer or a shot from the amaro machine, which blends Italian liqueur just like a Jager machine.

Zella - Lincoln Park

Located on the corner of Clybourn and Racine, this casual Lincoln Park bar has a spacious indoor dining and bar area that spills out into a large outdoor patio. Zella's outdoor patio is perfect for kicking back a few beers with friends during happy hour and its ample seating can accommodate large parties for special events or celebrations. In addition to great cocktails and beer options, patrons can also dine from a delectable menu of classic Mexican food, including tacos, tamales, and quesadillas. If you're looking for an affordable and fun weekend brunch spot on a sunny day, Zella offers great deals on their unlimited brunch packages that include bottomless Bloody Marys and Mimosas. For what it's worth this bar is frequented by staff.

The Promontory 5311 - Hyde Park

The Promontory is a hip restaurant and music venue in Hyde Park. It has an indoor/outdoor design where half of the restaurant is essentially a patio. The Promontory's design is a nod to the lakefront peninsula a mile to the east and the patio is open, airy, and undeniably romantic. The upstairs patio also doubles as an extension of the music venue and showcases local as well as national acts.

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