Patio season has arrived. Conveniently, it’s also safest to dine outdoors right now. Milwaukeeans love outdoor dining and there are a whole bunch of places all around southeastern Wisconsin to dine al fresco. When you’re looking to go beyond just a backyard seating spot or sidewalk cafe, check out one of these open-air dining spots with a view. From waterfront vistas to parkside scenery, these are some of the best places to dine outside while appreciating some gorgeous landscapes. This isn’t an exhaustive list, by any means, but should get you started when you know you’re ready to head out to a restaurant, but want to stay safe and stay outside.
1955 S Hilbert St, Milwaukee
Located on the Kinnickinnic River right down by the port, this place is a big hidden, but well worth the search. This feels like a laid-back, lakeside party spot, but it’s right here in the city.
Bass Bay Brewhouse
S79W15851 Aud Mar Dr, Muskego
Worth the short drive from the city, these folks have one of the best brunches you’ve never been to. You’ll struggle deciding what to order from this place no matter when you go. Bass Bay is a lake-size off-shoot of Muskego Lake that is a bit of a slower oasis. You’ll love the peaceful backyard these folks have right on the shore.
Blue Bat Tequilaria
249 N Water St, Milwaukee
Part of the Riverwalk in the Third Bar, Blue Bat is Milwaukee’s first tequilaria has a brilliant “backyard” that you can boat up to. The people watching is spectacular, whether they’re walking by on the Riverwalk or boating by on the river.
1101 S 2nd St, Milwaukee
One of the best rooftop spots in the city, Braise gives you sweeping views over Walker’s Point, the Third Ward and Lake Michigan. At night, you’re basking in the glow of the Rockwell clock tower.
Doc’s on the Fox
232 N Milwaukee St, Waterford
The Fox River divides around an island right here, creating what almost feels like an inlet that has access, but is just a bit more chill. Great food and a relaxing vibe make this the kind of place you can imagine spending hours soaking up the sun – and a few of their tropical signature cocktails.
550 N Harbor Dr, Milwaukee
Probably the best view in the city, Harbor House sits directly on the shore of Lake Michigan, with unparalleled views of the Milwaukee Art Museum, the downtown skyline, and – if you’re lucky – the S/V Denis Sullivan sailing into dock at Discovery World.
Sandra’s on the Park
10049 W Forest Home Ave, Hales Corners
This is a great place for a special meal. The outdoor space abuts Potter Woods at Whitnall Park, bringing a really gorgeous, peaceful feeling as well as some of the best views away from the water.
W278 N2315 Prospect Ave, Pewaukee
Perched on the edge of Pewaukee Lake, you’ll find folks pulling their boats up and heading inside all day long. This place is a great miss of restaurant and lakeside bar that has an Up North feel much closer to home.
1200 W Canal St, Milwaukee
Literally put your feet in the sand alongside the Menomonee River at this seafood shack that would be at home on the east coast. Their massive outdoor deck is a great place to crack lobster legs and chow down on crab.