The sun’s out, the weather’s warm – those precious summer days have arrived. So…what are you doing inside? Get yourself to one of Niagara’s lovely outdoor patios…right now. What are you…crazy?
Like visiting your Auntie Gwen
The Pie Plate Bakery and Café in Virgil doesn’t technically have a patio…it has a porch, just like your dear old Auntie Gwen did. And I think they have her tea cups and saucers too. They’re certainly using her recipe for butter tarts and a whole lot of other really yummy stuff, all made with Niagara produce. Order something fabulous, grab yourself a table and chairs on the porch and enjoy the breezes!
Perfect for people watching
There’s nothing better than having a pretty screen of flowers to hide the fact that you’re scoping out everyone who walks past. You’ll find that at the Shaw Café and Wine Bar in downtown Niagara-on-the-Lake. The food’s great, the drinks are deliciously chilly and the window boxes of greenery and geraniums are placed strategically to allow you to peer through and watch to see if any of the stars from the Shaw Festival come strolling by.
Raving about Ravine
Why be in Niagara if you aren’t going to soak up a little of the local viticulture? And maybe you’ll also want to soak up a little (or a lot) of the wine that goes along with it. Where better to do that than on the pretty little patio at Ravine Vineyard Estate Winery? Gazing out over their leafy green vineyards will make you forget all about the work you have waiting back at the office (come to think of it, the wine might help to wipe out a few bad memories too.)
We’re positive you’ll have a passion for Peller
Peller Estate Winery takes dining al fresco to a whole new level with its Vineyard Stroll Dinner. Start with a Champagne reception on the front lawn, then tour the vineyards, learn all about the grapes that went into the wine you’re sipping then finish off the evening with a gourmet dinner served among the vines. It just doesn’t get any more Niagaran than that!
Note: If you’re looking for something a touch more casual, you can enjoy a lunch or dinner on Peller’s beautiful patio any time the weather permits.
There’s something about sitting on the patio at Trius Winery by Hillebrand that makes you feel like you own the place. Whether you choose to take shelter under a generous sunbrella or prefer to sizzle your brain a little in the rays, you can gaze down the perfectly pruned rows of grapevines and imagine bringing in your harvest, pressing your grapes and then sloshing around in the barrels and barrels of wine you’d produce. While you may not find yourself owning a winery any time soon, an afternoon on the Trius patio can make you feel as if you already do.
Down by the Riverbend
Winston Churchill called the Niagara Parkway “the prettiest Sunday drive in the world”…and that was before they’d even built the Riverbend Inn’s fab patio as a destination for that drive! Nestled in the trees at the edge of a leafy vineyard, this is your escape from the troubles of the world. You can eat breakfast, lunch and dinner on this pretty patio (heck…they’ll probably let you sleep out there if you ask nicely!) but you might want to consider a romantic little dinner for two in their private gazebo. There’s an extra fee for the special consideration, but really…what is the price of love?
Bask in the fresh breezes off Lake Ontario as you gobble up the great Italian food at Port Dalhousie’s new Acqua Restaurant and Bar. This is the place to spend the dog days of summer…relaxing by Lakeside Park, watching the beautiful people parade past and listening to the live music (check their Facebook page to see who’s playing when.)
You Haven’t LIV’d…
If you haven’t dined al fresco at the LIV patio at White Oaks, you just haven’t LIV’d! With sleek contemporary seating in black, white and chartreuse (and ladies…even funky little side tables to keep your purse off the ground) this hidden gem is not only sheltered from any chilly winds but is also equipped with fancy outdoor heaters so you can enjoy the fresh air without freezing your tushie…well into the fall. Order a glass of Niagara’s finest, choose something delicious from either the LIV or Play menus then bask, baby, bask!