Aalto Lounge 3356 SE Belmont, 235-6041

Located in the heart of SE Belmont, and described by one nearby resident as being a good place to go "when I want to feel like I'm getting out of my neighborhood." The Aalto has nice, retro mood lighting, a great counter area, and a cozy little patio out back. Great sandwiches, lousy soups, good salads, great beer and wine selection, so-so mixed drinks; all in an ambience easily as exotic as, say, SW Portland, or even NW Portland. JWS


Basta's Trattoria

410 NW 21st, 274-1572

Some say nay, but I say yay to Basta's simple Italian fare. They offer reservations for dinner on their eight-table patio, and the cheap bar menu from 4-6 at the tables out front. KS

Bella Faccia

2934 NE Alberta, 282-0600

Though squashed in between three buildings, the Bella Faccia patio is nevertheless an inviting and (dare I say it) romantic enclave nestled off NE Alberta. Decorated in a non-cutesy, faux Italian style (complete with a line of drying mismatched clothes), it's a calming place to whisper sweet nothings over what are hands down the best crusts and Caesar salads in town. WSH Patio currently closed for construction (but will open any day now).

Berlin Inn

3131 SE 12th Ave, 236-6761

This small but cute, high-walled patio set back from Powell is a great place to enjoy the Berlin's späzle (a required treat); it has a supple texture unlike any pasta and is specially suited to soak up the thick, full-flavored gravies that come with the sauerbraten and schnitzels. Veggies, don't fear the Germans, try the Berlin's eggplant schnitzel or vegetable-stuffed potato pancakes. Also, dogs are allowed at outside tables--ask about their Patio Pooch menu! And check out their hearty breakfast on Sat and Sun, 10-2:30. PL

Bernie's Southern Bistro

2904 NE Alberta, 282-9864

There are sparse choices for dining upscale on Alberta, but Bernie's scratches the itch for a bit of the fancy without being too pricey or pretentious. Their large, secluded back deck (one of the best patios in Portland) is the perfect respite for drinking, dining, and chatting with your pals. Check out the luscious and cheap $3 Bar Menu (my fave is the Mac & Cheese). Tues-Sat 4-6 pm & 10-12 pm, and all night Wed. BB Patio opens late May or early June, but call first!


2301 NW Savier, 228-2619

Besaws is famous for breakfast (complete with mimosas and bloody marys) and for their Mom's meatloaf sandwich. All of Besaw's food is consistently top notch. Their patio is near the street and covered by awnings, but is a great, shady choice for hot days. KS

Billy Reed's

2808 NE MLK, 493-8127

Billy Reed's is undoubtedly a weird place. Indoors they have jazz, high-tech lighting, and odd pictures of cows on the wall. Outside they have a great patio that's raised far above the street. Their dinners are hit and miss, but breakfast is always good (or, for you alcoholics, just have a drink). Happy Hour bar food and drink specials 3-6:30 daily--this includes dollar Pabst. KS

Brazen Bean

2075 NW Glisan, 294-0636

Holy shit, goddamn. The martinis at the Brazen Bean are so good they make me want to take my shirt off and run into the street singing Iggy Pop's "I Wanna Be Your Dog." And I can have as many as I want, thanks to their generous happy hour (5-8 pm, Mon-Fri), where they serve these infamous glasses of heaven for $2.75. Leave work early, and secure a spot on the Victorian wraparound porch for you and a few friends. Try their food, too. It's a little froofy--but then so are martinis. KS

Bridgeport Brew Pub

1313 NW Marshall, 241-3612

While it does kinda smell like dead fish in the neighborhood, this voluminous outdoor patio cannot be ignored. A great place for an IPA and a slice of pizza on the veranda. KS


118 NE 28th, 235-2794

Beulahland always makes solid fare, especially if you need a hearty soup to suck up some of that beer you've been drinking. Try out their small ten-seater patio this sunny season; it's got a bit of a junkyard feel, but that's what makes it so charming. KS


Cameo Café

2340 NW Westover, 221-6542, 8111 NE Sandy, 284-0401

Huge, heaping traditional breakfasts for about two bucks more than usual, with Asian specialties like a pancake made from rice and vegetables. Great patios at both locations, although the Sandy location offers more sun and less yuppies. Only open until 3. KS

Chez What?

2203 NE Alberta, 281-1717

I find a lot of Chez What's dinner options to be too heavy (though tantalizing for people who love cheese), but their breakfast is really good (try the biscuits and gravy), and priced right. It's also a spot in Northeast Portland where you can get liquor drinks to go alongside your eggs!!! Thank you OLCC for allowing us one place North of Burnside to dangerously enjoy a liquor drink. But I digress. Chez What's outside eating area is small, but you can probably get a spot. KS Not open yet, call before you go.


3006 SE Hawthorne, 232-1744

Claudia's has about one million televisions showing every sporting event inside, but outside they have a cute patio that seats about 20. Their gyros are some of the best in town, too, and OH! So cheap. KS



21st & Lovejoy, 227-4196

Yeah, it's a little Portland chain, but their falafels are pretty damn good, as is their baba, roasted eggplant, and vegetable soup. The outside seating at the Northwest store is ample, and provides great ambiance. The Hawthorne store is now, sadly, out of business. KS

Goose Hollow Inn

1927 SW Jefferson, 228-7010

If you're not a Twin Peaks fan, the One-Armed Man sitings won't mean much. The Goose is a near-perfect neighborhood joint, even though it's not really in a neighborhood. The patio is spacious, with an awning over one corner, 'cause it rains here occasionally. Try the Rueben or Gallo salami and Swiss. Wash it down with anything from Pabst to Fat Tire Amber. Mutton-chop sideburns and flannels die hard here. Go down fightin', kid. PA

Green Room

2280 NW Thurman, 228-6178

Their patio has a bar, a TV so you can watch the game, and overhead warmers, if need be. Plus, they've got a tasty pork tenderloin on the menu, fish 'n' chips, nachos, and $3 food specials 3:30-6:30. KS


5035 NE Sandy, 288-5503

You can't smoke on this patio, but you can drink a stein of German beer while "enjoying" German accordion music. Cheap happy hour with brats, chicken strips, shepherd's pie, 3-6 pm and 10-close. New menu features the black forest pretzel burger (yep, it's on a pretzel bun). KS



15 SE 28th, 231-1093

Order yourself some muthafuckin' fried food, the coldest beers in town, and walk right out back onto Holman's very own private patio. It's like the perfect backyard out here, with the added bonus that on weekends, food is served until dawn. You may even be served by Portland's Smartest Man. KG


Il Fornaio

115 NW 22nd, 248-9400

This patio has an automatic retractable roof--just like Safeco field! Mon-Fri, 4:30-6:30 they offer free pizza or an antipasti plate with the purchase of a drink. Does it get any better? Mmmmmmmmm... no. KS

It's a Beautiful Pizza

3342 SE Belmont, 233-5444

IBP has a pleasant, fenced-in enclosure complete with five or six picnic tables. If you can stand the smell of the hippies (less offensive when you're outdoors), you can drink beer, pat dogs, and eat fairly decent pizza that only kind of reminds you of the elementary school cafeteria. Lots of vegan options, too. JWS


John Street Café

8338 N Lombard, 247-1066

Even though St. Johns has limited dining options, you should still drop by for a visit. SJ not only has Portland's best selection of dive bars, but it also has a great goddamn Rueben at the John Street, which tastes even better enjoyed on their huge patio. Get there early though, they're only open until 2:30 pm. Closed Mon & Tues. KS Outdoor seating will be open in early May.


Khun Pic's Bahn Thai

3429 SE Belmont, 235-1610

The best Thai food in Portland, served up in a quaint little house with a quaint little patio, buried behind rows of quaint, pretty shrubs. Since there is one server (and one server only), and the place is popular, get there early to snag an outdoor seat, and be prepared to wait a while. But, (oh, sweet Jesus!) is it worth it. Opens nightly at 6 pm, closed Mon. JWS


Laughing Planet Café

3320 SE Belmont, 235-6472

How many times have you ordered a tofu scramble in this town and been presented with something unfit to bring home to your Shitsu? The good news about Laughing Planet is that it starts to fill the hole where tasty, healthy PDX food should be. Their balanced, bright dressings and sauces are lovely ladled over simple, steamed veggies and rice, or the "bowl" version of their burritos. Try the cilantro pesto! Leave the garish dècor behind, dine out underneath the sun, and add a few years to your life for cheap. SD


1510 SW Harbor Way, 295-6166

There are two reasons I like dining in hometown hotels. A) Sometimes I like to pretend I've left Portland to visit a far more interesting town. B) I like to mess with tourists. That's why I plan on a few trips to Lucere this summer. They've got ample room on their three (yes, three!) patios, and a decent happy hour, too ($2-3 food like mussels, Mac & Cheese, grilled ham and cheese, cheeseburger, hummus, and awesome French fries 3-6 pm & 9 pm-close). SD



725 SW 10th, 478-9600

Large outdoor back patio (one of the few downtown) makes you feel like you're in a greenhouse with the way the light trickles down among the buildings. Try some of Momo's simple but tasty fare, like their salads, grilled cheese, and pasta. Great place for lunch. KS


816 N Russell, 284-5118

Splendid, luxurious drinks (which include fresh fruit) and high-end fusion food make for a sophisticated dining/drinking experience. They've got six tables out front for now, but by the end of May the new cocktail lounge 820 will be open, which means 10 more tables. It'll be like an outdoor cocktail party! KS


New Old Lompoc

1616 NW 23rd, 225-1855

If you're looking for a patio that furnishes both width and girth, get with the New Old Lompoc. They serve high-end bar food at low-end prices, on a big ass patio that's furnished with open-air picnic tables and partially covered four-seater tabletops (for those chilly summer nights). This is a great patio for you and your large group of loud-mouthed friends to chug microbrew and laugh your ass silly under a star-filled sky. Cheap drinks weekdays 4-7 pm. WSH

No Fish, Go Fish

3962 SE Hawthorne, Suite A, 235-5378

Try No Fish's new menu debuting mid-May including mahi mahi, salmon salad with capers and lemon, duck confit, and later in the summer, their spectacular chilled soups. For the moment, however, you can still enjoy their tasty Southern Italian comfort food and hearty soups. Outdoor tables in front will be supplemented by umbrella tables in back once the weather gets nice. KS


2135 SE Division, 239-3933

Even though Nourishment offers some odd food pairings on their menu, the ingredients are overwhelmingly fresh tasting, and they have great homemade soups. Plus the restaurant offers a bevy of sunny outside seating which includes nice metal chairs and sturdy tables. KS


Perry's on Fremont

2401 NE Fremont, 287-3655

This is a great place to take grammy and grampy, or any family party, because you won't hear a lot of swear words. Perry's serves huge portions of American food that's a little too expensive, but their vine-covered patio makes up for it on the sunny days. Try their desserts, too. KS


6410 SE Milwaukie Ave, 239-8544

It's not Pat's, but it's as close as Portlanders can get without hopping a plane. Aside from a map or two of Philly on the walls, the place lacks personality. So the fenced-in patio is the place to sample Moore microbrews and scarf a hoagie. Try a cheese steak with mushrooms and onions, but ask for provolone instead of American. If you really crave the "Philly stoop" experience, lean over your patio table and eat like you're munching out of a food trough. PA

Pied Cow

3244 SE Belmont, 230-4866

People with clean hearts and youthful minds need someplace to drink coffee and fruity Belgian beer, smoke fancy tobacco out of hookahs, and enjoy tasty Mediterranean snack plates... in a huge grassy side yard. KS

Plainfield Mayur

852 SW 21st, 223-2995

Expensive Indian food that's as good as anyplace else, but worth it if you want to pay for the secluded outdoor dining. KS

Portland Brewing Taproom

2730 NW 31st & Industrial, 228-5269

Sometimes the people that live on Council Crest don't want to drive all the way to John's Landing to dine along the waterfront. Thank god for the Taproom, then. The menu of apps and sandwiches is consistent, and they creatively feature the MacTarnahan ales and porters in (or on) the food. Rotisserie items are where it's at; i.e. the Blackwatch cream porter pot roast is right on. The sizable front patio has a view of the Martin Sprocket and Gear building that'll make you wonder why you ever drove to Multnomah Falls. PA

Produce Row

204 SE Oak, 232-8355

With regular live music and tons of comfortable seating, Produce Row provides one of the best outdoor eating spots in town. It's vegetarian-friendly, has an eclectic menu of pasta and sandwiches that's delicious, and they have a great beer selection. Just watch out for the staff; they're rarely as friendly as they should be. But that's why they're cool, right? JWS

Red Fig Bento

4537 NE Fremont, 335-7068

Bento done well. Bento done healthy. You might not know the Red Fig, on quiet li'l NE Fremont, but its roomy, inviting deck is a great place to relax and put good, simple food in your body. Teriyaki-marinated chicken bento and salmon bento with tzaziki top the menu, both literally and figuratively. Substitute Yakisoba noodles for white or brown rice, add a little peanut or chili sauce, and you're fueled up for around eight bucks without feeling sloggy. Closed Sunday. PA

Saigon Kitchen

3829 SE Division, 236-2312

For solid Vietnamese food at fairly low prices, the Saigon Kitchen is a good bet. Try their salad rolls, and order any dish with tofu; they do a great job of cooking this difficult to handle bean curd. Also, the Division location has a large outdoor enclosure that's raised up from the street. KS Patio not open yet, call first.


3216 SE Milwaukie, 235-6665

Great Italian food with fresh Northwest ingredients is always better in the outdoors. Sala not only has enough space on their patio for you and your family, it also comes complete with a nifty, tall fountain kids can throw pennies in. They also boast a spectacular brunch (weekends 10-3). KS

Small World Café

722 N Sumner, 335-8232

Bummed out by cold greens/cold service at Vita? Small World Cafè has really come into its own with hormone-free, free-range, and fair trade everything. Enjoy the world-famous cheesy grits while basking in front of the "We are the World" mural under a shady parasol, amongst the fragrant flora and becobbled grasses of a patio/park fenced in by recycled bicycle frames. LC

Sweet Basil

3135 NE Broadway, 281-8337

They charge a buck or two more than your average Thai joint, but once you've eaten at Sweet Basil, you'll see why. Their curries are rich and tart, and served with black and white rice in adorable star and moon shapes. Dine outside in their secluded garden, complete with festive lights and heat lamps for the faint of heart. Brunch buffet Sat-Sun 11:30-2. SD

Tara Thai

1310 NW 23rd, 222-7840

Though not as tasty as Thai Orchid or artful as Typhoon, Mr. and Mrs. Phommaneth do an admirable job of dishing up authentic Thai vittles... and some with curious names, too. Enjoy the James Bond Fried Rice or the Evil Jungle Prince red curry outside on the wood-slat seating corralled by modest greenery. Dip into the Laotian part of the menu with Khao Poon Nam Kai: rice noodles, veggies, basil, coconut milk, and chicken stock. PA

Tin Shed Garden Café

1438 NE Alberta, 288-6966

Formerly Roslyn's coffee shop, the Tin Shed now has a full kitchen. They serve egg and tofu scrambles, French toast made with sweet potato bread, and the potato pancakes fly off the plates like actual hotcakes. Oh, and they have a host of outdoor tables. Weekday breakfast 7-11:30, lunch 11:30-2. Weekends breakfast all day. Closed Tues. KS


Una Mas!

314 NW 23rd, 226-9600, 3832 SE Hawthorne, 236-5000

First off, Unamas has 99-cent Mexican beers Fri-Sun all day. Even more reason to stop by and have a 99-cent taqueria taco, some crispy chicken tacos, or a mound of nachos, all for super-cheap. Plus, their outside seating is ample at both locations. KS


White Hat Catering/Café

1405 SE Tacoma, 238-6571

Now that Compass Cafe has, sadly, closed its doors, the title of "best garden seating" is up for grabs. White Hat is the heir apparent. This little-known lunch spot by the Sellwood Bridge offers some of the best sandwiches you'll find, homemade cookies, ice cream, sweet tea, and specials that will lure you in for repeat visits. Past the flowers and tiny potted Meyer lemon tree, a path leads to a backyard worthy of a Timber Press book. Have lunch here enough and you'll be inspired to leave soulless Intel or Nike to start a cafe of your own. Open 11-3 pm, Closed Mon. PA

Wild Abandon

2411 SE Belmont, 233-8699

Given its location on "Patchouli Blvd," otherwise known as SE Belmont, Wild Abandon seems somehow misplaced. But would it be just another Italian cafe in Lake Oswego or on the backside of Sellwood? Who's to say? What's clear is that it takes its culinary feats seriously--from wine list, to risotto, to tiramisu--and without pretension. The only drawback: the patio is super-tiny, about twice the size of a walk-in closet. Seinfeld's Kramer might suggest putting in a retractable roof over the place. Closed Tuesdays. PA