The Best Houston Restaurant Patios to Enjoy in 2024

Mutiny Wine Bar

When the weather in Houston begins to warm up but has not yet reached sweltering levels, diners flock to restaurants with patios for dining and drinking outside on sunny days and breezy evenings. Luckily for us, there is no shortage of restaurants in our city that fit the bill. We’ve gathered a list of some of our favorites for enjoying a weekend brunch, a weekday respite or a leisurely dinner al fresco. 

Asiatown

Hẻm Kitchen & Bar, 11714 Bellaire: This Asiatown restaurant serving authentic Vietnamese street food has gone to great lengths to recreate the street cafés of Vietnam. The name translates to “alley” in English, and the sidewalk outside the restaurant is lined with colorful, plastic, low tables and chairs reminiscent of a Vietnamese alley café. Family-style platters of grilled seafood featuring oysters, clams, whelks, scallops and mussels and grilled skewers of beef, pork and chicken hearts and gizzards are passed around, making for a festive outdoor dining experience. 

Hm opens early, offering Vietnamese coffee and tea such as cà phê mui (salted cream coffee), cà phê trng (egg cream coffee) and trà tắc(kumquat tea). It is open daily for coffee service from 8 to 10:30 a.m., for lunch from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and for dinner service from 5 to 10 p.m. Reservations are not required.

Downtown

Lyric Market
Outdoor seating at Lyric Market. Photo by Andrew Hemingway.

Lyric Market, 411 Smith: Whether taking a lunch break or stopping in for dinner and a drink before a show, the spacious patio at this downtown food hall is ideal for enjoying the weather amid the hustle and bustle of the city. Lyric Hall is great for groups, as there’s something for everyone to choose from among the seven different food vendors, including ramen from Samurai Noodle and Chinese-Creole fusion from 1929 Po-boy Kitchen

Lyric Bar offers happy hour from 3 to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, featuring $5 beers, $6 wines and $8 cocktails. It is open Sunday and Monday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., Tuesday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. 

Galleria

Artisans, 5745 Westheimer: Formerly located in midtown, this French restaurant has relocated to the heart of the Galleria area. The stunning interior is now even more elegant and warm, and the new location also boasts an outdoor terrace space where diners can enjoy a beautiful day while dining on classic dishes such as boeuf Bourguignon and duck confit

The patio also beckons during its weekday social hour from 3 to 5 p.m. The special menu includes small bites such as croque monsieur and a selection of cured meats and cheeses, as well as a selection of cocktails and wines. Artisans is open Sunday through Tuesday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., Wednesday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Saturday for dinner only from 5 to 10 p.m. Reservations are recommended and can be made on the website.  

Garden Oaks

La Mex Patio
The festive patio at La Mex in the Stomping Grounds. Photo by Becca Wright.

La Mex, 1223 West 34th: Sister restaurant to longstanding La Mexicana in Montrose, this casual Tex-Mex spot is located in the Stomping Grounds, a mixed-use development in the Garden Oaks area. The family-friendly restaurant’s festive patio leads out directly into expansive green lawn space, making it easy for parents to relax while the kids play. Diners familiar with La Mexicana will be happy to find all their favorites on the menu, including enchiladas, fajitas, tacos and queso, as well as breakfast offerings. It is open daily from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., and stays open an extra hour Friday and Saturday until 9 p.m. Reservations are not required. 

Greenway/Upper Kirby

Eunice Patio
The new patio at Eunice. Photo by Emma Umana.

Eunice, 3737 Buffalo Speedway: The bright and airy interior of chef Drake Leonard’s Cajon-Creole brasserie carries over to the newly renovated patio. The covered patio is surrounded by flowers and greenery, giving it a modern greenhouse feel. The open ceilings and fans keep the temperature breezy as diners enjoy the signature smoked chicken and sausage gumbo, hearth-roasted oysters or the seasonal catch of the day with blue crab, cauliflower, brown butter and almonds. Brunch or happy hour on the patio on a warm day can’t be beat. Eunice is open Monday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Reservations are recommended and can be made on the website

MaKiin Patio
A red carpet leads out to the patio area of MaKiin. Photo by Sean Rainer.

MaKiin, 2651 Kipling: The name of this upscale Thai restaurant translates to “come eat” in Thai, and the sophisticated and elegant interior invites you to do just that. However, when the weather is perfect for dining outside, the patio is just as luxurious. The red carpet leads out to black tables accented by gold tableware and plush red chairs. It’s an ideal setting to take in Makiin’s meticulously crafted dishes, such the Majestic Ocean Medley, a casserole of poached lobster tail, scallop, crispy soft-shell crab and calamari served with bean vermicelli noodles and the Salmon Royale, butter-poached salmon in a creamy Panang curry. It is open for lunch daily from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., dinner Sunday through Thursday from 4 to 10 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 4 p.m. to midnight. Happy hour is also offered at the bar, in the dining room and on the patio every day from 4 to 6:30 p.m. Reservations are recommended and can be made on the website

Heights

Spring dishes at 1891
A variety of dishes on the menu of 1891 American Eatery & Bar. Photo by Andrew Hemingway.

1891 American Eatery & Bar, 702 East 11th: This family-friendly sports bar, located in the former Berryhill space, has kept the expansive patio. It’s the perfect spot for warm days and nights where the whole family can enjoy executive chef Jason Gould’s modern American comfort food.  Dishes on the menu include a bacon-wrapped hot dog, steak sandwich, Adobo Beef Brisket Tacos, Summer Spaghetti and lemon pepper salmon. Add a margarita or mimosa flight for a festive al fresco experience. It is open Monday from 4 to 9 p.m., Tuesday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., Friday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., Saturday from 10:30 a.m. to 11 p.m., Sunday from 10:30 a.m. to 8 p.m.  Reservations are not required, but diners can check in on the waitlist on the website.

selection of cocktails at Heights & Co
A selection of cocktails at Heights & Co. Photo by Alex Montoya.

Heights & Co., 1343 Yale: This neighborhood bar is known for its spacious and dog-friendly patio. When Houston’s weather is at its finest, the outdoor tables under the light-strung pergola are often occupied by guests enjoying a weekend brunch burger, an afternoon wine and cheese board, a happy hour cocktail, or a steak frites dinner. It is open Monday through Thursday from 2 to 10 p.m. and Friday through Sunday from noon to midnight. Reservations are not required.

Mutiny Wine Room, 1124 Usener: Get as close to Napa Valley as you can at this upscale Heights wine bar. There are two sizable patios to choose from that both have a combination of lounge and table seating where guests (and their pooches) can unwind and enjoy boutique wines from around the world. Sunny days are made even more comfortable under umbrellas and with misting fans. The seasonal menu features meat and cheese boards, light starters such as Gulf Snapper ceviche and robust entrées such as braised beef short ribs. There are also special events monthly, including the popular Paella Sunday with chef Eduardo Alcayaga, where he cooks seafood paella live on the patio. Reservations are recommended and can be made on Resy

Rainbow Lodge patio
The backyard patio at Rainbow Lodge overlooking the immaculately landscaped grounds was just decked out with new patio furniture. Courtesy Photo.

Rainbow Lodge, 2011 Ella Blvd: You’ll almost forget where you are when seated outside on the patio deck of the over 100-year-old log cabin. The patio overlooks a sprawling acre of lush land on the banks of White Oak Bayou. The views are only rivaled by the menu of sophisticated, yet comforting wild game and seafood, which includes the signature smoked duck gumbo and the rainbow trout with lump blue crab and pecan brown butter. The patio is also always the right call for Sunday brunch and $2 mimosas. It is open Tuesday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., Saturday from 5 to 10 p.m., Sunday from 10:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. and is closed on Monday. Reservations are recommended and can be made on the website.

Montrose

Backstreet Cafe, 1103 South Shepherd: There’s no doubt that Backstreet Cafe is one of the city’s most popular restaurants for patio dining. Restaurateur Tracy Vaught and chef Hugo Ortega’s cozy converted house serving New American comfort food is a Houston institution, as is dining outside on the tree-shaded, New Orleans-style patio. Lush shrubbery separates the patio from the street, and each table is adorned with an umbrella keeping diners shaded and nestled away in the little haven. Weekend brunch on the patio is a tradition, where dishes such as brisket migas and crab cake and eggs get washed down with a mimosa. The dinner menu includes pan-roasted chicken, pan-seared scallops and a flavorful cioppino with fish, scallop, shrimp, clams, mussels, calamari and a tomato-infused seafood broth. All make for an elegant evening on the lit-up patio. Backstreet Cafe is open Tuesday through Thursday from 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m, Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and is closed on Monday. Reservations are recommended and can be made on the website

Cocktails B19
Enjoy cocktails on the patio at Brasserie 19. Photo by Andrew Hemingway.

Brasserie 19, 1962 West Gray: Arguably one of the buzziest patios in Houston, the River Oaks modern French bistro is a staple of the see-and-be-seen scene. Brunch or dinner on the breezy patio is always a good idea on warm days and nights. The menu includes a braised lamb shank with roasted sunchoke, arugula-horseradish purée and natural jus, and veal pappardelle with slow-cooked veal, fava beans, English peas and gremolata. Sit back, relax, and take in the lights of busy West Gray with one of its signature cocktails like the L’ananas made with Socorro Blanco, pineapple, fresh lime and a Tajín rim. Brasserie 19 is open Sunday and Monday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., Tuesday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.. Reservations are recommended and can be made on the website.

margaritas
Enjoy a margarita on the patio at Candente. Photo by Alex Montoya.

Candente, 4306 Yoakum: Dining outside on a patio when the weather is agreeable is synonymous with Tex-Mex and margaritas, and this Montrose spot is just the place for it. The family-friendly restaurant’s outdoor area includes a breezy covered dining area and a green space with different seating options where the kids can soak up the sun while the parents have a house margarita or a paloma. Nothing goes better with a refreshing drink than fresh guacamole with fresh avocado mashed to order with garlic, lime, red onion, fresh serrano and cilantro. Tex-Mex classics include tacos al carbon and Smoked Chicken Verde Enchiladas. It is open daily from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and stays open an extra hour until 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. Reservations are not required.

Patio of Pit Room
The laid back patio of the Pit Room. Photo by Duc Hoang.

The Pit Room, 1201 Richmond: Days when the weather cooperates means backyard barbecues, and sometimes you want to kick back and leave the work to the pros. This Montrose barbecue spot has the perfect patio that will have you feeling at home. It features a large deck with plentiful seating, TVs and a bar. Grab some brisket, beef and pork ribs and venison sausage and wash it down with an ice-cold local brew. The Pit Room also opens early daily, offering hearty breakfast tacos like pulled pork hash and egg, brisket and egg and jalapeño sausage and egg. During the season, diners can also grab a seat outside to enjoy boiled crawfish, snow crab and shrimp boils. It is open daily for breakfast from 7 to 10:30 a.m., and barbecue is served from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Reservations are not required, but come early and hang out.

Rice Village

Hamsa, 5555 Morningside: The beautiful, modern, Israeli restaurant from the team behind Doris Metropolitan is the perfect choice for a meal when the weather is good. The patio is surrounded by greenery and shaded by an awning and umbrellas. On sunny days, the doors leading to the patio stay open, making for a large airy space that is a lively setting for light fare such as hummus, roasted cabbage and skewers of chicken and ribeye. The patio is shared with Badolina, the sister bakery concept, where diners can sit back with a cup of coffee and a freshly baked pastry. Hamsa is open Tuesday and Wednesday from 11:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m., Thursday from 11:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday from 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. and is closed on Monday. Reservations are recommended and can be made on Resy.

River Oaks

Relish Patio
The charming sidewalk patio at Relish. Photo by Julie Soefer.

Relish Restaurant & Bar, 2810 Westheimer: This River Oaks neighborhood eatery offers a variety of American comfort foods with a Mediterranean twist in a casual-yet-charming setting. The outdoor patio is decked out in wicker chairs and potted greenery, which gives off perfect sidewalk café vibes. Diners will want to enjoy the warm weather while noshing on seasonal favorites such as a Panzanella Caprese with heirloom tomatoes, burrata, croutons, cucumbers, pickled red onion, basil and Champagne vinaigrette, the watermelon, tomato and feta salad with arugula, pickled onions, pepitas, breadcrumbs and basil lime vinaigrette, and the Melon Carpaccio with burrata, prosciutto, saba, hazelnuts, basil and mint. No meal al fresco is complete without a refreshing libation, such as the new Strawberry Chill made with Redemption Bourbon, strawberry, coconut, mint, lemon and yuzu. Reservations are recommended and can be made on Opentable.

The Woodlands

Amrina Patio
The patio at Amrina in the Woodlands. Courtesy Photo.

Amrina, 3 Waterway Square: Amrina, the eclectic, modern, fine-dining Indian restaurant has a stunning dining room, but when the weather warms up, the seats of choice will be out on the expansive, 1,500-square-foot patio that wraps around one corner of the restaurant. The fans keep things breezy while the string lights that dance throughout the patio make for a romantic setting while dining on such dishes such as jackfruit samosas and tiger prawns with pepper jam. “Fantasy Hour” on the patio includes small tapas style bites, wines by the glass and cocktails. Amrina is open Tuesday through Thursday from 4 to 9 p.mFriday from 4 to 10 p.m., Saturday from 5 to 10 p.m., Sunday from 4 to 9 p.m. and is closed on Monday. Reservations are recommended and can be made on OpenTable.

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  • April 23, 2024 at 10:18 pmgary brandenberger

    The Del Vista has a great patio in the Tanglewood area…..

    Reply