14 Pretty Patios For Alfresco Dining In S.F.

Every so often, in the thick of a San Francisco summer, something incredible happens—it gets warm and sunny outside. Mother Nature has been beyond kind to us recently (knock on wood!), and you'd better believe we’re doing what we can to fully appreciate every fog-free, here-today, gone-tomorrow day.
At the top of our list when toastier temps hit: getting our nosh on in the great outdoors! That’s why we scoped out 14 of S.F.’s loveliest restaurant patios to dine alfresco all summer long. Trust, these beauts are sure to feed your appetite and your eyes. From a tucked-away hidden garden to a laid-back bar by the ballpark to a rooftop patio with skyline views, we found an ambiance for every mood. Take a look 'cuz when the weather’s perfecto, nothing beats grabbing a bite and drink and shooting the breeze (quite literally) in the open air.
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Photographed by Anna-Alexia Basile
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Stable Cafe
Cuisine: Coffee and Modern Neapolitan
Its MO: Tranquil Java
If you’re on the hunt for a rustic, ambient, and sleek place to park it — Stable Café fits the bill. The horse stable-turned-coffee shop offers up light treats and java in a sweeping patio space. Tranquil, expansive, and brimming with light, we wish we could hole up and spend our days chilling here. It’s a lovely Mission respite.

Stable Cafe, 2128 Folsom Street (at 17th Street); 415-552-1199.

Photographed by Anna-Alexia Basile
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Café Flore
Cuisine: New American
Its MO: The Fun Patio
Need an afternoon pick-me-up in the form of burgers and sangria? This lively café is situated right in the center of it all in the Castro. The patio is surrounded by plants and has a cozy, energetic beer-garden feel, not to mention festive rainbow streamers. Street-side seating is also available.

Café Flore, 2298 Market Street (between Sanchez and Noe streets); 415-621-8579.

Photographed by Anna-Alexia Basile
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Bar Bambino
Cuisine: Upscale Italian
Its MO: La Bella (Urban) Vita
Upscale Italian done so right. Yes, this place is as adorable as everyone says. Between the delish wine, cheese, pasta options, the chic décor, and romantic patio, this is the spot to hit when want to impress your guest. The ambiance strikes just the right classy-yet-relaxed chord — think rustic-sleek.

Bar Bambino, 2931 16th Street (between Van Ness Avenue and Capp Street); 415-701-8466.

Photo: Via Bar Bambino
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SoMa StrEat Food Park
Cuisine: A Little Of Everything
Its MO: Food Heaven On Earth (okay, S.F.)
Its spelling may remind you of an Avril Lavigne album, but don’t let that fool you — this food truck fare is about as good as it gets. We’re talking a whole park full of yummy cuisines, Wi-Fi access, a movie projector, and covered pavilion. All of which is open seven days a week for lunch and dinner. Radio is broadcasted throughout (we lucked out and chowed down to the tune of "She's a Bad Mamma Jamma" on our last visit). In short, it’s the ultimate alfresco.

SoMa StrEat Food Park, 428 11th Street (between Bryant and Harrison streets); email.

Photographed by Anna-Alexia Basile
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Bar Agricole
Cuisine: New American
Its MO: Polished Americana
An artisan’s dream and about as quintessentially Californian as you can get. It’s green (LEED certified!), beautifully designed, and serves farm-fresh food. On the eco front, the space is a converted industrial loft and the tables and chairs were handmade from reclaimed wine barrels by local designers. We also appreciate the little touches that went into making the outdoor patio as lovely as it is, like a water fountain to drown out any traffic sounds and ultra-modern, raised planting beds.

Bar Agricole, 355 Eleventh Street (between Folsom and Harrison streets); 415-355-9400.

Photo: Via Bar Agricole
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Jones
Cuisine: New American
Its MO: Party On The Rooftop
The entrance to this restaurant-bar is so narrow and unassuming, newcomers might never suspect it opens up to a sizeable indoor area and cool, roomy rooftop bar. We’re fans of the ample seating and fluid indoor-outdoor floor plan. It’s easy to find a spot outside or cozy up indoors if the temps get too chilly. Plus, Jones is offering up two free alfresco movie screenings of Hitchcock films this summer (and serving complimentary booze and s’mores!). Enter the lottery for tickets here.

Jones, 620 Jones Street (between Colin Place and Geary Street); 415-496-6858.

Photo: Via Jones Bar
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Café de la Presse
Cuisine: French
Its MO: Street Chic
This quaint, casual spot is conveniently located at the edge of Chinatown and Union Square (shopping central!), so it’s the perfect place to swing by, sit street-side, and grab a bite in between boutiques. And great for people-watching, too. Expect the typical French café cuisine — quiches, croquet-monsieur, French onion soup, and the like.

Café de la Presse, 352 Grant Avenue (between Sutter Street and Harlan Place); 415-398-2680.

Photographed by Anna-Alexia Basile
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Arlequin Café
Cuisine: American
Its MO: An Empire’s Retreat
This hidden gem totally lives up to Absinthe Group's greatness (it's owned by the culinary powerhouse). The food goes beyond typical café fare, featuring hearty options like burgers and mac ‘n’ cheese. And, oh man, the back patio. Between the wrought-iron chairs, stone floor, and lush shrubs — the space feels like a full-on secret garden. It’s also located in the heart of Hayes Valley, making it an easy stop when you’re done shopping.

Arlequin Café, 384 Hayes Street (between Franklin and Gough streets); 415-626-1211.

Photographed by Anna-Alexia Basile
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Foreign Cinema
Cuisine: California-Mediterranean
Its MO: International Affair
With its ultra-elegant loft-like feel, it’s no surprise this spot is a local favorite for weddings and private events. As the name implies, the restaurant screens both foreign and independent films in the outdoor courtyard during dinner. Just check out its website for a rundown of current flicks. As if that wasn’t hip enough, there’s also an art gallery inside and an energetic, split-level adjoining bar, Laszlo.

Foreign Cinema, 2534 Mission Street (between 21st and 22nd streets); 415-648-7600.

Photo: Via Foreign Cinema
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Brindisi Cucina di Mare
Cuisine: Italian
Its MO: Italian Street Dining
Turns out it’s not actually necessary to hop on a flight to get a Euro-style dining experience. Instead, here’s a fitting alternative. This Italian joint may be in FiDi, but eating here sure feels like being transported to Europe. It’s located along Belden Place, a jam-packed alley filled with alfresco seating and strings of café lights. We’re also loving the venue’s super-charming gingham tablecloths and fresh flowers.

Brindisi Cucina di Mare, 88 Belden Place (between Pine and Bush streets); 415-593-8000.

Photographed by Anna-Alexia Basile
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Paragon Restaurant
Cuisine: New American
Its MO: The All-American
Just blocks away from the waterfront and AT&T Park, here’s a lively locale to grab a bite and a cold one before or after the ballgame. Patio seating complete with umbrellas and heat lamps is set up during warmer weather and the wine and beer lists include an ample selection of West Coast favorites. Bonus: For Giants home games, the restaurant opens a half hour early.

Paragon Restaurant, 701 Second Street (at Townsend Street); 415-537-1920.

Photo: Via Paragon Restaurant
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MarketBar Restaurant
Cuisine: American
Its MO: The Business Of Eating
On a really nice day, you might find yourself strolling along the Embarcadero. And when you do, MarketBar is a worthy pit stop. Its patio seating is right outside the Ferry Building, making it a great place to catch a breeze and grab a meal after a trip to the farmers' market. And speaking of said market, that and a handful of other local vendors are the source of this eatery’s farm-to-table ingredients.

MarketBar Restaurant, 1 Ferry Building (The Embarcadero at Market Street); 415-434-110.

Photo: Via MarketBar Restaurant
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Bin 38
Cuisine: American (New)
Its MO: Backyard Bar Party
Cozy-casual outdoor seating, umbrellas, and a fire pit — it’s like your bourgie neighbor’s backyard. The atmosphere is super chill, it doesn’t usually get overly crowded, and seems to attract a working-professional crowd. Hey, unwinding after a long day with a great glass of wine sounds like a plan to us! Grub-wise there’s a nice mix of finger-food options and entrees, depending on what you’re in the mood for.

Bin 38, 3232 Scott Street (between Chestnut and Lombard streets); 415-567-3838.

Photographed by Anna-Alexia Basile
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Gitane
Cuisine: French and Spanish
Its MO: Artfully Eclectic
Need a nightcap? This super-funky restaurant is known for its creative cocktails (saffron, cava, and orange-blossom water are among the ingredient list), and it specializes in sherry and brandy. The name “Gitane” means “gypsy" and the décor follows suit with dimly lit tables and ornate touches like tapestry-covered walls. We also love that the outdoor patio maintains this intimate, bohemian feel even though it shares an alleyway with other restaurants.

Gitane, 6 Claude Lane (between Sutter and Bush streets); 415-788-6686.

Photographed by Anna-Alexia Basile
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