The dog days of summer are upon us, and that means it’s the perfect time to dine alfresco with friends at one of these Reno restaurants with outdoor seating. But, the Biggest Little City doesn’t have a monopoly on eateries with fantastic outdoor patios. Sparks and Lake Tahoe also boast some lovely spots to have a sip or a nibble during a cool evening or balmy afternoon.
Reno Restaurants With Outdoor Seating
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Perenn Bakery’s new location in the modern, luxurious Village at Rancharrah is a spacious space with a modern French feel. There is plenty of indoor and outdoor seating. No matter where you choose to dine, you’ll order at the counter—beware of the myriad pastries you’ll be walking by on your way to order if you’re avoiding sugar or carbs—and then grab a table.
The menu features specialty pastries, fresh salads such as Panzanella and Nicoise, breakfast sandwiches, toasts, granola and grits bowls, breakfast dishes such as soft scrambled eggs en croissant and Brulee croissant French toast and sandwiches such as Croque Madame and a BLT. Perenn’s original location on St. Lawrence Street in Midtown Reno has a slightly different menu, and offers a small space on the adjacent sidewalk with bistro tables for outdoor dining.
Stone House Cafe is a Reno landmark with perhaps the loveliest patio in town. It’s spacious and filled with plenty of greenery to make alfresco dining feel intimate. One of our favorite Reno restaurants with outdoor seating, Stone House serves breakfast, lunch and dinner with pages and pages of offerings. For breakfast, try the Dungeness applewood bacon and spinach omelet or eggs Benedict with a mimosa or Sriracha bloody mary. For lunch, a seared ahi salad or crab Louie would be the perfect summertime midday meal with a glass of chilled white wine, and for dinner, the menu runs to steaks, chops, seafood, pasta and the like.
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Von Bismarck is a newcomer to the Reno food scene. It has an expansive patio complete with misters and umbrellas in the summer and heaters and blankets in the winter. Its modern beer garden feel extends to the menu with an expansive German beer and wine list. The menu features esoteric dishes such as grilled cabbage with buttermilk dressing, smoked walnut relish, fermented garlic oil and fresh horseradish, which is a revelation. Butterbrot, a house charcuterie plate, schnitzel and grilled wurst are also sensational.
Another one of Reno restaurants with outdoor seating is Wild River Grille. Situated along the Truckee River in downtown Reno, Wild River offers plenty of outdoor dining, a great place for a glass of wine and people-watching. For lunch, diners can tuck into crab and salmon cakes or tuna tartare to start as well as salads and wraps, a prime rib melt, a portabella and black bean burger or brie and pear sandwich. For dinner, try spicy shrimp pasta, crab-stuffed halibut with beurre blanc, steaks, wild mushroom ravioli or pan-seared duck breast with a smoky mezcal honey glaze.
Sparks Restaurants With Outdoor Seating
One can’t think about beer in Northern Nevada without Great Basin Brewing Company coming to mind. Great Basin is the largest and oldest currently operating brewery in Nevada, and its flagship Great Basin Brewpub is on Victorian Avenue in Sparks. The brewpub boasts a patio located along Victorian Square and plenty of outdoor seating on the patio. Flagship beer offerings include the Ichthyosaur “Icky” IPA, Leave No Trace Alpine Lager, Outlaw Milk Stout, Tectonic Event Double IPA, Wild Horse Amber Ale and Cerveza Chilebeso, as well as seasonal options.
The menu comprises pub fare such as fried pickles, stuffed jalapenos, chicken wings and loaded nacho appetizers; pizzas built atop a crust made from spent brewery grain; fresh salads such as a Pacific crest cobb and Greek shrimp salad; brewmaster’s mac ‘n cheese, fish and chips, fish tacos; chubby beef burgers such as a black and blue or bbq bacon burger served with crisp fries; and wraps, melts and sandwiches. Great Basin also has a brewpub location in Reno.
Mari Chuy’s has a new location on Victorian Square along the Avenue of the Americas. The original Mari Chuy’s was one of the first in the Sticks complex in Midtown Reno. Both locations have outdoor patios and feature fresh, seasonal Mexican dishes. The housemade salsas are killer, as is the ceviche and queso fundido. For lunch, the jicama tacos are super fresh, and the menu also features classic Mexican fare such as fajitas, carne asada, carnitas, fish tacos and camarones a la diabla (spicy shrimp).
Lake Tahoe Restaurants With Outdoor Seating
Bridgetender Tavern and Grill is a fun, mostly outdoors restaurant right across the street from the Lake Tahoe Dam in Tahoe City. It has a rustic, Tahoe laid-back vibe with picnic tables and an outdoor bar. The menu runs to classic pub fare and fresh-Mex dishes like burritos and quesadillas, burgers, sandwiches and hot dogs. For Tahoe, the prices are in line with the casual atmosphere.
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Gar Woods Grill & Pier in Carnelian Bay is the ultimate Lake Tahoe dining destination. Its famous pier has adorned many a wedding photograph, and its location right along the north shore of Lake Tahoe makes it an ideal spot for outdoor dining. The menu is pricier than many Reno restaurants—with appetizers such as lobster deviled eggs and short rib tacos, salads and pastas, shrimp and meat entrees—but on par with those in the Bay Area. Try Gar Woods’ famous Wet Woody options with whimsical names such as a Black and Blue Woody or Prickly Pear of Woodys.
Sunnyside Restaurant and Lodge in Tahoe City is another premier outdoor dining location on the North Shore of Lake Tahoe. With an expansive deck, Sunnyside is a premier resort with a menu featuring coconut-crusted calamari, fish tacos, a sesame salmon rice bowl, steak frites, a burger and chicken sandwich and the Kimo’s original hula pie.