Whether you love to linger in the carefree moments of summer sunshine, or love eating outdoors in cooler, fall temperatures, Northern Kentucky has amazing outdoor dining and patio options!  And with the current coronavirus pandemic, many people are gravitating to outdoor dining, but aren't quite ready to take the leap dine indoors.  Don't worry, some of Northern Kentucky's best restaurants offer outdoor dining and amazing patios!

the standard covington patio

The Standard Covington

An old mechanic's auto garage has been turned into a hip, new restaurant.  While I haven't had the pleasure of dining here quite yet, I have complete faith that it will be as amazing as everyone says simply because its owner also owns Otto's and Frida 602, which both get thumbs up from me.

knotty pine on the bayou

Knotty Pine on the Bayou

Delicious Cajun fare and seafood tucked away on the banks of the the Licking River, Knotty Pine might be one of NKY's best kept secrets.

the fairfield cafe

The Fairfield Cafe + Bar

Y'all, this place is a true hidden gem.  We had no idea this was even here until they reached out and invited us over to see the space.  Coffee drinks, a full bar, sandwiches, wraps, grab-and-go selection, pastries, plus outdoor seating... they've got it going on!

ripple wine bar sidewalk seating

Ripple Wine Bar

You don't want to miss this stylish wine bar in Covington, pouring more than 40 varieties of wines by the glass. Ripple also offers a seasonally inspired menu, cocktails and beer.  Their newly expanded patio gives you plenty of space to spread out and enjoy while taking in the sights of the city core.

camporosso patio

Camporosso

You guys, their patio is magical with the lights twinkling and the people all laughing and having a good time.  And the food is delicious!  Definitely add it to your list!

Yonder patio

Yonder

Yonder by Commonwealth is a unique rooftop bar inspired by the Commonwealth Bistro owners’ love of Kentucky State Parks. With a food menu that rotates weekly, you’ll always have new options to choose from!

exterior photo of fessler's legendary pizza and hoagies in bellevue ky

Fessler's Legendary Pizza & Hoagies

Their name includes the word "legendary" for good reason--it's been family owned and operated since 1963 (read more about that here).  We love the pizza, hoagies, and wings.  Oh and those fries... yum!  The outdoor seating on Fairfield Avenue in Bellevue is the perfect addition to this local favorite!

alexandria brewing company

Alexandria Brewing Company

Grab some craft beer and hang out on the picnic tables all night long.  Rotating food trucks provide great dining options.  If you're lucky, you might catch some live music!

knuck n futz

Knuck 'N Futz

These guys have been frying some of the best chicken wings in NKY for years, through restaurant fires and more, so there's no way they'd let some 25% capacity rules stop them.  They have built a patio and then expanded the patio to the parking lot so that they could serve their loyal patrons!  Pro tip: Don't mis the wing night specials!

three spirits tavern patio

Three Spirits Tavern

A fun neighborhood bar in the heart of Bellevue's Fairfield Avenue, Three Spirits Tavern serves amazing drinks, flatbreads, buffalo chicken dip, pimento crostinis, and more!  Their awesome patio and live music are not to be missed!

barleycorn's patio

Barleycorn's

With locations in Florence, Cold Spring, and Crestview, Barleycorn's is a great local favorite with amazing patios.  We love the fried chicken and the combo appetizer! (Photo was taken last year for anyone concerned with the social distancing guidelines!)

agave and rye patio

Agave & Rye

If you want epic tacos (kangaroo anyone?) and delicious margaritas, check out Agave & Rye in Covington.  They have outdoor service at picnic tables down both sidewalks.

grassroots and vine patio

Grassroots & Vine

This hidden gem in Ft. Thomas has an awesome patio to just sit back and relax.  From delicious brunch, fresh salads and sandwiches, and amazing flatbread, you can't go wrong with anything on the menu! 

Goodfellas pizza

Goodfellas

Goodfellas Pizzeria has tables out front and two levels of patio dining in the back where you can enjoy a yummy slice of New York-style pizza.  Don't forget about Wiseguy Lounge upstairs--a great place to grab a cocktail and it's also on our B-Line bourbon tour.

bircus brewing ludlow patio

Bircus Brewing Company

Guys, this place is so cool.  The world of circus acts lives in harmony with love of craft beer and you have Bircus.  The beer is brewed right here in Ludlow, the patio has expanded recently, and they have food trucks rotating throughout the week.  Don't miss the Taco Tuesday truck!  

Frida's patio

Frida 602

Frida 602, named in honor of the famous artist Frida Kahlo, is a Mainstrasse favorite and serves some of the best tacos in the NKY and Cincy region. You have to try their Brussels Sprouts taco!

red umbrellas and black outdoor patio tables on a brick sidewalk in front of the gruff in covington ky

The Gruff

Located at the foot of the Roebling Bridge, The Gruff is inspired by the fairy tale “Three Billy Goats Gruff.” With a full bar, brick oven pizzas, sandwiches, soups, and a great view of the bridge you won’t be able to get enough of their patio!

twisted pretzel

The Pretzel Place

Pretzel sandwiches and warm soft pretzels.. what's not to love!?  With outdoor seating on the sidewalk down Fairfield Avenue in Bellevue, The Pretzel Place is the perfect spot for lunch or even an afternoon snack.  The smell inside is amazing--we can never leave without getting cinnamon sugar knots and the caprese sandwich!

obryons bar and grill newport patio

O'Bryon's Bar & Grill

Some argue that O'Bryon's has the best wings in NKY, so it's time to go try them for yourself!  Their beautiful patio is a prime spot to settle in and catch a game on TV while you enjoy their delicious food and drink.

Keystone Patio

Keystone Bar & Grill

If you like mac & cheese, then you will love Keystone Bar & Grill because they have eight different mac & cheese dishes for you to enjoy in their outdoor dining space! Don’t worry, though, if you’re not the biggest fan of mac & cheese, they have other great options like quesadillas, burgers, sandwiches, and more.

Blinkers Tavern patio

Blinkers Tavern

Blinkers Tavern that has not one but TWO outdoor dining areas and has been voted “Best Steak” in Northern Kentucky six years running!

Lil's Bagels

Lil's Bagels

Lil’s Bagels has some of the best bagels in the NKY and Cincinnati area. Some people think they're the best you can get outside NYC! They also sell sandwiches, salads, and cocktails. They also have a carryout "windough" to grab some bagels on the go!

siam orchid outdoor seating

Siam Orchid

If you haven't been to Siam Orchid before, you need to.  Simply delicious Thai food!  Luckily, they have awesome sidewalk seating available! 

honey hole bar and grill alexandria

Honey Hole Bar & Grill

Like many other restaurants, Honey Hole in Alexandria has expanded their patio seating to take up some parking lot space, which means it'll be easier for you to grab a coveted outdoor table.  Don't miss their nightly specials!

midway cafe ft thomas patio

Midway Cafe

If you're from Ft. Thomas, you know about Midway Cafe, but if you aren't, it's a great local secret!  The wings are delicious--and so are these slushee drinks--and are especially great when enjoyed on their sidewalk seating while watching the cars drive by the Ft. Thomas strip.

Smoke Justis patio

Smoke Justis

Named after the opening day pitcher for the 1913 Covington Blue Sox, Smoke Justis is a sports bar in Covington that smokes their meat on site, making for great barbeque, wings, brisket, and more.  Check out their bourbon bar while you're there!

Molly Malone's Irish Pub & Restaurant

Molly Malone's

Molly Malone’s is an authentic Irish pub owned and operated by a native of The Emerald Isle. Grab a pint of Guinness and enjoy the view of the Roebling Bridge from their patio. They also host lots of live music, and have one of the best St. Patrick's Day parties in town.

divine waffles and weck patio

Divine Waffles & Weck

One of our readers told us to check out the patio at Divine Waffles & Weck in Bromley and we can't wait!  The menu looks amazing and that patio... wow!  What a hidden gem!

parlor on seventh outdoor dining

Parlor on Seventh

Parlor on Seventh has recently expanded their outdoor dining area so there's plenty of seating and room to ensure social distancing.  You won't be sorry you chose to dine here--everything on the menu is delicious!

859 taproom and grill

The 859 Taproom and Grill

To be honest, I haven't personally dined here yet, but man, their food and patio look amazing on social media!  They not only had a hopping patio before Covid, they also added to it by blocking off part of the parking lot to allow for more outdoor seating to accommodate for the new guidelines.  I can't wait to get here and try it out!

darkness brewing

Darkness Brewing

Darkness had an awesome patio scene before it was cool!  This is an awesome patio to grab a beer and if you're lucky, a local food truck will be there too!  If not, grab some dinner at one of the Fairfield Avenue restaurants nearby!

Amerasia patio picnic tables

Amerasia

We've been enjoying food from AmerAsia for years, so you can imagine how excited we were when they added socially distanced picnic tables in the alley for an outdoor dining option!  If your'e new to AmerAsia, everything's delicious, but be careful with the spice level--it sneaks up on you!

rich's proper food and drink patio

Rich's Proper Food & Drink

Rich's prides themselves on their oysters and southern menu offerings.  They're also a member of The B-Line and one of the country's top 100 bourbon bars.  So grab a seat at one of the socially distant patio tables.  You won't regret it!

Bouquet Restaurant in the heart of Mainstrasse Village

Bouquet

Bouquet Restaurant & Wine Bar is a stop on The B-Line and is a farm-to-table bistro known for their support of local and sustainable farming.

Otto's patio

Otto's

Otto’s Restaurant serves American and Southern style food and is known for their classic Southern dish, fried green tomatoes. They also serve an amazing brunch on weekends--be sure to make a reservation! 

A yellow summer cocktail held up outside on the brick patio of Coppin's restaurant in the Hotel Covington in Northern Kentucky.

Coppin’s Restaurant & Bar at Hotel Covington

Transformed from the original Coppin’s Department Store, Coppin’s is infused with history and offers curated cocktails and locally sourced food like their yummy Buffalo Cauliflower Sandwich. Coppin’s is also a stop on The B-Line and is dog friendly so bring your furry four-legged friend with you to experience their outdoor patio!

Libbys southern comfort patio

Libby's Southern Comfort

With a new covering for their already amazing patio, Libby's has a strong outdoor dining game!  You can't go wrong with their fried chicken, burgers, or bourbon slushees!  Read more in our blog about Libby's here.

 

cheddar's florence
Photo by Instagram user @courtney_ann_14

Cheddar's Scratch Kitchen

If you're looking for a nice outdoor patio with great landscaping, Cheddar's Scratch Kitchen is an excellent option.  Cheddar's has a huge menu with a wide variety of options.  From fresh salads with delicious honey butter croissants, burgers, and chicken tenders to salmon, pasta, and more, they also have a large selection of side items and delicious appetizers.  My personal favorite is this huge tower of onion rings!

 

grandview tavern

Grandview Tavern

The patio and bar are partially covered, so could be a good option for days when rainy weather is a threat.  The patio is huge, so also a good bet if you have a larger party or want to keep very distanced from other people.

Hofbrauhaus patio

Hofbrauhaus Biergarten

This list would be incomplete without mentioning Hofbrauhaus’ spacious outdoor biergarten. The Newport location is America’s first authentic Hofbrauhaus. It's located right across from Newport on the Levee. Make sure to stop in and enjoy traditions from Germany without having to leave the United States!

Greyhound patio

Greyhound Tavern

Located in Fort Mitchell, local favorite Greyhound Tavern recently built a large outdoor patio for customers to enjoy. Greyhound Tavern is known for their award-winning food including their fried chicken, hot brown, and large onion rings!

ft. mitchell pub patio

Ft. Mitchell Public House

If you're looking for a down home pub to grab some dinner and socialize, Ft. Mitchell Pub is a great option!

Bourbon House pizza

Bourbon House Pizza

Seriously the best Chicago-style pizza we've had outside of Chicago.  They have a few outdoor tables, but if you don't want to wait, there's always carryout!  So good!

Diners enjoying view of Cincinnati from Cancun Mexican restaurant

Cancun Mexican Restaurant

Okay, riverfront patios are hard to beat and Cancun has a great one!  When you have a craving for Mexican with a view, this is your best bet!

braxton brewing company rooftop patio

Braxton Brewing Company

Lift one to life at the Rooftop at Braxton Brewing Company in Covington.  Incredible views, lots of green space, beautiful lighting, and a living wall for the perfect photo opps.  

Shows two night views from Lisse restaurant, one of Mainstrasse Covington, Ky and one of the Cincinnati Skyline and Ohio River

Lisse Steakhuis

Lisse has an amazing rooftop area for dining with views of Mainstrasse Village as well as the Cincinnati skyline.  

 

brickhouse pub and grub

Brickhouse Pub & Grub

If you're looking for delicious, down-home American fare and a relaxed atmosphere, Brickhouse Pub & Grub in Florence is your place!  In addition to the mouth-watering burger and onion rings, Brickhouse features other sandwiches, pastas, chili cheese fries, and homemade desserts such as banana pudding and German chocolate cake.  Yum!

torres mexican steakhouse

Torres Mexican Steakhouse

While I haven't personally gotten to eat at Torres Mexican Steakhouse, our friends at the City of Florence recommended it and I can't wait to try it!  They have a great patio dining area and the food looks amazing.  *Adding it to my list right now!*

 

black patio chairs on sidewalk outside of the baker's table restaurant in newport ky

The Baker's Table

This Newport gem serves award-winning food and drink with a unique atmosphere and open-air garage doors.  The pastries are phenomenal!

mac's pizza patio

Mac's Pizza Pub

With locations in Cold Spring and Covington, Mac's is a great choice for pizza (or sandwiches, wings, and beer) on a patio!

drake's florence
Photo by Instagram user @escandelev

Drake's Florence

Drake's describes itself as a "restaurant that loves beer and a bar that loves food."  I'd say that's pretty accurate!  They also have a great sushi selection!  With a nice outdoor patio and garage doors that open up all across the front of the bar, there's ample opportunity to enjoy your dinner or drinks in open air.  My favorite thing on the menu is the crab rangoon roll!

bridgeview box park

Bridgeview Box Park at Newport on the Levee

The new Bridgeview Box Park is a great option for outdoor dining.  With walk-up counter service of several local food and drink options, there's truly something for everyone.  Grab your picks and settle in on the amazing patio at Newport on the Levee with the beautiful Cincinnati skyline as your backdrop!

 

 

Content written by Sarah O'Shaughnessy on October 4, 2019 and updated by Rebecca Banks on July 29, 2020.