Where to find Los Angeles’s best outdoor dining

A colorful, lantern-lined patio at Tallula’s in Santa Monica scores bonus points for being within walking distance of the beach. | Credit: Catherine Dzilenski
Pastel-colored paper lanterns hang from the patio at Tallula’s in Los Angeles

Los Angeles has mastered the year-round outdoor patio game with exemplary renditions of waterside seating, nature-filled decks, and charming courtyards. Sunsets, ocean breezes, and umbrellas abound for LA’s warm days and cooler nights.

A desert-like patio brightened with twinkly lights draws diners to an award-winning Middle Eastern spot downtown. At a Mexican restaurant in Santa Monica, a breezy beachside space was made for margaritas and carne asada. Breathtaking valley vistas from a swanky Burbank steakhouse make it one of LA’s most romantic perches. 

The City of Angels doesn’t lack superb places for an alfresco meal, but some rise above the rest. Here are LA’s 15 best restaurants for dining outside.

Bavel (Downtown)

A plant-lined side patio almost doubles the size of the dining area at Bavel in Los Angeles
Bavel’s plant-lined patio makes a pretty place to enjoy Middle Eastern fare. | Credit: Rebekah Lemire

It’s easy to see why Bavel made such a splash in the LA dining scene, between its award-winning Middle Eastern fare and gorgeous, desert-like patio. The DTLA hit took over two other patio spaces with similar twinkle-lit, plant-strewn charm to expand its alfresco offerings. The food is equally stellar at all three, featuring pitch-perfect hummus and baba ghanoush, grilled prawns with harissa marinade, and slow-roasted lamb neck shawarma. 

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Fia (Santa Monica)

Fia’s garden patio is magical, made extra-romantic with string lights, old-growth trees, and an outdoor bar that brings the buzz. Come with a date to bask in the enchanting space and bond over sumptuous Californian-Italian plates such as housemade cavatelli with brown butter and black truffle and roasted Maine scallops with cauliflower tortellini and caper raisin puree. Opt for the prix-fixe garden brunch for a daytime hangout, bookable through OpenTable Experiences

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(Beverly / Fairfax / La Brea / Third St., Brentwood)

Ivy, trees, and balconies deck the patio at A.O.C. in Los Angeles
A.O.C.’s Spanish courtyard-style patio is a year-round stunner. | Credit: A.O.C.

A.O.C. in Beverly Grove has long been a go-to for special occasions thanks to chef Suzanne Goin’s refined Californian-Mediterranean small plates. The restaurant’s Spanish courtyard-style patio is a stunner year round, full of ivy, trees, and even balconies. Grab a seat and feast on dishes including bacon-wrapped dates stuffed with Parmesan, fried chicken with romesco aioli and chile-cumin butter, and saffron pasta with prawns. The wine list is also a standout for its extensive organic, biodynamic, and sustainable selections.

A.O.C. – 3rd Street

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A.O.C. – Brentwood

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Perch LA (Downtown)

A French-inspired brunch spread at Perch LA in Los Angeles
French-inspired fare complements the chic rooftop views at Perch LA. | Credit: Perch LA

Perch LA’s two-story rooftop overlooks Pershing Square, Downtown, and beyond. Couched areas, cane chairs, tables, plants, bars, and live music come together to create an entrancing scene. Superb French fare including steak frites, bouillabaisse, and orange cardamom crème brûlée makes up the menu. Toast the stunning view with a well-crafted cocktail such as the Penthouse Passion made with tequila, mint, lime, and passionfruit.

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République (Hollywood)

République’s award-winning pastries and French brasserie fare are still the talk of the town after nearly a decade in Mid-City. Beyond the always-outstanding croissants, pies, quiches, and tarts, the savory menu includes dishes such as charcoal-grilled Santa Barbara prawns with Normandy butter and Meyer lemon. The historic building was erected by Charlie Chaplin in 1929, and the restaurant patio’s shade sails, string lights, and greenery make the outdoor space an inviting spot to enjoy a quick bite or a linger over a longer meal.

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Rossoblu (Downtown)

Rossoblu’s DTLA patio is a minimalist’s dream, filled with concrete, straight metal lines, and shrubs. The acclaimed menu combines influences from Bologna and California, resulting in dishes such as antipasto with eggplant, tomato sugo, basil, and shaved Parmigiano Reggiano and chicken al Mattone with braised collard greens, guanciale, and chicken jus. Rossoblu’s signature minestra nel sacco, a bowl of chicken soup with dumplings, was made for cooler LA nights. 

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Socalo (Santa Monica)

Acclaimed Border Grill founders Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger are the forces behind this modern Mexican spot. An all-Mexican wine list accompanies the food, with dishes such as spinach queso dip, crispy Baja shrimp, and short rib enchiladas. Outdoor seating is divided between open-air sidewalk spots and a romantic, string-lit patio shaded by bright orange umbrellas—both are dog-friendly.

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Wabi on Rose (Venice)

Wabi on Rose’s dreamy patio is splashed in shades of millennial pink. | Credit: Wabi on Rose

Flowers and greenery overflow on Wabi on Rose’s dreamy patio, splashed in shades of millennial pink. The trendy Japanese fusion restaurant focuses on sushi, from maki rolls and sashimi to the chef’s choice omakase—named “Make it Rain” after executive chef Rain Pantana. Herbivores shouldn’t miss the Wabi Bowl, a mix of California grown short-grain rice, edamame hummus, kimchi, and sauteed vegetables. Pair the dishes with one of the restaurant’s made-for-Instagram cocktails (the whiskey-forward She-So Sour is tinged with edible gold), and you’ve got all the ingredients for a chic night out.

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Openaire (Koreatown)

A lush rooftop garden beckons visitors to the aptly named Openaire, set on the second floor of the trendy Line Hotel. Award-winning chef Josiah Citrin—behind the two-MICHELIN-starred Mélisse—runs the kitchen, and his menu showcases fresh, California-centric flavors and local ingredients through dishes such as buttermilk-fried quail and mung bean latkes. Brunch, which includes bottomless mimosas and bloody marys in addition to cornflake-crusted French toast with caramelized bananas, pairs especially well with this swish poolside venue.

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Calabra (Santa Monica)

Soak up the sun on top of the Santa Monica Proper Hotel at this Mediterranean-inspired restaurant. The poolside spot channels a coastal atmosphere with hand-woven furniture and palms that offer plenty of privacy. Impress out-of-towners or close friends with an alfresco spread that includes grilled octopus, hummus, and labneh. For a heartier meal, Calabra serves rich mains such as a lamb chop with an Okinawan sweet potato puree and a classic burger with za’atar fries.

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Canopy Club (Culver City)

Peach-tinged patio umbrellas shade the cabanas and daybeds by the pool at Canopy Club in Culver City
Peach-tinged patio umbrellas shade the cabanas and daybeds that wreath the pool at Canopy Club. | Credit: Ksenia Zaytseva / SUPERHUNGRY.LA

Canopy Club opened in summer 2022 on top of the posh Shay hotel. Peach-tinged patio umbrellas shade the cabanas, day beds, and lounges that wreath the pool, channeling Palm Springs in the heart of Culver City. Playful cocktails such as the Thirst Trap (vodka, elderflower liqueur, fruit-infused white wine, cucumber, lime, and seltzer) pair well with beachy bites including lobster frites and avocado tacos. Saturday brunch plans could easily morph into a staycation at this buzzy new hotel hotspot.

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Castaway (Burbank) 

To properly earn LA stripes, one must dine under a cloudless evening sky at Castaway. The premiere steakhouse is known for an outdoor dining area that boasts one of most breathtaking views of the city and the valley—it’s a sought-after venue for weddings, proms, and everything in between. Drink in the sunset with Castaway’s specialty cocktails such as the Shiso Vain (shiso-infused tequila, agave nectar, cointreau, lime juice, orange liqueur foam, and Hawaiian red salt) or the Spruce Willis (peach-infused bourbon with white peach puree, mint, and rosemary). No matter the occasion, this striking Burbank landmark is poised to turn the night into a special memory.

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Tallula’s (Santa Monica)

A margarita garnished with a dried lemon slice at Tallula’s in Los Angeles
Tallula’s cantina-like menu includes margaritas that can be made spicy or with hibiscus. | Credit: Lindsey Huttrer

Tallula’s is a laidback Mexican gem in Santa Monica. Its coastal dishes are enhanced by the salty beach air and best devoured on the colorful outdoor patio with ample seating for small groups. Sip on margaritas or housemade agua frescas as you browse a cantina-like menu of tacos that come stuffed with carne asada, beer-battered rock cod, or refried black beans, onions, zucchini, and squash. End your meal with a visit to the beach, which happens to be within walking distance of Tallula’s pretty patio.

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Manuela (Downtown) 

Like the Hauser & Wirth gallery that gave this Arts District favorite its home, Manuela is known for vibrant flavors and colors. Its dog-friendly patio sits in a courtyard that art enthusiasts and tourists walk through to explore Hauser & Wirth’s collections and exhibits, making it a lively people-watching spot. Executive chef Kris Tominaga can be found working in the courtyard’s kitchen garden, prepping vegetables for a seasonal Californian menu that features dishes such as dry-aged sea bream with gold spice blend, fennel, pickled garlic, and sorrel vinaigrette.

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Cabra – LA (Downtown)

Award-winning chef Stephanie Izard continues to leave her mark in Los Angeles with Cabra, a dreamy Peruvian-inspired restaurant on the rooftop of The Hoxton hotel. Must-try shareable dishes include the housemade avocado dip served with taro and plantain chips, flaky chicken empanadas with a pecan chimichurri sauce, and chorizo skewers drizzled with a bright aji amarillo mayo. With seating options that include lounge chairs and poolside tables, Cabra is ideal for lazing and grazing on a warm weekend afternoon.

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Tried them all? Check out other options here.

Lisa Kwon is a reporter and writer focused on arts and food culture in Los Angeles, CA. Find Lisa on Instagram and Twitter.

Kristin Braswell contributed to this guide.

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