Outdoor dining is great, but eating a delicious meal in the glow of a warm summer sunset is no longer a reality. That fact is, Seattle weather doesn’t care that last year was terrible and we can’t move to California at the drop of a hat. When it comes to finding a restaurant on a day when the forecast is iffy (a.k.a. now until April), use this guide. Each spot has covered outdoor dining areas as well as a heat source so that you and your food won’t turn into soggier, colder, unhappier versions of themselves.
And for a full directory of restaurants and bars with tented coverings and/or heat lamps, check out our guide here.
Tamari Bar’s stupendous pork ramen dan dan is so spicy and warm that this Capitol Hill izakaya probably doesn’t even need space heaters on their patio. But they have them anyway for good measure. After all, you might be eating sashimi with an ice-cold Toki highball instead of steamy noodle soup. Their outdoor area is complete with a few covered picnic tables and the aforementioned artificial heat.
Bar Del Corso’s incredible pizza, blistered with delicious little charred dough bubbles, tastes best straight out of the oven. So if you’re looking to experience their anatomically-perfect margherita in its purest form, you can make a reservation for their back patio. Their pergola has a cover on it to shield the rain away, and plenty of space heaters to keep you warm and all that mozzarella melted.
This great Thai spot in Belltown has had a covered patio all along, and it continues to be a good choice for eating pad see ew and moo ping while it’s drizzling out. In addition to their patio, they’ve added some sidewalk seating, complete with a huge canopy tent and space heaters. If you’re still too cold after that, their comforting massaman curry should help.
Sometimes you just want to eat a double cheeseburger and fries somewhere besides the driver’s seat of your car in a parking lot. This terrific bar in Georgetown has a large deck with spaced-out tables, tented coverings, and plenty of space heaters. It’s perfect for cozying up with a pint of Manny’s and their excellent burger.
Cafe Flora is open for lunch and dinner every day serving delicious vegetarian and vegan versions of French dip sandwiches, burgers, and crunchy and cheesy mashed potato tacos (our favorite thing). Whether you’re looking for some avocado toast for weekend brunch or mushroom-topped polenta with a negroni, you can get those on their covered and heated-patio setup.
Bottlehouse is one of our favorite places to sip wine and snack on cheesemonger-curated charcuterie boards. Now we all have the option to do that in gross weather, too. Their covered garden deck is wallpapered with rain-resistant plastic on three sides, with ample room for outdoor ventilation and strategically-placed space heaters.
For tasty Peruvian food like lomo saltado, empanadas, and rotisserie chicken sandwiches, head to Don Lucho’s in Maple Leaf. Their astroturf-carpeted patio has rain-proof canopies and space heaters to ensure your fried yucca stays hot and crunchy (which is very important).
We love this Queen Anne cafe for everything from morning banana crepes with a latte to afternoon grilled cheese and a beer. We also love them for having one of the largest and most unique patios in town - one day we’ll win that impossible carnival-style basketball toss. Citizen has counter service too, so it’s ideal if you want to grab takeout or a coffee to go and enjoy it outside, underneath a roof, and next to a heater.
This little spot on Sunset Hill serves some of our favorite cocktails in the city, along with snacks like maple-y marcona almonds, charred scallion dip with chips, cheese and meat plates, and sandwiches. Their beautiful garden pergola now has a roof cover, and lots of heaters you can nurse your drink near.
The world needs rain. The world also needs tacos. But the world does not need them together in soggy matrimony. Pablo Y Pablo, a taqueria in Wallingford, understands this. They have a couple of different tent-plus-heater setups for any rainy-day scenario Seattle can throw you. They also have some tasty vegan chorizo nachos with cashew queso.
Harry's Beach House
If you live in West Seattle, the last thing you probably want to do is leave West Seattle. Especially with the bridge closure, and especially if it’s raining on top of that. For a cozy meal on Alki, Harry’s Beach House’s has a tented patio that works for brunch or a burger.
Whether we want fresh oysters or fried shrimp po’boys, White Swan Public House is one of our preferred places for seafood of all forms. And while we admit that Lake Union doesn’t look as magical when the sky is gray and misty, it’s still nice to spend some time by the water while also avoiding water.
Terra Plata proves that it’s possible to eat dinner on a rooftop garden while it’s actively raining. This Capitol Hill spot also proves that potato chips taste best when they’re cut to look like teeny waffles and dipped into pecorino-dusted crème fraîche. We used to have to wait until May to enjoy this relaxing second-story space, but not anymore, thanks to their tented coverings and space heaters.
Perihelion’s covered wraparound patio is practically meant for rainy days - each table out there has a personal fire pit, so it’s ideal for warming up with a cold beer and the best pub food in the city. Get the burger with a side of fries dunked in bone marrow aioli.
Fair warning: Reckless Noodle’s deck patio is dog-friendly, and the smells that come from this Vietnamese spot are fantastic. Which means that Douglas the dobermann might get jealous of your spicy beef cheek noodles, coconut fried rice with pastrami and chili jam, and crispy duck rolls. But at least Douglas will be dry and warm, as the patio’s located smack on the side of the building with a cover and plenty of heat.
For delicious dishes ranging from pasta with lamb ragu to gremolata-topped fish and chips, we love the food from this bar in Maple Leaf that’s literally located in a house. Their secret beer garden backyard is a wonderful place to grab a bite, especially since there’s a tent, string lights, and a heat source.