A Summer Tradition: Outdoor Dining in Milwaukee

Jul 12, 2018

With summer in full swing, people want to take in the beautiful weather whenever possible. As Wisconsinites know, summer is only here for so long and outdoor dining is a great way to take advantage of season.

Dining critic Ann Christenson agrees: "We have such a short amount of time to really enjoy it. So this is that precious time that we can...enjoy outdoor dining."

In an article in July's Milwaukee Magazine, Christenson highlights a few of the appealing restaurant patios in the Milwaukee area featuring scenic views, intimate atmospheres, and locally-sourced ingredients.  

ParkSide 23
2300 Pilgrim Square Dr., Brookfield (262) 784-7275

Featuring their own on-site farm, ParkSide 23 takes the farm-to-table concept to another level. With a terrace-like patio with umbrella-top tables and lots of flowers and shrubs, Christenson says the atmosphere "feels intimate and quiet." ParkSide 23 also offers an immersive farm dinner program in which diners can take a guided tour of the farm and eat a five-course meal. 

1101 S. Second St. (414) 212-8843

Milwaukee diners may be familiar with the big rooftop patios at Cafe Benelux or the Outsider at the Kimpton, but Braise also features a quaint rooftop patio. Christenson says the patio is a "charming little space," especially at night, when "you can see the Hoan Bridge and the sun setting." The rooftop patio also gives diners a glimpse into Braise's farm - or roof - to-table mentality, showcasing their herbal gardens and beekeeping pods. 

La Merenda 
125 E. National Ave. (414) 389-0125

The outdoor dining at La Merenda is more than just a little patio, according to Christenson, as they offer covered or uncovered dining and a lounge area with a fireplace. One of the first restaruants to bring tapas and small plate cuisine to Milwaukee, La Merenda features a menu full of international cuisine. In addition to the worldly cuisine, La Merenda also makes their own sodas.

Because she couldn't contain her list to just three, Christenson also mentioned Camino, Pizza Man on Downer, and Cafe Corazon in Riverwest as other places with great outdoor dining options.