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Hot August nights. Indian summers. Delta breezes. We have many reasons – and many seasons – to seek out the patio life in Sacramento.

There is a luxury and a freedom that comes with dining al fresco. You can laugh louder, hear one another, feel the sun (or the shade) and engage in some people-watching at the street happenings.

We’re lucky to have so many patios gracing the grid, punctuating the night sky with clinking glasses and uninhibited chatter, so we’ve rounded up an anything-but-comprehensive list of five patios where you can sip, bite, relax and linger.

We chose five patios to represent five different Sacramento experiences you might be seeking: a restaurant, a coffee house, a bar, a game room and a brewery.

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Paragary’s Restaurant: Stylish cocktails and thoughtful eats

Whether you’re strolling in for an after-work drink, date or brunch with pals, Paragary’s offers one of the most beautiful patios in Sacramento. Reopened in June of 2015 after over a year of remodeling, we discovered that the update was worth the wait. IMG_1548IMG_1642 IMG_1721Patio PerksWith unobtrusive heat lamps and retractable (and attractive) canopies, the patio is ready for any weather Mother Nature throws our way.

The fact that the patio is nestled in an interior courtyard with artfully designed industrial water features coupled with cascading bougainvillea creates a little dining haven secluded from the hustle and bustle of street noise.

Kids: Lots to look at, and plenty of kid-friendly dishes to munch on.

Dogs: Yes

Smoking: Nope

Notable nods in this category:

The Waterboy | The Press Bistro | Zocalo | Mulvaney’s | Aioli Bodega

Temple Coffee: Specialty coffee roaster with tasty treats

Each of the two Temple locations (soon to be three) on the grid offer different aesthetics, but what we especially like about the S Street location is its ample patio (note: the 9th street location also has outdoor seating), convenient location (right off of 99/50/80 junction) and proximity to the new upcoming location of the Sacramento Natural Foods Co-Op (right next door!).IMG_2089 IMG_2095 IMG_2085Patio PerksWith shade-casting canopies for the day and strings of globe lights for the night, you can find folks working, catching up, reading, drawing, writing and meeting up at all hours.

Something of a hub for the creative set, the patio – with its native plant selections and a variety of table sizes – attracts all kinds.

Kids: While there aren’t any kid-specific amenities per se, there’s plenty of table space to set up coloring books or toys.

Dogs: Bring your (friendly) pooch! The baristas behind the bar have a dog bowl if you need one.

Smoking: Nope

Good to KnowThe patio, like the café, is open from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m., 365 days a year.

This location shares its patio with their neighbor, Revolution Wines. The winery’s tables are closer to “their side” of the patio and are set up differently to distinguish them from Temple’s.

If you get a bit too over-caffeinated, you can snag a pastry – sweet or savory – from Grateful Bread or Sugar Plum (vegan and gluten-free) inside the place, try out Pushkin’s gluten-free bakery around the corner, or order a salad or appetizer from Revolution Wines.

Notable nods in this category:

Insight Coffee, S Street location | Old Soul at the Weatherstone

LowBrau: Brats, beers, babes, bros

There’s no better place on the grid to see and be seen — without being to scene-y — than the patio at LowBrau. Whether you’re grabbing one of their many imported or local beers or making the right choice and ordering up some Dirty Duck Fries, you can catch all of the action at the corner of 2oth and K Street. You really get a master-of-your-domain feel when you’re perched atop one of the most frequented intersections in town.

IMG_1811 IMG_1877 IMG_1853Patio Perks: This is an all-day patio on the weekends. If you’re strolling around the Midtown Farmers Market on Saturdays, climb up a few steps to LowBrau to keep an eye on the action and grab yourself a Bloody Mary.

Overhead trees offer just enough shade and just enough sun (and allergies in the spring in the case of yours truly).

Full service out on the patio means you don’t have to get up to order another round of Dirty Duck Fries.

Kids: Brunch on the weekends or a weekday lunch? No problem. Security guards card in the evenings, though, so come as you are.

Dogs: Big time! If you have a friendly dog who likes other friendly dogs, this is the place to be! We’ve seen countless pooches resting easily as they listen to the “Prosts!” from picnic tables above.

Smoking: Yep

Good to Know:

Happy Hour Monday-Friday from 3-6 p.m.

Generous brunch hours: Saturday and Sunday from 10-3.

Parking is pretty limited, but there’s a bike rack out front with your name on it.

Motown Monday is one of the best nights ever! A DJ (sometimes with accompanying live music) spins Motown jams for your dancing pleasure and the patio offers a quite literal welcome breath of fresh air.

The tables work as community tables, so come ready to share!

Notable nods in this category:

Pangea Bier Cafe | Federalist Public HouseRed Rabbit

Coin Op Game Room: It’s all fun and games until…always 

Occupying the old Marilyn’s space, the journey down the stairs from street level takes us back in time to when Sacramento was built. The old-timey vibes modernize a bit with the onslaught of vintage arcade games lining every wall.

Offering you the opportunity to chill out, level up and get down on some food, Coin Op fits the bill for a solo-, partner- or group night (or day!) out.IMG_2157 IMG_2230IMG_2227Patio PerksOversized Jenga and Connect Four keep the fun going even when you’re just out of earshot from the pings and pows of the arcade games within.

Happy Hour from 4-6 p.m. Monday-Friday with specials on cocktails, microbrews, and pizza. Though you order at the bar, you can still enjoy your choices outside.

Patio table options are limited to picnic tables, but people are friendly and the “community table” ethos is encouraged.

Food is served (even out on the patio!) until 1 a.m.

Kids: Nope (21 and over)

Dogs: Mostly no. Tuesday day? Sure. Saturday night? No go.

Smoking: Yep

Good to Know:

Parking can be a bit tough on K Street, but it’s nothing an Uber/Lyft/cab, Light rail trip, bike ride or stroll can’t fix.

You enter at street level and walk downstairs to a brick patio with strings of lights crisscrossing the courtyard.

Recently opened for Sunday mornings (and all-day free-play on the last Sunday of the month!) for football season. You can’t see the TVs from the patio, but who doesn’t need a breath of fresh air – or a game of Jenga – during official play reviews?

Notable nods in this category:

Der BiergartenFirestone Public House

Oak Park Brewing Company: Hometown hops

As the palm trees sway overhead (there’s bound to be oaks around somewhere) and the $2/4oz.-samplers come out on trays, there aren’t a whole lot of other places we’d rather be. With full service out on the canopy- and umbrella-lined patio, we’re hoppy and happy to have another brewery (and full restaurant) on the grid.IMG_2009 IMG_2062 IMG_2037Patio PerksOak Park Brewing Company proves that you really do use math in “the real world.” Circular (barrel) tables, square two-tops, and rectangular picnic tables all fit comfortably inside this triangle-shaped patio.

2, 4, 6, 8…12, who do we appreciate? Oak Park Brewing for providing various seating options for groups small and large.

Kids: Of course! The under-21 set can play oversize Jenga or, like some we saw, play cards and talk to imaginary friends.

Dogs: Woof! There are a couple water bowls out, and sometimes the kitchen even chefs up dog treats with the leftover hops. Cheers!

Smoking: Nope

Good to KnowHappy Hour from 3-6 p.m. Tuesdays – Fridays; brunch 10-2 on the weekends. Most Wednesday nights from 7-9 have live music, which gives us even more of a reason to make a night of it.

Closed Mondays.

Parking – of the bike or car variety – is plentiful.

Notable nods in this category:

Track 7 Brewery, Curtis Park location | Rubicon Brewing Company

We’ll see you out there!

Photos | Stephanie Russo

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