From panoramic rooftop views to pretty pavilions, sheltered verandas and urban gardens, these al fresco dining spots are worth a visit …
Avoca Kilmacanogue, Co Wicklow
Take in the greenery while enjoying coffee and cake or lunch sitting out on Avoca Kilmacanogue’s terrace. The Sugar Tree Café is open daily from breakfast to 4pm where its stunning pavilion-style veranda has a great view of the beautiful gardens; www.avoca.com.
Adare Manor, Co Limerick
There are two terrace options at The Carriage House at Adare Manor, one of the best outdoor dining spots in Limerick. Open from 9am serving breakfast, lunch from 12.30pm to 4pm and dinner from 5.30am to 9.30pm, this is a great setting to show off your new cashmere sweater and Instagram the occasion; www.adaremanor.com.
Asador, Dublin 4
In the mood for some barbecue? Starting today, Asador, 1 Haddington Road, Dublin 4 will be open for lunch and dinner on the terrace for 15 people. This gives the team a chance to offer an exclusive tasting menu, showcasing the best of Asador. From Iberico ham, lobster, turbot and the chargrilled fillet of beef – this is an intimate way to enjoy Asador’s famous barbecue specialities. €35 for lunch and €75 for dinner; www.asador.ie.
Wineport Lodge, Co Westmeath
Dining at Wineport Lodge is always a pleasure. Rustic in style, unpretentious and always generous servings, the uninterrupted lake views from the terrace invite guests to linger. Whether you’re staying for an overnight break, having lunch, or dinner a deux you’ll find food you’ll love; www.wineport.ie.
InterContinental Ballsbridge, Dublin
The new “Luxury Dining Escape” offer at InterContinental Dublin (from €145 per person), includes, bed, breakfast, dinner and access to the resort’s elegant Wellness area. During a stay, guests can lounge exclusively on the sunny Garden Terrace, now open to non residents, enjoy all-day dining including Afternoon Tea in the new Lobby Lounge, take a stroll through the landscaped gardens, or explore the surrounding areas of Ballsbridge, Sandymount Strand, and Herbert Park; www.intercontinentaldublin.ie.
Tankardstown House, Co Meath
Exuding elegance and luxury, Tankardstown comprises an 18th-century Manor House, adjoining Orangery and a central courtyard of Cottage Suites. Tucked behind the Main House is the “Garden Village”, where dining takes place in the 2AA Rosette Restaurant, Brabazon. For casual dining and Afternoon Tea, The Cellar offers alfresco dining by the fountain when the sun shines; www.tankardstown.ie.
Sophie’s, Dublin 2
As one of Dublin’s most popular rooftop restaurants, at The Dean hotel, Sophie’s remains open and is serving lunch, dinner and weekend brunch on its heated and covered terrace. 33 Harcourt St, Dublin 2; www.sophies.ie.
The Westbury, Dublin 2
The lovely spacious terrace at Balfes remains open and is welcoming visitors on a walk-in basis – the perfect spot for al fresco dining over a glass of rosé and a charcuterie board. Guests can also book the “Make A Night Of It” package which includes dinner for two and an overnight stay with a la carte breakfast the following morning; www.doylecollection.com.
The King Sitric, Co Dublin
You may not have travelled to Brittany this summer but enjoying the picturesque fishing village of Howth, its panoramic sea views and a stroll on the Pier, is equally inspiring. Stop off afterwards at The King Sitric and enjoy a seafood feast on its terrace where lobster, crab and shrimp are caught by local fishermen in Balscadden Bay, only meters from the restaurant; www.kingsitric.ie.
Park Hotel Kenmare, Co Kerry
The Terrace Bistro at the Park Hotel Kenmare is a stylish, new informal dining experience offering tasty food overlooking the gardens. In the evening there is an a la carte bistro menu from €75 per person; www.parkkenmare.com.
Isabelle’s Restaurant & Bar, Dublin 2
Facing out on the Royal Hibernian Way, Isabelle’s outdoor terrace catches the sun on Indian summer days, and there are also heaters and blankets for when it’s cooler outside. Open for lunch and dinner seven days a week, brunch every weekend is a particular highlight; Isabelle’s Restaurant & Bar, 13 – 14 South Anne Street, Dublin 2; www.isabelles.ie.
The Merrion, Dublin 2
Escape the city centre bustle at The Garden Terrace, which is open for outdoor dining with The Garden Room restaurant menu being served on both Upper and Lower Terraces from 12.30pm – 9.30pm daily. Executive chef Ed Cooney and his team has designed an all-day dining menu with signature dishes including kataifi prawns with mango salsa, herbed rack of lamb with peas and broad beans as well as desserts such as chocolate fondant with cherry dust, cherry ice cream and caramelised pecan nuts; www.merrionhotel.com.
Mackenzie’s, Dublin 2
This elegant outdoor terrace overlooks the Grand Canal with a panoramic view of the docklands, and is both open and covered. The no-frills menu features bistro classics, though Mackenzie’s is most known for its pancake platters. Designed to share, the platters include mini pancakes served with crispy bacon, fresh berries, caramelised banana, mascarpone with maple syrup, pecans and salted caramel sauce. 6 Hanover Quay, Grand Canal Dock, Dublin 2; www.mackenziesdublin.ie.
Ballynahinch Castle, Co Galway
If you find yourself in Connemara on a fine day, why not book lunch on the terrace at Ballynahinch Castle – there are few terraces that enjoy such breathtaking views over the Salmon River Served between 12.30 – 4pm, subject to the weather, reservations are required; www.ballynahinch-castle.com.
Cliff House Hotel, Co Waterford
Depending on the weather you could almost kid yourself you’re on holiday – say Biarritz – at Cliff House Hotel. On a clear, crisp day dine on the terrace and enjoy the sea views over the Atlantic. This holiday vibe is accentuated by the menu which features seafood specials, warm chowders and blacksole to tempting puddings. Coffee and cake are also served throughout the day – I’d say it’s worth a detour! www.cliffhousehotel.ie
Dublin’s latest outdoor space is set in the new piazza on Earlsfort Terrace following an impressive refurbishment by landscape architect Robert Townshend. The Terrace Kitchen & Social House features recycled oak planks and tables that have been repurposed while the understated outdoor terrace is an amazing spot to enjoy the views of the gardens and sip a glass of champagne. Henriot Champagne has branded the outdoor terrace with chic white umbrellas. The menu is simple and uncomplicated – favourites are the fritto misto and chef Gary Rogers’ own take on the traditional club sandwich, served on open homemade sourdough with buttermilk chicken; www.conraddublin.com.
Powerscourt Hotel Resort & Spa, Co Wicklow
Boasting a newly refurbished outdoor heated terrace, visitors to Sika Terrace have a vista of the Sugar Loaf mountain to enjoy as well as a delicious dining menu. Available from 12pm – 4.30pm on weekdays and 12.30pm – 4.30pm at the weekend, the al fresco menu caters for all – from salads to succulent steaks. The terrace is heated and also has protective canopies and warm throws for occasional inclement weather; www.powerscourthotel.com.
Tucked away behind the popular Saba on Upper Baggot Street is its outdoor garden, where I dined last week. Sheltered with heaters overhead it was a cosy experience made all the more enjoyable by the service and light, flavoursome menu. Saba, Clarendon Street also has outdoor dining facilities in addition to takeaway and delivery services. It’s best to book in advance for this bijou terrace due to limited spacing; www.sabarestaurant.com.
Dylan Hotel, Dublin
Dylan Hotel offers two covered and heated outdoor terraces to enjoy brunch, lunch, dinner, and cocktails; a rare find in Dublin city centre. The Eddison Terrace offers views of St Mary’s Road and serves a new all-day dining menu, while The Nurserie Terrace is the place to enjoy the last rays of summer, as it gets direct sunshine from early afternoon until sunset. Do try the hotel’s new brunch menu which includes French toast with brioche, maple syrup and crispy bacon with berries, poached eggs on smoked salmon with hollandaise sauce, a super salad, and to finish a coconut pannacotta with Wexford strawberries; www.dylan.ie.
Radisson Blu Royal Hotel, Dublin
The Dyflin Garden at the Radisson Blu Royal Hotel, Dublin is stylish and relaxed – tucked away within the hotel. It is open for lunch and dinner from 3pm – 10pm on weekdays and 3pm – 11pm on Friday and Saturday, serving an all dining menu; www.thechancerygrill.ie.
The Shelbourne, Dublin
It’s best to make a reservation for The Terrace at The Shelbourne, which is open to both residents and non-residents from Monday to Sunday 9am – 9pm, serving an all day dining menu of Shelbourne classics. Alternatively stay overnight with dinner and breakfast the following morning from €349 per night with their “Shelbourne Moments” package. www.theshelbourne.com
Castleknock Hotel, Co Dublin
The Patio at Castleknock Hotel is a relaxed all-weather plaza situated at the rear of the hotel with views over rolling green fields. The menu serves a selection of classic sandwiches, salads, pizzas and appetising main courses; www.castleknockhotel.com.
Volpe Nera, Co Dublin
Volpe Nera is now offering outdoor dining for up to 15 people on its terrace thanks to some extra space kindly offered by their next door neighbours at The Wishing Well. Open from 3pm – 8pm Wednesday to Saturday, and 2pm – 6pm for lunch on Sunday, all tables are heated and sheltered; 22 Newtown Park, Newtownpark, Blackrock; www.volpenera.ie.
The River Club, Co Cork
The Terrace at The River Club is a sunny haven on the banks of the River Lee. Serving a selection of light bites and cocktails it’s an ideal location to soak up the last of the summer sun; theriverclubcork.ie.
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