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Perfect Patios
Local outdoor dining spots to make the most of the fleeting summer weather


July 2018

As long as the summer lasts, we sing the praises of the patio. Since its pleasures are all too fleeting in this northern climate, we sing until the very last note of the season gets blown away by winter’s early chill. Here are some tune-worthy outdoor spaces, paired with appropriate melodies, that will have you crooning in no time.

“No Roots”

The most coveted outdoor space at the Kimpton Journeyman Hotel in the Historic Third Ward is not on the ground ... it’s on the roof. With rooftop firepits, cabana-style seating and shuffleboard games, there are plenty of amenities to enjoy here. And its sunset views are only rivaled by Chef Heather Terhune’s culinary creations and lead bartender Gen Longoria’s inventive cocktails.

As lines even to the elevator can get long during warm weather, another rootless wonder is the roof of the Camp Bar in Wauwatosa, where you feel like you’re in the northwoods, sipping old-fashioneds under the stars.

“Who Let the Dogs Out”

Call the Baha Men and tell them we finally know who let the dogs out: Milwaukee’s Bay View neighborhood let the dogs out a long time ago with South Shore Terrace Kitchen & Beer Garden, but the unparalleled views of Lake Michigan make this the best pet-friendly place to sip a brewski with your furry friend.

Another good pet-friendly patio in Bay View is the nearby Palomino. The brew list and the beer are worth a visit, and you can order your best bud a Pabst, and they’ll pour it in a bowl for him or her.

“What a Wonderful World”

While we can’t promise you that the skies will be blue when you visit, there is definitely a gorgeous tree of green at this newer spot at Kindred on KK – a lovely, light-laced Hawthorne tree, to be exact. There’s also a stunning fire pit. No matter which side of the patio you sit on as you sip a summer rosé, you’ll be thinking to yourself that it’s a wonderful world.

The intimate patio tucked behind Crazy Water will also get you thinking wonderful thoughts, especially if you’re trying out the new brunch menu.

“Sitting on the Dock of the Bay”

You won’t be wasting your time if you’re sitting on the patio at the deck at the Edgewater Supper Club, enjoying a cocktail or a beer and some delicious bites as you watch the sunset over the lake, with colors streaking across the sky and rippling over the water.

Another accessible patio with lake views is at Artisan 179, where the food and beverage menu will exceed your expectations.

“Into the Woods”

The veranda at I.D. in Delafield – and it’s a veranda here, not a patio – will definitely make you feel like you’ve stepped into a Broadway play about fairy tales come to life. Not only are the wooded views enchanting, so are the food and drinks here.

But if you want to enjoy the woods – or an outdoors environment without having to put on bug spray – head to Harvey’s Central Grille in Mequon because you’ll be singing the praises of the screened in patio here.  This delightful patio also boasts an outdoor fireplace pit to take an edge off of chilly nights.


This story ran in the July 2018 issue of: