Williamsburg is one subway stop from the East Village, with waterfront views, nice parks, and enough consignment shops to reset your wardrobe many times over. But the main reason to find yourself in the neighborhood, with the possible exception of living here, is to make use of the very high density of places to eat and drink. And right now, a ton of those spots are offering outdoor seating. We’ll be keeping track of all of them in this guide, so if you know of any that we missed, please let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Aurora’s covered patio looks like a place where the best-friends-turned-soulmates in a rom-com would feed each other pasta just before the credits roll. It’s decorated with lots of hanging ivy and more lights than a fairly large Christmas tree, as well as high walls and a roof that make it feel far removed from the corner of Wythe and Grand. Their Italian small plates and pastas are available for lunch, brunch, and dinner, with reservations available through their website.
When this counter-service Pakistani spot moved from Bushwick to Williamsburg earlier this year, they kept their phenomenal burger and seekh kebabs, and gained a lovely little backyard in the process. It was a classic win-win move, unless you live in Bushwick.
This Moroccan spot is open every day for lunch, dinner, and that awkward time in between when wanting a drink and having an empty stomach are like the devil and angel on your shoulder pulling you in different directions. Fortunately, it’s a dilemma Mogador can help solve thanks to their daily Happy Hour from 4-6pm that includes a free mezze with the purchase of two drinks.
There’s no rule that says porterhouses and martinis need to be served in dark rooms filled with some combination of mahogany, worn leather, and jazz. We say this for two reasons. First, it’d be a very stupid rule, and second, Peter Luger is currently serving great versions of both at sidewalk tables outside their iconic steakhouse. Make a reservation for lunch or dinner through their website.
Every time we’ve been to Hanon, we’ve looked out the backdoor into the huge, unused backyard, and imagined how great it’d be if they set up outdoor dining back there. There’s no need to imagine any more. Sit at an umbrella-covered picnic table under ivy and hanging lights any day except Monday, and enjoy some of the best udon in the city.
Whether you get the mac and cheese with bacon and five types of cheese, or the cheeseburger topped with grilled pineapple at this American spot in East Williamsburg is up to you. We recommend sipping on a Hennycolada while you decide, and then just ordering both. Their patio seating is available from 12-10pm every day except Monday.
Lilia isn’t accepting walk-ins, which saves you the trouble of thinking “this’ll be the night,” only to be told that the waitlist filled up five minutes after they opened. If you do manage to reserve one of their outdoor tables online, which are available Wednesday through Sunday from 5-10pm, then you’ll be able to get the same fantastic sheep’s milk agnolotti and grilled clams as you would have if you’d ever gotten off the waitlist in the past.
This probably won’t come as a surprise, but putting a slab of kielbasa on a burger leads to good results, as does adding cumin-ginger sofrito to an already juicy chicken thigh. In case you’re an “I’ll believe it when I see it” kind of person, head to Pheasant. This Mediterranean spot’s backyard seating is available Wednesday through Sunday for lunch or dinner, with reservations available through their website, or by phone at 718-675-5588 for groups of six or more.
This Mediterranean spot’s backyard is bigger than plenty of NYC parks. Not McCarren or Central, but the ones that you look at on a map, and wonder how many people in the entire city know its actual name. This place is easier to remember thanks to ceviche, frozen cocktails, and a very attractive space covered in lights and hanging plants. It’s open from 5-11pm during the week, and starting at noon on weekends, so keep it in mind when you want to day drink in a park, legally.
You could pick up a hot chicken or wagyu roast beef sandwich from Mekelburg’s, and eat it across the street in Domino Park. But if you’d rather wipe your hands with napkins than with artificial turf, get a table outside. They come with the added benefit of silverware so you can get a salt baked potato topped with a mound of caviar, and pint glasses so you can take advantage of their excellent draft beer list.
We would happily eat this Thai spot’s tom yum with pork or pad kee mao with chicken sitting on a fire hydrant, so the fact that they’ve set up some outdoor seating is just one more reason to head to Noods n’ Chill. Order at the counter during lunch or dinner, pay with cash or Venmo, and then find an open table on the sidewalk out front.
One of the most charming hotel restaurants in the city is officially back open for outdoor dining on their garden patio. While we do like the borderline-palatial dining room, the stringlit and brick-surrounded yard will be a nice place to deconstruct and consume a small mountain consisting of roasted chicken and fries followed by some profiteroles. You can make a reservation online, and they’re going fast.
The rooftop patio at this cocktail bar is always one of the best outdoor drinking options in Williamsburg, and Wednesday through Sunday until midnight, it still is. They’ve also put some tables on the sidewalk out front in case the roof is full or you have a fear of not very high heights.
St Anselm’s huge backyard is usually just a place to drink Belgian beers from Spuyten Duyvil while waiting for a table inside, but now you’ll find a bunch of tent-covered tables where you can order a butcher’s steak and pan-fried mashed potatoes any day until 10pm.
Not only has Kent Ale House expanded its outdoor seating - much of which has nice very views of the Manhattan skyline - but it has also set up outdoor TVs, so you can watch soccer somewhere other than a bench in McCarren Park. Check their Instagram for information on what matches they’re showing, and stop by between 3-9pm during the week, or 12-9pm on weekends.
The East Village location of Caracas has the honor of being the first, while the Rockaway outpost has the pleasure of being a few steps from the beach. But this Venezualan spot in Williamsburg has something that the others don’t - a beautiful backyard and a cocktail bar with more than 40 types of rum. Make use of both while sampling their wide selection of arepas any day for lunch or dinner.
As usual, Lighthouse is offering a handful of outdoor tables on the sidewalk. And as usual, dinner here feels casual, but over-delivers in every way. From grilled escarole that we’d eat by the bucket to a great wine list to one of the best burgers in the neighborhood, this should be near the top of your list for your next dinner when you want to impress someone without appearing to try. Make a reservation through their website for a table any day of the week.
There’s no wrong time to eat brisket and spicy sausage at a picnic table in front of Fette Sau, and that certainly includes weekday lunch. From 2-5pm, this BBQ spot offers specials like $8 loaded pulled pork sandwiches, and Happy Hour deals like $4 cans of local beers. The first come, first served seating is available Monday-Thursday from 2-9pm , and Friday-Sunday from 12-10pm.
We’re not aware of any official rankings, but if an award were given out for the best people-watching corner in Brooklyn, North 5th and Bedford in Williamsburg would be a strong contender. That’s where you’ll find this all-day cafe, with outdoor seating right on Bedford offered every day from 8:30am-9pm (11pm on weekends).
The outdoor tables at this Israeli cafe are open from 9am-9pm every day, which means you can dip challah in shakshuka at breakfast, eat a lamb burger with tzatziki at lunch, or decide how to build your DIY Israeli bento box at dinner.
Kings County Imperial is serving their fantastic dim sum, big wok mapo dofu, and rotating specials like red chili soft shell crabs in their back garden and out front on Skillman Avenue. You can make a reservation through their website for a table any day from 4:30-10:30pm.
Not only has this Peruvian spot set up a bunch of tables out front, but it’s also offering seating on its colorful, plant-covered roof. You can make a dinner reservation through their website or by calling 718-387-3434 for groups of up to six any night of the week. As of July 25th, they’re also offering weekend brunch, when you can pair a spicy pan con chicharron with a Llama Del Rey cocktail (pisco, rum, and red wine).
When the oversupply of humidity and undersupply of bathrooms turns your day in the park into an hour in the park, head a block away to The Bedford. You’ll find some very good bar food, like a fried chicken sandwich with pickleback slaw and bourbon aioli, as well as plenty of frozen cocktails. The first come, first served seating is available every day from 3-11pm, and starting at noon on weekends.
Sometimes being out from under a roof isn’t enough, and you want to be out on top of a roof as well. When that urge hits you in Williamsburg, take the elevator to the roof of The William Vale hotel. It has pretty amazing views of the Manhattan skyline, which you can take in while having cocktails and guacamole on a big, cushioned yellow couch. We recommend making a reservation through website before going.
Every weekend, this all-day American spot sets up Gertie Summer Shack out front on Grand Street. From 4-9pm on Friday, 10:30am-9pm on Saturday, and 10:30am-6pm on Sunday, you can stop by for things like chicken schnitzel sandwiches on challah, smoked shrimp rolls with Old Bar aioli, and mezcal lemonades or summer shandies.
Beco has expanded its outdoor seating area and is now open from 12-10pm everyday. Stop by this Brazilian spot for filet mignon and eggs at brunch, or feijoada and moqueca at dinner. Either way, order plenty of pão de queijo and caipirinhas.
This Williamsburg Italian restaurant specializes in the pizza-adjacent Roman flatbreads known as pinsa, and they serve them with toppings like stracciatella, broccoli rabe, and Sardinian honey. They also have a very nice back patio with plenty of tables and a retractable roof, and they’re currently accepting online reservations.
Sunday In Brooklyn is as synonymous with brunch as any place in Williamsburg. That could be because the brunch menu is longer than the dinner one, or that brunch is served every day, or the fact that most of the drinks could be described as “breakfast cocktails.” Try to figure out while eating a triple stack of fluffy pancakes with hazelnut maple praline, or a BEC with gochujang aioli at a sidewalk table Wednesday through Sunday.
Have & Meyer has over 100 natural wines by the glass, which is a good deal more than just about any other Italian restaurant, let alone wine bar, in NYC. They also have a small dinner menu with things like pasta and octopus, and you can book a table on their (very) small front patio.
This takeaway window in the middle of Domino Park is open daily from 11am-5pm. Place your order ahead of time through their website, and have some chicken tinga tacos and margaritas at a table overlooking the East River.
From 9am-11pm during the week, and until 1am on weekends, you can hang out in Freehold’s backyard in Williamsburg. They’re serving everything from BECs and coffee in the morning to pizzas and large format margaritas at night. Reservations are recommended and available through their website.
The menu at this Israeli spot ranges from goat cheese salads and vegetable couscous to lamb burgers and chicken schnitzel. In other words, you can go to couscous with pretty much anyone without worrying if they’ll be able to eat anything on the menu. As an added bonus, just about every dish is less than $20, and they’re open every day from 8:30am-9pm.
You wouldn’t know it from the outside, but Amazzacaffe has a sizable back patio that’s great for a quiet outdoor dinner in Williamsburg. The Italian food here is also consistently impressive, especially the pasta and skewers.
You can’t watch soccer or cheer against the Gators during a Florida alumni event at Roebling Sporting Club right now, but you can still enjoy drinks and bar food, like hoisin sesame chicken wings or fried mac ’n cheese balls, at tables out front any day of the week.
From 12-10pm daily, this Italian spot a block from the river in Williamsburg is serving its wood-fired pizzas (including gluten-free options), cacio e pepe ravioli, and Italian wines at tables on the street out front. Seating at lunch is first come first served, but reservations for dinner are available through their website.
Pomp & Circumstance is a great spot to get some drinks and snacks while you’re walking around Williamsburg. Their Mediterranean small plates, especially the various dips served with housemade sourdough, are available every day except Wednesday from 1:30-10pm. They accept groups of up to eight people, and you can make a reservation by calling 718-387-4861.
This American spot has reopened with an expanded outdoor dining area along the curb in front of their restaurant. They’re serving high-end American dishes like roast chicken with potato gnocchi or wagyu bavette with spinach-ramp puree for weeknight dinner and weekend brunch, with tables available for walk-ins, or by reservation through their website.
The corner of North 3rd and Berry in Williamsburg feels a bit like a (greatly subdued) World Cup rally in Munich. Both streets are full of picnic tables, where people are drinking giant steins of Radeberger zwickelbier and eating brats and currywurst. The first come, first served tables are available for up to 90 minutes per party from 12-8pm during the week, and 11am-10pm on Saturday.
Like both of the Manhattan locations of The Butcher’s Daughter, the all-day cafe in Williamsburg is offering patio seating every day from 8am-10pm. You can reserve a table ahead of time through their website, or walk-in whenever you’re in the mood for a latte and cold-pressed juice, or glass of wine and spicy kale caesar.
If you’re looking to day drink In Williamsburg, check out Ainslie. This beer garden and Italian spot offers backyard and sidewalk seating, with pizzas, bar snacks, and a bunch of different beers available every day except Monday.
Juliette is a great option for outdoor brunch in Williamsburg. This French spot just off Bedford has some sidewalk seating, but the best tables are on their partially shaded roofdeck. Make a reservation through their website, and order a spicy bloody mary with a fried chicken sandwich on a buttermilk biscuit.
Concord Hill is a neighborhood spot in Williamsburg where you can eat a burger and some oysters for lunch or dinner, or fried eggs with andouille sausage during weekend brunch. You can make a reservation for up to 10 people through their website any day except Monday.
For barbacoa tacos, margaritas, and guacamole in Williamsburg, try Casa Publica. They’ve got plenty of outdoor seating available on a first come, first served basis starting at 3pm daily.