From boozy brunches to leisurely nightcaps, Toronto’s patios add ambiance to your cocktail, whatever the hour. Don’t let summer pass you by without experiencing a few of these hot spots, which offer an ideal way to make the most of a sultry summer day or night in the city.
The Chelsea Patio is a hidden urban oasis right downtown. Serving up $6 drink specials (!) from Monday to Friday on daily selections including wine, beers, even Rosé Frosé, this is a happy hour must. Plus, the patio is connected to the Market Garden restaurant, so you can stay for lunch or dinner, too.
Located on the Harbourfront right next to Sugar Beach, this chic restaurant offers an unparalleled view of Lake Ontario and Toronto Island. With lounge seating, fire pits and enough space for 170 people, Against the Grain’s patio is a great way to experience the waterfront without getting wet.
The Amsterdam Brewhouse’s waterfront outpost combines its signature local brews with a beer-infused menu and serves it up on three big, breezy patios – one of which looks right onto the lake. Craft beer fans can choose from a wide selection of draft, cask or seasonal brews and curl up on one of the Muskoka chairs for a truly Canadian experience.
This patio atop the Rock'n' Horse Saloon in the heart of the Entertainment District has a spectacular view of the city and a party vibe. Here, enormous margaritas come garnished with overturned Coronas, the dance floor hosts line dancing, and the bar resembles a wood horse stable. When you’ve had enough with the porch, check out the country-themed nightclub inside – and take the mechanical bull for a spin.
Despite the punk rock/goth-inspired interior, the Bovine Sex Club’s recently-installed rooftop patio is modelled after a tropical oasis. Grab a cocktail from the tiki-hut-style bar and relax amongst the tropical plants, tiki masks and graffiti-covered exposed brick.
Located in the Distillery Historic District, the Mill Street Brewery’s coveted cobblestone patio makes you feel like you’ve stepped back in time (after a couple of pints). The building is a well-preserved example of the 19th century industrial complex – spiritmakers Gooderham & Worts – that occupied this site. Choose between 14 brews on draft and drink in the sights of the neighbourhood known for its beer.
Set in First Canadian Place, Duke of Westminster is a classic pub spread across two levels, and serves tall pints and cool cocktails. An after work crowd flocks to the 70-seat patio, nestled in among the soaring towers of the financial district.
This traditional Irish pub on Church Street draws a lively crowd in summer. The biggest patio in the gaybourhood, O'Grady's accommodates 160 people between its upstairs and street level patio. Expect a rambunctious crowd, friendly staff and a great spot to watch Village nightlife in action – especially during the Pride festival.
Start your evening here with a hearty “Bear Platter” and continue up Church to see which stops strike your fancy, or end off the night with a late night snack (the kitchen is open till 3 a.m. on weekends).
This intimate Irish pub on the Danforth is where Toronto’s Celtic music scene is at its best. Opened in 1987 to resemble a saloon restaurant typical of Irish New York, Allen's evolved into a family-friendly neighbourhood pub lauded for its live music and handmade burgers. In summer, the spacious and leafy back patio is where Danforth drinkers gather.
Once home to the Dominion Bank in the early 1900s, the stately Stone Lion Pub at the corner of Queen and Kenilworth Avenue is a favourite for locals and tourists in The Beach neighbourhood. Two large patios offer the best of shade and sun, making this a perfect option for lunch and an afternoon pint after strolling the boardwalk.