Editor's note: If you're thinking this item looks familiar, it is. I was talking with Rallo about how today's weather demanded an outdoor lunch, and like idiots we sat there for five minutes trying to think of good patios. Then we realized that we run a web site that exists solely to solve these quandaries. So I dug this up (it's from September) and republished. You could safely add two of Scott's recent reviews, Goodfriend and Stackhouse, to this list.
Seriously, go eat outside today. It's going to be 71 degrees, it's Friday and the NFL playoffs start this weekend. Life gets no better. -- Joe Tone
Original item: For this week's review, which is on newsstands and on the restaurant page now, I drank my way through an exploration of the Katy Trail Ice House, a bar and grill defined by its patio. Over my several visits, the weather was brutally hot, but as we polished the story, the summer released its hold on the thermometer and cooler weather rolled in.
I'm pretty smitten with the Ice House, but it can get packed on the weekends, and having a backup or two is never a bad thing when looking for places to drink outdoors.
So: Here are some Observer favorites. Chime in with some of your own, and, God willing, we'll see you on a patio, any patio, soon and for several weeks to come.
The Black Friar: The front porch of this house-turned-bar spills out onto a large deck made for drinking. Outdoor televisions keep you entertained if your date sucks, and gas heat lamps stand at the ready to extend your fall season. 2621 McKinney Ave. Dallas, TX 75204 | Uptown & Oak Lawn | 214-953-0599
The Mansion at Turtle Creek, Back Patio: The only thing that's missing is a perfect Dallas skyline, but two big fireplaces, a canopy of trees dotted with lanterns, and lots of space make for a polished evening session. 2821 Turtle Creek Dallas, TX 75219 | Uptown & Oak Lawn | 214-559-2100
Lee Harvey's: Just like Katy Trail, Lee Harvey's has a massive outdoor space supported by a smaller building. The scale-tipper here is live music, and there are also fire pits, because nothing goes better with booze than open flames.1807 Gould St. Dallas, TX 75215 | Oak Cliff & South Dallas | 214-428-1555
Barley House: You'll have to put up with those crazy kids from SMU, but the Barley House is owned by the same characters as Katy Trail. They also own Bryan Street Tavern. All of their locations sport solid bar food. 5612 SMU Blvd. Dallas, TX 75206 | East Dallas & Lakewood | 214-824-0306
Ozona: Vegetation and fencing that separate this multi-level patio from Greenville Avenue have won Ozona a few Best Of Dallas Best Patio awards. 4615 Greenville Ave. Dallas, TX 75206 | East Dallas & Lakewood | 214-265-9105