As the weather finally improves, the joy of outdoor dining comes with it. Whether it’s a spectacular view, cocktails and apps, or simply a chance to enjoy the warmth, these 28 eateries offer some of the best alfresco dining experiences on the North Shore. These patios and decks are often in high demand as the weather improves. Check on restrictions to availability, party size, time limits, or mask requirements in the coming months.
1606 Restaurant & Bar at the Beauport Hotel
According to their website, the restaurant is currently partially under construction remaking the oyster bar in their dining room. But their deck with fire pit, umbrellas, and views of the water are currently open; they also have a covered deck for a slightly more sheltered dining experience. The cuisine is “modern American” and executive chef John Welch creates a harvest and ocean-to-table experience (he won Lobster Chef of the Year in 2001, so he knows his seafood). The best time to go by far is in the evening during sunset.
55 Commercial St., Gloucester, 978-491-5090, 1606restaurant.com
This eatery is on the opposite end of the spectrum: it’s very casual and low-key. The vibe channels a New England seafood shack with notes of Southern influence in their simple, straightforward menu. Restaurateur Jason Santos (also owner of Boston’s Buttermilk & Bourbon, Abby Lane, and Citrus & Salt) with his longtime chef Jeff DeCandia opened B&B in November 2020, and their newly built patio is designed for alfresco eating. They can even offer outdoor dining in the colder months, thanks to a fire pit.
195 Pleasant St., Marblehead, 781-990-1739, bandbfish.com
C.K. Pearl’s deck (partially covered, partially open air) overlooks the Essex River. Reservations for the patio fill up quickly—even in the off-season. The seafood’s simple but delicious, the drinks are fun, and the site’s massive smoker lends the whole location a warm deliciousness. The overhead lights make for a soft, romantic ambiance. Chef and owner Patrick Shea is originally from Essex and has worked in Denver, Colorado; Florence, Italy; and Boston.
112 Main St., Essex, 978-890-7378, ckpearl.com
This classic Italian restaurant comes courtesy of owners Daniella and Dan Mammola, who also head Pellana Prime Steakhouse and Daniella’s Café & Market. It has a small but mighty menu filled with classics, paired with an impressive wine list; meanwhile, pastry chef Karolina Sadova makes all the unmissable desserts. Their enclosed patio is open even when it’s colder, thanks to heaters, but will be perfectly warm in the summer, too.
41 Cross St., Peabody, 978-871-2942, daniellasristorante.com
Davio’s Northern Italian Steakhouse
All the Davio’s locations offer delicious food, particularly their handmade pastas and upscale entrees, but Lynnfield has something a little special: food sourced directly from the nearby Whole Foods’ rooftop garden, and their outdoor seating overlooking the Market Street “Green,” the hub of activity for the area (skating rink in winter, green activity area in summer). The outdoor dining at their Lynnfield location is a bit more casual than their indoor dining, and the ambiance and food are top-notch.
1250 Market St., Lynnfield, 781-944-4810, davios.com/lynnfield
Opening May 16 for this year’s season, the casual outdoor dining space includes open air and covered patio (as the name implies). Known for their lobster rolls and rum buckets in particular as part of a casual and simple menu, The Deck is a favorite after-work spot. Check the weather before you go and call ahead, since inclement weather may affect their hours.
179 Bridge Rd., Salisbury, 978-499-4422, thedecksalisbury.com
Elm Square Oyster Co.
The menu at Elm Square Oyster Co. is made in their scratch kitchen from locally sourced ingredients—everything’s made in-house, including condiments. They’re known for their oyster happy hour and wine and beer selection, making it a particularly choice spot for evening meals. Executive chef Michael Sherman adds French-inspired flair to the menu, particularly with inventive sauces. Their patio, which is now open, offers soft lighting, umbrellas, and quiet ambiance.
2 Elm Sq., Andover, 978-470-2228, elmsquareoysterco.com
According to chef and co-owner Frank McClelland, he was farm-to-table before it was cool. The resulting FRANK is low-key and straightforward, with a greenhouse onsite and relationships with New England farms to keep everything sourced locally. The outdoor dining is available not just during the summer, with heaters available in the colder months. There’s also a market with wine, snacks, and pastries to go.
112 Rantoul St., Beverly, 978-998-4946, farmtofrank.com
The Grill at Great Marsh Brewing Company
The Essex brewing company has an outdoor beer garden serving up pizza and pretzels—but their second-floor restaurant has a full bar and pub fare menu to pair with their beers, as well as a ground-floor deck available seasonally. Open Wednesday through Sunday, the brewery keeps focus on the drinks and views, and there’s sometimes live music to enjoy, too.
99 Main St., Essex, 978-890-7827, grillatgreatmarsh.com
Grove at Briar Barn Inn
The restaurant of the Briar Barn Inn is known for its relaxed-yet-highly-delicious environment. That applies to the outdoor space, too, with simple wooden tables on a deck (with heat lamps when it’s cold) and lights strung overhead. The surrounding wooded area offers a secluded, beautiful atmosphere as you dine. Closed Monday and Tuesday, the restaurant fills up quickly. They have local partnerships with farms and vendors to offer top-notch seasonal offerings; executive chef Ben Lightbody aims for refined but filling.
101 Main St., Rowley, 978-484-5166, briarbarninn.com/grove
Jack’s Coal Fired Pizza
No surprise, Jack’s Coal Fired Pizza is all about the pizza, although the apps (wings, charred cauliflower, and calamari to name a few) are apparently underrated. They have both coal-fired and wood-fired pizza so patrons have the option between thick and crispy or soft and chewy. All of their creations are delicious, but their most popular is the polpetta (meatball) coal-fired pie. They have a casual screened in patio as well as a fully outdoor space—both are currently open.
2 Wall St., Burlington, 781-272-2600, jackscfp.com
With its rustic Tuscan cuisine, L’Andana channels classic, simple food. Their outdoor seating is in the open air under a tent, with heat lamps and lights—it’s cozy but small, so be sure to make a reservation before you go. Chef Jamie Mammano has a number of ventures inside Boston and out of the city (Mistral, Mooo, and Sorrellina to name a few), but L’Andana channels the peaceful Italian countryside with food to match.
86 Cambridge St., Burlington, 781-270-0100, landanagrill.com
Ledger has both an open-air patio and a tent open for diners as of April—but check on the weather, and call or go online to make a reservation. Chef/owner Matt O’Neil is from Swampscott and aims to bring elevated dining to the North Shore with a wood-fired grill and a constantly changing menu. They’ve always got special menus depending on holidays and events, and their housemade desserts are to die for.
125 Washington St., Salem, 978-594-1908, ledgersalem.com
Longboards Restaurant + Bar
Brothers Justin and Matthew Mattera expanded a small sandwich store into Longboards, a casual local eatery that just so happens to have top-notch food. From their pickled vegetables (it’s got a secret spice mix!) to their in-store popcorn to their secret menu items, there’s a little something for everybody. And they have a waterfront patio to boot, with happy hour specials and games.
72 Wharf St., Salem, 978-745-6659, longboardsbar.com
Located at the Newburyport Train Station, Metzy’s offers Mexican-Asian fusion in their cantina and award-winning food truck (the latter can be found traveling around Newburyport). The cantina prides itself on offering more than just “street food,” but the most delicious and popular offerings are classics like their Korean BBQ street tacos and Korean BBQ steak cobb salad. They have an open-air patio with umbrellas—sometimes with live music.
5 Boston Way #4067, Newburyport, 978-255-7347, metzys.com
The Tavern’s open-air deck features brightly colored umbrellas and gorgeous views. Retractable glass walls means the space can be modified depending on the weather. The food is elevated pub fare (their sushi is especially eye-catching) and they host trivia, DJ nights, and live bands depending on the schedule.
25 Rogers St., Gloucester, 978-281-0223, minglewoodharborside.com
Mission on the Bay
With gorgeous views of Kings Beach and the sound of the waves against the shore, patio season is officially amazing at Mission on the Bay. Known for their lobster rolls and other fresh seafood, the restaurant’s also famed for its attention to detail and to patrons’ needs. Owner Wellington Augusto brings a Brazilian influence to the food, and each floor has a different feel—there’s a dining room, ocean bar, and “The Cove” for takeout.
141 Humphrey St., Swampscott, 781-691-9277, missiononthebay.com
The Paddle Inn
The Inn’s new patio setup is simple tables on an open air deck, but sometimes that’s all you need when the food is this good. Chef Suzi Maitland (owner and executive chef of two Trina’s Starlite Lounges, Parlor Sports, and Audubon) specializes in creating local gems. This restaurant channels the love of the beach and surfing, with dishes from coastal communities including Thailand, Jamaica, and Maitland’s native Florida.
27 State St., Newburyport, 978-572-1242, paddleinnsurf.com
Pazzo Pizza Co.
General manager Jeff Malloy was previously the head chef at critically acclaimed Carmen’s in Boston’s North End. He opened Pazzo Pizza with brother David Malloy to rave reviews. Their 13-inch Neapolitan pizzas come with a variety of toppings such as potato and pancetta, mushrooms, and Quattro formaggio. As of April, you can now enjoy their quality pizzas, craft beers, and hand-selected wines on their patio in downtown Andover.
10 Main Street, Andover, 978-409-2268, 978-409-2306, pazzoandover.com
The Rossetti family really knows Italian food and outdoor dining. There’s another highly popular Rossetti in Lynn that also has alfresco dining, and a Cafe Rossetti on the beach in Winthrop. The latest restaurant in Beverly just completed its Pavilion dining room in January so that patrons can enjoy open air dining even when the temperatures drop. The huge Beverly space is 3,900 square feet in total and also offers a bar and restaurant for a variety of eating opportunities.
142 Brimbal Ave., Beverly, 978-969-0080, rossettibeverly.com.
Sea Level Oyster Bar
As the name suggests, the oysters (and seafood in general) are delicious here. It also has spectacular views of the Salem Maritime National Historic Site, and you can see all the way to Marblehead and the harbor islands. Opened in 2015 and one of two Sea Level locations (the other’s in Newburyport), it’s casual and offers the simple pleasure of eating seafood close to the water—as close as eight feet away.
94 Wharf St., Salem, 978-741-0555, sealeveloysterbar.com
With not one but two decks (one outdoor, one covered), Seaport Grille at Cruiseport Gloucester is right on the harbor. They specialize in American and Italian dishes as well as seafood, and it’s hard to go wrong with their specialty drinks—including a rotating drink of the month. According to their website, tables are first come, first served (except for specific holidays) so get there early if you want a table with a view.
6 Rowe Sq., Gloucester, 978-282-9799, seaportgrillegloucester.com
Located right on “the beach” of the Essex River, Shea’s open air dining features tables, a tent, and sand beneath your feet. The food’s an elevated take on seafood but also features steak and pasta as well as fried plates. Shea’s even has an Itsy Bitsy Farm on-site that grows vegetables, fruits, and flowers and houses two beehives—it truly fulfills Shea’s promise of “farm to fork” dining.
122 Main St., Essex, 978-768-6931, sheasrestaurant.com
Temazcal Tequila Cantina
Technically there are five locations that channel this restaurant’s upscale, modern Mexican cuisine: Burlington, Dedham, Lynnfield, Framingham, and the Seaport. The Burlington location has an open air patio as well as a tent—and, like the other locations, 250 different types of tequila as well as seasonal mixed drinks. They also sometimes have live performers, but check their social media for details.
2 Wall St., Burlington, 781-272-9700, temazcalcantina.com/locations/burlington
Formerly The Market Restaurant, Talise is situated on Lobster Cove and offers a tranquil, boat-filled view. They have porch-covered and truly open air dining and are taking reservations for the first month of their season (it’s likely to fill up fast, so act quickly if you’re interested). Owners Joshua and Ariel Smith offer an ever-changing, locally sourced menu, including seafood straight from Cape Ann’s fishermen. As of May 12, Talise is open for its second season, which goes through October.
33 River Rd., Gloucester, 978-515-7814, taliserestaurant.com
Tonno Wakefield brings a new level of sophistication to the Wakefield dining scene within a framework of Italian favorites, located in the luxury mixed-used development called Wakefield Station just across from the MBTA stop. The 4,100-square-foot space—with an outdoor patio for alfresco dining and a 65-seat private dining room for special events—has a lively atmosphere and a décor that is contemporary and fresh, with ocean accents woven in. Chef and owner Anthony Caturano also operates Tonno in Gloucester, plus Boston’s Prezza and Lynn’s Blue Ox.
175 North Ave., Wakefield, 781-486-3606, tonnorestaurant.com
Tuscan Sea Grill & Bar
Tuscan Sea Grill & Bar, a new restaurant concept in downtown Newburyport, features locally sourced seafood, a raw bar, and Tuscan Brand’s famous scratch made pasta. You can also find housemade artisan breads, Neapolitan style pizzas, housemade desserts, gelato, and more. The restaurant’s waterfront location overlooking the Merrimack River has sweeping harbor views and boasts ample outdoor seating for warm weather alfresco dining. Featuring a total interior transformation, the new restaurant will be an exciting addition to the already flourishing restaurant scene in Newburyport.
38R Merrimac St., Newburyport, 978-465-2211, tuscanseagrillbar.com.
Yella on the Water
Situated on the waterfront, this Mediterranean restaurant offers modern yet hearty dishes. Chef Carlo Berdahn (who’s originally from North Lebanon before he brought his culinary prowess to the U.S.) and wife Danielle partner with a number of local businesses to source their food. The alfresco outdoor space is elevated and spacious, with lights strung overhead and umbrellas. The vibe is casual—the focus is (rightly) on the delicious and hearty food. As of April 29, Yella on the Water is now open for the season.
25 Western Ave., Gloucester, 978-491-5334, yellaonthewater.com