Kick Off Summer with Outdoor Dining
by Karen Carzo
Friday, May 23, 2014

Ahhh...Memorial Day.  The “unofficial official” kick-off to the summer season.  After the brutal winter that gripped most of the Northeast, this acknowledged start of the summer season – official or not – should be celebrated.  Here are a few Great Places where you can enjoy a cold summer cocktail and dine outside.  These restaurants are also great venues for larger events. 

Bottino, 246 10th Avenue, 212.206.6766

Enjoy contemporary and classic Tuscan cuisine in Bottino’s beautiful urban garden.  Located on Tenth Avenue between 24th and 25th Streets, Bottino is in the center of West Chelsea’s art scene and easily accessible to all boroughs.  In addition to its lunch and dinner service, the restaurant offers several prix fixe menu options to accommodate private events of all types.

Humphrey and Brighton, Eventi Hotel, 851 Avenue of the Americas, 212.201.4065

Located atop the swanky Eventi Hotel in Manhattan’s Chelsea neighborhood is Humphrey and Brighton.  In addition to several dining options and private event spaces, there’s an outdoor patio and terrace where you can enjoy refreshing cocktails such as the Flower District (Beefeater Gin, Elderflower, tonic, fresh lime and candied ginger, $13), the Sunset Cosmo (Hangar 1 Mandarin Blossom, Plum Sake, cranberry and fresh lime, $12), or the Pomegranate Sidecar (Courvoisier VS Cognac, pomegranate syrup, fresh lemon and pomegranate syrup, $14).  An assortment of appetizers, sandwiches and entrees are also available.

Toshi’s Living Room & Penthouse, 1141 Broadway, NYC 917.432.8810

This just might be the happiest place in New York City!  On the top floor of the Flatiron Hotel is where you’ll find Toshi’s Living Room & Penthouse. If the spectacular view doesn’t help you relax, perhaps one of their libations will.  The menu doesn’t list “cocktails”- it features “Glasses of Happiness” such as the Sazerock and Roll ($16) of Bulleit Rye, fresh lemon juice, Angostura Bitters and simple syrup poured over a fiery lemon wheel and completed with an Absinthe Rinse.  Or try the house specialty – The Toshi ($12) with Beefeater Gin, lemon, champagne and fresh raspberries.  A full menu of Toshi Tapas, appetizers, salads, pizzas, pastas, seafood, steak and chicken dishes is also available.  But call before you go, they are often closed for private events.

The Bryant Park Grill, 25 W. 40th Street, 212.840.6500

Right in the center of midtown is a Parisian-style oasis – The Bryant Park Grill.  This full-service restaurant offers two outdoor dining options.  Sit high above the hustle and bustle of the city streets in the restaurant’s rooftop garden, or enjoy the activities in Bryant Park with a seat on the restaurant’s outdoor patio.  Either location lets you enjoy the sights and sounds of the city while enjoying delicious cuisine.


STK Rooftop, 26 Little West 12th Street, 646.624.2444

You don’t have to be a steak-lover to enjoy the beautiful views offered at STK Rooftop, above STK in the trendy Meatpacking district.  The dinner menu at this high-end, stylish hotspot offers a wide variety of choices and even serves brunch!


Rocking Horse Café, 182 Eighth Avenue, 212.463.9511

What better way to kick off summer than sipping margaritas, sangria and caipirnhas and enjoying deliciously spicy Mexican fare?  The sidewalk patio at the Rocking Horse Café is an excellent way to unwind and welcome the warmer weather all while enjoying lunch, brunch or dinner.  


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