Best Outdoor (Al Fresco) Dining Spots to Try Now!

Looking for a place to enjoy great food, great tableside service and sit outdoors? Okay… here are 11 of the best spots to do it that are currently open for business (July 13, 2020)! (presented in no particular order)

Publico Kitchen + Tap

Their colorful foods and colorful patio area make this Five Points spot a locals favorite. Head there for lunch, dinner, brunch or late night. Latin-Asian fusion menu offers creative takes on favorites from each culture. Open 7 days. More here.

Old Mill Brew Pub

Certainly one of the top restaurants in all the Midlands when it comes to creatively cooking the region’s favorites, Old Mill Brewpub offers outdoor dining on its wide deck. Located in Lexington. Small brewery onsite delivers a selection of refreshing brews that change seasonally. You’ll love it! See their menu here.

Liberty on the Lake

Outdoor dining with a view like none other! Liberty Tap Room on Lake Murray in Irmo offers deck seating under canopy or out in the sunshine. Features a great menu for lunch, dinner or brunch. Come by boat, if you have one, or by vehicle if you must (large parking lot). More on Facebook.

O’Hara’s Public House

O’Hara’s Public House in Lexington has deck-dining and daily menu specials that will knock your socks off. Just check out their Facebook pages for mouth-watering pics – yep, it tastes as good as it looks! O’Hara’s also has live music on the deck on a weekly basis. Check their Facebook page for details.

Gervais & Vine

A cozy little establishment in the Vista, Gervais & Vine offers outdoor dining on their covered deck. A menu where delectable tapas selections meet one of the best burgers in town! Extensive beer, wine and cocktails menus. Large free parking lot in the rear. More here.

Top Dawg Tavern

A great spot in Northeast Columbia, with a big outdoor patio and live music! Enjoy burgers, wings and onion rings to die-for! Located in the Village at Sandhill shopping district. Palmetto Priority Participant. More here.

Grill Marks

Known for their outrageously creative FreakShakes and big, juicy burgers, Grill Marks in the Vista allocates a large number of tables to outdoor, covered dining. Enjoy your food and drinks while you people and traffic-watch over Gervais Street.

The Gourmet Shop

Check out their Facebook page for updates

A long-standing Columbia tradition is sitting out at a sidewalk table for lunch or brunch in front of The Gourmet Shop on Saluda Avenue in Five Points. Choose from house made salads and sandwiches,paninis, wraps, cheese plates, and charcuterie boards (open 7 days until 4pm). Palmetto Priority Participant. More here.

Palmetto Oyster House (PO House)

Sumter, SC is home to this amazing little spot that specializes in all types of seafood. Shrimp, crabcakes and fresh oysters are locals’ favorites. Just 40 miles from the SC Statehouse… great place for a daytrip! Swan Lake and Iris Gardens, Sumter County Museum and PO House! More here.


Three Columbia-area locations, each with outdoor seating available. Think honey-drenched fresh croissants, big flavorful burgers, char-grilled steaks and beautiful salads! Chapin, Forest Acres and Northeast Columbia. More here.

J’s Corner

J’s Corner is near Williams Brice Stadium and SC State Fairgrounds (where Jaco’s used to be.) Expansive outdoor seating with umbrella tables, covered patio and tents. Definitely Southern! Sweet Tea Fried Chicken, Sweet Potato Chicken Salad, Catfish Bites, and Shrimp & Grits are a few diners’ faves. Open Mon – Sat for lunch and dinner (until 9:30pm). More here.

Know of another spot we should include? Email and let her know!