in ,

Eat Outdoors at These Amazing Sacramento Restaurants

Restaurants in the area with outdoor dining that you don’t want to miss.

Sacramento is as verdant as it is historic. Sacramento is famous for having the highest ratio of trees to people in the U.S.

table set view at sacramento outdoor dining

Its greenery is inextricably linked to its history.

Vast urban forests popped up during the mid-1800s to shade the population of miners during the Gold Rush.

Along with an abundance of trees, Sacramento has two beautiful rivers, American and Sacramento, flowing through its neighborhoods and converging at one of the city’s most beautiful parks.

You can admire the dry, moderate climate and green surroundings at one of the restaurants with the best outdoor dining in Sacramento that I’ll discuss below.


Aioli Bodega Espanola

1800 L St, Sacramento, CA 95811
Phone: 916-447-9440
Visit Website

Located in the heart of downtown two blocks from Capitol Mall, Aioli Bodega Espanola is a romantic Spanish tapas restaurant, cocktail, and wine bar.

The bustling interior has an open kitchen and walls lined with Spanish wines, opening onto a lovely tree-covered terrace lit with white Christmas lights.

Aioli Bodega Espanola has been a Sacramento fixture for 25 years.

Their authentic Spanish menu has a full list of tapas, soups, and salads along with pasta, paella, and grilled meats.

I enjoyed a glass of their famous sangria with a meal of shared tapas dishes.

My favorite tapas plate was the Gambas al Ajillo, with fresh shrimp sauteed in garlic and white wine sauce.


Prelude Kitchen & Bar

1117 11th St, Sacramento, CA 95814
Phone: 916-898-1071
Visit Website

Prelude Kitchen & Bar is an absolutely incredible place to eat outside while you’re enjoying a sunny day here in Sacramento.

You won’t find a better view of the California State Capitol Museum anywhere else.

The food is unbelievably delicious as well.

The buttermilk fried chicken sandwich is ssecond to none in the whole city. Don’t hesitate to pay Prelude Kitchen & Bar a visit.


Firehouse

1112 2nd St, Sacramento, CA 95814
Phone: 916-442-4772
Visit Website

With over 60 years as an Old Sacramento favorite, Firehouse fuses history and charm into an elegant, fine-dining experience.

Their traditional dining space features four opulent dining rooms, all with white tablecloths, impeccable service, and decadent multi-course New American menus.

Their outdoor courtyard has won awards for its romantic and picturesque ambiance.

They also have the most extensive wine selection in the city.

Their menu uses locally sourced ingredients.

I loved the oven-roasted maple duck in a plum demiglace, with Peruvian purple potatoes, Cara Cara, plum, and fennel frisee, tarragon crème, and candied walnuts.


Cafeteria 15L

1116 15th St, Sacramento, CA 95814
Phone: 916-492-1960
Visit Website

Designed by the architects who built the posh W Hotel chain, Cafeteria 15L is an equally stylish farm-to-table American comfort food café in Midtown, overlooking Capitol Park.

Cafeteria 15L has an industrial, urban-chic interior and two lush and verdant outdoor patios with modern fire pits, an open wooden bar, and whimsically mismatched chairs and tables.

The food is as stylish as its surroundings, putting a playful and modern twist on home-cooked meals.

They’re open for lunch, dinner, and weekend brunch and also have a full bar and wine list.

I had to go with the most comforting home-cooked meal of all and ordered the Meatloaf wrapped in applewood smoked bacon with garlic mashed potatoes, green beans, and gravy.


Seasons 52

1689 Arden Way Suite 1065, Sacramento, CA 95815
Phone: 916-922-5252
Visit Website

Located inside the Arden Fair Mall, Seasons 52 is a seasonal, farm-to-table restaurant and wine bar serving a selection of 52 different wines.

Seasons 52 has a refined and bustling atmosphere to enjoy an upscale New American meal.

Their cooking revolves around an oak-fired grill and brick oven.

Menus are ingredient-driven and change with each season.

I went during the summer and was delighted to see a watermelon and tomato salad on the menu.

For the main dish, I recommend the fire-grilled, dry-rubbed pork chop with a honey lemon glaze, braised red cabbage, and California golden raisins.


The Porch Restaurant & Bar

1815 K St, Sacramento, CA 95811
Phone: 916-444-2423
Visit Website

Teetering between Midtown and Boulevard Park, The Porch is a charming and festive Southern Comfort restaurant and bar in a country-chic dining space with a giant front porch.

The architecture emulates a New Orleans French Quarter structure, with a menu to match.

The Porch prides itself on 100% local, organic, and responsible sourcing.

They describe their Southern Comfort menu as having a California twist due to the organic, eco-friendly, and sustainable ingredients used.

I started with the most delicious skillet cornbread that tasted more like corn pudding, made with cheddar, creamed corn, and garlic.

It was the perfect prelude to a sumptuous main course of barbecued gulf shrimp over creamy gouda grits.


Zócalo

Multiple locations
Visit Website

Zocalo is a contemporary Mexican bistro offering upscale regional Mexican food with a full cocktail bar in a lively and hip dining space.

Zocalo has four locations around Sacramento in Folsom, UV, Fountains, and Midtown, each with a unique urban-chic design and tree-shaded outdoor seating.

The outdoor seating offers a romantic old-world streetside café feel.

Their cocktail menu revolves around Mexico’s best spirits, tequila, and mezcal.

It has a full section of margaritas and Palomas along with Mexicanized classic cocktails.

I had an Oaxacan Old Fashioned with tequila and mezcal, orange peel, bitters, and agave to accompany a rich plate of mole enchiladas.


Mulvaney’s B&L

1215 19th St, Sacramento, CA 95811
Phone: 916-441-6022
Visit Website

Owned by California natives Bobbin and Chef Patrick Mulvaney, Mulvaney’s B&L is a farm-to-fork California-style restaurant in an iconic 19th-century firehouse in Midtown.

The interior is beautifully preserved with romantic dim lighting, red brick walls, charming photographs, and nature-inspired art on the walls.

The menu is the star of the show and the epitome of California’s seasonal bounty.

Chef Mulvaney creates a different market-driven menu each day, for a truly memorable culinary experience.

California is the land of milk and honey, and the freshness and artistry of each dish were nothing short of heavenly.

I had the potato gnocchi with buttery mushrooms, farm-fresh corn, and basil.


Final Thoughts

Sacramento’s natural beauty and California’s natural culinary bounty combine to create the ultimate outdoor dining experience.

Whether you’re looking for authentic Mexican food, farm-to-fork California cuisine, or Southern Comfort home-cooked meals, you’ll find it on my list of restaurants with the best outdoor dining in Sacramento.

If you’re looking for Sacramento’s greatest pizzerias, check out our list of favorites!

Did we leave a restaurant out of this list? Make sure you leave us a comment and we’ll check it out!


Best Outdoor Dining in Sacramento

  1. Aioli Bodega Espanola
  2. Prelude Kitchen & Bar
  3. Firehouse
  4. Cafeteria 15L
  5. Seasons 52
  6. The Porch Restaurant & Bar
  7. Zócalo
  8. Mulvaney’s B&L

This page may contain affiliate links. If you click through and make a purchase, we'll earn a small commission, at no additional cost to you.

2 Comments

Leave a Reply
  1. It would be nice if the outdoor dining in Sacramento didn’t include all the mice which overrun the sidewalks where a lot of outdoor dining happens. They’re bold little rodents to say the least.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Written by Brian N

Brian has been an influencer in the food and beverage industry for over 20 years. He not only loves to eat and drink at restaurants on a regular basis, he also knows the business inside and out.