If you’re like me and hate to relinquish the pleasures of dining alfresco, literally holding out until it gets bitter cold outside, you’re in luck while dining in NYC. Even as the autumn chill deepens, you still crave the glimmer of moonlight and fresh air with dinner. Here are 3 of my favorite restaurants with outdoor spaces heated with more than just candlelight or the fondue burner:
Outfitted with retractable awnings and patio heaters for comfortable dining in any weather, this casual and surprisingly affordable Williamsburg hangout serves up hearty cold weather fare that’s sure to satisfy…macaroni and cheese loaded with white Cheddar, Parmesan, and Gruyère; tamarind-braised short ribs, Skate with roasted tomato, and the classic DuMont burger for only $12.50
Closest subway stop: G, L at Metropolitan Ave.-Lorimer St.
Offering modern French and classic brasserie fare with an award-winning wine list, Orsay strikes a delicate balance between sophistication and warmth. Custom designed by Jean Denoyer, intricate hand-laid Italian mosaic tiles fan out in beautiful patterns across the floor, Art Nouveau chandeliers grace the ceiling, and banquettes are topped with frosted glass. Completing this elegant Parisian-style brasserie, a 24-foot pewter-topped bar and French doors spill onto a sidewalk terrace outfitted with heaters and an awning providing protection from everything but heavy snowfall.
Closest subway stop: 6th @ 77th St.
Literally translated from Spanish, El Amacen means “general store” and it’s easy to see why the name perfectly
matches this quaint Argentine restaurant with it’s old-time-shop décor like the front counter, chalkboard menus, and a glass ingredient cabinet. The ambiance and menu are down-to-earth with a wide range of small plates, from an extensive seviche bar to cotija-covered grilled corn or the popular avocado fries. And in Argentina, you can’t possibly forget the steak and here it’s featured in their costilla de res, braised for nine hours in maté (a South American substitute for coffee). For dessert, flan is accompanied with chopped fresh fruits, and churros are served hot and ready to dunk in chocolate and caramel dipping sauces. Head up to the top outdoor deck where you’ll stay cozy under an awning and heaters warm enough to keep the snowflakes at bay.
Closest subway stop: L at Bedford Ave.