With the largest selection of restaurants in southwest USA, Phoenix, Arizona, boasts a decadent selection of traditional south-western cuisine and authentic international cuisines. Our guide to Phoenix’s best al fresco restaurants combine an appreciation for its stunning desert views, delicious organic spreads, and tried-and-true local favourites. Enjoy Phoenix’s laid-back, tranquil atmosphere whilst relaxing on shaded patios and trying flavourful dishes.
The Farm at South Mountain prides itself on offering a deliciously healthy farm-to-table experience. With menus for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, there is something for everyone. The farm is a tranquil retreat serving fresh, organic food. Seating is arranged at charming, rustic picnic tables under the trees—so make sure to visit in good weather. After the meal, visitors often choose to stop by the garden market, where the farm sells its fresh produce.
6106 S 32nd St, Phoenix, AZ +1 (602) 276 6360
Sassi, one of the finest Italian restaurants in the area, has previously been awarded, among other accolades, Best Patio by Arizona Republic. It more than lives up to this reputation, with magnificent views over the surrounding mountain and desert area. The décor is elegant and intimate, making it particularly ideal for a romantic outing. The restaurant is famed for its service, waiters are well informed about the food and are delighted to recommend dishes. One of the stars of the menu is the Caprese salad, which is light, airy and summery, and immaculately prepared.
10455 E Pinnacle Peak Parkway, Scottsdale, AZ +1 480 502 9095
Chelsea’s Kitchen is a trendy, casual restaurant overlooking a canal. A popular brunch and breakfast spot, it has a variety of menu options for children. The patio is shaded by trees as well as large, cheerful umbrellas, and the chairs are quirkily colourful, adding to the cheerful and welcoming vibe. The food is traditional, healthy Southwestern food, and there is a wine and cocktail menu. Among their dishes, the short rib tacos are especially recommended.
5040 N. 40th St., Phoenix, AZ +1 602 957 2555
The Courtyard Café is part of Phoenix’s Heard Museum, a stunning museum that showcases American Indian art and history. Whilst there are many museum visitors here, several people pop in to enjoy the café alone. The patio is spacious, with a lively, friendly atmosphere. It is paved with cobblestones and exudes an almost streetside European feel. The food, however, is traditional Southwest-inspired cuisine, including a selection of American Indian dishes. Their tepary hummus dish is a favourite, and the prickly pear margarita is a popular choice.
Heard Museum, 2301 North Central Ave, Phoenix, AZ +1 (602) 252 8840
Ollie Vaughn’s is a restaurant as well as a bakery. With a cool, picturesque vintage feel, this restaurant serves a wide variety of breakfast choices. Their freshly-prepared pastries are well-known and loved. Although the indoor seating has an old-world charm to it, choose to have your brunch al fresco in the patio area. With citrus trees overhead and the soft smells of the cultivated herb garden around you, it’s sure to be a serene and memorable experience.
1526 E. McDowell Rd., Phoenix, AZ +1 (602) 254 1392