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Fort Worth’s 10 Best Patio Restaurants — Your Ultimate Outdoor Dining Guide

March 23,2023

See full Paper City article by Courtney Dabney here.

North Texas has a brief window we call patio season each fall and spring. On those fabulously rare days when the stars align and it’s neither swelteringly hot or frigidly cold, you gotta find a patio and soak it up while you can. Shoulder season dining and sipping packs the most coveted Fort Worth patio restaurants, which can be found spread across many parts of town.

Who couldn’t use a patio guide? Here are the 10 Best Fort Worth Patio Restaurants:

Flying Saucer Draught Emporium

Downtown Fort Worth’s open-air beer garden is out of this world. You can now find several Flying Saucer Draught Emporiums across the Southeast, but Fort Worth is home to the very first Flying Saucer. You might say it’s the mothership. And it holds up.

This beer mecca serves more than 100 beers, from local brews to hard-to-find international selections, along with a pub food menu. True connoisseurs can camp out on the patio and split the “beer feast” with friends. That’s a large Bavarian-style pretzel stuffed with meats and cheeses, served with nuts, fruits and spreads.

Maple Branch Craft Brewery
This award-winning craft brewery has 20 beers on tap, all brewed in-house. But that’s not all. There is also food at Maple Branch. That includes pretzels, brats and pizzas to go with the wine and non-alcoholic drinks.

You can kick back inside the shady courtyard-style enclosed patio at Maple Branch Craft Brewery and listen to the water trickling from its central fountain.

Situated along the Trinity Trails, right next to the river, Woodshed Smokehouse was one of the first restaurants in Fort Worth to take full advantage of the city’s waterway. Celebrity chef Tim Love’s new barbecue menu is smokin’ and the relaxed atmosphere with cyclists zipping by, dog walkers strolling past and often a guitarist strumming on stage is ideal whether it’s breakfast, lunch, or dinner. There’s even a pup menu at Woodshed.

Courtside Kitchen
Do you play pickleball? You don’t have to at Courtside Kitchen. There is a a great menu that is worth the drive by itself, and the lively atmosphere lets you amble around the grounds, find a spot on the patio, or take in a pickleball game or two while you dine or drink.

Courtside also serves up a mean happy hour and brunch, as well as everything from coffee to cocktails.

Maggie’s R & R
Magnolia Avenue’s premier patio space boasts live music on the stage. On the menu at Maggie’s R& R, you’ll find chefy comfort foods like a salmon B.L.A.T., as well as weekend brunches filled with chilaquiles verdes and Maggie’s French toast topped with marshmallow sauce. The drinks menu means a full bar, with some smashing patio punches if you’re so inclined.

Press Cafe
The Trailhead at Clearfork is a coveted shady oasis next to the Trinity River. Felipe Armenta’s hotspot Press Cafe operates on a waitlist most weekends, but it’s worth the wait. Happy hikers can be found nibbling avocado toast and spreading housemade ricotta atop toasted ciabatta bread.

Press Cafe also serves one of my favorite brunch items ― eggs in a hole, with its toasted sourdough filled with prosciutto, cheddar, fontina and an over-easy egg. Firepits warm chilly nights, and fans cool warmer days.

Paco’s Mexican Cuisine & Cantina
Authenic Mexican food from Francisco “Paco” Islas, has been coveted in Fort Worth for years. First at Paco & Jon’s, then at Paco’s on Magnolia. But Paco’s Fort Worth patio overlooking Sundance Square is the spot to sit and soak when temperatures are right.

The Queso Fundido is filled with chorizo and nopales, the chile relleno is topped with tomato sauce and the trout Veracruzana is a real treat. This For Worth patio is also the place for happy hour sips and brunch with friends.

The Bearded Lady
With its move from Magnolia to South Main, The Bearded Lady added a stellar Fort Worth patio to the mix. The vast menu boasts everything from fried leeks to fried pickles, chef-inspired sandwich creations, burgers and greens like the Texas Smoke Salad topped with honey pecans, sliced cherry tomatoes, roasted corn, shredded smoked gouda, a hardboiled egg and house-made dill ranch. The Bearded Lady’s crushed granite patio is filled with picnic tables and shaded by umbrellas.

Joe T. Garcia’s
No Fort Worth patio restaurant list would be complete without Cowtown’s fabled Joe T. Garcia’s. What began as a tiny home in 1935 has expanded into a sprawling tropical oasis over the decades. Filled with pergolas, fountains and lush plantings, this is patio dining at its best.

The Garcia family adds new features to its gardens every year. The seating capacity has grown from the original 16 on the patio to more than 1,000 today, allowing for elaborate parties and gatherings.

Ascension Coffee
Fronting the Trinity Trail at WestBend, Ascension Coffee has a view of the river and the Fort Worth Zoo beyond. This coveted Fort Worth patio sees cyclists dip in for refreshment, and hosts coffee and brunch like nobody else. The coffee roaster serves many styles from pour-over to Kyoto-style doki-doki cups.

Ascension Coffee even serves “brekky” all day, including power bowls and eggs Benedicts. But the sublime riverside setting is a worthy draw all on its own.

The Fort Worth patio scene is stronger than ever and now is the time to soak in the scene.

Locations Mentioned: Flying Saucer Draught Emporium, Paco's Mexican Cuisine and Cantina