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9 Patios You Won't Want to Miss This Summer

Posted on July 24, 2017

Victoria is known as a foodie destination, and with its location on the southern tip of Vancouver Island and boasting rights that it has more restaurants per capita than almost any other city in Canada, you can bet there are some fantastic outdoor dining opportunities. Al fresco is basically a way of life here. We've put together a list of nine can't-miss patios for the summer to give you some inspiration for your next visit. 

 

The Drake Eatery

 
With one of the largest selections of craft beer options in the city, The Drake Eatery is a must stop on Victoria’s famous self-guided Victoria Ale Trail. Draught taps feature hard to find west coast craft beers and ciders,. They offer a concise menu with small plates great for sharing and individual meals, produced from quality local suppliers. They also have a lovely patio overlooking Victoria’s historic Market Square.
 
Images: The Drake Eatery
 

Il Covo Trattoria

 
Just a ten minute walk from the Inner Harbour, you’ll feel miles away from it all at Il Covo Trattoria, a traditional, rustic Italian restaurant nestled into Victoria’s historic James Bay neighbourhood. The restaurant features a super secluded, split-level patio with soft music and lush foliage abound, plus a tiny antique shop hidden within the building itself. Choose from several delicious a la carte options (like cannelloni stuffed with ricotta, spinach, crab and lobster), or opt to go family-style with a four-course chef’s choice menu.
 
Images: Il Covo Trattoria
 

Sea Cider Farm & Ciderhouse

 
Located in the heart of the Saanich Peninsula, only a 25 minute drive north of Victoria, Sea Cider Farm & Ciderhouse is a lovely place to stop and enjoy some snacks and cider on a summer afternoon. With an indoor/outdoor seating space and picturesque views over the orchard and the Straight of Georgia beyond, you’ll enjoy the best of the island all in one place. 
 
Pro tip: Opt for a long flight, which consists of nine cider samples shared between two people. Decide which ones you like best, then purchase a few bottles to enjoy at home!
 
Images: Sea Cider Farm & Ciderhouse
 

Spinnakers Gastro Brewpub

 
Victoria’s reputation for oceanfront brewpubs began with Spinnakers Gastro Brewpub, the city’s first brewpub when it opened in 1984. A pilgrimage of sorts for beer lovers, Spinnakers offers over 26 taps including some original recipes that date back 30 years. Working closely with local food producers and farmers, their chef has crafted a menu that also highlights local cuisine and flavours, which can all be enjoyed waterfront on their covered, heated patio.
 
Pro tip: Starting at the Empress Dock or Fisherman’s Wharf, hop aboard a Victoria Harbour Ferry which will whisk you across the harbour to Spinnakers doorstep.
 
Image: Spinnakers Gastro Brewpub
 

Steamship Grill & Bar

 
If you’re going for waterfront, it doesn’t get much closer than Steamship Grill & Bar. Located in the landmark Steamship Terminal on the south side of the Inner Harbour, Steamship offers a heated, covered patio so you’ll stay toasty warm as you enjoy the harbour views all evening long. Their menu features “inspired west coast food” (Read: Seafood and craft beer), although you’ll still find a wine list that includes acclaimed local and international wines.
 
Images: Steamship Grill & Bar
 

Fort Common

 
A historic space in downtown Victoria, Fort Common is a revitalized carriage courtyard surrounded by red brick, street-facing shops and lots of multi-national eateries. This courtyard patio is a perfect space to escape the hustle and bustle of downtown and enjoy lunch or a coffee with friends. 
 
Images via Fort Properties. Bottom image by Lillie Louise Photography.
 

10 Acres Bistro + Kitchen + Commons + Farm

 
Locals will tell you that a visit to 10 Acres Bistro + Kitchen + Commons + Farm is always a safe bet. Divided into three distinct spaces, the Bistro offers covered outdoor seating and a super creative, casual menu, while downstairs, the Kitchen offers a slightly finer dining experience inspired by land and sea.  
 
The Commons includes an indoor bar (with live DJ) as well as a spacious patio with clear views over the Inner Harbour. They’ve got a great selection of house-made signature cocktails and offer Prosecco on tap.
 
Another fun fact: Much of the produce and meat products featured on the menu come directly from the 10 Acres farm on the Saanich Peninsula.
 
Images: 10 Acres Bistro + Kitchen + Commons + Farm
 

The Beach House

 
Perched upon bluffs overlooking the idyllic Cordova Bay beach, The Beach House offers unobstructed, panoramic, east-facing views toward the Gulf Islands and Mount Baker. Their dog-friendly patio offers both a casual menu (burgers, sandwiches, salads) and lots of super fresh seafood options like calamari, west coast paella and catch of the day. Located outside of the downtown core, you'll get all the beauty of waterfront dining without the hustle and bustle of the city centre. 
 
Pro tip: There’s also live music on Wednesday evenings and a happy hour from 3-5pm, Monday through Friday.
 
 

The Veranda at the Fairmont Empress

 
Keep it classy with a champagne cocktail on the newly-renovated Veranda at the Fairmont Empress. Overlooking the sparkling Inner Harbour, the Veranda is situated for maximum sunlight hours and features a selection of handcrafted, summer-inspired cocktails (Pimms Cup, two kinds of Sangria) and a menu made for sharing. 
 
Pro tip: Gin lovers, try the brand new, handcrafted Empress 1908 Gin by Victoria Distillers. This smooth-drinking gin is purple in colour and turns pink when you add citrus or tonic.
 
Images: Fairmont Empress Veranda (top right), Fairmont Gold patio (bottom). All images courtesy of Fairmont Empress
 

Other Great Patios in Victoria:

We know we said nine... but it was really hard to narrow it down. So, here are some other fantastic patios in Victoria!
 
Darcy’s Pub | downtown | waterfront
Rooftop Patio at the Strathcona Hotel | downtown | rooftop beach volleyball
Garrick’s Head Pub | historic building | craft beer
Old Spaghetti Factory | downtown | family friendly
Irish Times Pub | traditional Irish pub
The Bard & Banker Pub | historic building
Breakwater Bistro | Ogden Point | waterfront
Harbour House Restaurant | Sooke | waterfront
LURE Restaurant & Bar | downtown, waterfront
Cactus Club Cafe | downtown | family friendly
Moxies Grill & Bar | downtown 
AURA Waterfront Restaurant & Patio | downtown | waterfront
Earls Kitchen & Bar | downtown | family friendly
Milestones Restaurant | downtown | waterfront | family friendly
The Beagle Pub | Cook Street Village | sports bar
Blue Crab Seafood Restaurant | downtown | waterfront
The Pacific Restaurant and Terrace | downtwon | waterfront
17 Mile House Pub | Sooke | waterfront
Blue's Bayou Cafe | Brentwood Bay
Marina Dockside Eatery | Oak Bay | waterfront
Clarke & Co. | downtown | cocktails
Victoria Distillers | Sidney | waterfront
Brentwood Bay Resort & Spa | Brentwood Bay | waterfront
Bubby's Kitchen | Cook Street Village 
Finest at Sea Seafood Boutique | Fisherman's Wharf | food cart | seafood
Browns Socialhouse | downtown
Flying Otter Grill | Inner Harbour | waterfront
San Remo Restaurant & Bar | Quadra Street Village | Greek 
West Coast Grill | Sooke 
Haro's Restaurant + Bar | Sidney | waterfront
Breakwater Bistro | Ogden Point | waterfront
Red Fish Blue Fish | Inner Harbour | food cart | seafood
Smuggler's Cove Pub | Gordon Head 
Cafe Brio | Fort Street 
O Cafe & Bistro | James Bay
Zambri's | downtown