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7 Best Al Fresco Restaurants in Arlington, VA You Must Try

Just across the Potomac River from Washington, D.C., Arlington, Va., is a bustling city with lots to see and do. With its many parks, trails, and outdoor spaces, Arlington is the perfect place to enjoy the fresh air and sunshine. And what better way to appreciate the outdoors than dining on a fantastic meal at one of Arlington’s al fresco restaurants? 


Whether you're looking for a romantic couple’s dinner, a family-friendly meal, or happy hour with your friends, Arlington has a multitude of outdoor dining options for you to choose from. From charming streetside patio cafes to upscale restaurants on the Potomac River, there's something for everyone in Arlington. 


Here, we'll explore some of Arlington's best al fresco restaurants and highlight what’s so special about each. So grab a seat, soak up the sun, and enjoy the delicious food and drinks Arlington offers!


1. Ambar

2901 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA 22201

This Balkan restaurant has a beautiful outdoor patio with colorful chairs and umbrellas and rustic-chic vibes to die for. The menu features a variety of Balkan small plates, grilled meats, and desserts, as well as an extensive list of regional drinks, cocktails, and wines. 


Ambar offers unlimited breakfast, lunch, and dinner for a set price, so you can enjoy as much Balkan cuisine as you want. Ambar is within walking distance of multiple buildings with condos for sale in Arlington, VA, so you can easily access al fresco dining if you please!


2. Barley Mac

1600 Wilson Blvd Suite 100, Arlington, VA 22209

Barley Mac offers an expansive outdoor patio with a fireplace and plenty of seating. Their menu focuses on classic American dishes with a twist, featuring items such as cheddar broccolini mac and cheese, truck stop chicken, Waldorf steak salad, and more, as well as craft cocktails and an extensive whiskey and bourbon list. Barley Mac is a local hotspot for happy hours out on the patio.


3. Cava Mezze

2940 Clarendon Blvd, Arlington, VA 22201

This modern Greek restaurant on Clarendon features a cozy outdoor patio with string lights and a fireplace. The menu features small plates, dips, and grilled meats inspired by Greek and Mediterranean cuisine (plus drinks). Brunch at Cava Mezze is popular thanks to its Brunch Mania deals and 25-cent mimosas. It’s a great place to bring the crew for brunch before exploring the town.


4. CIRCA

3010 Clarendon Blvd, Arlington, VA 22201

Welcome to CIRCA, a trendy American bistro that’s become a local hotspot in Arlington. It’s the perfect place to enjoy al fresco dining, with a large outdoor patio with plenty of seating and a retractable roof. CIRCA’s menu features a variety of delicious seafood options, vegetarian options, steak, sandwiches, and flatbreads. During their happy hour, you can snag a discount on drinks, small plates, and flatbreads.


5. Green Pig Bistro

1025 N Fillmore St STE D, Arlington, VA 22201

Arlington’s Green Pig Bistro in Clarendon offers a cute patio space with cozy covered tables and rustic decor. The menu features elevated, creative comfort foods, like crispy goat cheese and quinoa cakes, manila clams with chorizo, and multiple classic steak options, as well as beer, wine, and cocktails. Green Pig Bistro is open for brunch, lunch, dinner, dessert, and (of course) happy hour!


6. Tupelo Honey Southern Kitchen & Bar

1616 N Troy St, Arlington, VA 22201

Tupelo Honey Southern Kitchen & Bar specializes in — you guessed it — Southern food. Serving up mouthwatering comfort food classics on a large patio with ample seating has earned Tupelo Honey a fantastic reputation in Arlington. You’ll find all your favorite Southern classics here, from fried chicken to shrimp and grits. Tupelo Honey also mixes creative cocktails like the "Moonshine Mule," made with moonshine, ginger beer, and lime.


7. The Liberty Tavern

3195 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA 22201

Locals and visitors flock to The Liberty Tavern in Clarendon, thanks to its spacious patio and delicious menu. This restaurant was founded by two local Arlington families and has blossomed into a thriving local business since it opened in 2007. The Liberty Tavern boasts a hardwood smoker, and all of their bread, pasta, and sausage are homemade from scratch at the restaurant.


Arlington is a fantastic destination for foodies looking for various outdoor dining options. From trendy outdoor bars to charming patios, there is no shortage of places to enjoy a delicious meal with a side of fresh air. But the appeal of Arlington goes far beyond its culinary scene. With its vibrant neighborhoods, excellent schools, and proximity to Washington, D.C., it's no wonder why homes for sale in Arlington, VA, tend to fly off the market. Whether you're a first-time buyer or looking to upgrade to one of the larger Arlington, VA homes for sale, this town has something to offer everyone.


If Arlington sounds like a place you’d love to call home, you’ll need an experienced local realtor to help you search. Amalia Morales Garicoits is knowledgeable about the Arlington market and can guide you throughout the homebuying process. Regarding homes for sale, Arlington, VA, has some of the most beautiful places available, some right on the Potomac River. So why not make this thriving city your home and see everything it offers? Contact Amalia today.

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