Warmer weather is on the way! Check out these patios for dining out this weekend

Credit: Tom Gilliam

Credit: Tom Gilliam

It was frigid and snowing last weekend and this weekend it’s supposed to be 80 degrees and sunny. Welcome to Ohio.

If ever there was a time to seek out a patio, it’s this weekend when the cold weather breaks. Just as we crave food, we crave special outdoor dining and drinking spots to enjoy as the weather warms.

Here are a handful of patio gems that create an experience and offer unexpected surprises to consider for this weekend.

Carillon Brewing Company

1000 Carillon Blvd, Dayton

www.carillonbrewingco.org or 937-910-0722

Why it rates?: It’s a lovely outdoor option with views of an expansive lawn and beautiful park. Besides a great outdoor space that screams to be enjoyed, Carillon Brewing Company is also home to the nation’s only production brewery in a museum. History buffs and folks who crave something a little off the beaten path will find more than enough to like here. You really can’t beat the setting and during the summer the patio is a superstar. Some of the beers on tap are historically accurate recreations of the earliest beers made in Ohio’s breweries. If you haven’t been before, grab a flight of beers to get a sense of what it’s all about with a medley of flavors. Carillon Brewing Company ales use grain that has been floor malted just as it was done in the 19th century and, when available, Ohio-grown hops. All brewed in open copper kettles, fermented in oak barrels, and unfiltered. Most beers feature varying levels of tartness from the wild yeasts and bacteria that join in on the fermentation. The patio overlooks the grounds and it is a treat to enjoy a meal or a beer here on a nice day.

Hidden Valley Orchards (HVO)

5474 N. State Route 48, Lebanon

513-932-1869 or www.hiddenvalleyorchards.com

Why it rates?: To say I love this place would be a huge understatement. Robyn and Randy Lane have done amazing things since purchasing the property at the beginning of 2018. The sweet 65-acre Warren County family fruit farm used to be sleepy but it’s got new life thanks to the hip, shabby chic farm bar called The Crate Room that opens to one of the best patios in southern Ohio with a view that won’t quit. It’s a great spot to grab an HVO hard cider or one of the rotating beers from the tap room. Walk out the garage doors on a good, sunny day and enjoy a “crop-tail” that will feel more like vacation than a farm.

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Rip Rap Roadhouse

6024 Rip Rap Rd., Dayton

ripraproadhouse.com or 937-236-4329

Why it rates?: If the weather cooperates, Wednesday night bike night may attract 1,000 or more motorcycles, which is a site to behold. And for those kinds of crowds you need plenty of seating and plenty of bars. Depending on what’s going on, Rip Rap Roadhouse has that in spades with live music, tasty food and stiff frosty drinks. The 1853 barn and the grounds are a nice change of scenery from more typical patios overlooking parking lots. This is the kind of spot that is a true original from location to landscape to the delicious comfort food selection that seems plucked from the Diners, Drive-ins and Dives playbook.

Smiths’ Boathouse Restaurant

439 N. Elm St., Troy

937-335-3837 or http://smithsboathouse.com

Why it rates?: In late 2016 Smiths’ Boathouse Restaurant opened at Treasure Island Park in Troy. The location is picturesque and steeped in history. Conceived and funded by Hobart Brothers Co. and led by Edward and William Hobart, Treasure Island and Marina opened in 1946. The Boathouse was the center of activities including boat races, water skiing, family outings, dances and boat shows. The restaurant, located on the Great Miami River, features a beautiful patio with expansive views of the river and greenery. It is unquestionably one of the best patios in the entire region. The menu features seafood, steaks and seasonal items.

Table 33

130 W. Second St., Dayton

www.table33dayton.com or (937) 999-3070

Why it rates?: This is a totally awesome downtown patio. There’s room to spread out and soak up the sun during the spring, summer and fall (weather cooperating). Why not go for brunch? The Husky breakfast sandwich ($8) – made with scrambled egg, a housemade sausage patty, gouda, red onion jam, arugula and dijonnaise – is an affordable treat. Pair it with a cup of coffee or a cold brew and you’ll be ready for whatever the day has in store.

Contact this contributing writer at alexis.e.larsen@hotmail.com.

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