Food and Drink

Best London restaurants and bars with heated outdoor terraces to enjoy come rain or shine

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Megan Murray
Posted by
Leah Sinclair
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Flat Iron Square

Looking to keep your social life going as the weather changes? Here’s a comprehensive list of London’s best restaurants and bars with heated outdoor spaces.

Londoners looking to dine out and socialise haven’t had the easiest time emerging from lockdown

While many of us were looking forward to relaxing in the sun with a tropical cocktail or frosty beer in hand, the weather made that difficult as the UK battled high winds and heavy rain instead of non-stop sunshine.

And as the season changes and autumn is officially in full swing, some of us are still chasing the carefree Summer vibes of al fresco dining.

Luckily for Londoners, this city is known for its extensive selection of brilliant restaurants and bars which are often equipped with large outdoor terraces and heaters.

Whatever the weather, you can still enjoy outdoor dining with our ever-growing list of some of London’s best restaurants which are home to heated open-air spaces where you’re safe to meet up with pals for food and drink without, you know, losing the use of your fingers.

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  • Dinings SW3

    Dinings SW3 has a beautiful hidden garden surrounded by luscious green plants. Guests can sample dishes from chef Masaki Sugisaki’s Izakaya menu and try bespoke cocktails all year round.

  • Paradise

    Soho’s fiery Sri-Lankan eatery has a 30-seater terrace where guests can dine alfresco. The terrace has its own street food-inspired short eats menu, as well as Sri Lankan style cocktails.

  • Nine Lives Alley

    Nine Lives Alley’s tropical vibes spill out on to the cobbles in a rare pocket of al fresco London in the shadow of The Shard. Under the heated terrace, guests can enjoy some killer cocktails and the legendary tacos of native Mexican chef El Tigre and his Tigre Taco truck.

  • Turnips

    Turnips is tucked away under Borough Market and is known for its small plates menu filled with fresh produce cooked by Tomas Lidakevicius. The restaurant is equipped with a number of outdoor heaters, allowing guests to dine late into the night in a perfectly toasty environment.

  • Arenella at The Chapel Bar

    Arenella is The Chapel Bar’s resident restaurant and comes with a covered and heated terrace to keep you warm whatever the weather. Enjoy the alfresco space along with their Italian-inspired bottomless lunch in the heart of Islington.

  • Paladar

    Venture to Elephant & Castle and dine alfresco at Paladar. The Latin American restaurant keeps visitors warm with infrared heaters and blankets while guests enjoy gluten-free meals and cocktails inspired by the flavours of Central and South America.

  • Bluebird White City

    Bluebird Chelsea has reopened its terrace with restricted capacity, extra outdoor heating and faux grass carpeting to maximise the Summer vibes.

    The eatery is serving a set menu priced at £32 for two courses or £37 for three courses. Guests have a two-hour time slot to get through a curated list of favourites including crab on toast with pickled cucumber and whole grilled lobster.

  • Aquavit

    Aquavit is the place to go for top notch dining with a Nordic twist. Situated in an ideal location in the middle of town in St James’s Market, it’s just a hop, skip and a jump from the bright lights of Piccadilly Circus and therefore perfectly placed as a central meet-up spot for friends.

    But it’s the menu that will really make you sit up in your seat. Aquavit proudly boasts a Michelin star and it’s easy to understand why once you’ve tasted the unique flavours of its interesting dishes, which feel very different from the other restaurants in the area.

    Standout dishes include the herring smörgåsbord with mustard, dill and lingonberry to start and the beef rydberg with crispy potatoes, caramelised onion and a confit egg yolk cracked on top for main. When it comes to dessert, the Arctic bird’s nest is a visual sensation with unexpected flavours and textures.

    Aquavit has a selection of tables outside which are perfect for watching the world go by. There are heaters but as always, we would recommend wrapping up warm.

  • HIDE

    HIDE in Mayfair may be a beautiful restaurant, but you can enjoy parts of its Michelin-starred menu while sitting on the terrace with a glorious view out of Green Park. 

    It is the creation of chef Ollie Dabbous and Hedonism Wines, so expect innovative dishes inspired by nature and using unusual produce. Plus, incredible cocktail and wine pairings which we would recommend indulging in. 

    From the terrace, you’re able to order the HIDE Ground menu which serves breakfast, lunch and dinner, with a sizeable a la carte menu. 

  • Bingham Riverhouse

    If you’re keen to explore Richmond then there’s one place to put right at the top of your must-visit list: the Bingham Riverhouse. 

    This charming hotel and restaurant has one of the best views of the area, looking out to the steadily flowing river and the beautiful trees that frame it, while serving up high quality food and drinks (especially the cocktails!).

    The newly launched Riverhouse Garden Terrace is perfect for the current restrictions where only single households can meet inside. 

    The space is open from Thursday night through to Sunday, from 2pm until 10pm. Here, you can enjoy a heated space filled with twinkling lights and flickering candles, blankets and live DJ sets at the weekends.

  • Fallow

    Since opening at 10 Heddon Street in March, Fallow has received a lot of buzz for its sustainability-focused concept and deliciously creative dishes.

    The menu, designed by head chefs Will Murray and Jack Croft focuses on ‘root to stem’ and ‘nose to tail’ dishes, with a spotlight on plant-based ingredients. 

    Thankfully, the restaurant’s terrace has heaters aplenty so you can still enjoy this new favourite’s delicacies with friends and family you don’t live with. Plus, guests can purchase their bottled Negroni to take home with them.

  • Homeslice

    Homeslice is the ultimate haven if you’re looking for tasty grub. Known for their super sized portions, this chain of restaurants serve up whopping 20 inch pizzas whole or by the slice, which will keep you warm even on the coldest days.

    Luckily, though, Homeslice’s Shoreditch and Marylebone restaurants also feature heated terraces where you can snuggle up and stay toasty.

  • Double Standard at The Standard

    You might know The Standard hotel for its swish rooms but have you given its outdoor terrace a chance to impress you yet?

    The Rooftop at The Standard has only been open for a month, but this atmospheric open-air setting is vying to be a firm favourite of Londoners this summer.  

    From Monday to Sunday you can enjoy hearty fare accompanied by draft beers and classic cocktails for lunch and casual drinking and dining throughout the evening. Plus, there’s even a bottomless brunch with a DJ at the weekend if you’re in the party mood. This terrace is set to be one of the city’s coolest spots to catch up in with friends this Summer.  

  • Vinegar Yard

    This hangout is situated just minutes from London Bridge, hidden away from the main road. It has a creative vibe and is a relaxed place to grab a drink with friends after work.

    To comply with the initial tier two restrictions, Vinegar Yard transformed its outdoor garden into a heated eating and drinking space with canopy cover and tables for up to six people.

    There are a number of street food vendors on offer including Nanny Bill’s, Baba G’s, Sugo and Nik’s Kitchen, serving up grub from all over the world.

    Vinegar Yard’s bar has a selection of drinks on offer including pitchers of Pimms for authentic British summer vibes. 

  • Koya

    Koya in the City has a large outdoor space with room enough for 50 guests in its covered and heated terrace, which is a snuggly place to sit come rain or shine. 

    What’s more, this Japanese udon noodle hotspot not only provides warming decor to keep you feeling toasty, but delicious bowls of steaming noodle dishes, which are sure to help keep the cold at bay.

    We particularly like the sound of the Buta Miso with pork mince and miso with spring onion and the Hiyashi Yasai Ten vegetable tempura. Yum. 

  • Pastaio

    Visit this mouth-watering pasta joint’s Westfield branch if you’re looking for a large, well-heated outdoor terrace to enjoy your freshly made carbonara.

    If you’ve been updating your Summer wardrobe with some shopping at White City’s extensive range of stores, then this is the perfect place to take the weight off and enjoy delights such as seasonal prosecco slushies.

    Plus, on Thursdays the restaurant offers its ‘Infinity Pasta’ menu where guests can enjoy an Aperol Spritz and unlimited plates of pasta for £25. 

  • Flat Iron Square

    Flat Iron Square is the place to be for a plethora of delicious food options in an easy-going space, with plenty of atmosphere.

    There’s a large selection of independent food vendors to choose from including succulent fried chicken from Mother Clucker, fresh, hand-rolled pasta from La Nonna and Mexican-style tacos from Breddos – and that’s just the start.

    You can book for up to six people in the outdoor seating area and keep cosy under the heaters while enjoying an eclectic vibe.

  • Barrafina

    Barrafina is a small chain of London-based modern tapas restaurants serving up a fantastic selection of fish and seafood from both Spanish and British waters.

    At the Dean Street site you’ll find not only lip-smacking dishes like scorpion fish, deep water mussels and sea urchins, but a heated outdoor terrace, too.

    Huddle up in here in the thick of Soho with friends and watch the world go by from this snug spot, which was erected especially for tier 2 restrictions. 

  • Pergola Paddington

    The weather may be unpredictable, but there are still so many places to head to that don’t require you to hide your cool new outfits under huge coats.

    Pergola Paddington is heated and sits underneath a perspex roof. The eatery has a vibrant energy, an Instagrammable flower-covered terrace and tonnes of food and drinks options, making it a safe bet for a meet-up with friends.

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Author

Megan Murray

Megan Murray is a senior digital writer for stylist.co.uk, who enjoys writing about homeware (particularly candles), travel, food trends, restaurants and all the wonderful things London has to offer.

Author

Leah Sinclair