When the weather’s good, alfresco dining is a must, so we’ve rounded up the best places to eat outdoors in Leeds.
Good food, good friends, good times – we all want it and if it comes with a bit of sunshine, all the better. But where should you go when you want to dine alfresco? Luckily for you, we have the answer, with a list of utterly delicious outdoor dining options. From loaded burgers to crispy pizzas, gorge-worthy tapas to finger-lickin’ chicken, you can have whatever your heart desires.
Water Lane Boathouse
Overlooking the River Aire at Granary Wharf, Water Lane Boathouse is one of the best alfresco dining spots in Leeds. It’s great when the sun’s shining – but don’t worry, they have heaters and covered seating too. Their menu takes a two-pronged approach – Neapolitan-style sourdough pizza, made in a hand-crafted Italian oven, and juicy burgers, stacked high with everything from Yorkshire beef to Meatless Farm vegan patties. Pair yours with one of their exceptional craft beers or artisan gins.
Water Lane Boathouse, Canal Wharf, Water Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS11 5PS.
Nestled on the fifth floor of Trinity Leeds, Angelica will cater for all your alfresco dining needs. Their rooftop terrace comes complete with breathtaking skyline views as well as heaters and canopies if the weather demands. They have a tantalising selection of sharing boards and small plates, or you can dive straight in with one of their mains. Wild garlic risotto, a classic cheeseburger or steak frites? The choice is yours. Be sure to treat yourself to something from their extensive collection of wine and Champagne.
Angelica, Level 6 Trinity Leeds, 70 Boar Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 6HW.
The Midnight Bell
The Midnight Bell’s courtyard beer garden is a real sun trap, perfect when you want to eat outdoors in Leeds. Their menu offers proper pub classics, done well. We’re talking beer-battered haddock with hand-cut chips, pan-fried coley with fondant potato and Swaledale sausage with mash and red wine gravy. While you’re there, why not sample their impressive selection of real ales, including Leeds Brewery favourites? Don’t worry if the weather turns because they have parasols to protect you from the elements if needed.
The Midnight Bell, 101 Water Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS11 5QN.
Nation of Shopkeepers
Their courtyard is one of the most popular beer gardens in Leeds, so Nation is great for alfresco dining. You can sit on their covered terrace or head down the steps to their sheltered booths and parasol-covered tables. Chill in the air? They have plenty of heaters to warm up your typical British summers. Once you’ve found a spot, their menu will have you salivating – will you go for fried chicken or juicy burgers served in brioche-style vegan buns? Whatever you choose, pair it with one of their craft beers.
Nation of Shopkeepers, 29 Cookridge Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 3AG.
It’s well-known as the home of Thai fine dining in Leeds, but did you know about Chaophraya’s secret balcony? It sits on the first floor of the restaurant, with its elegant furniture surrounded by oodles of plants, a perfect place for summer scoffing. And my, what a menu you’ve got to look forward to. Classics like pad Thai and gaeng massaman sit alongside innovative plates like their famous Thai tacos and a whole menu dedicated to meat-free eats. When paired with authentic Thai cocktails and Asian beers, it’s outdoor dining done right.
Chaophraya, 20A Blayds Court, Swinegate, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 4AG.
The Mustard Pot
Right in the heart of Chapel Allerton, The Mustard Pot is a favourite with the locals and has been known to attract many a reveller from further afield. Their beer garden is the stuff of legend – big, grassy and filled with benches, each with their own umbrella. You can also find space on their heated patio. Food comes in the form of old school pub classics, from cider-steamed mussels to beer-battered fish and chips. Don’t miss their roast on Sundays. You won’t go thirsty with real ale and hand-picked wines.
The Mustard Pot, 20 Stainbeck Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS7 3QY.
Outside their flash Greek Street restaurant, Neighbourhood’s outdoor area promises afternoon sun and Insta-worthy food. There’s a canopy along the building to offer shelter from the elements, but if it’s sun you want, there’s plenty of space. They offer a menu of New York inspired eats, from fresh sushi rolls to crispy pulled duck lollipops and teriyaki-glazed salmon. On Sundays, they do a roast worth visiting for. Be sure to try their epic cocktails while you’re here or order a bottle of champers with a sparkler.
Neighbourhood, 5 Greek Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 5RW.
Traditional Chinese flavours transformed by modern cooking techniques and next-level presentation, Tattu is a dining destination in Leeds. But did you know it can be your go-to for alfresco eats too? It’s home to the White Rose Garden Terrace in conjunction with Minuty Rosé Wine, covered with beautiful flowers and a retractable roof to let the sun in on those golden summer days. Here you can delve into their menu of elevated Chinese food – think sesame roasted scallops with Chinese sausage – which pair with a host of show-stopping cocktails.
Tattu, 29 East Parade, Minerva House, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 5PS.
Crafthouse is at the very top of the food game in Leeds, offering elegant dining backed up with to-die-for views, whether you’re sat inside their tropical paradise dining room, or out on the near-cloud-bothering terrace. Sit amongst greenery and below heaters (if needed) and get ready to dive into a menu of sheer luxury. Hereford fillet of beef and grilled lobster are straight off the Josper and paired with crispy French fries, while the dover sole meunière is enlivened by the beurre noisette. Explore the spectacular wine list to enter real foodie heaven.
Crafthouse, Level 5, Trinity Leeds, 70 Boar Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 6HW.
Slap bang wallop in the heart of City Square, Banyan is a sure-fire hit if you want to eat outdoors in Leeds. Their outdoor terrace is complete with heaters, but it’s a perfect sun-trap when the weather’s great. You can enjoy crispy duck bao and deep fried brie wedges if you fancy a light bite, or choose from a hearty selection of big plates. Malayan curry, chicken schnitzel, Deluxe Burger – it’s hard to choose. Fancy a few drinks? They have wine and craft beer, or you can bag 2-4-1 cocktails all day Sunday to Friday and from 5pm on Saturdays.
Banyan, 2, The Old Post Office, City Square, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 2ES.
The south-facing roof terrace at Issho is the perfect setting to enjoy alfresco dinner and drinks. They’ve created a cosy hideaway, complete with heaters, sensational views and an awning that covers the entire terrace when needed, where you can enjoy the very best in Japanese cuisine, outdoors. Their a la carte menu is designed for sharing, so you can try a bit of everything – start with katsu chicken baos before you move onto spicy tuna rolls, seabass nigiri and chicken karaage. Thirsty? Their Japanese-inspired cocktails are a must-try.
Issho, Victoria Gate, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 7AU.
The Calverley Arms
The Calverley Arms has one of the biggest beer gardens in Leeds, which makes it perfect for alfresco dining. You can sit on the terrace, next to the pub, or head down onto the grass where picnic tables await, ready to load up with pub classics. There’s baked Camembert, Korean-style chicken skewers and an aubergine parmigiana, not to mention a tantalising array of pizzas and burgers, including a 100% vegan oyster mushroom burger. Whatever you go for, you can wash it down with their ever-changing line-up of local cask ales.
The Calverley Arms, Calverley Lane, Calverley, West Yorkshire, LS28 5QQ.
The elevated rooftop sun trap at Green Room is an alfresco dining dream in the heart of Leeds. It’s bedecked in festoon lights surrounding long benches and swathes of greenery everywhere you look. It looks great, but what will you get for a feed? An assortment of all-day brunch delights – think brekky bagels and burritos, stacks of vegan pancakes and colourful bowls and wraps, which you can wash down with cocktails and craft beer. From Thursday to Saturday, you even get DJs soundtracking your dining.
Green Room, 36 Wellington Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 2DE.
The Lost & Found
The Lost & Found on Greek Street has two outdoor areas, one on the main street and one behind the restaurant. Out front, the parasols are kitted out with heaters to keep you warm and toasty whatever the weather, but out back, you’ll need your beer jacket. The menu is wonderfully eclectic. From the black truffle rigatoni to the oak-smoked salmon and grilled cauliflower steak, there’s something for everyone. Add their unique, creative cocktails and you’ve found the perfect spot for dinner and drinks.
The Lost & Found, 12 Greek Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 5RN.
The Cross Keys
Best known for its craft beer offering (which is more varied than ever), The Cross Keys also does a roaring trade in proper pub grub. Take a pew in their recently refurbished beer garden, complete with heaters and parasols, before exploring their menu. From Monday to Saturday, you can tuck into dishes from their menu of elevated pub classics – pan-roasted sea trout sits alongside crispy herb gnocchi and a steak of the day. On Sundays, come hungry for their giant roast dinners.
The Cross Keys, 107 Water Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS11 5WD.
Home to not one, not two, but three outdoor areas, Parkside Tavern is a no-brainer for alfresco dining. You can soak up the sunshine over a few drinks and a bite to eat, or if it’s raining, under a parasol and a heat lamp with stubborn determination. They have a menu of hand-stretched pizzas, including their Yorkshire Blue, Proscuitto Summer and the mango chutney-drizzled Tandoori. Couple ‘em with something from their extensive selection of local ales and craft beers for a right-good summer feed.
Parkside Tavern, St Johns House, Merrion Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 8JE.
Fine dining par excellence to be enjoyed by the riverside? It can only be Home. Liz Cottam’s extraordinary restaurant goes the extra mile for alfresco dining in Leeds, creating a menu specifically to be enjoyed on their stylish wraparound terrace (weather permitting, of course) on Fridays and Sundays. Their menu offers an array of ever-changing dishes on a five, seven or twelve-course set menu. You can even turn up the luxury a notch by adding a hand-picked wine pairing. Go on, live a little in the sunshine.
Home, 3 Brewery Place, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS10 1NE.
Salute at the White Swan
If you’re in the mood for Italian, a trip to Salute at the White Swan is an absolute must. They’ve refurbished the terrace, so you can cosy up for an alfresco feast amidst the heat lamps and string lights. This is tasty, rustic, wholesome Italian fare, cooked to perfection. From the salmon Hollandaise and spaghetti aglio to the fiery chicken and chorizo risotto, you’re in for a treat. Their rotisserie chicken is a local favourite too. Couple your dinner with a hand-picked bottle of wine, imported from Italy.
Salute, The White Swan, Church Street, Rothwell, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS26 0QL.
Restaurant Bar & Grill
Nestled on Park Square, Restaurant Bar & Grill has one of the best locations in Leeds. Their outdoor area is vast and undeniably swish, looking out as it does over City Square. Where better to enjoy a high end meal on a warm summer’s day? You can choose from an exemplary menu featuring dishes like Devonshire crab ravioli, slow roast crispy duck and wild venison fillet. To accompany your meal, they have lager, cider and cocktails, but it’s the wine that steals the show – red, white, rose or sparkling, take your pick.
Restaurant Bar & Grill, The Old Post Office, 3 City Square, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 2AN.
Belgrave Music Hall
Whether you’re in their ground floor beer garden or up on the iconic rooftop beer terrace, Belgrave Music Hall is perfect for a laidback bite to eat. They have a medley of covered areas, complete with heaters if needed, making it the perfect place to enjoy their legendary eats. Patty’s Burgers are the go-to burger masters – their messy, juicy and downright delicious combos are a joy to behold! Fancy pizza? Go by the slice or you can get whole Dough Boys’ pies to share. Whatever you chose, couple it with craft beer and spirits from the bar.
Belgrave Music Hall and Canteen, 1a Cross Belgrave Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 8JP.
Kirkstall Bridge Inn
Kirkstall Bridge Inn has one of the best beer gardens in Leeds and it just got bigger. They’ve added more tables to their riverside spot, complete with covered seating and heat lamps, sometimes with an additional tipi depending on the time of year. They’re serving pub classics alongside a menu of garden-appropriate eats, so you can tuck into everything from Virtuous-battered fish and chips to a Thai tofu burger, Yorkshire loaded fries or a Scotch egg pizza. Whatever you go for, wash it down with one of Kirkstall Brewery’s own tipples on tap.
Kirkstall Bridge Inn, 12 Bridge Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS5 3BW.
Lamb & Flag
Lamb & Flag sits in the shadow of Leeds Minster and it has one of the best alfresco dining areas in the city. Their beer garden is protected a series of covered areas, complete with string lights and heaters to create a magical little hideaway. Pub classics are the order of the day at this old school watering hole. Leeds Best-battered haddock with chips, spiced pork tenderloin and vegan vegetable pie, they do it all. Wine and spirits can wash it down, but beer is their speciality, with a host of ales from Leeds Brewery on tap.
Lamb & Flag, 1 Church Row, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 7HD.
You have two outdoor areas to choose from at The Woods. There’s a ground floor terrace and a top floor roof garden, with space for 120 people in total. If the weather turns, the umbrellas come out and the heat lamps go on. Pizza is their bag and they have an enormous menu for you to choose from. Will you keep it simple with a pepperoni and red onion, or go all out with the nduja and gorgonzola? They have an extensive wine menu to match, as well as a wide selection of real ales and craft beer.
The Woods, 5 Stainbeck Corner, Chapel Allerton, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS7 3PG.
If you want alfresco dining in its most informal guise, then a visit to Chow Down is a must. This is Leeds’ street food mecca, a revolving door of global cuisine in one of the coolest venues in the city. It has a mix of covered and uncovered spaces, perfect for the whims of British weather, and it’s all decorated in colourful fashion. As for the food, they have seasonal residencies from street food vendors alongside weekly guest traders. Add in cocktails and craft beer and you’ll have every reason for repeat visits.
Chow Down, Temple Arches, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS11 5QG.
The Beck & Call
This family-friendly pub from the folk behind Belgrave and Headrow House has a humungous beer garden in the heart of Meanwood. There are tables all the way around the pub, with heaters and parasols to protect you from the elements. They serve good old fashioned pub grub, from fish finger butties to sausage and mash, or you can tuck into one of their massive burgers, served in a brioche bun. While you’re here, make use of their well-stocked bar – they do wine and cocktails, but it’s the craft beer offering that steals the show.
The Beck & Call, Stainbeck Road, Meanwood, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS7 2NP.
If you want to eat outdoors in Leeds, Grumpy’s sun trap of a courtyard is the perfect choice. They have plenty of picnic tables outside, many of which come complete with parasols to give you a little respite from the summer sun. You can treat yourself to wood-fired, Roman-style pizzas with a host of bold toppings. Take the Walt for example, it’s layered with tomato sauce, mozzarella, anchovies, olives, basil, garlic oil and oregano. While you’re there, try one of their hand-picked craft beers or classic cocktails.
Grumpy’s, 2 Old Combing, Sunnybank Mills, Farsley, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS28 5UJ.
The riverside beer garden at Buon Apps is a fantastic spot to enjoy a bite to eat. Not only can you tuck into a menu of delicious Italian fare, but you can also look out over the River Wharfe. Their heated terrace is covered and protected from the elements, while the garden offers picnic benches with individual parasols. The extensive menu offers plenty of choice – classic pasta dishes like linguine carbonara sit alongside classic pizza combos and mains like the pollo Milanese. Why not pair your dinner with one of their hand-picked bottles of vino?
Buon Apps, Hartley House, 50 Mill Way, Otley, West Yorkshire, LS21 1FE.
Heaney & Mill
This Headingley favourite has a massive terrace, complete with heat lamps and huge parasols to keep diners warm and dry when the weather turns. Their all-day menu takes you from loaded pancakes at breakfast to heaving sandwiches at lunch – and don’t even get us started on dinner. From the maple-glazed gammon to the harissa chicken, you’ll be positively spoilt for choice. Drinks come in the from of craft beer on tap, as well as hand-picked wines and cocktails that will pair perfectly with your dinner.
Heaney & Mill, 48 Otley Road, Headingley, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS6 2AL.
A pub reimagined for the 21st century on the banks of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal, The Owl offers a twist on fine alfresco dining. Out on their partially covered terrace, you can enjoy a specially tailored menu for your setting. Renowned chef Liz Cottam has created a series of bar bites taking you from baked Lindisfarne oyster with a special chef’s garnish to apple tart with pistachio butter and Stichelton cheese. Fancy sharing? Their grazing tray for two is a must, and goes swimmingly with craft beer and cocktails from the bar.
The Owl, Lockside, Mustard Wharf, Mustard Approach, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 4EY.
In the summer, the delicious smells of Gusto spread out onto Greek Street to create an alfresco dining experience that’s hard to resist. Their outdoor seating comes with big parasols and cosy heat lamps, so you can dine in the lap of outdoor luxury. The menu is filled with refined Italian classics. From the honey-glazed duck and balsamic to the three-meat homemade lasagne, it’s a delicious way to enjoy the summer sun. Paired with one of their hand-picked Italian bottles of wine, you can’t go wrong.
Gusto, 10 Greek Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 5RU.
The refurbished terrace at The Whitehall has more tables than ever, alongside a new (and all important) collection of heat lamps and parasols. Take your seat and pore over a menu of modern British cuisine. From king scallops with kombu baked celeriac to roast heritage beetroot, they give classic combinations a new lease of life with locally-sourced ingredients. Visit on a Sunday and you can devour one of their epic roast dinners. Thirsty? Craft beer and spirits are a-go, but it’s the hand-picked wine list that makes The Whitehall stand out from the crowd.
The Whitehall, Wellington Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 4JY.
The Boundary House
The Boundary House has a massive beer garden, ready and waiting for when you want to eat outdoors in Leeds. Up on the terrace, they have rattan furniture with individual parasols, but there’s even more seating in the garden proper, where lines of picnic benches await. The menu is worth coming for – wild mushroom risotto sits alongside beer-battered haddock and chips, or you can try one of their speciality Boundary Kebabs. Thirsty? They have plenty of local ales on tap and a pretty good wine list too.
The Boundary House, 24 Church Side, Methley, West Yorkshire, LS26 9EE.
Serving up sunny Spanish dishes in a sun-soaked location, Bomba is one of the best places in Leeds for alfresco dining. It’s tapas on the menu here, so you can grab the likes of patatas bravas, pan con tomate and tortilla del dia to share (or hoard to yourself) with a true-to-tradition pot of paella. Will you be tempted by the carne with chicken, chorizo and pork or will the seafood version with fish, prawns, squid and mussels be the one? Wine is a given while beer comes in all forms and their sangria is a summery treat best enjoyed on their courtyard terrace.
Bomba, 1 Saw Mill Street, Holbeck, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS11 5WH.
Amity Brew Co and Farsley Fire & Smoke
Weather looking good in Leeds? Make a beeline for Sunny Bank Mills to enjoy beers and buns in the sun. Amity Brew Co is the mill’s resident brewery and taproom. And what’s good beer without good food? Fellow residents Farsley Fire & Smoke bring a selection of stateside favourites to Leeds and boy are they perfect for alfresco dining. We’re talking the juiciest of smoked meats and the tastiest of burgers, plus Italian-style pizzas from Nonna’s Slice Bar come summer. Better yet, the terrace is westerly-facing, so prepare to get drenched in sun.
Amity Brew Co, Sunny Bank Mills, Unit 15-16, Festoon Rooms, 83-85 Town Street, Farsley, Pudsey, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS28 5UJ.Cover image credit: © Copyright Leeds-List 2023 by Oliver Dixon Photography.