It's finally safe to say it's summer, right? If the late onset of sunny days has wreaked havoc with your after-work drinks game, don't despair. Power down your computer, round up your co-workers, and make a beeline to the nearest patio. Here's what's on the menu.
Reds Wine Tavern
The spot: A mostly covered patio right on Adelaide St. The vibe: High-end wine bar with a playful side. The drinks: Close to 100 wines available by the glass, with a fine array of beers and cocktails to boot. The food: Come for the charcuterie and cheeses, stay for the steak frites and the lamb tagine. When to go: Tuesdays, when all wine bottles are half-price from 4pm - close and Saturdays from 5pm - close.
Duke of Westminster
The spot: A shady, 70-person patio with an Adelaide St. view. The vibe: Classic British-style pub. The drinks: London Pride, Kilkenny, Guiness - they've got 'em. The food: Standard pub fare, with a few surprises like cauliflower wings and Indonesian nasi goreng. When to go: When you're celebrating a big win with the team, or need to chase away a long week.
The spot: Sunny, quiet patio set back from busy King St. The vibe: Elegant and calm, with a hint of southern France. The drinks: Try their sharing cocktails for two to four people. The food: Fresh, flavour-packed sandwiches and salads, tapas, and buttery pastries to boot. When to go: Right at 5 p.m. for a quick nip with a small group before heading home for dinner.
The spot: A sprawling two-floor patio that juts out into busy King Street. The vibe: Sports bar with a playful side. The drinks: Close to 50 beers on tap, including rotating taps collabs with local brewers, and a none-too-shabby wine and cocktail list. The food: Tacos, pizzas, bowls, burgers, and some of that green salad stuff, too. When to go: When you need to wind down and have a laugh after a big meeting.
Cactus Club Café
The spot: Cactus Club boasts two patios, a rooftop patio and one on Adelaide Street. The vibe: Sleek, chic, and lively. The drinks: Think Aperol Spritzes, Cava, frosé, and a selection of local beers. The food: Inventive, vegetable-forward dishes, with a few familiar pub faves thrown in for good measure. When to go: Gather for dinner, stay for twilight.