Eight great patios that’ll heat things up this spring and summer

If you’re like me then you love a good to enjoy a nice lunch with a friend, grab dinner with the guy or gal you’re seeing or get a fabulous cocktail after dark. Here’s a list of 8 great patios from the area all the way down to and Kent. And the best thing about this list (well, most of it anyway) is that it will get you away from the messy college scene!

Riverside Wine & Imports

We’ll start things off close to home. This wine bar is located on Rt. 43 or N. Mantua Street, right here in Kent. Not only is its Kent’s first retail wine and beer bar, but it has one of the best patios I’ve ever visited. It’s large, well-lit and nicely furnished as well. I know we all love the cheap at the downtown Kent bars, but the good thing is that Riverside prices its wine and beer at decent rates. So who’s up for a nice white zin under a summer sunset? Romantic, right?

The Lockview

Have you ever tried Melt near the Cleveland area? Well, this restaurant and bar in downtown Akron not only serves eclectic wines and other cocktails, but it has some of the best grilled cheeses behind Melt’s infamous “I’m going to have leftovers tomorrow” sandwich. Making it a unique spot to the area, it hosts Akron’s one and only rooftop patio. That’s right, rooftop! Just don’t go thinking nobody can see your hands down his pants just because you’re on a roof.

Russo’s Kitchen

I’ve never been to this one, so I’m definitely going to try it out soon, but it comes highly recommended from a friend. Russo’s is a restaurant and bar on State Road in Cuyahoga Falls that, like Riverside, features eclectic wines and beers at a modest price. Reviews online say it feels a lot like a New Orleans atmosphere with Cajun and Italian entrees, and the consensus says the staff and drinks are fabulous. Russo’s tells me the patio is opening at the beginning of May with all new furniture, and it’s a decent size that sits up to 50. All right, I’m in.

Luxe Kitchen and Lounge

If you plan to make a trip to the Cleveland area this summer, check out Luxe on Detroit Avenue! It’s a large, well-decorated space with modest pricing. You can get a great burger and a side for only around 10 bucks. Come on, that’s pretty good for Cleveland! The patio too is decorated with vibrant hanging lights and comfortable furniture, so you’re bound to enjoy yourself here while getting your drink on. Another perk about this place is that it’s located in Gordon Square, a very gay-friendly area in Cleveland.

L’Albatros Brasserie & Bar

Also located in a very gay-friendly area is this Italian restaurant and bar located in Cleveland’s University Circle. If you have some extra bucks to spend, this is your patio destination for at least one Saturday night this summer. Its menu is absolutely scrumptious and the atmosphere is modern and slick with a spacious patio. I’d dress a little more spruced up for this place, but that’s just me.

Panini’s Bar & Grill

All right, so I know there are quite a few different Panini’s around the area, but the one I’m talking about is the North Canton location. Seriously folks, what a patio! It’s great for cheap and tasty burgers, wraps, and salads, and the night life is – how do I put this delicately—bumpin! The patio is so large, it has its own bar, and it’s fenced in with nice lighting and tropical decoration. Sex on the beach, anyone?

The Zephyr

This is another Kent native and home to Kent’s college scene, but I couldn’t resist adding it to my list of great patios. If you’ve been to the Zephyr you know exactly what I’m talking about. The patio is multi-leveled, and it’s huge. It’s great for a summer night out with your friends, and guess what? This Kent bar isn’t so packed in the summer, but you might run in to some of those crazy townies. You know, the ones who sit and watch you make a fool of yourself on Halloween … wait; I guess we’re all a little cray-cray.

P.S. This bar makes a FANTASTIC bay breeze.

The Office Bistro & Lounge

Everybody knows breakfast and brunch makes the perfect hangover . For a quaint Sunday brunch spot, check out The Office Bistro & Lounge in Akron on North Main Street. And what’s the perfect hangover remedy? More alcohol, of course! This little restaurant is known for its featured champagne and mimosa brunch that you can enjoy on the small patio located on the side of the building. So bring a date, bring your friends or bring your mother. If you end up puking from the night before, though, you didn’t get this recommendation from me!

Know a patio that I missed or have no clue is even in existence? Share it in the comments section!

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