Outdoor Dining? Here Are Your Favorites

Relax at an outdoor table, savor a mouth-watering meal, sip a refreshing beverage and watch the world float by. Is there a better way to spend a summer workweek evening or sprawling weekend afternoon? New Bedford has plenty of options to enjoy outdoor dining, with outstanding food and equally impressive views.

Here’s a few you’ve got to try!

Some of the city’s best-known restaurants overlook New Bedford’s waterfront, which has defined the city for generations. New Bedford was once among the nation’s richest cities, bolstered by a world-famous whaling industry captured in “Moby Dick.’’ Today, the Port of New Bedford ranks number one in the country for its seafood catch value and has for nearly 20 years. So, when you order seafood in New Bedford, you know it’s as fresh as you can get!

These waterfront options let you see the sea while savoring your seafood.
Merrill’s on the Waterfront is one of the newest waterfront options, giving guests a front row view of the working waterfront. Fresh, local seafood is a specialty here, served in an elegant but casual setting.

The Black Whale also offers close-up views of the historic New Bedford harbor while serving a full menu of options, including a raw bar. Don’t miss sitting in their very Instagram-able over-sized chair!

A little bit north along the harbor, check out Kyler’s Catch Seafood Market and Kitchen. This venerable seafood market has added a restaurant and deck. You can take your seafood home or savor it in the summer sun of the patio.

Just west of the New Bedford-Fairhaven bridge, Fathom’s Waterfront Bar and Grille serves a range of specialties, but fresh seafood is a mainstay, straight from fishing boats that catch seafood daily. Both commercial and personal boats dock a few feet away from the restaurant’s popular deck.

Not all outdoor options directly overlook the water, but the views are no less intriguing. These choices provide a great diner’s-eye view of the city’s charm and history.

Step into Tia Maria’s European Café, located in the New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park area, and you might think you have dropped into a little café in Europe. People take their relaxation seriously here, stopping for lunch or just sipping an espresso with friends. Grab one of their outdoor tables overlooking the cobblestone streets of downtown and take a Mediterranean vacation without leaving New Bedford!

At the bottom of Union Street, two popular restaurants should add “awesome people-watching’’ to their intriguing menus.

Rose Alley Ale House features some of the best people watching in the city, with an outdoor dining area located along the bottom of Union Street and along the art walk that showcases the city’s creative talents. They feature innovative appetite quenchers in a casual pub environment.

Cork Wine and Tapas recently renovated their beautiful outdoor seating area. This eclectic eatery highlights the city’s fascination with the sea while also offering a range of options for vegetarians and meat lovers. The eatery blends trendy and tradition with taste.

Walk up the charming cobblestone streets for two other options, both overlooking Wings Court. This outdoor space has been described as “New Bedford’s backyard’’ and brings the community together in a shared open environment.

There is soup for you and more at Destination Soups, which features, soups, salads, sandwiches and wraps. Order your food inside then take it out to a table at adjoining Wings Court.

Brick Pizzeria Napoletana satisfies your craving for pizza, in a style inspired by the taste of Naples, Italy. They also feature fresh salads, some appetizers, calzones, and flatbread sandwiches, all made fresh each day. Grab a slice or a pie and check out what’s buzzing on Wings Court.

Sit outside and enjoy the sea breezes of the South End at Cove Surf and Turf, 1500 Cove Road. Choose from seafood specialties such as clam-boils and steamers and meat dishes including slow-cooked BBQ ribs and steak tips. The outdoor seating also overlooks the popular Blue Lane walking and biking trail and the long-standing ice cream stand favorite, Dairy Maid.

In the north end, among the many intriguing restaurants and businesses at Acushnet Avenue, check out Cotali Mar Restaurante, 1178 Acushnet Ave. They specialize in authentic Portuguese cuisine. The cozy fireside seating takes the chill off a colder day while in the summer, enjoy your meal at their outdoor terrace,

Have we whetted your appetite yet? There are just a few of the outside dining opportunities in New Bedford; there are too many to list.
For more information on these locations as well as other options, check out destinationnewbedford.org/dine.


Sandy Quadros Bowles, Contributing Writer 
Photo credit: Merrill’s on the Waterfront
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