pizza outside garden Kaos Pizzeria. | Photo by Ashley Beguin

5 Best Patios: Dine Alfresco In a Garden

Have a little greenery with your ramen or pizza in these beautiful botanical porches around Denver.

BY Steph Wilson


Denver’s dining scene offers a plethora of flora and fauna filled patios to savor a meal amid lush greenery. Explore five verdant verandas to take you out of the city and into a secret garden. Choose from a rustic nihon teien to herb-filled spaces to an epic vertical garden.  Each spot offers a special charm and character to match the restaurant hosting the garden. 

Cuba Cuba Cafe & Bar 

Cuba Cuba has remained a portal to the flavors of Havana since 2001. Here find minty mojitos, sweet plantains, and Cuban espressos transported to a city that rests a mile higher than where the cuisine hails from. Set in two historic homes outfitted with a tropical flair, the Cuban eatery welcomes you to spend a leisurely evening on island time. 

cuba cuba blue house denver garden ashely beguin
Cuba Cuba has a colorful vibe inside and out. | Photo by Ashley Beguin

Sit back, sip on some rum from the bar’s 80-plus vintages. Find a seat in the space, which seamlessly blends the indoors and out thanks to a patio that feels like an extension of the restaurant itself. A living green wall covered in a dense climbing vine adds a touch of flair to the tropical tone set by the salsa music that’s always jamming in the bar. Real palm trees out front seal the deal. As does a plate of ropa vieja, the Cuban national dish. It’s a masterpiece of slow-cooked shredded beef with fresh tomatoes, peppers, and onions over white rice, black beans, and tostones. 1173 Delaware St., Denver,

Potager Restaurant & Winebar and Garden

Tucked away in Capitol Hill, Potager Restaurant & Winebar’s enchanting back patio offers a serene escape for patio dining enthusiasts. As you step onto the half-sunny, half-shaded patio, an overgrown, woody haven sports vines climbing pergolas, herbs, vegetables, and other green things littered about. 

Celebrating its 25th anniversary, Potager doesn’t just have a garden in mind, it’s one of the first to really dedicate the kitchen to the idea of farm-to-table cooking. The chefs at Potager are dedicated to simple cooking and honoring the immediacy of freshly picked vegetables, fruits, and locally sourced fish. This philosophy creates an ever-changing menu that highlights the best of what’s growing right outside the back door. Potager’s patio, bar seating, and open-air garden areas operate on a first-come, first-served basis, encouraging a spontaneous dining experience. (Note that the restaurant will be closed for its annual summer break from Sunday, June 23 through Monday, July 8.) 1109 Ogden St., Denver,

The indoor-outdoor patio at Vital Root. | Photo by James Florio
The indoor-outdoor patio at Vital Root. | Photo by James Florio

Vital Root

For a patio dining experience as fresh and dynamic as the food on your plate, Vital Root is the place to be. Located in the Berkeley neighborhood, the restaurant has made a name due to the dedication to sustainability, whole foods, and fresh ingredients. Guests can see this practice right on the porch where herbs grow and in a 320-square-foot vertical hydroponic farm inside an upcycled shipping container.

The latter is dubbed Beat Box Farm and is a marvel of sustainable innovation that churns out enough fresh produce to feed all of Justin Cucci’s Edible Beats establishments (Root Down, El Five, Linger, and Ophelia’s Electric Soapbox). Imagine biting into greens like red Russian kale, purple mustard greens, and runaway arugula, all so fresh it practically leaps off your plate. Plus, the hydroponic system uses 99 percent less water than traditional farming, filtering and recycling every drop. 2915 Tennyson St., Denver,

bushes with domo sign garden
Domo is surrounded by plants. | Photo by Linnea Covington

Domo Japanese Country Restaurant and Garden

Step into Domo’s outdoor patio and transport to a tranquil Japanese garden, or nihon teien, right in the heart of Denver. After a two-year hiatus that left many yearning for its return, Domo reopened with a smaller menu curated by owner Gaku Homma.

While winter brings diners inside the country-like restaurant, during the warmer months Domo’s garden is a sanctuary of calm, bursting with seasonal foliage and featuring a peaceful koi pond. The rustic seating, crafted from tree trunks and stumps, adds an earthy, authentic touch. Picture yourself at a low wooden table, perched on a cushioned tree stump stool, with stone slabs underfoot that once lined Osage Street’s flagstone sidewalks. The tree trunks, reclaimed from Colorado wildfires and Cherry Creek, add a layer of history and resilience to this already magical setting. 1365 Osage St., Denver, no website

pizza at kaos garden
Kaos Pizzeria comes with a side of homey garden seating. | Photo by Ashley Beguin

Kaos Pizzeria 

Tucked away in Platt Park, Kaos Pizzeria is something of an urban oasis. Here the ivy isn’t just climbing the walls, it’s practically throwing a garden party. This pizzeria’s patio is legendary, a sprawling space where both sun worshippers and shade seekers find a happy place. In fact, Kaos may be the perfect spot for diving into a wood-fired pizza, handmade pastas, and towering sandwiches. 

Dogs sprawl contentedly by their owners’ feet, catching the occasional crumb, while diners relax into chairs that seem designed for lingering over that last sip of chianti. It’s a patio that feels less like stepping out for a bite and more like stepping into a friend’s backyard garden.  And with a happy hour stretching luxuriously from 2 to 6 p.m., it’s where you come for the discounted drinks, but end up staying late for dinner. Kaos Pizzeria, 1439 S. Pearl St., Denver, 

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Steph Wilson

Steph Wilson is a writer, editor, and creative maximalist in Denver. She makes magazines for a living and throws color around the world like confetti for fun.