There’s something about sitting outside that just makes beer taste better. At least, that’s what we’ve found at Chicago’s best bar patios. And since Chicago is one of the top beer city’s in the country, we have plenty of spots to test out our hypothesis.

Here’s a roundup of just a few bar patios and beer gardens in Chicago.

ERIS Brewery and Cider House

Drinking beer on the ERIS patio
ERIS ©Adam Alexander Photography 2019

Come for the cider, stay for the vibes. This women-owned brewery and cider house is housed in a stunning 107-year-old space. The historic building (a former Korean Presbyterian church, and a Masonic Temple before that) has been converted into an industrial-cool bar and dining room, where you can order cider flights and dishes from the modern American menu. Just outside, you’ll find ample patio space where you can enjoy your freshly made cider in the sun. 4240 W. Irving Park Rd.

Moody’s Pub

The old-school spot in Edgewater is affectionately known as the neighborhoods “de facto back porch.” And the secluded outdoor patio really does feel like someones porch — always packed with locals sipping on Chicago-made brews or gathered around a picnic table digging into Moody’s famous burgers and cheese fries. Order a pitcher of beer and settle in for a classic summer night in Chicago. 5910 N. Broadway St.

Best Large City in the U.S.

Fountainhead
Fountainhead

This low-key bar and gastropub features a long list of beers and creative, organic pub food. You can enjoy both on their seasonal rooftop patio, complete with heat lamps and a fireplace for chillier nights. Fountainhead is located just a few blocks from Malt Row, Ravenswood’s brewery haven, if you feel like making a bar crawl out of it. 1970 W. Montrose Ave.

Tiny Tapp
Kayaks at the Cove

If you’re looking for a waterfront beer garden, this is the place to be. Tiny Tapp is located on the scenic Chicago Riverwalk, which means you can enjoy a cold drink and sweeping river views at the same time. Plus — beer, wine, and cocktails on tap! There’s also a full menu of munchies that pair perfectly with a cold beer, like street corn nachos and Chicago style hot dogs. 55 W. Riverwalk South

The Moonlighter
The Moonlighter

At first glance, The Moonlighter seems like your typical neighborhood bar. But there are a few unexpected twists. First, there’s the world-class cocktail program designed by the team behind Scofflaw (the acclaimed cocktail bar just around the corner). Then there’s the entire vegetarian and vegan-friendly menu that includes everything from elotes to blue cheeseburgers. But the thing that keeps locals coming back? The spacious, dog-friendly patio where you can enjoy cold pints of more than 20 craft beers on taps. 3204 W. Armitage Ave. 

Kaiser Tiger

kaiser tiger

Kaiser Tiger has one of the largest (and most popular) patios on Randolph Street, also known as “Restaurant Row” in the trendy West Loop. The outdoor space is outfitted with bocce ball courts in the summer and curling in the winter. But you can enjoy their extensive beer list (filled with options from local breweries) and meat-centric menu (think bacon-covered everything) all year-round. 1415 W. Randolph St.

Frontier

Frontier Beer Garden
Courtesy of Frontier

If you’re coming to Frontier, you’ll want to bring a group (and your appetite). That’s because the West Town spot is known for their whole animal experiences, where you can order entire goats, alligators, antelopes, wild boar, and more, for a large-format dinner with your choice of sides. But even non-carnivores will love the outdoor beer garden, where a large fireplace and string lights create a cozy vibe. 1072 N. Milwaukee Ave.

Miller Lite Beer Garden at Navy Pier

Miller Lite Beer Garden at Navy Pier

Enjoy live music on the lake, from reggae to blues to DJs, at the bustling Miller Light Beer Garden. Located on Navy Pier, the seasonal spot serves bar favorites like chicken tenders and loaded nachos, along with a long list of beers, cocktails, and frozen drinks. Plus, you’ll have a front-row seat for the fireworks displays every Wednesdays and Saturdays during the summer. 700 E. Grand Ave.