5 Places to Eat Al Fresco in Stockton
We have the perfect guide for dining outside in the warmer weather at some of our favorite restaurants.
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There’s something about dining outdoors that makes any dining experience a little more special, and it’s even better when Fido tags along! Day or night, eating al fresco can add drama to a romantic meal, or inspire fun conversations with newly made friends.
Stockton is one place you can count on for ideal outdoor ambiance. Its mild climate keeps the evenings cool and comfortable, and the breeze off the water keeps the day from getting too hot.
Plus, no matter the weather, there’s a patio to fit your mood and food to fit your taste buds and your budget.
Centrale Kitchen and Bar - 1825 Pacific Avenue
Located in Stockton’s prolific shopping district, the Miracle Mile, there’s no mistaking the garden patio at Centrale Kitchen and Bar. Twinkling lights decorate the steel patio ceiling, the perfect place to escape the sun.
Centrale is known for mixing classic American fare with modern techniques and local ingredients. They’ve done the same thing with their décor, which mixes brick and dark wood tones with contemporary lighting, a marble bar top and sleek design.
You’ll find great bites here, as well as enlightening cocktails, craft beer on tap and a sophisticated wine list that seasonally rotates.
The patio is special because it faces the pedestrian sidewalk of the bustling shopping district. It’s a great place to meet up with friends for happy hour, or make new ones as people pass by this popular Stockton restaurant.
Papapavlo’s Bistro & Bar - 501 N. Lincoln Center
There’s no missing the Lincoln Center in Stockton; just look for the sign with the large “L” on it and you’re there. Papapavlo's commands the same attention from within this shopping center, with a sprawling patio and two-story building.
Since 1989, this restaurant has been serving traditional European food in Stockton with a Mediterranean twist. Expect hearty portions of steak, lamb and fish, as well as pastas, salads and sandwiches. They’ve also got weekly entrée specials that highlight what’s growing fresh locally.
Although the inside of Papapavlo's is stunning—earthy colors and an open kitchen make it easily inviting—this pretty patio is well shaded and the perfect place to enjoy a fancy meal al fresco.
Squeeze Burger & Brew - 856 Benjamin Holt Drive
Sometimes entertaining friends at home can be challenging—limited parking, not enough seating—but eating out can be expensive, or challenging without a reservation. Lucky for you, Squeeze Burger & Brew is the perfect spot to enjoy a delicious burger in a setting no fancier than your own backyard. Plus, they have good beer on tap—a lot of it.
TVs line the inside walls of the stone bar, with more than a dozen tap handles to choose from. And nothing goes with beer quite like burgers, which they’ve done up right here, with 100 percent fresh ground beef, locally baked buns, and their famous cheese skirts that drape over their burgers.
Two large doors connect the patio with the interior bar, making it a great space for large gatherings, allowing guests to move in and out freely, and easily order another round of beers.
Midgley’s Public House - 296 Lincoln Center
Also located in Lincoln Center, Midgley’s Public House is one of Stockton’s most beloved and well-known eateries with a patio, made famous by its owner, respected restaurateur and reality TV star, chef Michael Midgley.
Specializing in small plates, meals to share and general deliciousness, menu offerings are thoughtfully prepared and made with quality proteins like lobster, rack of lamb and a 48-ounce tomahawk ribeye you can swing around like a hammer. You can even order a whole hog if you’ve got 10 friends to share it with.
Whatever you order, make sure to sit out on the patio this summer, where you can enjoy craft cocktails in the summer breeze, and showcase your whole hog for the world to see, if you’re really hungry.
Valley Brewing Company - 157 W. Adams Street
Valley Brewing Company is Stockton's only microbrewery. The building is unassuming, but a welcoming patio in front of the brewery covered with umbrellas and peppered with green plants is invitation enough to check out what’s inside.
Inside you’ll discover all the ingredients you need for a good time, including a beautiful wood bar, music venue for events, really good beer (more than 30 on tap!) and locally sourced, pub-style food.
But it’s the shady patio that takes the cake, which serves as both a neighborhood hangout and a shady retreat from ordinary indoor dining. At night, and particularly on evenings when Valley Brewing hosts live entertainment, the garden patio really comes to life. Don’t miss a chance to mix and mingle at the one and only microbrewery in Stockton.
So, what are you waiting for? The next time you decide to eat out in Stockton, pick a place with a patio and enjoy your food and drink with a side of beautiful weather. Explore other dining options here.