The best restaurants to dine al fresco | Living North

The best restaurants to dine al fresco


Grantley Hall
Quick, the sun is out, find a sunny spot and order lunch. Here are some of the best places for al fresco eating and drinking across the North

The Beehive, Earsdon
Located on a winding two-mile road that links Earsdon to the coast, The Beehive is an 18th century country pub with a one-acre secret garden that is even home to resident goats. With St Mary’s lighthouse in the far distance, grab a picnic bench, dispatch the children to the play area and unwind with one of the Beehive’s sharing boards and a glass of something cold.

Lord Crewe Arms, Blanchland
The main part of The Lord Crewe Arms formed part of what was Blanchland Abbey in the 12th century, before it was converted into a manor house and then an inn. The large walled garden here was the Abbey’s cloisters and is a glorious spot to enjoy lunch. Bar Manager Robin has created a special section on the drinks menu called garden cocktails while Chef Simon Hicks’ ‘bait bites’ menu is a delicious nod to Northern pub culture. 

The Lookout, Seaham Harbour
This contemporary, nautical-themed café in the Seaham Harbour Marina has unrivalled views of the Durham coastline. The large raised balcony area has lots of colourful chairs and wooden tables to sit at and enjoy great coffee from with a delicious menu offering homemade scones, paninis, hot carvery sandwiches, jacket potatoes with a daily specials board always worth a look.

The Boat Inn, Kielder
The waterside setting of the Boat Inn has uninterrupted panoramic views of the expansive Kielder Water. Last year top North East fish chef Richard Sim joined in a consultancy basis, introducing a new menu of local fare that includes fish platters, twice-baked cheese soufflé with nettle pesto, venison, roast trout, and fennel and smoked bacon salad.

Shears Yard, Leeds
The fine folks behind Art’s Café set up this independent kitchen and bar to celebrate the best of modern European food, and it does it well. Grab a cocktail, too, and head out to their terrace under the stars.

Middleton Lodge, Middleton Tyas
North Yorkshire’s award-winning country retreat, Middleton Lodge Estate, has created an all-new outdoor dining experience at its Coach House Restaurant, just in time for summer and the release of a new seasonal menu. Expect a menu inspired by ingredients from the Estate’s everchanging kitchen garden, including beetroot and horseradish cured salmon with garden flowers, and Moroccan chicken and carrot salad with cous cous and coriander.

Grantley Hall, Ripon
Set amongst beautifully-manicured gardens, with the tranquil sounds of the River Skell in the background, Norton Bar & Courtyard at Grantley Hall serves classic cocktails, tantalising spirits and a menu, created using the freshest and most authentic Yorkshire ingredients.

The Cricket Inn, Sheffield
This good Yorkshire pub is right on the edge of the Peak District National Park, has a great beer garden, serves high-grade British classics like Jaipur-beer battered fish with curried lentils and chips, and is named after cricket. Yorkshire-tastic. 

Published in: August 2020

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