For all the time we spend looking forward to leisurely, sun-dappled outdoor meals, there’s a frustratingly small window between “still too chilly” and “good Lord get me some air conditioning.” So when one of those elusive perfect days comes along, you’d better be ready.

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The laidback hangout/restaurant/dance-party venue rolled out a charming indoor space this winter, but we have to say we're pretty excited its giant, welcoming backyard is open again for the season. (And if it gets a little chilly, just hop into the on-site sauna.)

50-06 Cooper Ave., Queens;

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Le Fanfare

This charm-filled Italian spot already feels transported from somewhere else thanks to its quiet Greenpoint location. And its dreamy backyard doubles down on that notion with tile-inset tables, string lights and plants galore.

1103 Manhattan Ave., Brooklyn;

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De Maria

Posting up on a sidewalk café and watching the world parade by is a beloved NYC ritual. Do it right (i.e., with an order of snapper ceviche and turmeric potato gratin) at this Nolita hot spot.

19 Kenmare St.;

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Habana Outpost

Attention: The solar-powered, rainbow-umbrella-outfitted, frozen-marg-slinging summertime spot is opening its gates tomorrow. BYO sunglasses.

757 Fulton St., Brooklyn;

North River Lobster Company

Great news, everyone: Manhattan’s one and only floating lobster shack is open for the season, as of yesterday. And if chowing down on a lobster roll on the Hudson River isn’t a way to kick off the season, we don’t know what is.

Pier 81 at W. 41st St. and 12th Ave.;

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What’s not to like about a sunny backyard that serves smoked-chicken tater "tachos" and a really good burger? And lucky us—that garden is officially reopening tomorrow.

295 Flatbush Ave., Brooklyn;

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Boqueria Upper East Side

Why settle for a regular brunch when you can have a tapas-style brunch that includes unlimited sangria and a churro sundae—all while soaking up some much-needed vitamin D?

1460 Second Ave.;

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Anable Basin Sailing Bar & Grill

If you didn’t know there was a big, sprawling waterfront perch in Long Island City with some of the best skyline views anywhere, now you know.

4-40 44th Dr., Queens;

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French Louie

Brunch is good. Brunch on a charming, spacious patio with an Everything Mary (that would be an everything-bagel-spiced Bloody Mary) is better. 

320 Atlantic Ave., Brooklyn;

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Hudson Clearwater

This West Village gem has the whole secret-garden vibe down pat. Plus, this garden happens to have duck hash and avocado toast.

447 Hudson St.;

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Our appetite for pasta knows no season. But if we can feast on cacio e pepe with rainbow cauliflower in a lovely garden like this one, all the better. 

387 Myrtle Ave., Brooklyn;

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The Bonnie

This Astoria gastropub boasts not one but two outdoor areas. Stop by now for rosé sangria on the spacious sidewalk café, then come back in a few weeks when the equally lovely back garden is up and running. 

29-12 23rd Ave., Queens;

Lavender Lake

The leafy back garden of this Gowanus mainstay was made for balmy days (and nights). Throw in some crispy Brussels sprouts and a cocktail or two and we might never leave.

383 Carroll St., Brooklyn;

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As far as we’re concerned, it’s not happy hour unless there are oysters, frosé and Hudson River views. (And maybe a cheese plate or two.) 

Brookfield Place, 225 Liberty St.;

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Super Power

This moody, neon-lit tiki bar has a secret: a magically tropical back garden that goes perfectly with its umbrella-topped, rum-spiked drinks.

722 Nostrand Ave., Brooklyn;


To be fair, this ivy-covered sundeck is actually open year-round, thanks to a couple of industrial-strength heaters. But it truly achieves its potential when the windows are flung wide to let those spring breezes in.

70 Grand St., Brooklyn;

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