Editor’s Note: This is an excerpt from WBUR’s Saturday morning newsletter, The Weekender. If you like what you read and want it in your inbox, sign up here. 

The city’s expanded patio program is back — and this time, it’s permanent.

Dining alfresco is one of my favorite ways to enjoy lunch or brunch on a sunny weekend. There’s a sort of European vibe to it (though I wouldn’t suggest using the term alfresco in Italy) that makes me feel like I’m on vacation… even when I’m right at home in Boston.

You might notice some changes to the outdoor dining scene this year: Most notably, the lack of on-street parking spot “patios” in the North End. City officials say the shift is due to the neighborhood’s unique set up (fun fact: the North End has the densest per capita number of restaurants in the entire state, with 95 restaurants in just over a third of a square mile) that led to traffic and sanitation concerns from some its residents. Read Monday’s edition of WBUR Today for more details on the change.

Still, there’s no lack of outdoor dining options across the Boston area. With this weekend’s favorable forecast in mind, I asked the WBUR Newsroom about their favorite patios, rooftops and alfresco dining spots in the city. Here are the ‘BUR-approved recs:

Orinoco in Harvard Square has a great patio! (And good food.)” — Dianna Bell, arts and culture editor

The Speedway in Brighton is my favorite outdoor patio, a perfect stop after a stroll along the Charles. The tables are big and great for large groups. There are umbrellas for super sunny days so you don’t have to roast in the sun. Notch Brewing beers are delightful and there are multiple food options to grab a bite (Super Bien empanadas — chicken bacon cool ranch or mac and cheese, come on! — are my go-to choices).” — Meagan McGinnes, assistant managing editor for newsletters

Petit Robert Bistro + oysters + rosé = heaven.” — Candice Springer, assistant director at CitySpace

Owl’s Nest on the Esplanade is my vote. Bonus: the dog (shhhh) can come and sit outside of the ropes. We [also] spend a lot of summer afternoons/evenings at Time Out Market’s patio.” — Steven Davy, senior producer for CitySpace [Editor’s note: Boston announced a new policy this week to soon begin allowing people to bring dogs to approved patios and beer gardens.]

Felipe’s Taqueria rooftop!” — Jacob Garcianewsroom fellow

“The Naco Taco patio is fun!” — Amy Sokolow, associate producer

Bow Market has such a vibe on sunny days. Also, Bloc’s patio if you’re feeling coffee in Somerville.” — Katelyn Harrop, podcast producer

“I stop in to buy delicious sandwiches and pie and other treats at a tiny independent bakery owned by one of my best friends — Drive-By-Pies in Brookline. Then, I walk over to Jamaica Pond or the Brookline Reservoir and have a picnic.” — Sharon Brody, news anchor

It’s a beautiful day and you want to dine outdoors. Where are you headed? Send us an email at [email protected] and tell us about your favorite hidden (or not-so-hidden) gem. Your response will help us put together a future newsletter rounding up the best reader recs!

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