Ahhh, the music of wavelets lapping a bulkhead, the reflection of city lights on a still river, the sound of crickets in the night. Could there be anything better than dining en plein air? Herein, alfresco for foodies.
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The big clay pots on C.W. Harborside’s patio on the Christina Riverwalk explode with pink geraniums, and wrought-iron tables and chairs surround a crescent-shaped bar under an expansive canopy that twinkles with tiny white lights at night. Happy hour foods such as hot wings and grilled turkey legs are popular. It’s a perfect place to watch rowers on the Christina. 110 S. West St., Wilmington, 658-6626
The Deer Park Tavern
Two decks of spacious porch wrap the front and side of the legendary Deer Park. Enjoy an ahi burger or the famous nachos. Sunday brunch is an affair as popular for unique offerings such as Eggs Chesapeake (Eggs Benedict made with crab cakes instead of Canadian bacon) as for its 16-ounce Bloody Marys. 108 W. Main St., Newark, 369-9414
Del Rose Café
Del Rose’s patio is set between the outer brick wall of the restaurant and the massive granite blocks of a railroad bridge, a study in contrasting textures which, protected by a beautiful wrought iron gate, makes a surprisingly cozy area for enjoying the signature chopped antipasto. 1707 Delaware Ave. Wilmington, 656-3015
The gated courtyard at DiFebo’s is decorated with blue umbrellas and wicker furniture, which makes it feel thoroughly Mediterranean. Try cavatelli alla Bolognese while relaxing by the fountain. Entrée salads are a perfect fit. Top yours with slices of filet mignon, fresh fish, grilled shrimp or a crab cake. 789 Garfield Pkwy., Bethany Beach, 539-4550
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