Outdoor dining is one of the joys of summer, but what if you could eat al fresco year-round? A few restaurants in town have made it possible to eat outside in winter, but most are weather dependent, and one spot is absolutely romantic. Here is a list of winter outdoor dining in Princeton.
I recommend calling the restaurant and requesting outdoor seating that day due to weather. Wear a warm coat and possibly bring a blanket in the evening. Also, wear insulated boots, or very warm shoes, because the ground will still be cold. Avoid keeping both feet flat on the ground for too long.
They offer views of Palmer Square. It’s enclosed, so must enter through restaurant. Not sure if there will be heaters used, so outdoor dining might only last a couple of weeks longer. Call ahead.
The set-back nook off Palmer Square gives you the opportunity to people watch, yet you have a more private dining experience. There are heaters, but it’s not covered, so it’s weather permitted. Call ahead.
The restaurant is on the second floor, so the balcony gives you a nice view of Nassau Street. Heating lamps run on cool days, but the balcony is closed if it’s too cold or inclement since it is not covered. It’s weather permitted, so call ahead.
Blue Point Grill
This is pure sidewalk seating on a slightly quieter part of Nassau Street. The ideal location for people watching. There are heaters to keep you warm, but it’s weather permitted. Call ahead.
Alchemist & Barrister
The first Princeton restaurant to offer year-round dining. It has an enclosed, covered patio and heaters. You will stay dry, but it might get chilly. Call ahead.
The designated area for outdoor seating is basically a lean-to. It has three walls and one open side that has an all-weather curtain that can be closed during colder temperatures. The permanent roof protects you from precipitation, but the gables fitted with windows to let in more light. There is a long gas fireplace and heating elements on the beams of the open ceiling plus standing heaters, making this the warmest outdoor seating in winter. Along with the soft lighting and delectable small plates that you can share, it also designates it as one of Princeton’s most romantic restaurant experiences in the evening (inside or outdoors). Blankets are available for those who still feel a bit chilled.